Author Topic: Daniel Foor  (Read 14491 times)

Offline educatedindian

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Daniel Foor
« on: October 15, 2009, 03:15:52 pm »
I received this account alleging possible abuse by Foor.

Foor was trained by Phillip Scott, who is already listed under Frauds here.
http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=1282.0

The person sending the account asked to remain anonymous.

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[In 2005] he was performing "shamanic" healing and craniosacral massage out of his bedroom in [his[ house....  I suspected, but could not prove, that he was performing inappropriate (read: sexual) activity with the male and female "patrons" that he solicited through craigslist....

I had originally believed that he was genuine and earnest in his efforts to help and "heal," but later came to sense a narcissistic and parasitic quality in all of his dealings with people...and had to extract myself from the environment. Of those of his "followers" with whom I had contact, I sensed a general brainwashed attitude that this person could do no wrong. Again, I was not able to "prove" this criminality, but believed, and continue to believe, that this person is a danger to anyone with whom he comes into contact.  

His name is Daniel Foor (of http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/page/page/4896754.htm).  His former "teacher," also a genuinely corrupt wannabe shaman. is called Phillip Scott (of http://www.ancestralvoice.org/ ).
 
Again, I cannot prove what I know and feel about these individuals, but wanted to make contact with you (after reading of your website in the recent NY Times article about the tragedy in Sedona) in the hopes of making others aware of what is in dire need of attention.
 
With thanks for your efforts,
[name withheld]
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Foor's site has some strange points. He specifically says he only wants clients "without recent indigenous ancestry." Yet he's doing knockoffs of Native traditions he calls earth medicine.

I also can't help but notice his age. He was already posing as a shaman at 26, far too young to have the maturity or have had the training needed. And claiming to be a "shaman" at that age. He's almost a kid doing roleplay.

A confused mix of NDN, African, Euro pagan, and who knows what else he teaches.

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http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4176/is_20061221/ai_n17073894/
....Daniel Foor, 29, who leads shamanic drum circles at Sacred Paths Bookstore in San Mateo....

Foor was raised Methodist in the Midwest but has explored a wide swath of beliefs, including his current interest in indigenous African spirituality.

"I still am open, you know?" he said. "It never ends. You can't stop moving. You can't stop changing."

He said his Native American-inspired ceremonies have seasonal themes. They explore "earth element" issues such as body image, money matters, and life in the home during winter, as opposed to fire, water and air themes.

Attendees gather in a circle, a Native American symbol of how people are connected by the thread of life in a "hoop." They may chant, pray, offer up songs and drum, according to Sasha Avanvsov, 29, who participates with Foor.

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From his bio on his site:

"Daniel Foor is a practitioner of earth-honoring ways of life here in the San Francisco Bay Area. His formal academic training includes a Ph.D. in psychology from Saybrook Graduate School and Research Center, an M.A. in Counseling Psychology from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology (MFC #46692), and a B.S.S. in Religious Studies from Ohio University."

That's not nearly as impressive as it sounds. Saybrook is all distance learning. No courses on campus, in fact not really a campus as most of us are used to thinking of one. For courses, you meet a grand total of twice a semester. It's also been around only since 1975. It is accredited, but it's repuation is very poor.

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http://graduate-school.phds.org/rankings/psychology/program/profile/saybrook/23097
Reputation(NRC, 1995) ?
In 1993, the National Research Council asked faculty members to rate the educational effectiveness of doctoral programs at other universities on a scale of 0 ("Not Effective") to 5 ("Extremely Effective"). (Note that the resulting effectiveness ratings were found to be almost perfectly correlated (r=0.99) with ratings of "faculty quality," which suggests that the ratings may simply reflect the overall reputation of a program rather than any specific educational achievements.)
  Psychology
Perceived educational effectiveness  Not effective
Perceived effectiveness on a scale of 0–5  0.7

(0 = "Not effective", 5 = "Extremely effective")

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The field he's part of itself had a poor reputation that's only recently turning around.
  http://www.apa.org/monitor/sep02/renaissance.html

The Institute of Transpersonal Pysch where he got his MA....some of what they teach is disturbing. Basically it seems they offer how to be a shame on seminars.
http://www.itp.edu/resources/divinefeminine/ritual.php
"Transformational Healing Circle
The Transformational Healing Ritual is a powerful group form developed by Vicki Noble over three decades of shamanistic healing and teaching."

