Author Topic: Andrew Soliz  (Read 57222 times)

Offline StudentofLife

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #60 on: July 11, 2012, 08:03:14 pm »
Quote
SoL,

I believe you owe earth an apology.  Have you bothered to read any of her many posts to these forums which indicate who she is and what community she is a MEMBER OF and LIVES IN?  She has every right to defend the traditions of her People.  Are LDN people supposed to leave the determination of the fate of their culture to well intentioned white people simply because of abject poverty?

Read more: http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?action=post;topic=3274.45;num_replies=59#ixzz20LTHlc00

I owe earth an apology because of her own statements? I have written nothing that is not factually true and based upon personal experience. I went so far as to state clearly I am not insulting earth as a person, but what she has written is inaccurate and logically flawed. I mean no disrespect to the posters on this site, the forum administration, the native people, or this site itself, but to list someone as a fraud without any evidence and pure conjecture is essentially slander.

At no point did I suggest she has no right to defend the traditions of her people. I did suggest no one has a right to accuse another of something such as fraud without evidence, and there is no evidence listed in this thread. This thread is incorrectly placed in "confirmed fraud" areas of this site, when there is nothing confirmed other than strong opinions of people whom read something online and have no real contact with the tribe in question or the person in question.

I am happy to answer any questions asked of me, but none were asked. Instead my entire post was dismissed by sky simply because I am not native and because I miswrote the name of the reservation.

Now, I'm being accused of a personal attack I did not make, when in reality, the perception I have is I am being personally attacked for defending the man. Why would I apologize for an insult I did not make and an offense that is made up?

If earth has a great reputation on this forum, awesome. However, her response to me was written poorly and included no substance. Again, this is not a personal attack on anyone. I am simply explaining the situation.

If there are other reasons Andrew is considered a fraud by the natives here, please I would absolutely implore you to explain as his spiritual guidance affects many, and many of these people are good people - including I think myself. I don't want anyone to be mislead in the least. However, the examples I see listing him as a fraud are: He works for a retreat and while working for a retreat he offers sweat lodges. He also offers sweats for free, without mention of money, off the retreat. His adoption is accused as being false, but the Cross family seems to think the adoption is real, as well as the Oglala tribe. Andrew does indeed dance at Sun Dance and is respected by the natives there so far as their behavior demonstrates.

I am happy to civilly discuss this, but the responses thus far come from a predisposition of minds already made up based upon inaccurate information. I still do not see any quoted texts of Andrew suggesting he is authorized to do anything in Vernal's name. Andrew has only stated in the quotes in this thread he has the permission of his adopted native family, the Cross family, to do what he does.. which is perform sweats and provide spiritual advice.

When I mentioned abject poverty it was in support of my argument that it's not realistic to expect someone from the Oglala tribe to jump on the internet to defend Andrew. How is the judgement of fraud against him supposed to be fair in any way when the conclusion is based on nothing but a retreat he works with over charging for medicine bags?

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #61 on: July 11, 2012, 09:38:13 pm »

1. I was referred to Andrew by a well respected and trustworthy friend of mine in Los Angeles.

2. My understanding of what Andrew does with the often referenced site "Alchemy of the Heart" is sort of a contracted work type gig. The website is not managed by him and he does not own the company from what I've gathered. It seems the sort of situation where the organisation hires Andrew as their spiritual guru and while Andrew is at their retreats he gives advice, performs services, and offers sweats. This may be a "loop hole" for in a way technically having sweats paid for, but not by Andrews design. Attendees seem to pay Alchemy of the Heart for the retreats, and Andrew happens to also offer Sweats at these retreats while there.

3. I have not personally attended one of these retreats though, I've only spoken with many who have and are involved with Andrew. The sweats I attended at Andrews home are absolutely free and money is not mentioned. Donations are not even mentioned, but when asked Andrew will point out a little donation container where someone could put any amount if they so chose. However, again, I do not have personal experience with these retreats and this is only what I've "gathered" in researching and through overheard conversations. If you want to discredit this first paragraph then that's fine, I'd understand.

