The Secret

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So, I followed The Secret's recommendation and notified the universe's call center that I wanted a quick, economical, pleasing, and durable kitchen floor.

The Secret

Once I did that, the next step was to enter such an intense state of visualization that it was as if my new floor already existed. It turns out I was on a universal high because a few nights later I awoke at 3 a. Paint the floor to look like acid-stained concrete! The next morning I searched the internet and contacted every faux painter within a mile radius. Only one, Deanne Lenehan Cunningham, agreed to come and take a look.

She had never done a floor and was concerned whether her products would adhere to the sealant now on my floor. She said she would talk to the manufacturer, see if was possible, then give us an estimate. When a week went by without a callback, my husband suggested I phone her, and that I also explore other alternatives just in case. Normally I tend toward the anxiously obsessive, and I would have already been doing that. Instead I told him it wasn't necessary because we already had a perfect kitchen floor. Secret- speak requires this odd future-present construction, which my husband came to call, "sounding like a moron.

But as Byrne so amply proves, the universe loves people who sound like morons. We now have a gorgeous, glowing floor. And I had to admit just sitting back and letting my desires manifest freed up a lot of time—and was much more relaxing than trying to take care of things myself. With that success, I moved on to my sinuses. Each spring, pollen causes my nose to resemble a drip irrigation device.

What happened when I followed the best-selling book’s advice for two months.

I spend months spraying my nostrils and popping antihistamines. Why not put in a Secret request to get rid of my allergies?


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After all, the fiftysomething Byrne describes how it took her only three days of proper thinking to get rid of her reading glasses and restore her eyesight to that of a twentysomething. So I shelved the drugs, walked my dog, breathed deep, and expressed gratitude for my sensational sinuses. This worked great for weeks, through one of the most frigid springs on record, and I was starting to think that maybe my father was right, maybe people like Byrne really knew how the world worked. Then the weather warmed up and the air was thick with pollen.

My eyes swelled, my nose started pouring, and I ended up with a sinus infection and a bag of medications from the otolaryngologist.


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Of course, one could say The Secret failed. But look at it this way: When I first started imagining myself drip-free, the universe responded by sending a cold snap! Surely there is a lesson here for Al Gore. I had spent months dragging myself around to furniture stores and cruising the internet for the desk, which I can see quite clearly: It's sleek and made of steel, L-shaped, with plenty of work space on top and storage below.

Valerie Frankel of Good Housekeeping wrote an article where she tries the principles of The Secret for four weeks. While she reached some of her goals, others had improved. Frankel's final assessment is: Visualization has forced me to pay attention to what I really desire. And laughing is never a bad idea. If you ignore The Secret's far-too-simplistic maxims no, you will not be doomed to a miserable life for thinking negative thoughts and the hocus-pocus the cosmos isn't going to deliver a new car; it's busy , there's actually some helpful advice in the book.

But it's nothing you don't already know. In , Barbara Ehrenreich published Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America as a reaction to self-help books such as The Secret , claiming that they promote political complacency and a failure to engage with reality. Byrne's scientific claims, in particular concerning quantum physics , have been rejected by a range of authors including Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons at The New York Times [16] and Harvard physicist Lisa Randall.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For the film the book was based on, see The Secret film. For other uses, see Secret disambiguation. Retrieved 2 February No one with a brain. The Law of Attraction. Whatever you send out of positive thoughts to the Universe comes back to you, ten fold at least. It's a bit like "karma" and positive thinking with a twist: You want to money comming to you? Just visualise it and it will happen. You want to be thinner? Just visualise that food has 0 calories! Quote from the book: Food cannot cause you to put on weight, unless you think it can.

Well, I guess that's why this person is so insanely fat; she must believe that the food she eats has many calories and fat! Someone should have explained to her that it's 0 calories and good for her! By all means, I'm all pro positive thinking. I'll go as far as to say that: This book is just up there next to Paulo Coelho 's The Alchemist: But what is even worse is that the "author" blames people for their own misfortune: You ended up in the gas chamber in WWII: You get the idea.

Needless to say how incredibly condescending and trivializing this must appear to people who are enduring pain and distress in their lives whether that be emotional, physical or professional is irrelevant. It's actually quite disgusting when you sit back and think about it! Byrne's getting away with it and earning millions on it at the same time is beyond me. She must be the most positive thinking person in the world. View all 25 comments. View all 17 comments.

Aug 22, Katharine Grubb rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: I wasn't interested in reading this book. I thought from the reviews of friends that it was pretty obvious stuff. However, I listened to the audio version. I sort of laughed at first and thought, "duh". I promised to listen to the whole book on CD, and as I listened, the connections between what the author is trying to communicate, and what many world religions try to communicate is huge. I am not a religious person. I found this book inspiring because I wasn't being told that God created the un I wasn't interested in reading this book.