Noble is a questionable character who endorsed a fraud we have a thread on.
http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=2219.msg17282#msg17282


Offline educatedindian

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2009, 03:22:12 pm »
Received this account from a supporter of Foor's.

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Hi,

I can appreciate protecting people from scams. I have, however, worked for a long time with Daniel Foor. I believe him to be an honest, spiritually profound and straight-forward person. One key jugdement for me is cost. If a person is fixed on their price, this raises a red flag for me. Daniel has always worked with me on the basis of what I could afford or on a donation basis. I have spent hours working on difficult stuff which required a great deal of work on his part and paid only a dollar because that is what i could afford.

There is obviously the question of native traditions and respect. Much of the work I have done with Danel comes out of core shamanism. After many years of spiritual events coming from many quarters, I had my first journey. The woman who first led me was a friend who is a Hawaii native. This journey was very simple. I could not tell you if this simple journey came from any tradition or not. However, the journeys which followed took place in Hungary through a shaman who had been trained in Siberia. These journeys were somewhat similar to the original. But they were journeys and work in and of themselves.

The point that I want to make here, is that shamanism existed everywhere. It existed in Europe before the burning times. That part of the world may make up most of my family tree.  I have accessed these times through journey work with Daniel. This work brought a more organic core to my life, helping me to serve a planet we all share. During those journeys, I made contact with ancestors who were not part of the religious corporation taking over the planet a thousand years ago. Those people gave me the strength to stop that action, to help those who the system has violated, to help others along the path to health and relatedness.

As a native woman once said, while we should have respect for all traditions, and critique people who don't work with them appropriately, the earth does not have time for us to worry about whose job it is to heal it. Although I am not a Naive American, I have their blood from more than one part of my family. I am also a minority. The guides that lead me have made clear that if there is any thing good and healing that can come from the native traditions largely exterminated, we must utilize it now; for humanity, the animals, trees, stones, and for the great spirit which weaves all this together has a purpose. That purpose is not merely to remain esoteric.

Dave Johnson

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2009, 09:47:21 pm »
Another defender of Foor's popped up. It seems pretty likely to me that Foor sent both of them. First email is from him, followed by my reply, then Logan, then me again.

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1st email from Logan

Dear NAFPS:

Thank you for managing a site intended to protect people from harmful and manipulative people claiming to be benevolent teachers. Judging from the tragedy in New Mexico, your concerns are well warranted.

Looking through your site, I noticed you posted an anonymous person's account of Daniel Foor which deeply surprised me. I wish I could respond to that person, though he or she is unnamed.

[Ommitted a section that was a long extended series of smears of the person Logan suspects criticized Foor. To post it online would be downright libelous.]

For what it is worth, it is my opinion that Daniel's spiritual work is very sound, mindful, and extremely respectful of indigenous culture. He has hundreds of people in the Bay Area that have worked with him in numerous ways and has helped people connect in immeasurable ways with the earth, their own ancestry, and each other.  He has never posed as a "shaman,"  taken advantage of anyone in any way or solicited money. He has helped me and my extended family, including my two children, behave in a mindful way that respects all beings, and especially those cultures that were always awake to such ways. His influence has put us on the path to reach our full potential for the greater good. I feel very blessed to have known him and to have had access to his work. Thanks for taking the time to read this message.

Sincerely,

Andrew Logan
Woodside, CA

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My first response to Logan

Hello,
Thank you for the compliments.
 
