TRUTHS THE MOVIE & BOOK DO NOT REVEAL ABOUT THE PROCESS OF HUMAN ACCOMPLISHMENT
In the past six months, The Secret has taken the world by storm, selling millions of copies as a DVD and a book and jumping to the top of the best-sellers list. It has won acclaim from popular icons such as Larry King and Oprah Winfrey. It has been scorned by some scientists and psychologists as pseudo-science and psycho-babble and condemned by others for appealing to people’s materialistic aspirations. Those who dismiss it, do so with a vehemence reminiscent of the church’s response to Copernicus and Galileo. Everyone is talking and arguing about The Secret, but very little is being done to rationally examine and evaluate the methodology it advocates.The purpose of all knowledge is the power to better life on earth -- to improve the human condition physically, economically, socially, politically, psychologically and spiritually. Human Science is knowledge for human accomplishment. Human Science is based on the premise that there are universal laws and processes governing all fields of human activities. The objective of this project is to impartially examine The Secret from the perspective of Human Science to determine whether the method it advocates is consistent with universal principles of consciousness, life and human accomplishment.
Theory of The Secret
These article present a detailed analysis of the methodology in The Secret. They examine the questions: Does it really work? Why does it work? What are the theoretical principles on which it is based? How can the method be further improved and made more effective? They raise and answer questions which the movie and book do not address. They discuss application of the method for unfailing success in romantic love and to create luck. They conclude that The Secret is a powerful, practical methodology for unfailing accomplishment in life.
Accomplishment is a natural endowment of all human beings. All of us know how to accomplish and we apply that knowledge all the time for important and trivial purposes. But few of us feel that we know the secret for to ensure success in anything we do. The Secret offers a method for unfailing accomplishment.
The method presented in The Secret is one expression of the universal process of creation and accomplishment. Any person can apply this method to accomplish any goal in his/her own life. The book and DVD explain the method but not the theory of why and how the method works. Knowledge is power. A full understanding of the theory behind The Secret will enhance its power. When applied with knowledge, conviction and intense aspiration, the method of The Secret is infallible. It cannot fail.
Section One of this article presents and discusses the statements made in The Secret. The remainder of the article examines the theory behind the method.
Message of The Secret
The author state that the DVD and the book present knowledge that has been known through the ages, but is brought all together for the first time. That knowledge can be briefly summarized as follows: Human beings have the power to accomplish whatever they intensely aspire to accomplish, provided they adhere to the method advocated. The method is valid for achieving personal wealth, improving personal relationships, curing illness or any other purpose including service to society. Rightly applied, the method is infallible.
Law of Attraction
The book states that The Secret is based on an unfailing universal law, the law of attraction. This law states that whatever we focus our attention on is attracted to us. Our thoughts and feelings create our reality. When we consciously direct our thoughts and feelings toward the positive goals we want to achieve, we send forth a message to the universal consciousness and attract the results we concentrate on. The book does not explain the theory, process or mechanism by which the law works. It advises practitioners to concentrate on the result to be achieved and insists that method is infallible.
The essence of the method in The Secret is described in three steps:
- Ask: Intensely visualize and emotionalize the goal you want to achieve and continuously concentrate on the achievement of that goal. Avoid all negative thoughts that are contrary to the achievement of the goal. Especially avoid focusing attention on the problem or situation that one wants to change, since according to the law of attraction, attention to the problem reinforces the existing situation.
- Answer: Wait for the universe to respond. It is not necessary for you to know how your goal can be accomplished. Do not dwell on 'how', only on the goal itself. Your task is only to intensely aspire and wait for circumstances to turn in your favor.
- Receive: Align and attune yourself to the universe. Put your thoughts and feelings in harmony with what you want to accomplish. Express only positive feelings. Feel cheerful and enthusiastic. Avoid all negative emotions of any description. Try to feel now as you will when your goal is achieved. Feel gratitude for what you already have.
The book states that fragments of The Secret can be found in earlier oral and written traditions, but that all the pieces of The Secret have been brought together for the first time. This knowledge can be found in traditional sources of wisdom. The Bhagavad Gita, India’s great scripture written thousands of years ago, states "you can achieve anything which you aspire to achieve." The Gita goes even further to state that "you can become whatever you aspire to become".
The book also states that "for the first time all the pieces have come together." It may be more accurate to say that these truths have now been presented in a manner that is more accessible and understandable by the general public. All the elements of the formula have been brought together in writing long ago. Sri Aurobindo describes in detail the conditions for a conscious mastery over life in chapters 13 to 24 of The Life Divine. He also explains the Process of Creation, which is the means by which that mastery is accomplished. The emphasis in his writings is on the application of this process for self-perfection and spiritual evolution. Since 1970, the application of this process to accomplishments in life has been extensively studied, codified as a practical methodology and disseminated under the heading Life Response.
Scientific Validation of The Secret
It is easy for people to dismiss the claims of The Secret as irrational and unscientific and to feel a sense of satisfaction in not falling prey to patent ‘non-sense’. Those of the positivist school of science who are proud of their insistence on empiricism reject the idea of a conscious, responsive universe prima facie as unscientific and unworthy of serious consideration. But that is not a rational or a scientific response. Equally bizarre, contradictory and inexplicable concepts have been embraced by physicists during the past century, including Relative Time, Curved Space, Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle, Black Holes, and Dark Matter.
Science, according to the renowned scientific philosopher Karl Popper, is not concerned with the source or rationality of a hypothesis, only with its capacity for validation. “Every discovery contains an ‘irrational element’, or a ‘creative intuition’ in Bergson’s sense…Scientific discovery is impossible without faith in ideas which are of a purely speculative kind, and sometimes even quite hazy; a faith which is completely unwarranted from the point of view of science, and which, to that extent, is metaphysical.”
Science is only concerned with the rationality of the methods used to test the hypothesis. It is not at all necessary that we understand ‘how’ The Secret works in order to evaluate its validity from a scientific perspective. It is enough that we determine whether or not it works, i.e. whether controlled application of the methodology advocated actually achieves the anticipated results. Testability, not plausibility, is the sole valid criteria for scientific investigation.
“I shall certainly admit a system as empirical or scientific only if it is capable of being tested by experience. ..I hold that scientific theories are never fully justifiable or verifiable, but they are nevertheless testable…The objectivity of scientific statements lies in the fact that they can be inter-subjectively tested.” Testability means inter-subject repeatability, i.e. the capacity of the same results to empirically validated by numerous independent scientists applying the same procedure.
That is precisely what advocates of The Secret claim. They claim that the method works, that it cannot fail to work when the required conditions are fulfilled and the method is followed precisely. They do not insist that practitioners must believe in their explanation of how the method works. They do say that greater faith in the method enhances the intensity of the psychological effort taken to practice it and, by the same logic it can be implied that, strong disbelief in the method can prevent the method from working. That is because the method is based on the power of mind to realize what it conceives to be possible and aspires to achieve. This position is internally consistent with the entire thesis and cannot be contested on rational grounds.
Scientifically, the issue reduces to a question of whether the method works. Advocates invite everyone to apply the method and test it for themselves. Therefore, it is neither necessary nor relevant to consider whether or not their explanation of how it works appeals to our common sense or is consistent with our view of the universe.
Nevertheless, it is only natural that those who apply the method, either for personal benefit or the pursuit of impersonal knowledge, would also like to understand the mechanism by which it works. This article presents an explanation for The Secret which is entirely consist with the knowledge that can be gained by an acute and objective study of the character of life in history, biography or literature or by direct empirical experience through psycho-spiritual methods of yoga. The explanations given here are based on the writings of Sri Aurobindo and on research conducted over the past three decades by | The Mother’s Service Society of Pondicherry, India.
Regardless of whether the objective is to personally benefit from The Secret or to impersonally test its validity, the first essential condition is to clearly understand the conditions and steps required to achieve results.
Step One: Visualize & Emotionalize
The power of mental concentration on a goal has been known for millennium. Concentration of the mind on God, a sound (mantra), an idea (koan or sloka), an image (yantra), a center of consciousness (chakra) or one’s breath is common to all spiritual disciplines. These methods are based on the principle that all power derives from Consciousness and mental energy is one expression of Consciousness.
One of the crucial insights presented by The Secret is the importance of avoiding negative thoughts. In the course of pursuing a goal – whether it is getting out of debt, losing weight, curing a disease, getting a job or getting married -- we often spend more time thinking about the condition we want to escape or the possibility of failure than we do envisioning the goal we want to achieve. In the name of working on a solution, we become even more preoccupied worrying and feeling sorry about our problem. The Secret advises us that not dwelling on the negative is as important as focusing on the positive. Consciousness is power. Attention is energy. Whatever gets attention is energized. Whatever you concentrate the power of your attention on tends to increase. Problems such as illness and depression are negative formations of energy that grow and persist because of the attention people give to them. That explains why so many people find their problems increasing the more they try to solve them.
All that we are is the result of what we have thought. - Buddha
Mind is a subtle plane of existence. Things shape in our minds before they express in our physical acts. Before speaking we think. Before launching a project, we plan. The greater the mental preparation, the greater our accomplishment. Thinkers, poets, composers, writers, scientists, business people, inventors and professional athletes all know the essential role that mental concentration plays in accomplishment. The only valid question that may be raised is whether mental concentration is sufficient to accomplish any goal we decide upon, i.e. whether it really has the power to evoke a positive response from life (the universe).
The Question of ‘How?’
Spiritually, Consciousness consists of two powers – the power to Know and the power to Will. In pure Consciousness, knowledge and will are united. Mental consciousness has the same two attributes – the power to understand and the power to will to act. In mind, the capacity to know and the will to act are separate and can work in isolation from each other. I may know something is good for me, but lack the will to do it. I may want something, but lack the knowledge of how to get it.