Oprah's POWERFUL Secret to SUCCESS Using The Law Of Attraction - Oprah Winfrey Show

I found this book inspiring because I wasn't being told that God created the universe and that if I pray to Jesus that HE will take care of me. Finally, I was getting a confirmation that if I live a positive life, and if I really attempt to understand the connection between why I am here, and why the world is here, then I can live a better life. There are even segments of the book that answered all of my cynical questions such as, "then just focus all your thoughts on getting revenge to those you hate", "I didn't give myself this disease", and "I am a victim".

Many folks think the whole book is bunk because it gives an air of personal responsibility, and I can see why they would hate that. It's so much easier to blame others. There are parts that I think are simplistic. But who says life has to be all that complicated?

The Secret (book) - Wikipedia

Why not try living this secret to life for a year and see what's possible? I think I would have a hard time reading it. View all 9 comments.

Jul 09, Matt Evans rated it did not like it. Excerpted from an online essay I wrote: To be sure, the so-called Secret represents a financially viable means to wealth, obviously so, but let's be clear: Thus, Byrnes would have you believe that the world's wealthy, distinguished and famous—every last luminous one of them—attained their high position by dint of simple adherence to a secret law: She shits you not.

Furthermore, they the world's rich, ce Excerpted from an online essay I wrote: Furthermore, they the world's rich, celebrated, and leisured have all conspired to keep knowledge of this law from the rest of us. Morgan, Mozart, Sir Isaac Newton, Beethoven, and the Rockefellers, among others, are all given as examples of this mighty and mightily secretive Them. There are problems with this theory. For starters, the Law of Attraction isn't really a secret. Self-help books with a metaphysical bent have preached this stuff for centuries.

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I mean, just walk into your nearest New Age bookshop and pick up the first book you see; it will undoubtedly mention something about the Law. So is Byrnes lying to us? He just picks them out, or makes them up, to suit his purpose" p. A liar, you see, at least recognizes the truth enough to know that he's departing from it; a bullshitter couldn't care less—just show her the money. The Law of Attraction, then, is the bullshitter's belief that one can change the objective world alone by the power of thought—forget action; in fact, eschew action. If your belief is strong enough, says the Law, your dreams and desires will come to you much as a steel screw hops across a tabletop and slaps into a powerful magnet.

This is the "As you sow, so shall ye reap" philosophy minus any actual sowing, a fairy dust notion that we all at one point in our lives have espoused: We're supposed to outgrow it. When I was four years old I had an invisible friend named Kenny. His existence, such as it was, may or may not have originated in direct response to my sister Amanda's birth, an event which made me an oldest child instead of the only child in the family.

Unlike my busy mother, Kenny always paid attention to me and let me have my way. My mom eventually forced me to go outside and play with real children. Predictably, Kenny soon disappeared. The Secret would explain the account thus: Which is true—at least to the degree that we forget about my mom forcing me to go outside. What follows, then, is an arbitrary list of some of the "authorities" that appear on the DVD, the trained animals of the circus or the witch's evil monkeys, depending on the metaphor, waxing explanatory on the The Secret. But don't imagine the monkeys as evil; rather, picture streetwise capuchins earnestly working a cheap accordion with their tiny, hairy hands, glancing up now and then with a smile, anxious to see if you've put a coin yet in their dented tin cups: Marie Diamond, internationally-known Feng Shui mistress.

John Assaraf, "a former street kid…who has dedicated the last twenty-five years to researching the human brain, quantum physics, and business strategies, as they relate to achieving success in business and life. Michael Bernard Beckwith, "a non-aligned trans-religious progressive"—your guess here is as good as mine. Beckwith also claims the title of doctor, although God alone knows where the title comes from. Beckwith, ever the walking conundrum, dresses in a sharp suit, speaks in patrician tones, and sports a wild head of dreadlocks.

And Ester Hicks, spokesperson for Abraham, a multifarious spiritual entity. She is the author of The Law of Attraction. It's hard to say. Esther's website quotes Abraham, the spiritual collective she channels, on the topic: There is nothing that has gone wrong here….

She has a serene presence, almost comforting. She also has the most attractive voice I've ever heard—very earthy, very sexy. I find it difficult to reconcile that voice with anything close to its putative paranormal personae. Even though the author's of The Secret and anyone else swept into their rhetorical corner probably aren't consciously lying to us about their great happiness at having discovered the Law, I have suspicions that somewhere deep in their hearts something like a moral question prickles and goads.

I’ve Got The Secret

For instance, how should one respond to a crisis of, say, Darfur proportions? Should the suffering of stranger Africans on a continent far, far away be of concern if, ultimately, all that matters is how I feel? Esther asked Abraham the multifarious spiritual entity for clarification on this very matter: I used to be extremely disturbed when a person's rights were violated by violence on a person, or by someone forcefully taking someone else's property But then, after meeting you [Abraham: I've gotten somewhat better at not feeling their pain.