Most of what is on the thread is independent of the personal account, using Foor's own accounts of himself and his own claims.
 
In contrast to what you claim, Foor openly admits being trained by a notorious spiritual exploiter and imposter who poses as a medicine man, Phillip Scott. (Scott was originally trained by a notorious faux shaman, Mary Grimes AKA "Mary Thunder," who runs a cult in Texas.) Foor also does solicit money.
 
The account was not anonymous. We chose to not have their name revealed publicly because our source feared retaliation.
 
May I ask, how did you meet Foor? Would you tell me about your experiences with him?


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Logan's second email

Dear NAFPS:

Thanks for responding so quickly. I'll try to address what you wrote and answer as many of your questions as I can.

Regarding Daniel's teacher, I have personally never met Phillip and from what I know of the situation Daniel worked with him over five years ago and it was brief, maybe even for less than a year.  When I was asking Daniel about his own journey, he told me a little about Phillip and how once Daniel really got to know him, he stopped working with Phillip.  It seems like they haven't spoken in years and whatever Daniel is doing is not with Phillip's blessing or anything like that. I know Daniel does not in any way claim to represent Phillip.  

Regarding the money issue, I guess the word solicit stuck out for me, as it feels so superficial. From what I have seen, a lot of what Daniel does is by donation like passing a hat to cover costs.  For the trainings where he does charge, unlike a lot of folks out there, the costs are super modest and I know he has a policy that no one is ever turned away because of inability to pay.  I've actually talked with him about this, as it is similar to doing a sliding scale in psychotherapy work, and from everything I've seen he's living a really simple lifestyle and helping spiritual circles stay accessible for whoever wants to participate.  

About that article you quoted from him saying "Native-inspired ceremonies" I remember when that came out years ago and Daniel feeling frustrated about being misrepresented there and then not being able to take it off the internet. I guess the bottom line is he isn't offering Native American ceremonies and has never made any claims of that when I have been present. In fact, I have seen him always clarifying this intention, so that nobody gets the wrong idea.

Regarding your source, I can only assume it is this guy [the same one Logan smeared in the earlier email] and I still worry that the person could be involving your site unwittingly in a personal vendetta against Daniel. I have never known Daniel to be physically or emotionally threatening to anyone, so I question anyone asking to be anonymous out of fear from Daniel. That feels like projection.

Regarding how we met and my experiences with Daniel, we worked at the same counseling agency years ago and I've been a part of some of the community circles since then.  There are a few points that come to mind here that might be helpful for you to know about:

A big focus of Daniel's work is helping people to get in right relationship with their blood ancestors. I have seem him repeatedly (and also in my case) discourage me from focusing too much on other people's traditions, including Native American and Hawaiian religions, and first get to know my own roots and do healing work around my own ancestors.  This has been really helpful for me and my family and also has helped me to understand Native history in new ways. I think this kind of thing is actually one kind of antidote for all the imposter and fraud type energy that is out there.

I recall a story from Daniel of someone who in a totally naive way, without anyone knowing, bought a newly made chanunpa style sacred pipe on ebay.  This person approached Daniel before using it, told him what they had done, and asked Daniel if it would be ok to pray with it.  Rather than presume to answer the question, Daniel gave the person the phone number of several acquaintances of his who are sundancers with the Chipps family in South Dakota and encouraged the person who bought the pipe to talk with them. After learning about the sacred history, the person recognized the mistake of purchasing it, and Daniel then suggested that it would be wise to return the pipe, with an explanation of what happened, to a reputable Native organization.

From anything I have ever seen or heard in relation to Daniel, he has always been clear that he does not claim in any way to represent any traditions besides those of his own ancestors..  I just checked, and it says that on his website, but most importantly I know it's something that he really emphasizes in circles.  I've actually seen him take people to task on that issue in circle when they are claiming something that's not their place to claim.  A lot of people who present themselves as teachers of "shamanism" or whatever they call it don't get into these questions, they just avoid them or at worse become frauds themselves by intending to fool people.  In Daniel's case he's actively telling people to get to know their own ancestors precisely so they don't end up exploiting other people's traditions and cultures.