4. Regarding Sun Dances, I recently attended a Sun Dance in South Dakota with Andrew and the Oglala Sioux tribe, whom Vernon Cross lead. I met Darlene Cross and the majority of the tribe there. Andrew is indeed a Sun Dancer and adopted by Darlene's family. I personally met the family, Michael - Vernon's son and co-patriarch, Eric - Also Vernon's son and co-patriarch, and many others. Andrew pierces at the Sun Dance and does not claim any sort of official leadership in the ceremonies that is noticeable to a non-native. Andrew has never claimed to myself or others that I've met to lead Sun Dances or have any authority to do so. Darlene absolutely seems to trust and love Andrew from the interactions I've witnessed. I've stood in one of the Cross family homes and met nieces, cousins, brothers and sisters. They all seem to love and respect Andrew. Andrew refers to Darlene as "mom", Michael as his "brother", etc.. and this is accepted by the family. For all intents and purposes he is a member of their family from their demonstrated perspective and his own.

5. I am aware of Andrew working with men to provide retreats for western men interested in spirituality. The cost of these retreats and where the money goes, I have not asked nor do I care. {Al's note:Bolding is mine] I have heard mention similar to other posts here defending Andrew that much of the costs go to operating expenses, as the retreats are typically held in isolated and beautiful places owned by a specific family - the family is otherwise un-associated with Andrew.

6. I would suggest from my personal experience, if Vernon is considered legitimate, and if the Cross family on the Pinewood reservation and the Oglala are a respected Lakota tribe, then I can vouch for the legitimacy of Andrews adoption into the family and their deep respect for him, and thus Andrew should not be considered a fraud.

7. Much of the speculation and misdirected assumptions in this thread are exactly that. People are posting here with preconceived notions and intentions not based in fact. If you really want to confirm Andrew's legitimacy, contact the Cross family directly! Michael has a phone, but the number I will not give out. I'd imagine other Lakota could find a way to contact the family, but I'm not too familiar with how in-touch other families are with each other on the reservation there.

8. To list Andrew in the confirmed fraud section based solely upon the *opinions* in this thread and unsupported arguments is a disservice to him, and to the credibility of this website.

9. I do not see any confirmed proof beyond conjecture and arguments of Andrew being a fraud, and my own personal experiences suggest the complete opposite, so what does this website base its decisions upon? Irrational arguments and preconceived notions?

10. If Andrew Soliz is a fraud, then Vernon's surviving family is supporting this fraud wholeheartedly,

11. and so is the Oglala Sioux tribe. This seems absolutely unlikely and absurd.

12. Andrew's legitimacy can 100% be confirmed by actually doing the legwork to contact the cross family.

13. I mean no disrespect to other posters in this thread or this site, but what is posted in this thread attacking Andrew's reputation, and this thread being moved to confirmed frauds, absolutely hurts the credit of those accusers here and this website.

Edit: I wrote "Sacred Heart" when I meant to write "Alchemy of the Heart" for the website I mention.

Hello,
I added numbers to make it clearer what I am replying to.

1. You do not name this person. Why?

2. You understand incorrectly. If you had bothered to actually read the thread, you'd see the site is owned by Soliz and his wife.

3. False. If you had bothered to actually read the thread, the website owned by Soliz clearly says payment required in advance.

4. False. You clearly are lying here. Like Earth pointed out, Cross died some years back.

Again...If you had bothered to actually read the thread, you'd see his widow Darlene has specifically said her husband did not authorize anyone.

Again...If you had bothered to actually read the thread, you'd see that Soliz has consistently refused to answer when asked why he lies about being authorized when Darlene Cross says otherwise.

5. The fact you openly say you don't care that ceremonies are being sold says volumes. You clearly understand as little about Native ceremony as every other member of Soliz's circle that has come here.

6. False. Once again, If you had bothered to actually read the thread...you'd have seen the evidence and would not be making one false statement after another.

