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James Ray Defends Himself

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What did you do after making sure 911 was called?
I did everything I could to help. There was a medical doctor there, and I was having her make sure that everything was being run appropriately. I held people’s hands, I stroked their hair, I talked to them, I held IV for the paramedics. I was there the entire time doing whatever I could do to help until I was detained by the detectives.

One of your former employees, Melinda Martin, has said that you did nothing to help. Where was she when you were helping?
She was performing CPR, which she was trained to do. And I was there behind her at one time until I was asked to go look for a defibrillator.

You’ve been quoted as saying, in the tent, “You’re not going to die. You might think you are, but you’re not going to die.” Did you say that?
I think those statements have been—in fact, I don’t think, I know those statements have been taken completely out of context. There’s no one who would say that I was talking literally. If you look at the Judeo-Christian tradition, it’s full of references to death and rebirth. In fact, the apostle Paul, who was pretty much the founder of Christianity post-Jesus’s death, said, “I die daily.” Now, did he really mean that literally? No, of course not. What is meant there is that, you know, you let go of the things that no longer serve you and you move forward. You know, from a physical perspective, a lot of times people running a foot race will be completely winded and say, “God, I feel like I’m going to die,” but do they mean that literally? No, absolutely not.

In a conference call after Sedona, a woman who was identified as speaking on behalf of James Ray International and who was identified as a kind of medium or channeler, said that the victims had been having out-of-body experiences and were having so much fun that they chose not to return to their bodies.
Well first of all, that’s not absolutely correct. The person you’re speaking of was a volunteer at the event. She was not a representative of JRI and she was not a channeler. She said that Angel Valley Ranch had brought a channeler into that meeting and that’s what that person had told her. She was just relaying the message.

What do you think about what she said?
I have no comment. I don’t think I’m qualified to talk about channeling.

So it might be true and it might not be true: You don’t have any sense either way?
I really don’t, no. I think that’s up to an interpretation of each individual.

The “White Paper” says that you sent a message to sweat-lodge participants that night. What was the message?
That I loved them and I wished nothing more than to be with them.

When did you leave Arizona?
I left the next morning around lunch time because I had to drive back to Phoenix to catch a flight.

Why didn’t you speak to the Spiritual Warrior Retreat participants before you left?
I asked on several occasions, when I was being detained, if I could possibly go speak to them, and that just wasn’t possible. The detectives were doing their jobs.

Did James Ray “the citizen” create a crime in Sedona? And did James Ray “the man” do something wrong, however you choose to define that—irresponsible, amoral, unethical, or careless?
[Lawyer interjects] Lawyer: I think you have to rely on the “White Paper” for that. [The White Paper asserts that Ray “did not commit criminally negligent conduct.”]

Is there anything at all, either on that day or since, that you wish you had done differently?
Lawyer: This is another one of those things that I think the “White Paper” is just going to have to speak for itself.

Why didn’t you or anyone from your organization contact the family of Kirby Brown, one of the victims, until five days after she died?
Well I reached out to the families as soon as I could. What do you do in those situations? I think we all would like to believe that we would do the exact, perfect thing. Would I do some things differently? Probably. But I did the best I could at the time.

A basic principal of your teaching is that the universe is at your command; you speak of the power of intention. I wonder how you perceive the tragedy in Sedona in light of those teachings. Did you in some way cause this to happen?
Well I don’t … First of all, here’s the situation: Three people have died in transitions. What I’m really focused on right now is to have my team find out exactly why that happened and bring it to some type of closure.


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