Teal Swan

From Wikipedia

Teal Swan
Teal Swan
BornMary Teal Bosworth
(1984-06-16) June 16, 1984 (age 37)
Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States
Pen nameThe Spiritual Catalyst
OccupationWriter, Public speaker
GenresSpirituality, Psychology, Metaphysics
Notable work(s)"Shadows Before Dawn" (2015)
"The Completion Process" (2016)
"The Anatomy of Loneliness" (2018)
Spouse(s)Mark Scott (2006-2013)
Sarbedeep Swan (2014)
Ale Gicqueau (2016-2018)

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Template:Undisclosed paid Teal Swan (born Mary Teal Bosworth; June 16, 1984) is an American spiritual teacher.[1][2] Swan's teachings on how to manage mental health issues have often been described as unconventional and potentially hazardous and has received criticism for how she attracts fans.[3][4]

Swan and her teachings were discussed in a six-part audio documentary series by Gizmodo in June 2018.[5] She was also the subject of a documentary film, Open Shadow: The Story of Teal Swan, which was released in 2017. In 2020, Swan released Hunger of the Pine.

Early life[edit]

Swan was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico and was raised in Logan, Utah.[6] She lived in Logan until her teens with her parents and younger brother, Sky. Logan had a high percentage of practicing Mormons in the city at the time, and Swan stated her religious differences meant that from an early age she felt she didn't conform. The religious and cultural differences between family and school life meant she didn't "fit in" at school and was often bullied due to her different beliefs. Adding to the cultural differences, Swan also states that she often spoke and acted differently to other children at the school. This combination meant at times the bullying was intense and had an effect on Swan from an early age.[5]

Swan began to feel physically different from other children she spent time with. According to Gizmodo, Swan first noticed these physical differences when in class and other children didn't react to things Swan was experiencing.[5] Years later, Swan's mother was interviewed for the film Open Shadow, where she stated Swan had hypersensitivity while she was growing up, often reacting to sound. Swan has also alluded to this part of her childhood when journalists have asked her about her claims of clairvoyance abilities.[5]

Swan has stated in numerous interviews that she was abused, raped and psychologically tortured from the age of six onwards by a family friend. According to an article in Huffington Post Canada, Swan claimed to have been the victim of ritualistic abuse by a satanic cult for over a decade.[7] This was apparently in order to cure her of her supposed extrasensory abilities.[8][9] Part of this alleged abuse included being sewn into a corpse.[10] In particular TV interviews conducted in 2014 by Chris Oswalt, regarding her ritual abuse, were sent to KNIN-TV, KIVI-TV, and Idaho News.[11] Swan claims that she has memories of these events which were repressed, until a Salt Lake City based therapist helped her uncover them.[10] An investigation was opened into her claims before being ultimately shut down due to several accusations being made against her therapist, Barbara Snow, who incited Satanic Panic.[10]

Her mother said in an interview Swan had attempted to take her own life in her teens. Both parents agreed to take Swan to see a psychiatrist but stated in the Open Shadow documentary that none of the techniques worked. They turned to eastern medicine when Swan was in her teens, and rather than saying Swan was sick, they said she was gifted and experiencing hypersensitivity. During an interview with Ozy, the journalist noted that Swan's arms were "covered in scars," apparently as a result of the abuse she endured as a child.[12] At the age of nineteen, Swan reportedly was able to reject advances from the cult who had abused her for over a decade and subsequently reported the abuse she had endured to the police.[7]

According to her, she was born with extrasensory abilities such as clairvoyance, "clairsentience", and "clairaudience".[9] She has claimed to be an alien from the star Arcturus.[13] She has also claimed to be the reincarnation of Indian guru Sai Baba of Shirdi and remembers the life as clearly as her own.[14]


In 2011 she released the book The Sculptor in the Sky and started her YouTube channel. After 2012, her popularity grew having followers in several countries. In 2011, Swan hosted one of her first talks in Salt Lake City, Utah with around twenty people attending and was the first she uploaded to her YouTube channel.

The company Teal Eye, according to the website,[15] is meant to create changes in several different areas: alternative education, reforms in the global food industry, justice, animal rights and spirituality.[citation needed]

Swan has focused her ministry on healing others of their psychological ailments, including suicidal thoughts and repressed traumatic experiences.[10] She operates the Philia Center, a retreat center in Costa Rica.[16] Her followers are called the "Teal Tribe."[17]

In 2017, Teal Swan was the subject of a documentary about her life "Open Shadow: The Story Of Teal Swan".[18]

In 2018, a Gizmodo podcast ran a six-part series on Teal Swan and her self-help spiritual teachings on depression and how her techniques "process past trauma in order to overcome it." The host, Jennings Brown, stated that Swan was not like your regular spiritual leader, with both her appearance and how she markets herself.[19] At the time of recording, her YouTube videos had been viewed 55 million times.[20]

During 2015, she received her first major media coverage discussing the use of her mantra, "what would someone who loved themselves do?"[21]

Swan has frequently spoken about the best techniques to deal with anger. According to an Irish Independent reporter that attended one of her seminars in 2016, it was stated that suppression of anger can have dangerous consequences. Swan stated that when she suppresses anger, she becomes a "ticking time-bomb." Swan's theory about anger is deciding on the difference between constructive and destructive anger. Kailash Satyarthi made similar remarks during his TED talk on anger.[22]

Hunger of the Pine[edit]

