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|Written by Agnes Cadieux|
|Wednesday, 13 July 2011 00:00|
From the very moment we begin to understand what's going on around us, we are told what the formula of life is: we grow up, go to school, get a job, become a good citizen of the community, marry and have children, raise them, and die happy. Any questions? Now, I don't know about you, but this layout depresses me. Where are the aspirations? Where is my silver lining? Where does my uniqueness fit in to this cookie-cutter life? Enter The Secret.
In 2006 a woman named Rhonda Byrne released a self-help book called The Secret. Based on William Walker Atkinson's school of thought that positive thinking can have life-altering results, Byrne takes this thought process and lays out, step-by-step, how you can use positive thinking to your benefit. With a motto like Everything is Possible, Nothing is Impossible, it sort of stirs something deep within our inner skeptic. But does it work?
I have to admit, I got on the Secret train along with the millions of other people sick of their meaningless, crappy lives. I was looking for something different, something that could change my situation when everything else had failed. Did it turn my life around? Well, yes and no. I'm not a millionaire, nor am I a best-selling author living in a villa somewhere in Spain. But I'm happier, and I'm making things happen. The secret in The Secret is harnessing the power of positive thinking and tapping into the energies and vibrations of the universe. This may sound a little hokey, but there has been research done in the field of quantum physics and quantum biology (a relatively new field), and there is some very strong evidence to suggest that we, and all things around us, are, in fact, energy. What we're doing wrong, according to the book, is not vibrating on the higher levels where change actually occurs. The Secret states: if you think it, you give it energy, therefore it will come into being -- and this "it" can be anything from "bad luck" to "coincidences" to "miracles." The thing we must remember is that if we perceive it to be true, it will actually happen.
But it wasn't all the unusually delightful things happening around me that prompted me to continue looking into The Secret; it was the principle of the book. The Secret asks you to assess your outlook on life, to consider what you think of it, and to examine how you go through your day. Are you always in a bad mood, or think you're constantly a victim of circumstance? What sort of vibrations surround you? To be honest, I've become aware of what I'm spreading, and what I'm attracting to me, and, as loopy as it may sound, I think there may be something to this. I no longer say things like, "I don't want to be late again," in which the energetic focus is on "being late." Instead, I change the focus and say things like, "I will be on time." Easy? You betcha! Does it work? Who knows, but I haven't been late in years!
At this point, the question of success came up. And what was a key here was to understand that everyone's measure of success is different. To me, success could be landing a publishing deal, to someone else it could be finally getting pregnant, or getting that job in Europe. Whatever it may be, as long as we know the universe has enough cool stuff in its warehouse for everyone, we can attract what we want to us.
With all the good the book spreads, there are also some things that are a little... off. For starters, Byrne says we have to always be positive and full of love, that all negative emotions carry negative energy, and will therefore bring negative outcomes. Have you ever tried to be cheerful and loving all the time? It's borderline creepy. Also, on the global perspective, she claims that if we draw attention to disasters and unrest, we will only create more of it, and we should all therefore stop reading the paper and watching the news, thus not giving energy to these travesties. Okay, makes sense, but a world full of shut-ins probably won't make matters better either. Finally, she states that everything we need will find us. You heard right, folks, we don't need to do anything at all. So, if I followed that, it would mean I don't have to send out my manuscript to publishers, because they will find me!
Despite a few hiccups in The Secret, I think it sends a very good message to the world. I think it offers people something to believe in when everything else has failed. My grandmother followed this book when she was dying of cancer; my mother discovered The Secret, and it prompted her to seek out other, similar schools of thought. My friend and her mother both read it, and both of them now lead quiet, satisfied lives. The bottom line is that this book will probably not make miracles happen. It won't grant you millions, nor will it send Ferraris down from the heavens and onto your driveway. What it will do, though, is prove to you that if you maintain a positive outlook, keep faith, have hope, and never, ever give in, things will happen, and they will be good.
If you'd like to read more on The Secret, click here.