The Secret Exposed
Why Oprah and millions of readers can be wrong.
June 18, 2007
You can gain anything you want in lifewealth, health, the perfect mate, business success, respect from othersliterally anything. That is the promise of the No. 1 best-selling book The Secret (Beyond Words). The editor, Rhonda Byrne, explains that "the secret" can be found in everything from Babylonian religion to Buddhism to Albert Einstein. The Secret (available as both a book and a DVD) is no secret now, however. It has become a global video event, a clever cross-promotional marketing plan, and a book touted by Oprah.
Byrne, an Australian television talk-show producer, discovered the secret just over two years ago. The book's contributors are described on the official website as: a "philosopher" who "developed The Science of Success and Harmonic Wealth® which teach [sic] people how to yield unlimited results in all areas: relationally, intellectually, physically, and spiritually" (James Arthur Ray); a "business building and moneymaking" expert (John Assaraf); a "doctor," "philosopher," and "international speaker" (John DeMartini); a "metaphysician" and "one of the top marketing specialists in the world" (Joe Vitale); and "a nonaligned, trans-religious progressive" (Michael Beckwith). Such titles reveal the new kind of gurus to whom millions of people give credence today.
The secret is simply "the law of attraction." Think about wealth, and you will become wealthy. Think about that new car, and it will come. Think about getting a good parking spot, and one will open up. Think about your ideal weight (really, dwell on that number, write it on your scale), and you will attract that reality to yourself. Byrne reports that since deciding her "perfect weight" was 116 pounds, she has reached it, and nothing has ...