Tag: controversial

The Uncomfortable Truth about “The Secret”

by Joe Barnes


Mind Set


Date: Nov 9, 2018

The Uncomfortable Truth about “The Secret”

Last night, I watched The Secret on Netflix. Despite this movie/documentary being made in 2006, and despite me working in the personal development world, I’d never seen it before.

I’d heard a lot about it. I knew that it’d been a personal development phenomenon – selling 30 million copies of the book – and introducing a new audience to the self-help world. I also had a good idea what The Secret was about – hence me never watching or reading it. However, I was slightly sceptical.

I’d heard a lot of criticism about The Secret and The Law of Attraction. Pseudoscience or New Age nonsense is a label that’s commonly applied. I believed it was too simplistic. Miracles manifesting in a matter of months. It didn’t measure up with my experience of changing my life. However, despite all this, I was pleasantly surprised when watching the film.

My only criticism was the production of the documentary (and on a tight budget the producers can be forgiven for this). Some of it did come across as a little cheesy and dated and the ‘movie sections’ lacked polish, giving the film a ‘made for TV’ feel. However, Hollywood gloss isn’t the reason people are watching The Secret, so let’s explore its message.

The Law of Attraction gets a lot of criticism. The main gripe is that it isn’t really a scientific Law. Unlike The Law of Gravity or the speed of light etc. . it, SO FAR, it hasn’t been proved. Does this mean it lacks credibility? Furthermore, Is everything that can’t be proved by science worthless?

It’s interesting that, to my knowledge, The Law of Attraction hasn’t been disproved either. The fact is, it hasn’t been tested. Nobody has conducted a series of experiments to check the validity of its claims. Perhaps, and this is why we have no results or findings, we presently don’t have the technology to make any measurements. We can’t see the direct correlation between a raise in mood or energy and subsequent positive events occurring in a person’s life.

I’m sceptical of science. I don’t doubt that it’s discovered some amazing things about how our world works, and brought advances that have massively helped the cause of humanity. However, I don’t agree with the God like status that scientists, doctors etc. are granted in our society and I certainly don’t believe they know all the answers.

As an interesting aside, the speed of light isn’t actually a constant. Despite scientists telling us it’s fixed at 299 792 458 m / s, there’s a lot of evidence to suggests it varies. (Dr. Rupert Sheldrake talks about this in his book and talk ‘The Science Delusion’ if you want to conduct further research.)

Anyway, back to my point. Just because science hasn’t proved The Law of Attraction, doesn’t mean it’s without merit. The basic idea is that YOU attract the circumstances and conditions of your life through the way you think and feel. You have an energy or, vibrational frequency, and this is transmitted to the Universe which responds with the physical equivalent.

It’s both an interesting, and liberating, theory. It means that, through your thoughts and feelings, you can direct and shape your life in a way you desire. You can be happy, healthy, achieve all your goals and experience love. There is nothing stopping you apart from the mastery of this ‘law’.

I agree.

While The Law of Attraction can’t scientifically be described as a ‘law’; it operates close enough to this definition to be effective. I’ve turned my entire life around through changing my thoughts and feelings. On many occasions, which I’ve documented in a diary spanning 16 years, I’ve changed the outcome of a tennis match, my ability to attract women, injuries and my ability to help clients, through raising my energy. There was a direct correlation. Higher energy (better mood) = improved outcomes. I don’t need a scientist to tell me this. I’ve conducted my own experiments and proved it to myself.

The Secret gives an excellent and easily applied explanation of The Law of Attraction. Think about the outcome you desire as much as possible and feel how you would feel if this outcome came to pass. Furthermore, always think about what you want. If you ever catch yourself thinking about the things you don’t want, then immediately correct this thinking and redirect it towards to something positive.

The Uncomfortable Truth

A major criticism of The Secret is that it claims each individual is responsible for ALL the events and outcomes in their life. This means that if you have cancer or a failed relationship, or get fired from your job, it’s because of something you thought and felt for a sustained period of time.

This triggers a lot of people. It’s an uncomfortable truth that challenges their notion of being a blameless victim. ‘I don’t deserve this’ they say. It’s cruel.

To some extent, I agree. You would never say to someone who has just been diagnosed with a terminal illness, ‘you brought it on yourself.’ However, I think people who despise The Secret or The Law of Attraction for this reason are missing the point.

Rather than blaming you for what has happened, you’re being given the key to change and recover. The film documents two cases of people who have bounced back from life threatening situations by using The Law of Attraction. The first, is a lady who healed herself of breast cancer in 3 months. The second, is a man who recovered from a plane crash that broke his back and crushed his diaphragm.

So, rather than focusing on blame, think about responsibility. If you take total responsibility for all the events and circumstances in your life, irrespective of how bad they are, you can then start to move towards a solution.

Finally, the issue of time scales must be addressed. On this point, I am slightly critical of The Secret. In the film, the author Jack Cranfield talks about how he manifested a $100,000 income in a matter of months. It all seems so easy.

My experience has been anything but. I’ve struggled for 16 long years to turn my life around. I’ve been successful, but it’s been the fight of my life. To see people talking about realising their desires in less than half a year is difficult to comprehend.

Again, though, this could just be a fault in my approach. Notice how I use the words ‘struggle’ and ‘fight’ in my previous paragraph. The Law of Attraction indicates that if one believes they need to struggle and fight against their conditions then they’ll receive more of this experience. Perhaps my own slow progress is a result of the internal battle that has been raging inside me throughout this time. And, if I could just believe with greater clarity, then I’d have achieved my desires far more quickly.

I can accept this criticism. In fact, I want to believe it because of the opportunity it presents. If I can let go of the struggle, then the possibilities for rapid manifestation are very appealing.

In conclusion, I couldn’t find much to fault in The Secret. Yes, The Law of Attraction isn’t a bonafide scientific law, but that won’t stop it from working in your life. My advice is to USE IT!