The method of The Secret emphasizes the importance of mental will. It does not insist that we know how to achieve the goal we set for ourselves. It even suggests that we may be better off not exercising our minds on the question of ‘how can I accomplish it?’ But it does insist that we make a firm unshakeable decision of the will to achieve it.
Some critics object that people who accomplish do not simply wish for things. Successful people formulate clear ideas and plans as to how they can achieve their goals. This is certainly often true. That is why many self-help programs urge practitioners to translate their goals into detailed plans of action. How can we reconcile this view with what is spoken of The Secret? Is understanding how to achieve a help or a bar to accomplishment?
Power of Imagination
This dilemma can be resolved by the following principle: Wherever we have the capacity to mentally formulate a means of achieving the goal, visualizing the means adds conviction and power to the mental formation.
The experience of Jack Canfield cited in The Secret supports this view. He decided that he wanted to raise his income from $8000 to $100,000. Then he tried to imagine some conceivable way in which that might be possible. He came up with the idea that it could be achieved if his book were written about in National Enquirer. A month later a free-lance reporter who writes for the Enquirer approached him. Canfield used his mental imagination to supplement and reinforce his mental will.
Einstein understood its power:
"Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming attractions. - Buddha
The story of how Fred Smith created Federal Express and grew it to become a Fortune 500 company in record time confirms this view. Smith started out with both a clear idea and a clear plan for how to achieve it. While doing his MBA, he conceived of the idea of establishing a courier business that would deliver packages across the USA overnight in comparison to the three to five day delivery offered by UPS and the US Postal Service. His strategy was to establish a hub system at Memphis so that flights coming from all major cities could reach the hub before 2 am, unload their parcels for resorting, reload with items bound for their return destination and land back home early morning in time for delivery during the day. His objective and his strategy were inseparable aspects of the plan he executed and the results he achieved.
Understanding can be a bar
Planning works. The only question is whether the visualization of ‘how’ is always essential and always beneficial. Experience confirms that it is not. Many people have difficulty imagining how to achieve a goal that is very far removed from present realities. There is a proverbial story of a man who got lost while driving in a rural area. He stopped to ask a farmer for directions to his destination. The farmer replied, “There is no way to get there from here!” That is often the understanding of the physical mind. If so, it is better not to listen to it!
A person earning $8000 a year may be able to realistically envision $18,000, but he may find the effort to formulate a means of earning $80,000 is pure fantasy. In such cases, the inability to imagine realistic possibilities or a personal sense of incapacity become a bar to higher accomplishment. Countless stories can be cited of people who fail to take advantage of magnificent opportunities that are offered to them, just because they cannot imagine themselves achieving at a much higher level.
There are also many stories of people who accomplished tremendous results because they were determined to achieve, even though they had no idea how that achievement it would be possible when they started out. Shabir Bhartia traveled from India to Silicon Valley in the mid 1990s as a young software engineer with an aspiration to earn millions. After a few years working for others and hearing stories of so many people becoming millionaires in the computer industry, he decided that he must achieve that goal himself within a short time. He and a friend came up with the idea of Hotmail and sold it to Microsoft a few years later for $200 million. He knew what he wanted to achieve and willed it powerfully. Only later did he discover the means to achieve it.
In 1961 when President Kennedy announced the goal of the US space program was to land a man on the moon and bring him back again by 1970, the technology had not yet been invented that could accomplish it. Reaching the moon was not an insurmountable object, but bringing him back again from the moon’s surface presented serious challenges. Yet America achieved that goal -- six months ahead of Kennedy’s deadline.
When France, Belgium and Netherlands collapsed under the onslaught of the German army in 1940, Britain was left virtually alone to fight the Axis powers. A month after Winston Churchill became Prime Minister, the Germans commenced the intense day-light bombing of England in what became known as the Battle of Britain. Churchill delivered his stirring proclamation to the enemies of Britain and to the world:
“We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender…”
Probably no one in Britain or anywhere else on earth could honestly say that they knew how Britain could stand up alone and survive the German bombardment, let along win the war. Yet when Churchill spoke, few could doubt that he was absolutely determined to keep his word. He refused even to consider the possibility of defeat. He may not have known how, but he surely was determined to win at any cost. Churchill knew the essence of The Secret:
“You create your own universe as you go along.”
There are other situations in which a person powerfully wills for a result but has absolutely no way of conceiving how to achieve it. A cancer patient who is told by his physician that the disease is incurable cannot be expected to work out a solution in his mind, but his mental will to be cured may still be very strong and effective, if it is not interfered with. In such instances, trying to imagine the ‘how’ can limit the power of the mental will and reduce its effectiveness.
The New York Times carried a story on the power of placebos that clearly supports this view. In 1957 a patient named Wright was found to have orange-size tumors in his abdomen and was diagnosed with incurable cancer. Wright told his physician, Dr. West, about a horse serum named Krebiozen, which reportedly had been effective in treating serious cases of this type. The skeptical physician reluctantly agreed to administer the serum and was shocked to find that in three days Wright’s tumors melted away. Two months later Wright read medical reports that Krebiozen was ineffective. He suffered an immediate relapse. Recognizing the power of the patient’s mental understanding, Dr. West told Wright he was going to administer a super version of Krebiozen. Actually he injected Wright with water. Again the tumors miraculously disappeared. Wright remained in perfect health, until he read again that Krebiozen was ineffective. He died shortly thereafter.
This is a clear instance in which it would have been better for the patient to simply believe he can be cured and not activate his understanding to confirm what the medical tests already shown to be true. The Times concludes: “Doctors who know this story dismiss it as one of those strange tales that medicine cannot explain. The idea that a patient's beliefs can make a fatal disease go away is too bizarre.” Rationality requires that we accept the empirical evidence and try to understand what made it possible.
Is it necessary to know how to accomplish something in order to accomplish it? There is a principle behind the The Secret’s ambivalence on this question. If you are capable of envisioning the ‘how’ as well as the ‘what’, so much the better. If you are not, don’t let your lack of imagination dampen the height and intensity of your aspiration. There is always a way to achieve any goal. Even if we do not know how, the universe does.
The Secret emphasizes the power of visualization, but it also makes clear that mere mental visualization is not sufficient to move the universe. The mind’s decision to accomplish has to be back by full emotional commitment. The mind has the power to decide. But the nervous and emotional part of our being, what Sri Aurobindo calls the ‘vital’, is the source of the psychological energy needed for any accomplishment. Mental thoughts carry clarity, not power. The body is the seat of power, but that power is locked in the physical form and inaccessible. When the vital accepts an idea from the mind, it has the capacity to release the power of the body to realize it. The vital is the live center of human existence and accomplishment.
Everyone can recall incidents in which they decided to do something – stop smoking, exercise more, go on a diet, work harder, spend less – but their decision did not lead to action or results, because the mind’s intention was not backed by a commitment of the vital. "I decided, but my heart was not in it." The Secret says that in order to accomplish, you should throw the full weight of your emotions behind the decision.
The English language has many synonyms that express different levels of human determination. Although precise definitions are lacking, we can see a gradation in the following sequence of psychological steps: thought, understanding, interest, conviction, intention, resolution, decision, will, commitment, determination, enthusiasm, passion, vital yearning, physical urge. These words present a psychological gradient from the mere idea of accomplishing something to the level of full, total passionate determination to accomplish. The further we move along that gradient from thought to urge, the faster will be the response and the greater the level of the accomplishment.
How do I know when my vital-emotional commitment is complete? The best sign is when the thought of the goal generates an intense, cheerful, eager enthusiasm for action. As long as we are merely interested, willing or decided, we can know that the direction is set for the journey, but we have not yet generated the fuel needed to get there.
Step Two: Universe Responds
The Secret is based on the concept that the Universe is a conscious entity with the power to respond to human aspirations. Here is where the skeptics have a field day. Visualizing and emotionalizing is what people can do, but whoever heard of the universe responding? Some will dismiss The Secret simply because the concept of a universe that can respond to human aspirations is so foreign to modern scientific thinking.
In fact every society has possessed knowledge of this fact in the past as reflected in their customs, stories, practices, values and in words such as luck, fortune, fate and destiny. All great literature and films – from Hamlet to Star Wars -- depict this phenomenon. Most high achievers in business, politics, sports and even science are at least partly conscious of it in their own lives. And all of us have experienced this innumerable times, without perhaps understanding or even being conscious of what was happening. But we live in an age of scientific materialism in which an empirical and positivist mind-set has persuaded us that all such occurrences are simply strokes of chance.
Because a different conception of the universe is essential to a full understanding of how and why The Secret works, the following few sections examine in detail both the view of scientific materialism and an alternative view validated by personal life, history, literature, biography and spiritual experience.
Materialist’s view of the Universe
Western empiricism views Nature as a physical field containing living organisms and inanimate material objects. Modern science views life and consciousness as properties of individual forms, not as universal forces. To the materialist, the world is a creation out of inconscient, inanimate matter and energy resulting from the interaction of random chance and universal laws . Out of this inconscient, inanimate world, animate life forms and conscious human beings have somehow emerged due to a series of chance events, events so unlikely to occur on their own that they defy the laws of probability. Clearly there is no room for the conception of a conscious or responsive universe in this worldview.
Oddly enough, the greatest challenge to the materialist mindset has come from where it might be least expected – from the masters of matter – the physicists. Quantum theorists have observed the relationship between matter and the consciousness of the observer. Field theorists have begun to think of reality in terms of interconnected elements of a single continuous whole, rather than as separate, discrete, isolated parts interacting with one another. This does not mean that physicists will endorse the concept of a universe presented in The Secret, but it is possible that their recent discoveries will ultimately lead them to rediscover an ancient truth known since the beginnings of recorded history, but recently forgotten or abandoned in an effort to reduce all reality to the formula of the empiricists.
