Owners of Valley resort describe sweat lodge tragedy - CBS 5 - KPHO

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Owners of Valley resort describe sweat lodge tragedy

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Amayra and Michael Hamilton Amayra and Michael Hamilton
Their spiritual resort called "Angel Valley" Their spiritual resort called "Angel Valley"
SEDONA, AZ (CBS5) -

Tragedy rocked Sedona when three people died at a sweat lodge ceremony.

A spiritual resort called "Angel Valley" hosted the event and the owners have only spoken briefly about what happened three years ago, until now.

They sat down with CBS 5 News for an exclusive interview about their new book.

"The incident that happened has had a tremendous amount of publicity and yet there is a lot of things not clear for people," Amayra Hamilton said.

"How do we ever know ourselves until we're tested," Michael Hamilton asked.

The last few years have been some of the most painful of the their lives - the deadly sweat lodge held on their property, the tragic loss that day and the aftermath: lawsuits, a trial and now healing.

"It was my way of being able to process through all that happened and to realize that there is a bigger picture," Michael Hamilton said.

The Hamiltons chose to get their story out once and for all in a way no one can manipulate or chose what parts they'd like to hear.

They wrote a book called Transformation at Angel Valley. It's a book three years in the making.

"The world was also not ready to look at the bigger picture because it was too much trauma, too much grief that first had to be processed before any person can relate to the bigger picture and the bigger picture is our main reason to step out and say this is what we did with it," Amayra Hamilton said.

She wrote the first half of the book which chronicles the details of the events that led up to the sweat lodge tragedy and those that followed.

In the section titled Something Terribly Wrong, she describes her reaction when she learned people inside the lodge were in trouble and it's leader, James Ray, did nothing to help them.

She wrote, "I felt a tremendous rage rising up in me towards James Ray. Why did this arrogant son of a (explicative) have to push the limits in such an extreme way?"

Michael Hamilton wrote the second half of the book.

"Thank you for the gift I'm giving myself through you," Michael Hamilton said.

His part is more philosophical. Michael Hamilton chose to see the final and still pending lawsuit against the Hamiltons in a positive light. He wrote, "I realized that there is nothing I can do about the circumstances surrounding the events of Oct. 8, 2009, but I can do everything about my response to it."

"I incorporated the pain and I incorporated the darkest dark in my life. And that was really what the three year journey has been has been about, taking the darkest dark in my life and incorporating it with the lightest light and I wind up merging myself in my heart," Michael Hamilton said.

The book is selling for about $19 online. Click here for more information.

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