Blog Post

Louise Hay

Louise Hay (1926-2017)
(Photo courtesy of Wikicommons Images. Heiko Antoni CC BYU-SA 3.0)

JK asked us for comments about author/publisher Louise Hay.

Louise Hay is the owner of Hay House, one of the largest publishers of New Age books in the country. In a May 4, 2008 expose about her life in The New York Times, author Mark Oppenheimer refers to her as the "Queen of the New Age."

Born in Los Angeles in 1926, she was raped by a neighbor at age 5 and dropped out of high school 10 years later to have a baby. She gave the child up for adoption and worked at menial jobs until she began modeling for Bill Blass, Oleg Cassini and Pauline Trigere. In 1954, she married a wealthy English businessman, Andrew Hay, and divorced him 14 years later. She never remarried.

Hay became involved in the New Age when she stumbled upon the First Church of Religious Science which preaches the "Science of the Mind" and other New Thought concepts along with psychic work and channeling. She became a "minister" in this church in the early 70's and made a name for herself after writing a pamphlet called "Heal Your Body" which included a chart of different ailments and their metaphysical causes. For instance, according to Hay's theories, Alzheimers disease is caused by a "desire to leave the planet" and "anger and frustration" are the causes of anorectal bleeding.

At some point in the late 70's, she claims to have healed herself of cervical cancer through the use of enemas, reflexology, forgiveness, nutrition and positive thinking (although this has never been verfied).

In 1984, she expanded upon her theories in a book entitled, You Can Heal Your Life. It became an instant  best-seller with more than 35 million copies now in print around the world.

In 1987, she founded a publishing company, Hay House, to market her books, and soon began publishing other New Age and self-help authors such as Wayne Dyer (New Thought guru), Deepak Chopra (overall New Age guru), Marianne Williamson (A Course in Miracles) , Sylvia Browne (psychic), Doreen Virtue (clairvoyant) and Joan Borysenko (expert in "mind/body connection").

I think it's safe to assume that The New York Times got it right (for once) when they referred to Louise Hay as the "Queen of the New Age."

Louise died on August 30, 2017, at the age of 91.

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