Concept of a Conscious Universe
The conception of a conscious universe can be found in various Eastern traditions. The Vedas, Indian scriptures which are far older than the Gita, describe the universe as an ocean of conscious creative energy, hydra samudram. Taoism is founded on the conception of a universal field or flow, the tao, and states that the outcome of events depends on how each individual aligns with the flow. It advices us to align our personal will with the universal harmony. Poets such as Wordsworth and Whitman have experienced and described this universal consciousness.
Sri Aurobindo describes in detail this universal plane of Consciousness in Synthesis of Yoga and The Life Divine, both written before 1920. He explains its nature and attributes, how and from what it is created, how it acts and how it is evolving, as well as the precise relationship between cosmic consciousness and individual consciousness. It is the human ego that creates the sense of difference and separation between the individual and the universe. Our individual consciousness appears to us as something completely separate from the world around us. Actually, the separation is only a physical appearance. Our thoughts, feelings and impulses are in constant communication with the universe and it is constantly responding to them. Our individual consciousness shares the same creative power and creates by the very same process of creation as the cosmic consciousness. Although the human ego feels dwarfed and insignificant in the face of the infinite universe, Sri Aurobindo states that to the universal consciousness, the individual is not insignificant. The universal does not judge importance based on size or quantity. Every individual form in the universe is an expression of the Infinite. The universe manifests its aspirations and powers in and through individual centers of consciousness. Fulfillment of individual aspirations is a means by which the universal consciousness fulfills its own evolutionary objectives. That explains why some individuals are able to accomplish extraordinary feats on a universal scale or with universal repercussions. The nature and character of the universal life is explored more fully in the portals on Spirituality and Life and in the projects on Theory of Creation and Pride & Prejudice.
This universe, according to The Secret, responds to our thoughts and aspirations. It responds to the qualities of our psychological energies by presenting that which is a complement to the vibrations we emit. The Secret refers to this mechanism as the law of attraction. Science has discovered a law of attraction between oppositely charged electro-magnetic particles. There is a universal truth behind this law that expresses differently in different planes of existence. Since reality is an integrated whole, it seeks to express that wholeness in every action.
- Matter is rigid and fixed. Therefore, in the plane of matter the principle of oneness expresses as the attraction of opposites, which complement one another like the physical complementarities of the sexes.
- Mind divides reality into fragments. Therefore, in the plane the mind, the principle of oneness expresses in the form of complementary aspects of truth that combine to form a greater whole, a more complete truth. The curious mind seeking knowledge attracts to it that which complements or completes what it already knows, often the form of a truth quite opposite to what it has already accepted.
- Life is a plane of energy and will. The will is a vibration seeking completeness which is put out by the separate ego to the universe around it. The universe, which is the complement of the individual, responds in kind with a similar vibration. The capacity of our will to attract that which is in harmony with its vibrating frequency, is known as Life Response.
At the very moment this paragraph was being written, a book arrived from amazon.com entitled The Science of Oneness by Malcolm Hollick, which also presents an alternative view of the universe based on consciousness. This is an example of Life Response. Consciousness has the power to attract that which it takes interest in, that which will complete it. The freelance reporter who approached Jack Canfield offering to write an article for National Enquirer was a precise life response to his thought and aspiration.
One need not endorse this view of a conscious universe in order to verify the reality of Life Response. A close observation of one’s thoughts, attitudes and feelings during the course of a single day is usually sufficient. All who try to recollect key turning points in their lives will find critical events involving apparently chance or unbelievable coincidences. A book gifted by an acquaintance or falling off the shelf of its own accord becomes the occasion for a change of career or country. An accidental meeting brings you into contact with the future most-important-person in your life. A missed flight results in unexpected good fortune or a narrow escape from calamity. A full comprehension of the factors determining the nature of Life Response is a subject for a lifetime of study, but the fact that it exists can be ascertained by all who are willing for careful, unbiased observation of the events in their own lives. For a full discussion of the theory and principles of Life Response, see the Life Portal. For a detailed illustration of it, see Pride & Prejudice project.
Analogy to Society
Society is a good analogy for this universe. On the surface, human society appears to consist of a large number of individual beings and activities, each freely pursuing its own objectives. In fact, members of society share a common set of ideas, thoughts, values, beliefs, psychological characteristics, attitudes, aspirations, behaviors, ambitions, manners, information, skills, preferences, etc. Surely this commonality is not the result of chance. It is the result of the fact that even when we are most conscious of our separateness and difference from each other, our lives are all connected and we are made of the same stuff. This society is not only the source of our sameness, but it is also a continuous source of support. It is continuously throwing up opportunities and continuously responding to what we do. If we are successful, it praises us. If we violate its norms, it reprimands us. It places the collective discoveries of the past at our service, so each of us need not reinvent the telephone, TV, airplane or computer in order to use them. In fact, we need not even know how they work. It is enough we take advantage of the powers they place at our disposal. Society takes note of the enterprising and the talented by presenting opportunities for them to excel. It takes note of the lazy and the unproductive by pressurizing them to change. This society has no conscious center and seems to function without conscious intention. It acts and reacts in highly predictable ways by means of gossip, rumor, popularity, status and countless other mechanisms, apparently without conscious intention or initiative.
The Secret characterizes the universe as a genii waiting to fulfill our wishes. This is an oversimplification similar to saying that society exists only to fulfill the wishes of each of its individual citizens. In fact, society has its own aims and objectives which are expressions of a subconscious social will. Society extends support to its individual members in the measure their aims and actions are in consonance with its own larger purpose. Today societies around the world aspire for the education of all their citizens, for better communication, transportation, greater freedom, prosperity, economic security, comforts of life. The aspirations of most individuals are an expression of the social aspiration and fully in harmony with it, so the society supports the pursuit of these aims by its members. But that was not always true. Not long ago, those who aspired for wealth, education, higher status or more freedom were frowned upon or rejected. Pride & Prejudice depicts a period 200 years ago when those of lower social origin were looked down upon for seeking to rise in society. Only landholding males could vote in England until after 1850 and English women did not win suffrage till 1920. Today, most modern societies extend a helping and protective hand to the poor, women, minorities, and even the physically impaired.
The individual is not merely a beneficiary of social largess. He is also an instrument for social progress. The individual is the instrument through which society introduces new ideas, attitudes and practices. The initiatives of pioneering individuals are mechanisms through which the collective fulfills its aspiration for change. The conscious thoughts and intentions of creative individuals give expression to new possibilities, which later spread from the individual to the collective. The conscious aspirations of dynamic individuals give expression to new impulses, which the collective wants to encourage. Successful entrepreneurs are heroes in most countries today, because they express the aspiration of society for greater individual initiative and accomplishment. The conscious will of the individual does matter, because it is an expression of and representative of the subconscious will of society. Society speaks to itself in and through its outspoken individuals and it responds to what they say. For a complete discussion of the role of the individual in social development, see Social Development.
The Aim of the Universe
What is true for society is also true for the wider life of the universe. As the society has a subconscious aspiration for its own development, which includes that of its individual members, the universal consciousness also has a subconscious aspiration for its own evolution, an evolution of consciousness, which includes the evolution of conscious human beings. The universe is working out this aim in and through the actions and lives of countless individual. For a fuller discussion, see Spiritual Evolution. The consciousness of the individual is an expression of that universal consciousness. The individual responds to its subconscious intention and gives conscious expression to it. As the power for accomplishment in society is the power of the society which it lends to the individual for use, so too the power for accomplishment in life is the power of the universal life which lends itself to the individual for use. Individual will is one expression of the will of the universal life. So long as it is in harmony with that wider will, life responds to the individual will. The clearer the objective the individual formulates, the more intense the will with which the individual aspires, the greater is the response of the universe to the individual.
When the mind tries to conceive of the immensity of the universe and relate to it, it expands and is lifted above the surface consciousness into the Timeless plane. The power released by that wider conception and identification with the universe supplies the energy needed for accomplishment.
Step Three: Alignment and Action
The last step involves tuning in and aligning yourself with the universe, being alert and receptive to what comes, so that regardless of the form or the apparent hazards, you do not let the opening pass by. Your thoughts and feelings are in alignment with what you seek when they are entirely positive.
There appears to be some difference of opinion as to the importance of taking action to achieve the goal. Some practitioners of this method emphasize the importance of attuning oneself and waiting for events to unfold. Others stress the importance of action. They insist that anything good comes by effort and once the opportunity shows itself, the rest is up to you. They affirm the most practical of all Western values, hard work. The success stories cited almost all involve a series of actions that led to the accomplishment.
The apparent contradiction between these positions is resolved when we recognize that there are various types and levels of personal effort. The essential truth of step three can be summarized by the principle: Make an exhaustive effort. The only question remains what type of effort. Those who have attempted mental concentration know that it is an extremely demanding discipline. Every person who has accomplished in life knows the effort required to take a decision. Making up your mind on important issues can absorb enormous energy and leave you exhausted. Once you know what to do, committing the will to that decision can consume even greater energy. Taking a decision, concentration on the goal, mustering all your energy and enthusiasm to pursue it, releasing enthusiasm for the pursuit are psychological forms of effort that require even more energy and effort than physically action to pursue the goal. Action requires effort. Waiting patiently and cheerfully, refusing to take initiative until conditions are ripe, refusing to be anxious or disturbed, irritated or annoyed are also acts – they are psychological actions of immense power. Of the two, inner psychological effort is far more powerful and effective in achieving results than external physical action. Either way, the key is to exhaust one’s effort – inwardly or outwardly, physically or psychologically.
The Secret places major emphasis on the psychological approach and suggests three powerful methods for creating harmonious alignment through an exhaustive inner effort to be at your best. These three methods are found at the heart of many spiritual disciplines – cheerfulness, faith and gratitude.
