At least that’s the prediction offered by co-owners Stan Madson and Phil Thompson in an LA Times article marking the closure of their West Hollywood Melrose Avenue sanctuary. After 41 years in business, just west of celebrated Entourage hang Urth Caffé, the New Age crossroads closed its doors at 5:30 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
According to the article, the number of items sold daily at the Bodhi Tree had diminished in the past two decades by roughly 90%. But the seventy-ish owners tell reporter Teresa Watanabe that they weren’t that interested in embracing new retail paradigms:
The store could have added more non-book items, such as yoga clothing. It could have set up a live-streaming capacity to expand the audience for Bodhi Tree speakers — who have included Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh, world religion author Huston Smith, medium James Van Praagh and spiritual teachers Marianne Williamson, Carolyn Myss and Deepak Chopra. But, Madson said, he wasn’t quite comfortable or interested in evolving.
Regardless of where the Bodhi Tree throws down new roots, the original location will be forever known as the place where Shirley MacLaine began the spiritual awakening she detailed in her 1986 book Out on a Limb.
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