These types of beliefs about spirituality, UFOs, aliens and reincarnation have earned Shirley her critics, but the criticism doesn't bother her. "I never had the urge to please anybody," she says. "I don't know where that came from."

"You know where it comes from? It comes from a tremendous sense of your own self-worth," Oprah says. "You know that your own value is within yourself and you don't have to get it outside yourself."

This sense of self-worth may have fueled Shirley's independent nature, which she says manifests itself in her past relationships and life today. "I felt very comfortable being alone," she says. "That's why I live alone now. That's why I never had a conventional marriage. That's why I loved to travel [alone]."

Watch Shirley explain why she had an unconventional open marriage for years with her ex-husband, Steve Parker   


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