Om, sweet om
The Om Home
This is a little different. I haven’t really tried to cover the business of spirituality, although it’s a perfectly logical topic for Filet. At any rate, I’ve caught the flu, and I try to avoid the rest of humanity as much as possible when I’m contagious, so I’ll write the experiential thing later.
The Om Home was opened by Diane Hageman as a non-denominational place for people to practice various forms of meditation and other metaphysical pursuits. Not that meditation itself is metaphysical—but if the meditative state is a destination, there are many ways to get there. The Om Home offers several types of meditative practice, including drum circles (led by Glenda Mahin), mandala meditations, and group meditations. The business also has classes on meditation for $15. Most of the practices are by donation. Along more New Age-y metaphysical lines, they offer “angel oracle” card readings ($25), animal spirit guide workshops, and prayer and healing circles.
“I have been on the spiritual path for almost 20 years now,” Hageman said. “It started because I’m a recovering alcoholic. You start with the 12 steps, and they start talking about ‘the power greater than yourself.’ And all of a sudden it just sort of seemed like I was going farther and farther down the spiritual path, but I didn’t want to get into the religion. Religion seemed like too many rules, too much dogma—too much like shame and guilt. And I thought there has to be someplace that’s about spirituality and exploring spirituality and the metaphysics without having to have—quote unquote—the religion side of it.”
Hageman said she had a hard time finding anything like that, so she found a church in Oregon that was ordaining ministers. She studied with them for about nine months before they ordained her. She learned about how to perform weddings and how to do certain ceremonies. But, she says, that was still not enough. It was still part of a church. She decided what was needed was more of a community support center.
She was doing guided meditations when the Odyssey bookstore was still in town. Her friend Carla Sanders, a massage therapist, was changing offices, and they decided to throw in together for office space, and The Om Home was born (in an office building).
“We don’t want to compete with churches,” she said. “We’d like to be in addition to peoples’ churches and religion.”
Even though The Om Home has only been open for a few months, there is a small core of people who are already frequenting the business.
“We have new people that come in, kind of slowly, but we’re not getting in a huge amount of people yet.”
She has studied meditation from a Buddhist orientation, but describes her personal style as eclectic.
“I’m right now studying with a modern-day shaman, John English—he’s in Phoenix. I’m learning an awful lot about energy work from him. I think our western minds need to find our own way in meditation. What works for one person doesn’t necessarily work for somebody else. Meditation for me is just kind of stopping that crazy monkey mind that just drives us crazy. And I have lots of different techniques and ideas and breathing exercises and all of it is kind of incorporated.”