What could be so difficult about being cheerful? Its not difficult when we are in a good mood! It is extremely difficult when we intensely aspire for something to happen and find people or circumstances indifferent, obstructing our path or opposing our progress. Cheerfulness becomes a powerful method when you make a firm commitment to maintain it regardless of what happens. The cheerfulness referred to here does not just mean a calm, friendly and smiling demeanor. It means an unshakeable positive inner attitude toward people and events that occur around you, an incapacity for reaction, anger, impatience, annoyance, resentment, jealousy, frustration, or discouragement. Such an inner attitude has the power to align you with the most positive movements of life around you and to attract those movements to fulfill your aspiration.
Faith is a predominant characteristic of everyone who achieves anything. That faith may be in God, another person, in life, in law, in one’s abilities or one’s destiny or anything else. In the words of the Gita, “As is a person’s faith, so is his life.” The Secret is not preaching any type of religious faith or even faith in oneself, though either or both of these can be powerful aids to accomplishment. It specifically advocates faith in achievement of the goal. From the very outset, you should try to acquire an absolute confidence and conviction that you will, in fact, achieve the goal, rejecting all doubts, hesitations or fears of disappointment. But it goes even further. It says you should acquire such an intense faith in your ultimate accomplishment that you already feel now as you will feel when you have achieved the goal. Entrepreneurs achieve because they believe in themselves and their capacities. Practitioners of The Secret achieve because they believe in the method. The power in both cases issues from the belief.
This attitude of faith is illustrated by a story from India about two spiritual aspirants intensely seeking to realize god. One was seeking God through knowledge by concentrating all the energy of his mind on the thought of God. The other was seeking God through devotion by concentrating all the energy of his heart on a passionate emotion for God. One day both seekers were informed by a wise man that they would realize God after another 100,000 births. The mental seeker felt disillusioned and hopeless at the thought of having to wait and aspire so long to reach his ultimate goal. The God-loving devotee responded differently. He expanded in joy at the thought that he would at some time in future actually unite with God. The very next moment God realization came to him. A joyous, unshakeable faith in accomplishment has the power to bring the goal instantaneously.
There are people who have subtle faith in their health. Often it is a subconscious faith. When the doctor finds his efforts to cure them are in vain, a smile lights up their faces and they decline further medical help. When the medical help is removed, the innate health of the body asserts itself because of their subconscious faith. A middle aged woman with severe asthma suffered such a serious attack that her physician gave up hope of saving her life and withdrew. The patient removed the tubes providing her oxygen and quietly went to sleep. On waking, she found she had recovered, to the utter amazement of her physician. For the next 20 years she never suffered another serious attack. Something in her told her, “I know I will be all right, medicine or no medicine.” The method advocated by The Secret has the power to yield results, whatever the present position.
When Churchill delivered his stirring speech in June of 1940, he was so determined to win the war that he literally felt as if he had already won it. He communicated that sensation to those who listened to him on the radio and they felt exhilarated. Churchill was a born hero, descendent of the First Duke of Marlborough who led the British forces in their historic victory over the French in the Battle of Blenheim. During his life he constantly sought out dangerous adventures without the slightest concern for his own safety. When confronted by the Nazi invasion, he did not think about the outcome. To him surrender was inconceivable. His intense aspiration and faith created the result in the subtle plane and it later became a reality.
The Secret says be happy regardless of what happens and maintain an unshakeable faith in your achievement. Then they add a third psychological method – feel grateful for what you already have. Gratitude is something we all learn to express in words, but to feel a real inner sense of mental and emotional gratitude is extremely rare. The author of a business book was nearly overcome with disappointment when the initial promise of success seemed to vanish in thin air. Late one night, he decided to offer intense gratitude to those who had been responsible for helping him write and publish the book. When he awoke the following morning, he received an unprecedented life-changing opportunity that became the start of a whole new career. That is the power of genuine, intense gratitude.
Test the Method
Here ends the lesson of The Secret. It presents a method, provides a modicum of explanation, and then invites you to apply the method in your own life. It does not insist that you believe in the explanations provided. It only insists that you complete the three steps. It confidently asserts the method is infallible and unfailing.
The Secret is not a philosophy or a religion. It is a practical method for accomplishment. It should not be judged on how rational or logical or scientific it sounds, but on whether or not it really works. Practitioners of The Secret report many striking life incidence which illustrate its power. Hundreds of similar incidents can be presented from personal experience, history, biography and contemporary events. But the only real question is whether it works and that question can only be answered by making the effort. We invite you to try it for yourself.
Understanding how the theory works can make the effort more effective. Further sections of this article examine some issues regarding the method that are not raised in the book.
The Secret is not the only method for accomplishment or the only way to describe the process of accomplishment. There are other methods or techniques that can be used to complement those mentioned in the book and make them even more effective. Further sections of this article also examine some additional strategies and techniques that can make the method even more successful.
Many questions have been raised by people who have read the book or seen the movie. The article also raises and provides answers to several common questions that are not discussed in the book. Additional questions and answers by contributors can be viewed on The Secret Forum of Human Science.
Those who would like to understand more about how or why The Secret words can refer to articles in the Life portal on Character of Life and Principles of Life. Those who only care for the result or the proof of the method are invited to make the experiment for themselves.
The Secret of RomanceThe passionate quest for romantic fulfillment is the most universal and intense of human aspirations. When it reaches its acme, the attraction to another person totally occupies the thought and will, the emotions and sensations. Yet for every story of romantic love successfully fulfilled, there are countless tales of lovers who are ignored, scorned or rejected.
What hope does The Secret offer to those in search of romantic love? It offers the promise of unfailing success!
For many people it is easier to conceive that The Secret can be utilized to earn millions than to win the heart of another person. But the principles and the process are the same. An analysis of successful romantic pursuits will quickly show to that they obey the law of attraction.
Great writers have studied the phenomena of romance with scientific depth and precision, noting the correspondence between thought, emotion, action and result. Great literature reveals the process in its entirety. The successful union of Rosalind and Orlando in the face of enormous odds in Shakespeare’s As You Like It and the final victory of Darcy’s impassioned pursuit of Elizabeth in Austen’s Pride & Prejudice illustrate the process.
In As You Like It the obstacles to romantic love were primarily external. Orlando and Rosalind felt a natural affinity and attraction to each other on their first meeting. Both found themselves in precarious and threatening life situations. He because his father had died and his evil brother plotted his death. She because her father, the old duke, had been exiled and supplanted by her uncle, who found Rosalind's popularity with the people a threat to his hold on power. Orlando fled to the forest to escape arrest, but his mind and emotions were totally focused on his longing for Rosalind. Life, the universe, responded to Orlando’s all-consuming passion for Rosalind by bringing her to the forest, where she sought to escape persecution by her uncle. There they met, courted, loved and finally married.
The obstacles to the romantic union of Darcy and Elizabeth were even greater. In As You Like It the opposition was social. In Pride & Prejudice it arose directly from characters, thoughts, words and acts of the lovers themselves – from Darcy’s proud, arrogant and insulting demeanor and from Elizabeth’s low family connections and tense personal resentment of him. Darcy’s insulting behavior during their first meeting, his successful efforts to cancel the budding relationship between her sister Jane and his friend Bingley, coupled with Wickham’s false allegations against him were the source of Elizabeth’s intense dislike and resentment. Added to that was the offensive manner of his first proposal to her, insulting to both herself and her family. And on top of everything else, Darcy had to contend with the fact that Elizabeth was strongly attracted to Wickham. The obstacles appeared all but insurmountable.
From this seemingly impossible situation, Darcy managed to recover and win her by an approach which conforms in all essentials to the principles advocated in ‘’The Secret’’. Initially Darcy may have been supported his assurance that any woman would be pleased to marry a man of his high position. But when Elizabeth rebuffed his initial proposal with such finality – “You are the last person I would ever marry!” -- even that support was removed. Darcy wisely refrained from any further external initiatives. Instead, he acted inwardly, psychologically, on his own character. He frankly re-examined his life and behavior, recognized the justification in Elizabeth’s harsh accusations against him, and decided to remove the objectionable characteristics he observed. He refused to give up hope of winning her. His admiration and passionate aspiration for Elizabeth were undeterred or even enhanced by the intensity of her rebuke.
The universe responded to the intensity of Darcy’s inner effort by bringing Elizabeth to his very doorstep. When the trip she had planned to the North of England along with her aunt and uncle had to be abbreviated due to her uncle’s obligations in London, they proposed taking her to Derbyshire instead, to a village just adjacent to Darcy’s family estate, Pemberley. There Elizabeth heard from the housekeeper compelling evidence of Darcy’s good character and Wickham’s falsehood. There she was compelled to see and feel first hand the magnificence of the position Darcy had offered her and she had so vehemently scorned. These influences brought about a significant change in her own attitude to Darcy. The moment the psychological conditions were conducive, the universe acted to bring them together. Darcy suddenly appeared at the estate, a day ahead of schedule, and they met in mutual surprise and embarrassment.
Darcy’s hopes were sparked. Elizabeth’s warm interest was kindled. But conditions were not yet fully conducive for romance. Jane and Bingley were still separated from each other. The disdainful comments by Darcy about Elizabeth’s low family origins could not be effaced merely by his polite behavior. Again the universe acted in response to their mutual aspiration, this time bringing news of Elizabeth sister Lydia’s elopement with Wickham. The immediate result was to separate the prospective lovers and convince Elizabeth that any further relationship between them was made impossible by her sister’s disgraceful behavior. The actual effect was to present Darcy with an ideal opportunity to prove to her how fully he had altered his view of her family and how great were the personal sacrifices of his social sentiments he was willing to make in order to win her. Overcoming his repulsion for Wickham and Lydia, he hunted them out, arranged for their marriage and even paid for it, with a strict prohibition against his role being made known to Elizabeth or her parents. Again the universe acted to reveal the truth to Elizabeth about Darcy’s heroic role in saving the family honor. When Darcy also withdrew his opposition to Bingley’s marriage with Jane, the stage was set for his own fulfillment. But life required an occasion for him to renew his proposal to Elizabeth. It came when she finally spoke up expressing her gratitude to him for saving her family.