In 2020, it was announced that Swan would be releasing her first novel, Hunger of the Pine. The book follows Aria Abbott, a girl who drifted through the foster care system for most of her young life. The unbearable situation meant she had no option but to run away and live rough on the streets. Her relationship with Taylor leads them to board a Greyhound bus together to pursue their dreams. The novel received mainly positive reviews, with a score of 4 on Goodreads.[23]

In October 2020, it became a Publishers Weekly trade paperback frontlist Best Seller.[24]

In popular culture[edit]

Open Shadow film[edit]

In 2017, Teal Swan was the subject of a documentary film about her life "Open Shadow: The Story Of Teal Swan".[18]


Teal Swan has been documented in the Gizmodo podcast “The Gateway” conducted by journalist Jennings Brown[25] and the Maximum Fun podcast “Oh No, Ross and Carrie![26][27]


Suicide diction and allegations[edit]

Teal Swan has said on YouTube "What suicide is, is pushing the reset button... There is nothing wrong with suicide".[28] Additionally, two of Swan's followers have committed suicide, and opponents of Swan's methods have claimed Swan led them to their behavior. Swan's teachings are partly drawn from her own recovered childhood trauma, that she says left her with the same feelings.[29] Her teaching methods sometimes involve participants imagining their deaths, occasionally by suicide.[29][25] A Refinery29 piece notes that while Swan is not directly encouraging suicide and that she claims to have "the strategy to help people out of suicidal thoughts", nevertheless her "highly-triggering comments and extreme views on suicide that trickle into almost every piece of content Swan produces" are potentially harmful, as evidenced by the way Swan compares followers with suicidal thoughts to "stray cats" and "orphaned children".[30]


  • The Sculptor in the Sky, Authorhouse 2011
  • Shadows Before Dawn: Finding the Light of Self-Love Through Your Darkest Times, Hayhouse 2015
  • The Completion Process, Hayhouse 2016
  • The Anatomy of Loneliness: How to Find Your Way Back to Connection, Watkins Publishing 2018
  • The Connection Process, Archway Publishing 2018
  • Hunger of the Pine, Watkins Publishing 2020


  1. ^ "About Teal Swan". Teal Swan. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  2. ^ "Spiritual Guru or Dangerous Cult Leader?". November 19, 2017. Retrieved November 21, 2019.
  3. ^ Sawyer, Miranda. "The week in podcasts: The Gateway; Bikram". The Guardian. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  4. ^ Diseko, Lebo (November 23, 2019). "The woman encouraging her followers to visualise death". BBC News.
  5. ^ a b c d Brown, Jennings (July 4, 2018). "Gizmodo's Last Episode of The Gateway Podcast About Teal Swan". Gizmodo.
  6. ^ "Teal Swan". Gumroad. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  7. ^ a b Messervey, Lauren (October 12, 2016). "PTSD In The Wake Of Abuse Is A Reality For Many Women". Huffington Post Canada.
  8. ^ "Teal Swan's story of Satanic Ritual abuse". KIVI-TV. October 30, 2014. Archived from the original on April 27, 2015. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  9. ^ a b "Teal Swan | Author Biography". www.hayhouse.com. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  10. ^ a b c d "How Teal Swan's Therapist Instigated A Satanic Panic". greyfaction.org. Archived from the original on October 19, 2018. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  11. ^ Idaho News (October 31, 2016), Teal Swan interview with Chris Oswalt on 8/5/2014, retrieved November 30, 2018
  12. ^ Nugent, Addison (November 19, 2017). "Spiritual Guru or Dangerous Cult leader?". Ozy.
  13. ^ Bond, Gwenda. "Teal Swan, a glam guru for the YouTube Age with controversial views on death". Salon Magazine. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  14. ^ GabrielKundalini (December 22, 2014), Teal Swan on Her Past Life as Sai Baba from India
  15. ^ "The Vision of Teal Eye LLC". Teal Swan. Retrieved December 2, 2018.
  16. ^ "About". Philia. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  17. ^ "Teal Tribe". Teal Swan. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  18. ^ a b "Open Shadow | The Story Of Teal Swan". Open Shadow | The Story Of Teal Swan. Retrieved December 14, 2018.
  19. ^ Sawyer, Miranda (June 10, 2018). "The week in podcasts: The Gateway; Bikram". The Guardian.
  20. ^ "The Gateway: Teal Swan - Part 1 Catalyst". Gizmodo. May 29, 2018.
  21. ^ "This Question Can Change Your Whole Life". Cleveland.com.
  22. ^ "The latest rage - how anger has health benefits". Irish Independent. March 29, 2016.
  23. ^ "Hunger of the Pine by Teal Swan". Goodreads.
  24. ^ "Publishers Weekly Bestseller Lists". Publishers Weekly. Archived from the original on October 27, 2020.
  25. ^ a b Brown, Jennings. "Internet Spiritual Guru Teal Swan Says She Isn't a Cult Leader But Has 'The Perfect Recipe For a Cult'". Gizmodo. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  26. ^ "Ross and Carrie Synchronize With Teal Swan (Part 1): Shadow Work Edition". Oh No Ross and Carrie. Retrieved December 16, 2018.
  27. ^ "Ross and Carrie Synchronize With Teal Swan (Part 2): Two Steps Ahead Edition". Oh No Ross and Carrie. Retrieved December 16, 2018.
  28. ^ Berman, Sarah. "Yes, There Are Women-Led Cults". VICE. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
  29. ^ a b Scofield, Be (March 8, 2018). "The Gucci Guru: Inside Teal Swan's Posh Cult". Be Scofield. Archived from the original on March 12, 2018. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  30. ^ https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2018/08/205915/the-gateway-teal-swan-youtube-cult-jennings-brown