|The firewalk has existed for thousands of years in dozens of different cultures as a powerful experience for the evolving human. The firewalk is one of the oldest and most widely spread rituals that our planet has ever known. Contrary to the publicity surrounding the American firewalk, it is not a new age fad or the latest workshop to come out of California. There are few practices which so consistently show up in such a wide range of different cultures as the firewalk. For most firewalkers, the firewalk is a unique method for testing one's beliefs about the nature of reality and what role one plays in the creation of that reality. The firewalk ritual has served as a very graphic demonstration of what is possible and as a unforgettable example of human potential. Even the simple act of viewing a firewalk, whether it's in person or on video, can make a dramatic shift in your belief system. Each and ever time a person walks on fire they are continuously reminded of the connection between their mind, body and their environment. The firewalk is indeed an ancient experiment, and the fact that the firewalk has now made its way into present day america (western culture) suggests that it is becoming a modern day experiment as well.
This experiment came to the United States through the efforts of a man named Tolly Burkan. In 1976 he learned how to firewalk from a friend who had learned it from a Tibetan monk. In '78 he started offering a weekend firewalk workshop. In '82, Tolly created a four hour format that was open to the general public and started leading firewalks throughout the U.S. and parts of Europe. In '83 other people starting leading firewalks, the most notable being Tony Robbins, who managed to attract the most media attention. By the fall of '84 there was a proliferation of people leading the firewalk revolution, it seemed as if it was happening everywhere. The firewalk was covered in Newsweek, Time, Life, Rolling Stone, Omni, People and just about every major Newspaper in the country. From Network to Local News, to most of the major Talk Shows, the firewalk was attracting it's share of attention by this time. Now in the '90's with several hundred different firewalk instructors, there have been well over a million people who have had this experience of walking on fire. It's safe to say that the ancient firewalk ritual is now a major part of our western culture and the firewalk certainly much more than a passing fad and will most likely be around for a long time to come.
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