What then are the rules for success in romance?
- Unwavering confidence, conviction, concentration, will, determination and emotionally enthusiasm. Banish all traces of self-doubt, fear of rejection, sense of unworthiness.
- Place your total reliance on the universe to bring you the person who can best fulfill your emotions. Act inwardly, aspire intensely, and wait for external circumstances to ripen. After Darcy’s failed proposal to Elizabeth at Rosings, he aspired and waited patiently until the universe delivered her to his very door in circumstances far more propitious for success.
- Be entirely positive in thought and feeling with an unshakeable cheerfulness, a faith that is so strong that if feels as if it has already accomplished, and gratitude for all you have and will receive in future. These are the attitudes that align us with universal life and attract the object of our seeking.
- Above all, expand and reach out to embrace the world in your emotions. Move away from ego. Forget yourself in joyous goodwill and self-giving to others. Love responds irresistibly to a vibration of happy, expansive self-giving.
Can romance ever be unfailing? When the emotional energy is intense, happy, outgoing, expansive, confident, courageous, patient, self-forgetful and self-giving it can never fail to achieve any goal or win any person. Strength attracts. Cheerful, confident, pleasant, enthusiastic strength attracts much more. Calm, patient, undemanding strength that waits for life to bring the object of attraction is irresistible.
The methods of The Secret are infallible, even in love. In cases of romance, the aspiration comes from the deepest of emotional centers. Therefore it can never fail. If it does not succeed for any reason, an analysis of the situation according to the four-quadrant model of decision-making described below will reveal the missing ingredient so you can provide it.
Everyone wants luck, but not everyone believes in it. Luck enables us to accomplish in a very short time what we thought would take ages. We plan to travel overseas to meet an important person, only to learn that by what we call ‘luck’ this person is coming to where we live and can meet us here. For years we have dreamt about doing something special but our financial or other circumstances never permitted, until by ‘luck’ we are offered the opportunity without effort and expense. We need some essential information, but do not know where to look or how to find it, then by ‘luck’ that information reaches us without our even taking initiative. We are eager to speak with a person to share an important news, and by ‘luck’ the person calls us or arrives physically just at that moment. A chance encounter opens up a new career opportunity, creates a monetary windfall, or brings us into contact with a very special person. Life is full of such inexplicable coincidences. All of us welcome them when they happen and secretly pray for more of them to occur, but still many of us doubt whether luck really exists.
What does The Secret have to tell us about luck? It tells us that there is no such thing as luck. Or rather it tells us that we can create luck in our own lives by applying the method of The Secret.
The Secret of Luck
What we call luck, the scientist calls chance. One of the reasons people may doubt the power of The Secret is because of their belief in a world governed by chance. Science teaches us that the world is governed by mechanical laws and unpredictable chance occurrences. Science studies the factors or causes for each type of event. Wherever it cannot find a cause or predict an outcome from the causes it has identified, it attributes the outcome to chance. Scientific philosopher Karl Popper argues that it is impossible to prove the existence of chance scientifically. When scientists refer to the action of chance, what they really mean is that they do not know the laws that are operative or the precise conditions under which those laws are working, and therefore they observe what appears to be random behavior. The roll of the dice appears to be chance because we do not have sufficient knowledge to predict the outcome. So our perception of chance really reflects a lack of knowledge.
Malcolm Hollick explains that science reduces all phenomena to the interaction of laws and chance because it starts with the assumption that we live in an inanimate mechanistic world without consciousness. Science focuses focus only on what Aristotle termed material and efficient causes to explain how things actually occur, but excludes the examination of formal and final causes which explain the ‘why?’
Like the scientist, most other people believe that chance plays a big role in the outcome of their personal lives. Each of us tries to understand and explain the reasons for our accomplishments in terms of our talents, capacities, knowledge, skill, resourcefulness, contacts and hard work. Where these fail to achieve the result, we often attribute it to bad luck. When something happens without our expecting it or consciously doing anything to make it happen, we sometimes attribute it to good luck. A chance meeting with an old acquaintance or total stranger, an interesting article in the newspaper, a precious information overheard, a cancelled flight, misplaced article, bad weather that alters our plans, and countless other events appear to happen by themselves for no apparent reason. If they result in a favorable outcome, we say we were lucky. If they lead to failure, we speak of bad luck. Either way the goddess of chance rules over our lives.
The Secret provides an explanation for luck or at least a method to create it. It tells us that the universe response to what we think and feel according to the law of attraction. If we want to attract luck in our lives, we should think positively and confidently, aspire intensely, feel enthusiastically and harmoniously about ourselves, our lives, the people we interact with and everything that happens to us. It also tells us that if our lives seem to be plagued by ill luck or misfortune, it is because our own mental preoccupations, fears, doubts, anxieties, self-pity, resentments and frustrations are attracting the very opposite of what we consciously aspire for. Luck and misfortune are mirrors which life holds up reflecting what we are inside or what is happening inside.
According to The Secret, there is no such thing as chance. Everything depends on us, on what we think and feel inside. Everything can come under our control, if only we become conscious. The Secret is based on a profound spiritual knowledge: The inner determines the outer.
We speak of luck when something good suddenly materializes, often forgetting that we have aspired intensely for this very result and perhaps then forgotten it. In The Secret entrepreneur John Assaraf relates one day he realized that the dream house he was now living in was an exact reproduction of the house he had dreamed of owning many years before.
These conclusions are reinforced by the work of British psychologist Richard Wiseman, who has studied the phenomenon of luck for the past eight years. He found that people can actually increase their luck by a conscious effort. Unsurprisingly, the most important factor he identified is a positive outlook toward life.
The true nature of chance
This knowledge is fully confirmed by traditional wisdom and spiritual experience. In ‘’The Life Divine’’ Sri Aurobindo traces the cosmic origins of what we call chance and necessity. He explains that the manifestation of Infinite Consciousness in the universe expresses as two complementary powers – a power to assume fixed forms or patterns of movement which we perceive as universal laws and a power of freedom from those laws. The laws create a stable basis for manifestation. The freedom enables the infinite potentials of the Infinite to express and evolve out of the fixed forms. What we perceive as law is only conscious intention of a higher consciousness to create a stable basis. What we perceive as chance is also only intention of a higher consciousness to permit evolution of that consciousness. In human life chance has to compete with human choice. For a fuller discussion of chance and necessity in nature, see Creative Principle in Science.
Human beings are centers of that universal consciousness and have the same power over external events. When the human mind accepts a condition or circumstance as fixed and unchanging, that condition acquires a fixed and unchanging character in the life of the individual. When the human mind ardently embraces the idea of change, it acquires the capacity to bring about the change it aspires for. Our aspiration has the power to evoke a response from the universal plane of consciousness. When the universe modifies conditions and events in response to our aspiration, we speak of luck. What we call chance or luck is only the action of forces that are not visible and apparent to our surface consciousness, forces that originate or resonate with what we are inside.
Mind creates by the same process as the universal consciousness, by the power of self-conception What we once longed for still lives in the subconscious. When it suddenly materializes, it appears as luck. What our minds have imagined as possible and desirable later takes shape when the conditions are mature. By our becoming more conscious, mind has the power to make the makes what is there in the subconscious. Mind can also create what is not there in the subconscious by its power of imagination and then make it real. It is by self-conception mind creates the inconceivable and makes it real.
Luck in ‘’Pride & Prejudice’’
In Pride & Prejudice it appears that Darcy and Elizabeth just happen to meet by chance in the town where she lives, that Darcy’s old nemesis Wickham just happens to come to the same town at the same time, Darcy’s friend Bingley just happens to fall in love with Elizabeth’s sister Jane, Darcy and Elizabeth just happen to visit his aunt’s estate Rosings at the same time, Darcy’s cousin Fitzwilliam just happens to mention to Elizabeth Darcy’s role in stopping Jane’s romance with Bingley, Elizabeth trip to the Lake Country just happens to get cancelled and redirected to Derbyshire where Darcy lives, again Darcy and Elizabeth just happen to meet unexpectedly at Pemberley and so forth. When we view this story or any story with the dispassionate – or perhaps disconnected -- objectivity of the scientist, life appears like an absurd and highly improbable chain of coincidences. Surely our greatest writers could have imagined more realistic and likely sequences of events. But then when we examine our own lives with the same objective impartiality, we find exactly the same pattern holds true. The most important events in our lives – education, career, romance, marriage, finance, health – frequently turn on tiny and apparently insignificant coincidences whose importance becomes clear to us only after further events have unfolded. Is the quantum physicist right in saying that randomness is a fundamental aspect of reality? Or are we missing a clue?
All those who have accomplished great things in their lives have observed the role played by unexpected, inexplicable events. But many of them have also felt that those apparently inexplicable events are somehow a response to what they are and what they do. They may not know the theory that explains the relationship between our inner lives and the world around us, but the sense or know the relationship is very real.
Values create luck
The Secret accomplishes by the power of consciousness. Any external work is first prepared inside, in the subtle plane before it can materialize as action outside in the gross material plane. Thought, intention and decision precede conscious action. But not all our thoughts, intentions or decisions become facts in the outer world. The power to complete any work does not originate either in the gross or the subtle plane, but at a deeper level, the causal plane, the plane of consciousness. It is the power of our consciousness that energizes the thought, the intention and the decision and makes them effective.
Moving from the subtle to the causal plane is crucial for accomplishment. It often takes a long time for that to happen. Sometimes we do it subconsciously, but cannot explain how. Is there a method to abridge the time and make it happen immediately? We can move consciously to the causal plane and release its power for accomplishment by consciously embracing higher values of consciousness – values such as goodwill, self-giving, and truthfulness. Genuinely embracing any of these values helps us move from the surface ego to the inner depths of our personality which are in touch with universal power. Values help us move from the subtle plane to the causal plane. Luck occurs when we suddenly tap the power of the causal plane. When we live and express higher values, we enter the causal plane and luck rushes in.