7. False. The only falsehoods, speculation, and misdirected assumptions being made in here are by you. Once again...If you had bothered to actually read the thread, you would not be looking either foolish or a liar.

8. False. The only disservice being done in here is by you. You defend him without knowing anything, without bothering to look at the evidence right in front of your face.

Are you always this lazy in your spiritual search?

If you had bothered to actually read the thread...

9. You don't see any because you were too lazy to look. That seems to be typical of every last Soliz defender so far.

If you had bothered to actually read the thread...

10. But they are not. Darlene specifically says NO ONE was authorized by her husband and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.

If you had bothered to actually read the thread...

11. It is absurd. Simply because it is not true. And you would know that...If you had bothered to actually read the thread.

12. We did the work. You did not. You were so incredibly lazy you could not read what was inches from your face.

If you had bothered to actually read the thread...

13. Actually you did quite a bit of disrespect. You did that disrespect the first time you convinced yourself  that pay to pray was not that, simply because it was done indirectly.

You were being disrespectful when you attended that stereotypical mockery of Native culture Soliz has in his home. Playing Indian in a tipi in a backyard is not just disrespectful but racist. It's like a kid playing dressup on Halloween. But a small child has an excuse. What is yours?

You were being disrespectful when you said you did not care if Soliz sells ceremony in his men's retreats.

You were being disrespectful when you made lots of unfounded accusations in here with no evidence.

And finally you were being quite disrespectful when you insulted Earth, and then went on to smear her for another very long post yet again.

You are banned from posting for one week. But you can still login and contact people by IM.

Contact the mods by IM or earth by IM. You need to think about your insults, lack of respect, scattershot accusations, smears, personal attacks, and general immaturity.

If you can be more adult and less insulting, and actually know what you're talking about by bothering to read before leveling false accusations, then the ban will be lifted.

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #62 on: July 11, 2012, 09:44:57 pm »

I owe earth an apology because of her own statements? I have written nothing that is not factually true and based upon personal experience. I went so far as to state clearly I am not insulting earth as a person, but what she has written is inaccurate and logically flawed. I mean no disrespect to the posters on this site, the forum administration, the native people, or this site itself, but to list someone as a fraud without any evidence and pure conjecture is essentially slander.

At no point did I suggest she has no right to defend the traditions of her people. I did suggest no one has a right to accuse another of something such as fraud without evidence, and there is no evidence listed in this thread. This thread is incorrectly placed in "confirmed fraud" areas of this site, when there is nothing confirmed other than strong opinions of people whom read something online and have no real contact with the tribe in question or the person in question.

I am happy to answer any questions asked of me, but none were asked. Instead my entire post was dismissed by sky simply because I am not native and because I miswrote the name of the reservation.

Now, I'm being accused of a personal attack I did not make, when in reality, the perception I have is I am being personally attacked for defending the man. Why would I apologize for an insult I did not make and an offense that is made up?

If earth has a great reputation on this forum, awesome. However, her response to me was written poorly and included no substance. Again, this is not a personal attack on anyone. I am simply explaining the situation.

If there are other reasons Andrew is considered a fraud by the natives here, please I would absolutely implore you to explain as his spiritual guidance affects many, and many of these people are good people - including I think myself. I don't want anyone to be mislead in the least. However, the examples I see listing him as a fraud are: He works for a retreat and while working for a retreat he offers sweat lodges. He also offers sweats for free, without mention of money, off the retreat. His adoption is accused as being false, but the Cross family seems to think the adoption is real, as well as the Oglala tribe. Andrew does indeed dance at Sun Dance and is respected by the natives there so far as their behavior demonstrates.

I am happy to civilly discuss this, but the responses thus far come from a predisposition of minds already made up based upon inaccurate information. I still do not see any quoted texts of Andrew suggesting he is authorized to do anything in Vernal's name. Andrew has only stated in the quotes in this thread he has the permission of his adopted native family, the Cross family, to do what he does.. which is perform sweats and provide spiritual advice.

