Thursday, April 12, 2007

The Secret. The Lie. Same Differene

Though I have not read it, watched it, or been told it by a giggly twelve-year-old girl, I'm guessing The Secret is probably the biggest New Age, pseudo-spiritual, mind-enema to hit the best sellerslist since L. Ron Hubbard last shit on a pile of paper and called it a book. As I understand it, the titular secret is the knowledge of the "Law of Attraction," some all-powerful force that binds the things people desire to the people who desire them. This law is not something as plain as gravity, mind you. In fact, it's a law that science can't even explain. How it even became a law is anyone's guess, but a definite law of the universe it is.

Apparently, by recognizing this law and using the power of positive thinking, a person can get anything they want: a new car, a wife, a cheese grater, anything! You could probably even hold your breath for an hour or make yourself taller or cure yourself of cancer just by hoping that nasty ol' tumor will go away. All this, of course, is a giant lie. Sorry, wishes can't cure cancer.

While I'm sure there are benefits to positive thinking (having a more cheerful disposition, getting a new perspective, decreasing stress levels, etc.), I don't think that's what the phrase implies. Blindly believing some book that tells you there is a magic wishing well inside your head is not positive thinking. That's not thinking at all.

I think the main point of positive thinking is the last half, the thinking part. The power of positive thinking comes into play when a person actually uses their brain to analyze a situation. You want something? So think about it. Focus on it for a while. Find out about it. Ask yourself why you want it. Figure out the best ways to get it. Imagine what it would be like to have it. Consider the differences between having it and not having it. All this positive thinking will make you more prepared to get what you want than idle wishing.

But I suppose it's much harder to sell a book that promotes analytical thinking than it is to sell one that tells people that all they need is to think happy thoughts, sprinkle on some fairy dust, and then they can fly, they can fly, they can fly!

1 comment:

  1. So, this one's dated the 11th, but I didn't technically publish it until the 12th. Perhaps it's cheating my way around that whole "I'll post at least once a day next week" thing. But, in my defense, I started writing this post last night and fell asleep halfway through. Judge me how you will.


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