Process of Creation
The Secret is a method for accomplishment. It has not been invented by anyone. It is only one way of describing and consciously applying a universal process that is the basis for all human accomplishment and, in fact, the basis for all creation in the universe. We refer to this process here and elsewhere on the site as the process of creation. We stated earlier the view that all power is derived from Consciousness. This process is the means by which infinite Consciousness manifests itself as finite material and living forms in the universe. The project Theory of Creation explores the metaphysical and spiritual basis for this process.
Consciousness, not mechanical laws or random chance, is the true creator of the universe. All creation in the universe is by a process of Self-conception. Human beings create and accomplish by the same process. The first crucial step in that process is to conceive of something we want to achieve or become.
Aspiration vs. Expectation
Consciousness is power. The time taken for accomplishment depends on the strength of our aspiration and the intensity with which we apply it. Sometimes we confuse aspiration with wishful thinking. Wishful thinking is a dream of achieving something without the intense will to achieve it. It is passive and satisfied, a pleasant thought. Aspiration is active and intense, a determined will.
Aspiration is also confused with expectation. Both express a will for accomplishment, one strong and the other weak. When we aspire, we send forth energy to bring a result. When we expect, we wait for something to come. Aspiration is active. Expectation is passive. In aspiration, we feel can determine the results. In expectation, we depend on others or circumstances to accomplish it. The more intensely we aspire, the faster and greater the result that comes. Whereas expectation has the power to postpone the result until we stop consciously looking for it to appear.
Conscious vs. Subconscious
If there is only one fundamental process of creation, then all the events and results that occur in our lives must in some way be expressions or results of that process. Yet it is evident that we do not consciously will and seek all that occurs in our lives. In fact, there are many times when most of us do not consciously seek anything. But still events occur all the time. How or what determines these results?
The simple answer is that the process of creation is occurring all the time, whether we know it or not, whether we are conscious or not. The Secret advocates consciously utilizing this process to achieve what you aspire for. It also cautions that the same process – the same law of attraction -- is active every time you think about something you do not want or do not like as well, so be careful what you focus your attention on – consciousness is power.
Still most of us would respond that many things occur which we did not think about consciously at all. Here lies the other side of the truth. Our conscious attention is only one aspect of our consciousness. A large part, indeed the major part, of our consciousness is subconscious – meaning lies below the field of our surface awareness. Skills are examples of this. Whether you type on the computer or write with a pen, a subconscious knowledge and will guided each movement and enable you to correctly put down your thoughts. Physical skills belong to the subconscious of the body, the subconscious physical. Similarly, we all possess subconscious attitudes, aspirations, thoughts, conceptions, desires, preferences, fears and impulses which are casting out their vibrations just as inevitably as the habits which guide the body when we walk, eat or breathe. The process of creation applies to these as well. Fear of failure attracts the failure one fears. Doubts and suspicion about the trustworthiness of other people attracts to us untrustworthy people. They too are elements of consciousness that have the power of attraction. Observant people can often trace the sources of their own illnesses, accidents, disturbances and failures to this source.
Proponents of The Secret acknowledge but seek to downplay this fact because it raises concerns that are not easily resolved. They advise us to focus on the positive powers of The Secret, rather than dwell on the natural consequences arising from subconscious action of the law of attraction. In practice, the more we try to consciously utilize the law of attraction, the more we become aware in ourselves of those very subconscious elements that stand in the way of our accomplishment. Success is most readily achieved by reversing or removing these negative elements. For if consciousness has power, that power can be consciously exercised by us over our own subconscious formations.
Only a highly realized yogi can possess sufficient power of consciousness to fully expose and illumine all the dark corners of the subconscious. But all of us have the power to direct whatever consciousness we do possess positively. That is why The Secret advocates three powerful strategies – cheerfulness, faith and gratitude – to utilize the consciousness we have in the most positive and constructive way possible for us.
Ego vs. Non-ego
Some object to The Secret on moralistic grounds that it caters to narrow, selfish materialistic motives. Surely this cannot be the aim of the universe. Why should the universal force lend itself to such petty purposes? There is a truth in this view, but it is a partial truth. The truth is that the universe can act to fulfill our aspirations only in the measure we open ourselves to the power of the universe. That is what The Secret means by alignment. The ego acts like a straight-jacket imprisoning us within our small personal existence cut off from the world around us. The universe is an infinite energy. But it can enter our lives only in the measure we relate to something beyond our narrow boundaries. All of the methods advocated by The Secret are intended to help us escape from the confines of ego, even if it is done for a selfish personal motive. When a person earning $8000 a year conceives and aspires to earn $100,000, he is overcoming the narrow boundaries of his present existence, expanding beyond his limiting ego, even if he appears to be acting purely for personal, selfish motives. Therefore, the universe responds.
In common parlance we use the term ego to refer to someone who is self-centered, ambitious and self-important. But the ego is present in all of us, even those whose behavior exhibits the very opposite of these characteristics. A person who doubts their own capacity or self-worth, who feels it is wrong to aspire or assert, who feels other people are far more important and deserving is also living well within the bounds of the ego. Only in this case the ego feels weak, helpless and insignificant instead of strong, capable and important.
In order for universe to act in our lives, we have to rise above the constraints placed on us by the ego sense and realize in one way or another that we are much greater than our present being – in fact, our true Self is infinite and one with all – and we have much greater potential than what we have achieved till now. The aggressive entrepreneur who seeks to earn more and more money is really trying to exceed the limiting boundaries of his ego, albeit for selfish purposes, just the way the star athlete aspires to break new records and reach the top spot. Striving for higher accomplishment that far exceeds our present level of achievement is an expansive movement.
Ego has played a very important role in the evolution of humanity from the physically unconscious animal to the mentally self-conscious individual. Now humanity is at the stage where it becomes a bar for further progress. The methods of cheerfulness, faith and gratitude advocated in The Secret are all methods designed to help us shift away from the ego. It is very difficult for the ego to remain always cheerful, because so many things happen in and around us that are not to our liking. To remain always cheerful is to shift away from the surface ego to a deeper center of consciousness inside which is in harmony with the universe around. To generate such a powerful faith that we feel now how we would feel after achieving the goal we aspire for is also a means to move away from the ego. The ego is full of desire, impatience and discontent. To feel fulfilled now means to reject these disturbing influences of the ego. Gratitude is very powerful because it makes us stop thinking about ourselves and what we want and concentrate instead on what life and other people have already given us. The advocacy of these three spiritual methods shows that The Secret is really founded on a deeper wisdom.
Goodwill and Self-giving
The best way to escape and transcend the limits of ego is to feel genuine, intense good will for others and to practice total self-giving. To feel the joy in the joy of another is Good Will. The ego is highly competitive. It judges its own importance and success relative to the achievements of other people. When others accomplish more, it feels smaller and as if it had less than before. Therefore, to generate intense goodwill that takes joy in the accomplishments of other people is a powerful means for transcending the ego. Those who can ardently aspire for others to succeed and prosper generate the maximum receptivity for success and prosperity in their own lives.
Self-giving is even more powerful than goodwill. To grow by giving is Self-giving. Moving from selfishness to selflessness helps the being expand and increases the energy of the personality. To give oneself without thought or motive of return in thought, feeling and act is an ultimate spiritual discipline and path to higher accomplishment. That giving may be to a person, an ideal, an organization or to God. It is powerful when there is no thought or expectation or demand for recognition or return, only the joy of giving oneself.
Not everyone can practice self-giving. But everyone can raise their level of personal efficiency. This is a less powerful method that has a similar result because it gathers and concentrates one’s available energy so it can be more effectively utilized. Efficiency is a laborious physical method. Self-giving is an enjoyable spiritual method.
Rising above the ego though goodwill and self-giving can invoke the highest powers in the universe to act in our lives. When we do this, the universe invariably responds, bringing what we aspire for. But since our aspiration is not selfish, the benefit comes to everyone, not merely the one who aspires.
Several important issues are not mentioned in The Secret. We learn as children that when you make a wish, it is better not to speak about it to other people. That modern folklore is based on a profound truth of life. Speech is an act that consumes energy in the process of giving expression to a thought. Each time we speak about our goal to others, we are throwing out energy that can be better conserved as fuel for accomplishment. Silence is powerful. Silent will is more powerful than will expressed in words. This is especially true when we speak about our aspirations to others who may feel jealous or threatened by our accomplishment. In addition, when we speak about our intention of a great accomplishment, it is very difficult to prevent the ego from deriving from pleasure or sense of importance from the communication. When we take pleasure merely in talking about an accomplishment, that sense of satisfaction saps our energy for accomplishment and we end up only talking about it, never doing it. Pride, satisfaction and contentment with what we have or are is the enemy of higher accomplishment. Of course, there are times and people to whom speaking of our goal is appropriate or even essential. Speaking to those who have intense goodwill for us will magnify the power of aspiration. Speaking to those whose consent or cooperation is essential is necessary to avoid conflicts later on. Therefore, most spiritual disciplines advise practitioners not to speak about their experiences to other people, except to the guru whose guidance and support is essential for accomplishment.
Perfection in detail
Another secret that is not mentioned is the importance of the Infinitesimal. When we seek a great goal, we often disregard the small details as insignificant and unimportant. In fact, the very opposite is true. The best way to progress toward a great accomplishment is to make every small act as perfect as possible. To us the infinitesimal and the Infinite seem like opposites. But spiritually, the Infinitesimal is a manifestation of the Infinite. That is why it is very difficult to perform even the simplest act perfectly. If you try to keep a room perfectly clear, you will constantly discover areas that have been missed or that cannot be maintained in that condition. If you try to make everything you write – even the most casual message -- error-free, you discover that it requires enormous attention and effort. Avoid clumsy movements, loud noises, spilling, breaking, tearing and every other form of disharmony with the environment. When your goal is high accomplishment, the very best method is to make ever small act as perfect as possible. It is a method that brings a much greater result, much sooner.