In closing, I would just ask you to reconsider whether Daniel is really one of the people causing the types of damage you're working to prevent and also to consider whether that first post from the other source is really reliable.  I am sure it really difficult to discern friend from foe, and if you have a way of looking into it, I am sure Daniel would welcome a call or a chance to answer his critic. It would be sad to see the worthwhile intent of what you're trying to do with the site to be manipulated by someone with a personal vendetta.  

Sincerely,

Andrew

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My second email to Logan

Hello,
 
We always seek as much information as possible to try and get at the truth of these matters. We will post your accounts. You may also join and post if you wish.
 
Essentially there are several areas of contention:
 
1. That Foor was originally trained by an obvious fraud. What both you and he seem reluctant to say is why they no longer associate. Perhaps Foor is embarassed, because the ethical thing would be to admit publicly the wrongdoing he was once associated with.
 
But obviously not too embarassed. He actually recommends the work of Michael Hull, a member of the inner circle of the cult leader Mary Grimes/Thunder. It was Grimes that trained the fraud Phillip Scott, who trained Foor.
 
2. That Foor charges money. Yes, he does. There is no "passing a hat" mentioned on his site. He charges a set fee for ceremony.
 
3. The nature of the ceremonies themselves. As noted on the thread, they seem to be a confused mishmash of a number of traditions, Native, Siberian, and others. Clearly they are derived from confused ideas about the original traditions. As noted before, Foor uses false ideas about the medicine wheel that ultimately derive from a fraud and cult leader, Charles Storm.
 
Your ultimate defense to these is that you believe Foor means well and he makes you feel good. And incidentally to smear repeatedly someone you suspect requested we look at Foor's claims, hardly ethical behavior.
 
Foor certainly deserves further investigation. While he concedes the ethical problems of many of the frauds out there, there are still some areas of inconsistency in his own behavior.

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2012, 09:38:09 pm »
I received this request from Foor, who seeks to prove he is acting ethically. First is his email, followed by my response.

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Greetings.  Thanks in advance for taking the time with this concern.  Daniel Foor here writing with a sincere question about your site and the posting about me there.  Specifically, I am interested to know if there is any way to ever be removed from your site.
 
Here is my personal situation/case for that:
•One accusation on the site is that I am in some way presuming to represent or offer Native American ceremonies.  I am not doing this, and I am clear that I am not a representative of any Native North American traditions.  To the contrary on my site I am clear that I represent only my own ancestors.  I have participated as a guest in some Native ceremonies, however, many people do this.  The things I do offer through my personal practice are largely focused on helping people to honor their own ancestors (of whatever background) and to relate with the natural world wherever they may live (including to be educated and respectful toward First Nations' peoples and sacred sites of that area).  In helping people work with their own ancestors, I have found this makes them *less* likely to engage in cultural appropriation, not more likely.
 
•One aspect of my work (which I have never financially profited from in any way) is to actively create a forum for the voices of Native American and other earth-honoring elders to share their wisdom (again, at no cost to anyone involved). For forum for this is: http://www.earthmedicine.org/voicesoftheearth. Of our 10 interviews so far, three of them are with respected Native California elders (Pomo, Ohlone, Pit River) and several others with people who are representatives of their respective earth-honoring lineages.  One of our Board members for this non-profit is Yaqui and a lodge leader and sun dancer (in addition to being a brother and friend).  I am also in good and regular relationship with different Ohlone leaders who are not featured in this project, local Native folks engaged in good and necessary work.  If it made a difference with respect to being listed on your site, there are any number of these local Native leaders who could attest that I am working as an ally to Native causes in my own way as my time and energy permits and doing so in ways that are respectful. 

