Self-help guru Tony Robbins makes a lot of promises and issues a lot of challenges. The enormously successful Robbins does what self-help gurus do, in other words. Now there’s news that “at least 30 people,” according to CNN, “were treated for minor burns after walking on hot coals” during one of Robbins’ Unleash the Power Within seminars in Dallas.
Robbins’ has used the “fire walk” for decades as a way to help people “turn fear into power.” It’s a deeply-embedded part of the Robbins’ ritual, which includes multiple techniques for achieving one’s full potential. The 30 burn “victims” represent a small percentage of the estimated 7,000 seminar participants, who paid between $650 and $2995 per ticket. But one thing Americans appreciate as much as self-empowerment is litigation. Juries are capable of any opinion — and R obbins’ is no doubt well insured — but if the probable lawsuits find Robbins liable for grown-up, sentient adults harming themselves — after willfully walking over burning coals — then the US has far more trouble than a reality TV star presidential hopeful.