When I mentioned abject poverty it was in support of my argument that it's not realistic to expect someone from the Oglala tribe to jump on the internet to defend Andrew. How is the judgement of fraud against him supposed to be fair in any way when the conclusion is based on nothing but a retreat he works with over charging for medicine bags?

Talk about willful blindness...

Is there any reason not to delete this whole insulting, disrespectful,ignorant, lying mess? Outside of making it clear exactly why he was banned.

SOL (talk about an unfortunate choice of initials), that apology is still necessary. You need to come in here with less a sense of entitlement and attack mode.

Offline earthw7

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #63 on: July 12, 2012, 02:52:26 pm »
Pine Ridge, my apologies for not correcting the mistake when I reread what I posted.

I am aware Vernon died and at no point did I suggest he is alive.

At this point you're demonstrating an irrational personal vendetta against a man you may or may not know. You're suggesting my personal account of experience with Andrew Soliz is invalid because 1) I mistyped Pine Ridge, and 2) because I'm not native? How many Oglala do you think are on the Internet right now googling Andrew? When I was there on their reservation it seemed few even had plumbing. They live in what has been degraded seemingly by the US Government policies into essentially a third world country. They are distraught. Darlene is supposed to jump online and defend Andrew from misinterpreted information? Where did you pull "idol worship"  from? Because I respect the man and have actual personal experience with his family and the Oglala, vs your complete and ill founded speculation?  Or, are you insulting my spiritual beliefs of which you know nothing?

You are literally trying to refute two personal eye witness accounts through biased speculation and irrational arguments. I'm not insulting you as a person, mind you, but in this thread it appears you are barely avoiding outright unjustified slander.

SoL,

I believe you owe earth an apology.  Have you bothered to read any of her many posts to these forums which indicate who she is and what community she is a MEMBER OF and LIVES IN?  She has every right to defend the traditions of her People.  Are LDN people supposed to leave the determination of the fate of their culture to well intentioned white people simply because of abject poverty? 

I will apologize to you, it has been a long week, today is my anniversry of my son death and i get a little out of hand and say things i should not because my heart is hurt.
On the Other hand I am a warrior first for the people, my nation and my lway of life. I live on my reservation I have Oglala blood, my family the Fast Wolf's and Randall comes from the Wanbli area, but i live on the Standing Rock Reservation. I do my best to live my culture everyday as my parent and grandparents, Yes i do not take your words as truth because you are non native using my way of life like you owe it,you did not not read the proclamation that says NO NON INDIAN SHOULD LEAD INIPIS (SWEAT LODGE) with your friend leading our ceremonies he is in violation of our proclamation. At NO Time EVER has anyone ever been adopted a person into a Tribal Nation only a family can adopt and that does not mean that person has any right to ceremonies of our people, they can attend them but not teach our ways. I understand life on the reservation as well as my history and our social standing among the capitalist. Wow you are worried about our plumping when people are stealing our way of life, What are you saying because my people are poor it is al right to steal our ways?? We are degraded and distraught? That is not what i see from my eyes. Which Oglalas? You make it sound like you have the whole nation backing you but i know my people and you do not. Today since Vernon death we have a whole list of whiteman who go around claiming that have some sort of right to take our ceremonies, one man does not have the right to give away our nation rights. Please understand that i position is not to attack a person but to attack the abuse of my culture
In Spirit

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #64 on: July 13, 2012, 03:57:28 pm »
SoL emailed an apology and further questions. I'm posting it below followed by my answer to him.

----------

Dear Administrators,

My username on your forums is "Student of Life" and I was recently banned for a week because I was insensitive in the tone and language used when arguing in defense of Andrew Soliz. I must absolutely apologize for my indiscretions in the manner I approached this subject and in which I responded to Earth's posts. My intentions meant no ill will, however I am not accustomed to these types of discussions and as you have suggested, my cultural understanding of your background and point of view is limited.

