For 35,000 years, the mystic warrior Ramtha has spread enlightenment.
Now he's cutting back.
Ramtha's purported "channeler," J.Z. Knight, has told students that Ramtha won't be making as many appearances this year, said Pavel Mikoloski, spokesman for Ramtha's School of Enlightenment.
Mikoloski said Ramtha's retreat coincides with a need for Knight to have more time for herself, but is not a result of it.
Students from 23 countries pay as much as $1,000 each to attend retreats at Knight's estate and learn from Ramtha, who speaks through an entranced Knight. Many of the students have moved to the Yelm area to be close to the school and Knight.
Knight has said Ramtha first appeared to her in her Tacoma kitchen in 1977. Soon after that, she began to channel Ramtha, and in 1988 she established the school at her 120-acre ranch.
Ramtha announced the curtailing of his schedule in November, while being channeled through Knight, but he did not explain why, Mikoloski said.
"He's pulling back a bit," Mikoloski said. "That's not to say he's not going to be coming and teaching. The way he said it is he will be coming less frequently for this year."
Ramtha will teach at a New Year's weekend workshop Dec. 31-Jan. 2, Mikoloski said. More than 1,000 students have paid $350 each to attend the event at the school.
Ramtha normally would teach daily at the workshop, but this year "we don't know if he's going to be there for three hours or three days," Mikoloski said.
Thousands of students will arrive at the school in March for an annual retreat.
"I think there's been some concern from students because they love the teacher," Mikoloski said. "A lot of these students have been with him a long time now. I think they're taking the challenge quite well."
He said a number of students have reached a stage of spirituality that allows them to teach others.
Some of the more experienced students this year have begun leading weekend sessions for beginning students.
This year, Knight, 53, traveled to Germany, Australia, Mexico, Scotland, Italy, South Africa and Japan to channel Ramtha, Mikoloski said.