Power of Non-initiative
The ego is an organization of consciousness that enables the individual to gather personal experience and organize knowledge from it. It creates a center of concentration with sufficient intensity for the universe to evolve through it. That which is greater than the ego sense is referred to by The Secret as the universe. In the measure the individual suspends the action of his ego, the universe is able to act. When the individual takes external initiative to accomplish, the response of the universal is minimal. When the individual refuses to take initiative and invokes the universal consciousness to act, the response is maximum. A Dutch youth on a spiritual quest realized the value of education and took a degree at the age of 40. Many years later he went on to take an M.B.A. Out of idealism, he offered voluntary service to a distinguished international academic organization. After about ten years of such service, he was made an Associate Fellow, a goal he never dreamt of. He was devoid of ambition and only wanted to give. His mentor proposed that he take a Ph.D. so that he might eventually qualify to become a full Fellow in the organization. As a person who does not know his own inner potential, he found the proposal intimidating. After hesitating for years, he finally consented to register for Ph.D. and spent over a year preparing his proposal. Before he even submitted the proposal, he was unexpectedly elected as a Fellow of the organization. His emotional willingness brought the result even before he began to act.
When the results we seek are far beyond our present capacities and resources, but the intensity of our aspiration is sufficiently great, life waits for us to give up striving for the result and then suddenly presents us with all the necessary conditions for accomplishment. This process is dramatically illustrated by events in a sequel to from Alexander Dumas’ The Three Musketeers. After the execution of the English king Charles I by Cromwell, his son escapes to Holland where he lives in exile, impoverished and without a following. Ten years later Cromwell dies and there is a fight for succession. Young Charles II sees his last hope at regaining the throne. He travels to France incognito to seek money or troops from young Louis XIV with which he can attempt to regain power. When Louis refuses him, he falls in despair and abandons any hope of restoring the monarchy in England. Within a few hours of his meeting with Louis, he has a chance encounter with a French courtier from whom he learns that the money he sought was hidden by Charles I before his death and is now available for his son. Within a month of these events, Charles II ascended the throne without even having to expend that money. When the last hope is lost, one exhausts his efforts and forgets it. Forgetting the goal is to withdraw one’s own mental influence, allowing the universe to accomplish in one’s life as it chooses without the limitations of our egoistic understanding.
The Complete Act
Every successful act is an act of accomplishment that applies the process of creation. Whether we walk, talk, write, read, compose, invent or play, we are directing our consciousness to achieve certain results. There are three essential ingredients in every successful act.
- Self-conception: A clear mental conception of the goal to be
- Emotional endorsement: Release of emotional energy to achieve the
- Skilled execution: Action that expresses all the skills required for
completion of the act. When the action is be physical and external,
we rely on our own capacities to achieve the result. When it is
inner and psychological, as The Secret advocates, we rely on the
universe to act on our behalf.
The methodology of The Secret presupposes that you have already decided what it is you want to accomplish. But in practice, it does not usually work that way. Our decision as to what we want to accomplish is strongly influenced by what we believe we can accomplish and what we are ready to commit our energies to seriously pursue. The Secret works in instances in which your decision – the choice of the goal – fulfills all the essential conditions.
There are four types of decisions:
1.Decisions that are directly fulfilled.
2.Decisions that get off to a good start, but ultimately fail to achieve.
3.Decisions that are difficult to begin acting upon, but are ultimately accomplished.
4.Decisions that are a failure from start to finish.
These four situations can be graphically represented by the four quadrants below:
Quadrant I: This quadrant applies to instances in which all the essential requirements for fulfillment of the decision are met. These requirements consist of external conditions as well as inner psychological conditions. If you decide to climb Mt. Everest, learning the essential skills of mountain-climbing is an external requirement. Having the inner courage, fortitude and determination to face the challenge and persevere are internal requirements. Where both inner and outer conditions are fulfilled, success is assured and it will come readily.
Quadrant II: This quadrant applies to instances in which all the essential inner requirements are met, but the outer requirements are lacking. Such decisions get off to a slow start, encounter many obstacles on the way, but ultimately end in success. This is in consonance with the teaching of The Secret that psychological conditions are of paramount importance, not external realities. When you chose a goal for which you are not outwardly prepared and qualified, it takes time for the inner aspiration to bring about the necessary conditions.
Quadrant III: This quadrant applies to instances in which all the essential external requirements are met, but the inner requirements are lacking. Such decisions usually get off to a good start, but ultimately end in failure. A person with sufficient knowledge, skill and experience in mountain-climbing, connections with people who organize treks and sufficient funds to outfit themselves properly may find it relatively easy to commence preparations for the conquest of Mt. Everest. But if they do not also fulfill the inner conditions – if they lack the emotional fortitude, the self-confidence, the faith in other people, the patience to wait for suitable conditions, etc. – their enterprise is likely to stall even in the formative stage and even the attempt may never be made.
Quadrant IV: This quadrant applies to instances in which both the essential inner and outer requirements are lacking. There are situations where neither the outer nor the inner is ready. It is like the longing of one for a house who is intimidated inwardly by that suggestion and outwardly can never complete all the requirements.
When The Secret says that anyone can achieve anything, it only means that wherever a person’s decision falls in the 2nd, 3rd, or 4th quadrants, following the methodology of The Secret will enable the person to move into the first quadrant, where failure is unknown. Mental concentration on the goal, releasing one’s emotional energy to achieve it, attuning oneself to the external environment, feeling cheerful, having faith and expressing gratitude are powerful methods for advancing from any of the lower quadrants by moving inwardly to make life respond.
The Secret is a method based on the universal process of creation. The same process applies to the accomplishments of individuals, organizations and countries. It can be used not only to achieve results in future but also to better understand results that have been achieved in the past. For in all cases, the final outcome is determined by inner psychological conditions that cannot be discerned from a study of the external facts alone.
The Battle of Austerlitz in 1805 was one of Napoleon's greatest victories, effectively destroying the Third Coalition against the French Empire and giving France domination over Europe for nearly a decade. Although the armies were equal in size, Napoleon’s superior strategy and planning led to a rout in which 37% of the enemy forces and most of their artillery were captured or destroyed.
Historians who try to explain the outcome of the battle, war or other significant event in retrospect in terms of external facts and events forget that there were hundreds of factor that could have resulted in a different outcome. The inner process is the determinant of how those factors develop and interact and the outcome they produce.
For the first time in history Mahatma Gandhi conceived of non-violence, Satyagraha, as a method to achieve India’s independence from British rule. His faith in his method won freedom for India in 1947 and for 45 other Asian and African nations. In 1942 Gandhiji launched the Quit India movement. In response, the British arrested Gandhi and about 10,000 leaders of the Indian National Congress Party. The movement lost momentum and quickly died down. The British rebuffed all efforts to get Gandhi released from prison. But Gandhi’s faith in his method and his determination to accomplish were unshaken. While in jail, Gandhi became very serious ill with malaria, but he refused to take the medicine offered to him. The British became deeply concerned that a violent revolution might break out were he to die in prison, so they promptly released him. What could not be achieved by the pressure of hundreds of millions of people, was achieved by the bite of a mosquito! That is why The Secret counsels us not to be concerned with how the result will be achieved. There are innumerable and unimaginable ways for life to accomplish any goal.
Savitri is an epic poem written by Sri Aurobindo in 1950. It is based on a tale from the ancient epic, about a princess named Savitri who marries Satyavan, a prince living in exile. One year after their marriage, Satyavan dies. Savitri confronts the Lord of Death and by the power of chastity and will wins back the life of her Satyavan.
Sri Aurobindo took this story and converted it into a spiritual parable. In his version, Savitri, the daughter of the Sun, she pursued the Lord of Death and transformed him from a being of Darkness into a being of Light. The Message of this epic is that an individual has the power to abolish death, suffering and evil by transcending the limits of ego. The essence of The Secret is expressed in the following lines from the poem: A Prayer, a Master act, a King Idea Can link man’s strength to a Transcendent Force. Then miracle is made the common rule. The Secret cites actual instances in which such a link between the individual and the Transcendent leading to results that appear miraculous.
Since the release of The Secret its author and proponents have been asked a wide range of questions that go beyond the immediate scope of the method. How does The Secret explain tragedies like September 11th and Katrina? Can you use the power of The Secret to harm someone? Do luck and chance exist? What happens when two people both apply The Secret to achieve the same goal, such as the same elected office? Can you prolong life by means of the law of attraction? If the law of attraction is so important, why are so many people attracted to other people that are their opposites? On these and similar points The Secret is either silent or ambiguous. The remainder of this article discusses these and other questions in an effort to present a complete and comprehensive knowledge of how and why the method advocated by The Secret works and can be made to work faster and better.
How long will it take to achieve?
No clear explanation was given in The Secret regarding the time required to accomplish the goal. The answer depends on what you aspire for, how intensely you aspire, and how completely you fulfill the other conditions. Time is an extension of mind. It is the seriousness of the mind that determines the duration taken. Each person achieves according to strength of his or her personality.
This does not mean that very great achievements necessarily take many times longer to be fulfilled. The time which the mind thinks necessary to achieve the goal is clearly an important determinant factor. The sooner a person believes he can achieve, the faster he will achieve. Great things take longer because we think they should or feel that they must. When I apply The Secret for a small gain, I believe it can be immediately achieved, so it is. When I apply it for something great, I expect that it must take much longer and so it does.
Does The Secret work for everyone?
What happens when two people both aspire intensely for the same goal, such as the same elected office? Someone called in this question during a discussion of The Secret on Larry King live, but the reply given was vague. The law of attraction works equally for all. But not everyone applies The Secret equally. The result depends on the intensity of our aspiration and our application. Rarely will too people be evenly matched in these areas. There is an actual case in which two distinguished politicians vied for the Presidency of India in the early 1970s and both sought the support of a higher power to fulfill their aspirations. One of them was immediately elected. The second one was elected the next time around.