I was told I was banned but could still IM, but if by IM you mean private messages on the forum, the forum tells me this is not allowed. If by IM you meant using earth's profile information to add her to AIM or Yahoo chat, these are services I don't yet use.

The subject of Andrew Soliz as a fraud is very important to me, as he provides spiritual advice to myself and many others I've met who seem like genuinely well intentioned and good people in their society. I do not want anyone hurt by the actions of a fraud. I have a couple questions about your native tradition I'm hoping you may find time to answer in an effort to better understand why Andrew is considered a fraud.

I did read the entire thread but as, like you suggest, I am very ignorant of your ways, there are aspects I'm not quite "getting".

Primarily, is it the case where if the Cross family from the Oglala tribe properly adopted Andrew into their family, is it the case he would still without argument be unauthorized to perform the sweat lodge ceremony, even if the Cross family approved of him doing so? I understand you are saying based in Darlenes statements the family has not done so, but I need to understand is it culturally forbidden for an adopted Oglala and/or Lakota in general to perform sweats regardless of family approval?

Andrew tells us he is now a pipe carrier, is there any way this could be true of an adopted Lakota?

Again I apologize for my previous rash tone and conclusions, and for any insults I unintentionally bestowed on other respected members of this forum, including earth. I do honestly want to understand why Andrew is considered a fraud, and it seems my thick head couldn't figure it out from the evidence posted.

Again, I'm wondering if it is absolutely not allowed for an adopted Lakota to be a pipe carrier and lead sweats, even if they were theoretically given permission by the surviving Cross family?

Another point I don't understand is the statement that Vernon did not authorize anyone, but both of his sons Michael and Eric lead a Sundance in what they say to us is a "combined alter". If Vernon did not pass anything on, does this entail his children are not authorized to do what they do? I'm not making an argument in this question, I'm sincerely asking to help my understanding.

I have watched Andrew greet Darlene as "Mom" and refer to their family as his own in front of them. I have watched Andrew Pierce and dance at Sun Dance, but are you suggesting if this is true, what he does in his personal life may be unauthorized and hidden from the family? It is hard for me to understand how the family would seem so accepting of Andrew if they knew he was performing unauthorized ceremonies.

I absolutely and sincerely would appreciate the answers to these questions and your patience in dealing with my lack of understanding and insensitivities. I mean no ill will and only hope to help others by understanding.

Thank you,
SoL

--------
Hello,
I accept you at your word when you tell me of your good intentions.

It was my mistake not realizing that blocking posting also blocks IMs. I'll forward the message below to the other mods and Earth. And I will also post these emails and lift the ban.

Adoption into a family never gives one any supposed right to perform ceremony. Lakota traditions says one must be not only Lakota and raised in the community but also fluent in the language. On all three counts Soliz has no right to do Lakota ceremony. Most tribes have similar requirements, and all regard the sale of any ceremony as deeply offensive, crass, and making the ceremony useless. Donations, unprompted and unpressured, are allowed. Having a set price is not.

Darlene's public statement is that Vernon did not pass on authorization to anyone, period.

We have asked Soliz several times, as well as his followers, to clarify, get a statement from Darlene or any other Cross family member. Soliz and followers abruptly go quiet and don't answer when pressed on the question.

Al Carroll, moderator.

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #65 on: July 13, 2012, 05:06:55 pm »
SOL, you need to get up to speed on community standards, and community realities. I think we became frustrated with you because you kept saying, "Where's the information?" when the information is all over this site. You said, "Where are the Lakota?" when we have a number of respected Lakota who post here and work with us. I think you fell for some non-Native's lie that NDN people are not online. There is actually a thriving community of Native people from the reservations who communicate via social networking. A recent study showed NDNs have adopted social media more than any other ethnic minority in the US.

