Ivan Szendrö, a self-styled, modern-day shaman, says he can reveal your “legend” for $75. Knowing your legend – and subsequently, your “hero” – heals you and helps you solve problems, he contends. Szendrö, who lives in Palisades, N.Y., wants to bring his message to a larger audience.
Szendrö’s spiritual awakening came in 1970 in his Hungarian hometown of Nagygec. He was a young atheist actor living in Budapest, and was visiting Nagygec when a flood destroyed the village. The villagers connected the flood with ancient mythology – and Szendrö saw himself as part of the legend.
He started touring from town to town on his bike, spreading the story. Years later, he ended up married with two daughters in Palisades. There, Szendrö changed his approach and began offering personalized sessions. He says he wants to help people – and not be seen as a “freak.”
Besides his spiritual activities, he takes care of a senior citizen and a disabled person, and works part time as a hotel waiter. He has a dream: to rebuild a bridge in Nagygec that plays a major role in his personal legend. All the money Szendrö makes as a shaman is dedicated to this goal. So far, he’s saved $10,000.