•Just in general it's tough because on your site I've never been allowed to just respond directly to the (anonymous) accusation.  For example, I haven't even seen or spoken with Phillip Scott for like seven years or something, and he's certainly not someone I look to for guidance or identify with.

So...I understand you're wanting to protect people from cultural appropriation and those who claim to represent Native American traditions, and I just feel that I'm not actually making any of those claims, that I'm not the person you're looking for in this case. To the contrary I'm doing what I can to lend my support to Native leaders to reach a wider audience with their critical message, in their own voice, on their own terms, free from any financial transactions.  I hope you might consider in light of this removing this particular thread from your site or at least letting me know what is the process by which a person is ever cleared of accusations made.

Thanks for taking the time with this concern, and I hope to hear from you on this.

Sincerely,

Daniel

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Hello,

It does seem your site and you personally no longer offer or make any claim to Native ceremony. A few of the people you associate with on another site do, but you are not responsible for their behavior, only your own.

I'll point that out in the thread about you, and repost this request from you. We've only had a few people prior to this who have changed their behavior. Most get defensive and adamantly refuse and I take it as a good sign about your character that you were willing to reconsider the ethics of what you were doing.

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2013, 08:10:59 pm »
Foor sent this email asking he be moved to Archives since he no longer claims to be teaching Native ceremony on his site.

What does everyone think?

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Dr. Carroll,
Greetings, Daniel Foor here.  Thanks in advance for your consideration of this inquiry. 

I wrote to you in April of 2012 to ask if there was any way individuals referred to your site can ever get "cleared of the charges" so to speak...if their work can be reviewed and determined to not be in any way disrespectful toward Native American traditions or peoples.

At that time, I gave some reasons why I feel this may be warranted in my case, basically that I don't presume to represent Native ways at all (publicly or privately), that I'm willing to provide references to that effect if useful, and that I (in a very modest way) do some work to support Native teachers. For example:

Interview with Pomo teacher: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL2A8E185BAE76B0DA
Interview with Ohlone teacher: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5F42B392157C38AD
Interview with Pit River teacher: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL147CB3875FACA176
(etc., could give other examples)

I don't share those links because I think I'm doing some amazing service, merely to provide examples of how I am working, when possible, as an ally to Native teachers, supporting a few respected local elders in telling their own stories in their own voice (not trying to impersonate or profit from them).  As I'm sure you're aware many people in California are painfully ignorant about the rich history and diversity of Native cultures here.   

In response to the email inquiry I sent to the NAFPS site in April of 2012, you posted my email and your reply to the thread where you wrote that "your site and you personally no longer offer or make any claim to Native ceremony".  I was glad to see that and that remains true.

In light of that outcome, what remains of the case/thread are baseless accusations made by a stalker ....
[Long section with accusations I won't repost.]

Anyways, I'm just trying to sort this out directly and transparently with you.  As someone who is in the helping/healing fields and a professional educator, public perceptions do make a difference also for my livelihood, and so I'm humbly returning to the question of whether or not anything can be done about the thread on your site now that the heart of the accusations have been addressed.  If for some reason it's not an option to remove the thread (I'm hopeful that could be possible), perhaps the thread itself could be edited to focus only on the relevant topic of protection of Native tradition and not other baseless accusations by the anonymous source?

Sincere thanks for your time and consideration on this.
Daniel Foor

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2013, 01:07:22 am »
•One aspect of my work (which I have never financially profited from in any way) is to actively create a forum for the voices of Native American and other earth-honoring elders to share their wisdom (again, at no cost to anyone involved). For forum for this is: http://www.earthmedicine.org/voicesoftheearth.

The site is still up. While there are some people on there who are who they say they are, there are others who are problematic and/or ceremony-sellers, some of them listed here on NAFPS, such as John Lockley http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=3995. and Malidoma Some, who, for a fee, is proclaiming white Americans "Indigenous African Elders." [photo from Some's website attached below]. There are frauds selling sweats in our area who got their "training" from Some and people he sponsors.