You have an opportunity here. This is not a forum of random strangers - this is an established network of Native people and allies, many of whom have known one another for decades, and who work together in person to protect ceremony and culture. There is a lot of information here if you will commit to doing your own heavy lifting, if you read and listen with an open mind. And as I think you are aware now, you are the new person to an established community; it is your responsibility to introduce yourself, behave politely, and learn; we can't start over and educate every new person from scratch. Please read this thread: The Do's and Don'ts of Being a Good Ally: http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=2365.0

I suggest you read the pinned threads in all the sections, and the pages about Protection of Ceremony on the main website: http://newagefraud.com

Here's some explanation about adoption among the Lakota and related Nations: Adoption Ceremonies http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=1294.0

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #66 on: August 02, 2012, 04:30:38 pm »
Rita Robinson, a reporter for the Laguna Independent, contact me yesterday. We spoke on the phone twice, for over a half hour altogether. I'm more than a little discouraged after talking to her.

I submitted a guest column to the paper about a month ago. They have yet to run it. The paper has at least half a dozen articles on Soliz, mostly supportive and falsely accusing his neighbors of being racists and naively taking his word for it about his claims.

Robinson openly admitted to being very sympathetic to Soliz. "What's the harm?" And she said she had personally paid for ceremonies she believed to be Indian, though she didn't give any more details. I tried patiently explaining the basics about Native traditions and exploitation to her, but I don't think she understood. At this point my only hope is she uses some quotes of mine that might get through to people.

Robinson says the paper might use "details" of my guest column, but no word on when or if they will ever publish it. The city has a request from Soliz for a permit to build a permanent knockoff of a sweatlodge. The paper did contact local NDN communities. At least one wrote me asking for more information and saying they don't approve of Soliz as he's an outsider doing ceremony in their traditional homelands. We'll see what happens.

Offline tecpaocelotl

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #67 on: August 09, 2012, 05:20:07 am »
What about sending your concerns to the city?

Offline Superdog

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Re: Andrew Soliz
« Reply #68 on: August 09, 2012, 01:31:40 pm »
Checked on an older post of mine.

Some of the prices have changed for some of Soliz's services/products....but they still remain rather audacious.


Here are the "spirit medicine bags" (including a phone session with Andrew) now priced at $300-$900 (old price was $1200-$1800)
http://www.alchemyoftheheart.net/alchemy_of_the_heart_medicine_bags.html

The alchemyoftheheart.net site is still filled with "sell sell sell" impulse writing.  Hard to count the number of times Andrew calls himself "internationally renowned ceremonial leader and healer".....or things along that line.

For folks coming to defend him.  I won't attack your perception of him.  I will simply say that when someone is selling workshops, retreats, sessions that include "Native American ceremony" as one of the selling points....it's bothersome.  Soliz is only following ways of an adopted Lakota (badly...because he should've learned that he cannot represent himself as Lakota anything....he's simply adopted and that only gives him rights to participate in Lakota ceremonies...not create and sell his own).  But as has been stated over and over and over on this site....there are over 500 nations on the continent, each with their own ways, languages and customs.  This man only presents one aspect of that yet sells it with the generic blanket term "Native American".  That's the first flag that something is wrong and it bothers someone like me....a Native who's not Lakota.....who has to continually wade through eugenic stereotypes on a daily basis from other non-Natives who learn from bad teachers like Soliz.

The medicine bags posted above is only ONE example out of many that make me cringe.  For those that have bought services off of Andrew ask yourself something:  If a complete stranger told you, if you paid their fee, they could solve your problems by listening to you talk about them on the phone and then giving you a small bag filled with stuff he found outside....would you pay this man?  Why does the fact that this man says (himself only) that he's a "renowned healer and ceremonial leader" with "Native American ceremonies" seem to make this prospect actually sound plausible?

The term I like to use for those that would impulse others into buying anything ceremonial is "commercial spirituality".  Basically the idea that your level of spirituality coordinates to how much you can afford.  Keep in mind, that when Andrew goes to sundance and goes to the people that he says make him legitimate enough to sell their ceremonies....he isn't asked to pay them for it....yet he asks you for money...

Something to think about...

Superdog