Karma chameleon

"Just be yourself." People get this advice a lot when they're trying to make a good impression -- for example, on a date or a job interview. But you notice that people don't get this advice in court. You never see a TV crime show where the lawyer tells the defendant, "Just be yourself." They say, "Wear a suit and keep your mouth shut." They know not everybody can be trusted to be themselves.

"Be yourself" might be good advice for some of the people some of the time. But what if you have road rage? What if you're deeply depressed and need pills to be something other than yourself, otherwise you're miserable? Or what if you're just a jerk? Should you be yourself if your self sucks?

And why should you be yourself when you could be Marilyn Monroe? Or Oscar Wilde? Or Jerry Garcia?

Be a dead Kennedy ...

Leo Jean says he can make this happen for you. And no, we're not talking about dressing up as any of these people and getting a job in a theme park, community theater or tribute band. Leo sees dead people ... and tries to find a new place for their spirit to stay. This new place could be inside you.

In a phone interview from his Arizona home, the 79-year-old spiritual advisor and author, who claims a correspondence Ph.D. in "spiritual healing" and "spiritual analysis," said he was exiled at the age of five by his parents -- the king and queen of Belgium. He tells quite a tale of family drama, the result of which was that he "decided right then I was going to become better than them."Leo knew he had a special purpose ... of a spiritual nature.

Part of that purpose has become matching the spirits of restless dead celebrities with the bodies of restless living people, kind of like a metaphysical roommate-finder service. He claims to have quite a number of people looking to replace their old spirits with shiny new ones.

"[The] reason [people want a] replacement is leukemia, cancer, depression, migraine, overweight and learning problems. The spirits that come to me usually have bad karma ... he has to have the karma removed." The way to do this is to live another life and try to get it right the second time by working with one's spirit.

But as Leo discovered with his first case of spirit replacement, his friend Chief Dan George, some aren't eager to start from scratch.

The story is explained in detail on his web page (http://www.famousspirits.com) but the gist is that the two were friends before Chief Dan's death. After that event, the Chief wanted to clear up his dirty karma but was disappointed to learn that in order to do so, he had to start over and revisit "the ordeal of infancy and dirty diapers." This gave Leo the impetus to decide to put dead spirits into the bodies of adults who were unhappy with their own.

Leo has met up with some rather illustrious company from beyond. Aside from those already mentioned, Leo says he can hook you up with Walt Disney, William Shakespeare, Salvador Dali, Carl Jung, Audrey Hepburn, the Virgin Mary, Shiva, Princess Diana, JFK or Harry Houdini. "We got two more this week," he says, and when I say, "Jack Lemmon and Carroll O'Connor?," he giggles a "Yes!" (Leo has a great giggle). Adolph Hitler is also available ... and why not? Talk about having to work out some bad karma (though if I were Leo, I'd keep an eye on who asked for him).

... if the price is right

As with all roommate services there's a screening process: You have to be compatible with your desired spirit. To find out if you are, Leo does an initial interview with you and then allows the spirit itself do the same to find out if you're going to work with him. And then there's the price.

Marilyn's spirit goes for a cool $15 million. Jesus is asking $50 mil. And I do mean asking. The spirit is the one who sets the price. "The spirit doesn't want the money ... they want to make sure that the person that buys that spirit will work, and the more money, the more they would work." You'd think if you had $50 million to throw around you'd be in good spirits without any help. Nonetheless, Leo helps his clients work with their new spirits to clean up the bad karma. He says he's placed famous spirits already but won't say who to protect his client's privacy.

You can, of course, get a non-celebrity spirit a good deal cheaper, and Leo has stories of clients who have done well with their new inhabitants. Leo has even worked with children before, and is most proud of the work he plans to do with children healing AIDS, which he calls "a spiritual disease."

If the spirit you're looking for isn't listed on his site, no worries -- Leo says he'll check and see if they're available elsewhere. The stars may be a little out of your price range, but maybe they'll negotiate since, being dead, they haven't had any work in a while.

For those who've found that "Be yourself" is advice that just doesn't work, isn't it nice to know you can just give up and be somebody else?


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