Foor's promotion of, and profiting off of, frauds is a problem.

He also puts claims of Indigenous teachings in his bio, then lists ceremonies he offers. Even if the ceremonies he is now selling aren't authentically Indigenous, this claim taints it, as does calling what he is selling "Medicine." Non-native spiritual ways are not called "medicine."

In his bio: "Daniel has studied world religion for 15 years with an emphasis on Mahayana Buddhism, Islamic Sufism, and diverse forms of Indigenous, earth-honoring wisdom."  http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/aboutdaniel

Then selling "Earth Medicine Training" http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/earthritual

Here are some of the ceremonies sold by Foor and his group: http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/2012/ancestor-weekends-day-long-for-healers-and-monthly-circle-2012

In his calendar of events, the word "Indigenous" is liberally sprinkled throughout his workshop descriptions: http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/calendar

This just looks like a cosmetic change to cover up the same issues that are still there.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2013, 01:42:18 am by Kathryn »

Offline Ardal

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2015, 01:27:04 am »
Daniel Foor profits on shamanic workshops and events.  See his site here:
http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/

He spent some time with Sarangerel (who, despite some of her work here, is very questionable), and then went off to start his own efforts, so that he could get paid to do so. For example, he offers a 3-day workship on getting in touch with your ancestors:

"Everyone has loving and wise ancestors, and by reaching out for their support we access tremendous vitality for personal and family healing. In addition to supporting repairs with living family, our ancestors encourage healthy self-esteem and help us to clarify our destiny, relationships, and work in the world.

Participant will learn to relate safely and directly with family ancestors, both helpful guides and the troubled dead in need of assistance. Expect to engage lineage ancestors in heart-centered ritual space through prayer, song, visioning practices, and group dialogue. There are no prerequisites, however, prior experience with inner work/psychological healing and relating with spirit guides/teachers are both helpful.

Folks new to ancestor work, adoptees, and those with a tough experience of family are warmly welcome. Those with a healing arts practice will learn new skills to support your work. Spaces are limited to 16, and cost is $275 for the three full days (flexibility as needed, just talk with me). Preregistration and full attendance requested. "

edited: Edited to correct the name.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2015, 03:18:56 pm by Ardal »

Offline educatedindian

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2015, 02:46:14 pm »
Merged topics. His name is Foor, not Floor, and we had an older thread on him. He has an older dubious history of being trained by and working with other exploiters like Phillip Scott and core shamanism claims.

He's been under Research for awhile, and while he did make a pretense of some cosmetic changes, he is a ceremony seller. Anyone else think he belongs under Frauds?

Offline Ardal

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2015, 03:26:20 pm »
I edited the name. Thanks. Explains why I didn't find this thread.

I think the images make it clear what he is claiming to provide:



http://www.ancestralmedicine.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/043.jpg (too big to imbed)

Epiphany

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2015, 08:47:14 pm »
I think he belongs in Frauds.

Ceremony selling, includes sweat lodges.
http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs110/1102635818212/archive/1119926800732.html





Offline RedRightHand

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Re: Daniel Foor
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2015, 10:04:54 pm »
Daniel Foor is a fraud and exploiter who learned incomplete and potentially dangerous fragments of ceremonies from other frauds and exploiters. He came here and real NDNs told him how he could make it right. We gave him time. Instead, he spat in the faces of those who would help him. He could have started making amends. He could have stopped. But instead he has just spent the past few years seeking out more terminology and imagery to steal, in efforts to spin-doctor, misrepresent, and refine his sales pitch. All he has learned is how to be a slicker salesman and insult additional cultures and communities in the process.

"May 2nd - Oct 10th, 2015 ... ceremony ... inipi (sweat lodge) ... $60/day or $250 for the full series"

Fraud.