The term New Age (sometimes called the New Age Movement), refers to both a decentralized social phenomenon and a western socio-religious movement that developed in the 1970-80s. It combines aspects of spirituality, esotericism, complementary and alternative medicine, and includes religious practices from many sources across the world, as well as environmentalism. It is characterized by an eclectic and individual approach to spirituality, and a general rejection of mainstream dogma. Other terms used to describe the movement include Self-spirituality, New spirituality, and Mind-body-spirit.

The movement began in the mid 20th century and peaked around the 1980s. The name itself refers to the coming astrological Age of Aquarius. Beliefs in New Age ideas are found among diverse individuals, including some who graft additional beliefs onto a traditional religious affiliation. Some individuals who hold any of its beliefs may not identify with the term "New Age", and that term may be applied as a label by outsiders to anyone they consider inclined towards its world view.[citation needed] The New Age movement includes elements of older spiritual and religious traditions from both East and West, many of which have been melded with ideas from modern science, particularly psychology and ecology. New Age ideas could be described as drawing inspiration from all the major world religions (Judaism,Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Chinese folk religion, and Buddhism) with particularly strong influences from New Thought, Western esotericism, Neopaganism, East Asian religions, and Indian religions.

Various New Age religions and philosophies span a continuum from monotheism through classical pantheism, also including naturalistic pantheism or pantheisms.

The New Age movement has led to wide-ranging literature on the subject, and an active subeconomy with products such as new age books, music known as new age music, crafts—most visible in specialty shops and New Age fairs and festivals, and services in alternative medicine.

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia © 2001-2006 Wikipedia Contributors (Disclaimer)This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.)

Author's Bio: 

This definition is part of a series that covers the topic of New Age. The Official Guide to New Age is Deborah Leigh.

Deborah Leigh is a renowned intuitive card reader/instructor/counselor and advisor both on and off the internet. In addition, she holds credentials as a holistic health practitioner and a member of the University of Metaphysical Sciences faculty where she teaches divination.

Deborah has intuitively read ordinary playing cards for nearly 30 years. She learned the unique method she uses - called "Personal Prophesy" - from her maternal grandmother. This method makes it possible to focus intuitively on a deck of playing cards and achieve a happier, more satisfying life by employing powerful insights from the cards into our daily lives.

Additional Resources on New Age can be found at:

Website Directory for New Age
Articles on New Age
Products for New Age
Discussion Board
Deborah Leigh, The Official Guide to New Age