Can I just look at whatever they're doing to one another out there, and think, You're all doing to one another what you have somehow chosen to do? The upside, of course, is that such a belief absolves we standers-by from stepping in and offering help. Let's take as an example the recent shooting at Virginia Tech.

Apparently, if the Law of Attraction holds true, those 32 men and women somehow attracted their crazy executioner to themselves. Mass homicide, in this light, is simply a game played between the shooter and his frightened victims. Rhonda Byrnes attempted to defend this belief in a telephone conversation with Newsweek's Jerry Adler cite link. They were speaking on the topic of Rwanda, which dwarfs Blacksburg in terms of scope but certainly not in terms of horror: If we are in fear, if we're feeling in our lives that we're victims and feeling powerless, then we are on a frequency of attracting those things to us Totally those words that are so important, whether thought or spoken consciously or not, let the victims enjoy their just deserts.

It's true that any survivor of genocide or attempted homicide is responsible for picking up the various shattered pieces and attempting to make something of what's left of life. But to pretend that tragedy is nothing more than a game is to diminish its victims suffering in the cruelest possible way. If compassion would have us bear another's suffering, what then is its opposite? What is the word for ignoring or minimizing another's suffering for the primary purpose of easing the bystander's discomfort, and, as Law of Attraction espouses, the dubious secondary purpose of somehow inspiring the sufferer to quit wallowing in his own tragic juices?

Am I overreacting here? I feel like my parents yelling at me for listening to Heavy Metal music. But the question, remember, was whether one could actually reach a state of consciousness where he isn't bothered in the slightest by another's pain or suffering. Heavy Metal music, on the other hand, was meant to be a tongue-in-cheek solace to teenagers suffering under their parents' heavy hands. There is a difference: Magnanimity represents the apotheosis of human nature. Success, lasting success, takes place only when one figures out how to best serve a large number of people.

Real people, real service first, the money will probably follow. Bullshit, on the other hand, bullshit sells well, for a time -- perhaps even for a long time -- but it's not exactly a worthwhile endeavor. View all 10 comments. May 12, Shannon rated it did not like it Shelves: God, I am so sick of The Secret.

I just can't understand why everyone is so enthralled with it. That book is at the top of every bestseller list and it's total crap. You're not going to get what you want by thinking about how much you want it. I mean, yes to positive thinking and all that, but the part they left out was that you actually have to DO something to make things happen.

Jack Canfield whose involvement should turn you off automatically didn't really sit around staring at the ceiling God, I am so sick of The Secret. Jack Canfield whose involvement should turn you off automatically didn't really sit around staring at the ceiling waiting for a million dollars to fall out of the sky. He sat around writing nauseating stories and then got rejected by a ton of publishers before someone who likes nauseating stories bought his book.

Now you're just making stuff up. Don't get me wrong, The Secret has some valid points. You should envision your dreams. You should think about your goals constantly and imagine what you would do if you ever achieved them. But you should also think about and envision the steps you need to take to get there. Then you should act. The world is not just going to hand you what you want. Just a quick edit: I forgot to mention the absolute worst part of The Secret. It's your fault that bad things happen to you.

That's right, your negative thoughts bring negativity into your life and cause horrible things to occur. Your father died in a tragic accident? Your baby mama took off with the kids and won't let you see 'em? Laid off and can't find work? If you could just think positively all the time, you'd live a charmed life and trouble would never darken your doorstep. View all 3 comments. Aug 02, Lujayn Alyamani rated it liked it.

Nov 26, Ollie rated it did not like it Recommends it for: I'm sure this book only exists thanks to The Da Vinci Code. Sensing a public interest in ancient "secrets" passed down to modern times, the publishers of this awful piece of self-help decided they could market Rhonda Byrne's book and make a killing. They were not wrong. In Brasil, it's spreading like an Old World plague: Swept up by its popularity, my mom brought a copy home. Much like George Bush Jr. The stupid part comes in its mind-boggling belief that anything you ask from the Universe will become true, that everyone deserves and should pursue their most selfish desires in order to be happy.

Ask the Universe and you will get it. Want a great parking space at the shopping mall? The Universe will help you like a genie in a bottle. Knowledge found in Eastern religions such as Buddhism e. Karma are simplified and described as a "secret" that only the elite are aware of. The disturbing part comes in statements such as the one, early in the book, that says people killed in disasters or crimes brought it upon themselves. According to this book's reasoning, if you find yourself gassed to death with millions of other people it's because you were following negative thoughts and unable to see the Universe's path to your salvation.

This is, at least, the conclusion I draw from the book's teachings. It shifts blame from other people, or life's chaos, onto yourself. Robbed and shot in the head? You are in tune with the Universe.