Can the Secret be used for harm?
Intentional evil is a fact of life. No one can deny the fact that bad people often succeed, at least temporarily, in achieving what they aim for, even if it is at the expense of other people or directed to harm other people. Some people do actively wish for and act to harm other people. The results they achieve are also the results of a process. It is the same process of creation. The only difference is that they consciously direct the power they possess for wrong purposes.
However, there is one difference. Those that apply the process positively by concentrating only on positive results and positive feelings, attract more and more of those positive vibrations into their own lives. Their lives continue to expand and flourish as a result. Those who apply the process for negative purposes attract more and more negative vibrations into their own lives and ultimately lead to their own self-destruction.
What does The Secret tell us about the nature of the Universe?
The Secret portrays the universe as a helpful, benevolent force for good. Our conclusion in the previous section suggests that the universe is also capable of delivering harmful results. Which is it? The answer is that it depends very much which aspect of the universe you relate to.
This is most easily understood if you think about how society is organized. Society is a multi-layered universe consisting of many different types and levels. At the highest level are ideas and forces of idealism working to create a better world – principles, organization and individuals dedicated to promoting peace, freedom, prosperity, equality, knowledge and well-being for all humanity. At the other end of the spectrum are forces working for selfish aggrandizement regardless of the impact on other people – criminal forces, violent destructive elements driven by hatred and seeking revenge. Naturally, we seek to relate to that aspect of society which is most supportive and conducive for our fulfillment and avoid that part which is dangerous and threatening to our very survival.
The universe is organized in a similar manner as a hierarchy of levels of consciousness. The highest levels are above our normal consciousness – superconscient to us. They represent benevolent forces working for our upliftment and future evolution. The lowest levels represent forces lodged deep in the collective subconscious – relics of our animal and primitive past – working in the very opposite direction. These are the forces unleashed by war, genocide, hatred, and brutality. In between are forces that represent the current social consciousness of society in general, which work to fulfill the current aspirations and values of society.
In the past society was repressive and tried to keep each individual in his pre-assigned place. Today society supports and even encourages people to rise up. It ensures fundamental rights, provides opportunities for education and training, encourages people to start new ventures and celebrates their success when they rise. It protects minorities and aids the disabled. The ‘universe’ that many people appeal to when they invoke the method of The Secret is the consciousness of this supportive social environment which is a very real and tangible power answering to human aspirations. In other words, when our goals and are motives lie within the framework of current society, society is a collective force that can respond consciously or subconsciously – through its laws, institutions and programs or through what appears as chance or coincidence – to aid us in our endeavor.
But that is not the highest or most powerful level of the universe that can respond to human aspiration. Above the social plane are universal powers that work for the future evolution of society, for an evolution of human consciousness into something higher. Those with faith in a higher power and a greater good can invoke it to act in their lives for personal benefit or for the common benefit of humanity. In the measure their personal aspiration is in line with the conscious progress of humanity, these higher forces can and do respond even to very personal aspirations. When an individual aspires for extraordinary individual achievement, that too is a contribution to wider human development because it makes other people aware of the unlimited potential of the human spirit and the unlimited capacity of the universe to support higher accomplishment.
At the very highest levels, the universe responds most powerfully to aspirations, which are unselfish and impersonal, rather than targeted for immediate personal gain. This is the spiritual plane where the original and final intention of the Infinite Consciousness is revealed. The universe itself is evolving spiritually and becoming more conscious of its source and true nature. The aim of this highest level is nothing less than the spiritual evolution of humanity and the entire manifest universe. Whereas in the past it was very difficult for human beings to invoke the power of this highest plane, the descent of what Sri Aurobindo calls the supramental force has now brought that highest power within reach of humanity where it is actively working behind appearances to accelerate the evolution.
The Ultimate Secret of The Secret
’The Secret’’ dispels the old myth that Aladdin was only entitled to three wishes on the magic lamp. It insists that once you know the secret you can make as many wishes is you want to. ‘’’The method fixes no limits and the universe is infinite, so the only limits are those imposed by the limits to our aspiration.’’’
Its quite liberating to know that there is no limit to the genii’s generosity and beneficence. In very mundane terms, this means that an individual can go through life seeking and achieving an endless list of objectives – new cars, new houses, better jobs, enjoyable entertainments, thrilling adventures, better friends, attractive companions, etc. In fact, the endless pursuit of more and better material, social and psychological objectives does describe the lives of most people. Some fail to achieve even the minimum requirements for survival. Many succeed in fulfilling a wide range of their aspirations to greater or lesser extent. A few claim that they get just about everything they aspire for in life. They swim at the top, enjoying the best of everything and glorying in their own success. But is this really what ‘’The Secret’’ is about? Is ‘’The Secret’’ only a means for satisfying personal needs and greeds and inflated egos?
The DVD and the book focus on applying this knowledge to acquire things that we want. But that is not the only or the highest use or value of this knowledge. The material and social results which ‘’The Secret’’ offers to us are the least valuable portion of what the genii is willing to give. Far more precious is what ‘’The Secret’’ tells us about ourselves and our potential for accomplishment. It tells us that we have the potential to achieve anything that we aspire to achieve. That is an incredible knowledge that empowers and liberates! It is far more valuable than the long list of objects we can ask for and attain, because it tells us that we need not spend our lives in the endless, hurried, worried pursuit of objects at all. We can apply ‘’The Secret’’ to achieve whatever we need and then get on with the real purpose of life. That raises the question “What is the purpose of life, if not the pursuit of the things we need?”
‘’The Secret’’ tells us that we are the creators of our own lives. This means we are capable not only of creating the things we want to have; we are also capable of creating the person we want to become. ‘’The Secret’’ liberates us from the belief that our personal characters, capacities and destinies are fixed and limited by genetics, early life experience or social environment. In the words of the ‘’Gita’’, we can not only “achieve anything we want to achieve.” We can also “become anything we aspire to become.” In fact, the method of ‘’The Secret’’ subtly encourages us to concentrate all our attention on being better human beings, rather than on seeking more material possessions. It tells us to be entirely positive in our consciousness, to be unwaveringly cheerful and patient, to have faith that the future will bring all the happiness we aspire for, to be grateful for all we already have received, to have goodwill for everyone and grow by being. This is not just the formula for material accomplishment. It is the formula to become a better, happier, more fulfilled human being. It is a formula for personal growth.
‘’The Secret’’ tells us we can have whatever we want. It also tells us we can become whatever we want. But this is not all that it tells us. This same knowledge can be applied for an even greater purpose – to discover the true nature of the universe. It offers us the knowledge that the universe is an inexhaustible infinite source of beauty, love and joy – at least, it can become that for us and for everyone provided we consent to make our consciousness entirely positive. In other words, ‘’The Secret’’ offers us a way to experience the spiritual truth of existence first hand and to make it a reality in our own lives. More empowering than to know I can have whatever I want to have or that I can be whatever I want to be is to know that the universe is and can be all that my highest aspiration could ever want it to be – conscious, benevolent, infinitely powerful and joyous.
‘’The Secret’’ offers us the knowledge that the universe is evolving spiritually through us. As we acquire the knowledge of ‘’The Secret’’ and consent to apply it positively in our own lives, we change the nature of the world around us, we change the character of the universe and how it responds. The evolution of our personal consciousness to a higher level enables the consciousness of the universe to evolve to a higher level and for both ourselves and the universe to manifest more of the infinite potential which is our true being and nature.
The ultimate secret of ‘’The Secret’’ is that we don’t need the genii to grant us three wishes or an infinite number of wishes. We only need one wish to be fulfilled – that ‘’The Secret’’ is true – because this means we and the universe can become all that we can ever aspire to become. “The Secret’’ tells us that this is already the true nature of reality. Our wish has already been granted. So why wish at all. It is enough that we realize the truth of this knowledge and live in it. Everything else will unfold.
Why has The Secret become popular now? If The Secret has always been known to humanity, then why only now has it come to public attention? The Secret has been revealed by many teachers in the past. Now more people are ready to listen. In the past, society has been organized to preserve the status quo and keep each person in his or her original place. Even spiritual knowledge was preserved for the few and concealed from the public-at-large. Today humanity has advanced to the point were it seeks the development and flowering of each person as an individual. It has replaced insistence on personal status with a more impersonal attitude applicable to all. The knowledge offered by The Secret may be applied personally, but it is essentially an impersonal knowledge meant to benefit all equally. It can flower only in a social climate that supports the welfare of all. Because society has become more impersonal in its motives, those who offer that knowledge receive greater support and encouragement. At the same time, society has now developed instruments for disseminating knowledge to everyone.
We live in an age where individuality is emerging. The individual does not want to learn from another person. He wants to discover knowledge by his own effort. The publication of The Secret as a DVD and a book enables each person to acquire and master the knowledge for himself. The strategy for communication is well suited to the values of our time.
Finally, The Secret is being heard today because the people who speak about it are those who have applied it successfully in their own lives. It is not merely a philosophy or belief system for them. It is a lived reality. Therefore, it carries conviction.
Summary of Strategy
The following are the conditions by which we can attune ourselves with the creative universal energy to accomplish in our lives:
- Intensely aspire for what you want until the aspiration becomes a physical sensation.
- Try to convert the aspiration into gratitude.
- Generate intense, happy inner emotions in support of your aspiration.
- Ensure that your decisions are in the 1st quadrant of the decision-making matrix or take steps to move to the first quadrant as soon as possible.
- Your aspiration should reach the height of intensity and saturate your emotional being. The indication of that is one feels as if he has already achieved.
- Be entirely positive and patient.
- Shift entirely to reliance on the inner consciousness or the universal forces rather than dependence on external circumstances and events.
- Shift away from the ego as far as possible.
- Instead of seeking a personal goal, leave the goal to the universe.