Rhonda Byrne’s film and book ‘The Secret’, both from 2006, was described by its opponents as pseudoscience, New Thought and magical, wishful thinking. But it still sells well.
There are a lot of useful tips in this book (and film) that obviously attract people to it. Some people call it self-help because it actually helped them to change their lives for the better. So, if the outcomes are good, can it really be so bad? As it says in the Bible: ‘by their fruit you will recognize them’. And I do not want to remind everybody of the fruits of all the major religions. At the beginning, the ideas are always high-minded but what matters is how people put them into practice.
So what is the Secret? As the talking heads in the movie explain: ‘the Secret is the Law of Attraction’. In other words: ‘ you attract what you think about most’ because your ‘thoughts become things’ and ‘your thoughts and your feelings create your life’. Some people do not like that idea because it puts the responsibility for their lives on them and not the world around them. They cannot blame everybody else for their failures anymore, and play the victim.
It seems at first that the film (and the book) is trying to sell you something, because of the way it is made – like an advertisement or coaching. But in the end the whole message is already there and you do not have to pay for it. Everybody is sharing their knowledge with you for free. And that knowledge is not really new and it really is not a secret – it is just something we tend to forget. So they remind us of these eternal truths that we deep down already know ourselves.
And what are these principles? Have a healthy respect for yourself. When your cup is full then you can share things with other people. And ‘as you love yourself, you’ll love others’. Another one is: be grateful for everything that you already have! And then you can start visualizing what you want to achieve in the future. And against all appearances is not just a lot of money but general abundance. ‘What we really want is happiness’. And because ‘your joy lies within you’ you are the only person who can give it all to yourself instead of expecting it from others.
We are all connected. So we should focus our attention on trust, love, living in abundance, education, peace. We must concentrate on the solutions, not the problems, as we usually tend to do. For example we need peaceful resistance, not anti-war movement. Why? Because ‘energy flows where attention goes’. So by working on ourselves and our better future, we are actually working on a better future for the whole of humanity and this planet.
There is a saying, that we teach what we need to learn. And I really needed a reminder of all these truths again today.