After I graduated from USU, I worked with a sweet, beautiful and incredibly gullible lady in an administrative office. She’d get a pop-up on her screen and call her husband “Honey, I think I just won a big screen TV!!!” Then she discovered “The Secret” and she was obsessed with using her thoughts to make things happen. We thought it was another one of her funny tangents. But it turns out, she was right.
“The Secret” is one of my favorite ways of thinking and praying. And if you have the patience to get through the zonky, new-age film, you can distill a couple of really powerful principles out of it.
Principle #1: The Law of Attraction dictates that what we send out comes back to us. Light cleaveth unto light, mercy to mercy, love to love. Complaining cleaves unto poor customer service, stress brings more stress, yelling brings yelling.
Principle #2: Your thoughts create your actions, which create your habits which create your character. James Allen’s book, “As A Man Thinketh” addresses the same chain of events. So attracting a positive life requires positive thoughts. Thinking “I have so much debt” brings more debt. Thinking “I am going to have $10,000 in the bank this time next year” brings more money.
Principle #3: You have to know what you want if you want to get it.
Principle #4: It is just as easy for “the Universe” to give you something big as something little–it’s all just molecules in different combinations. It doesn’t share our same value system to know that gold is “better” than plants.
The problem is, it just leaves God right out of the mechanisms for getting what you want. Which is a mistake. And here is how I reconcile it:
Alma 42:13 talks about how if justice were destroyed, God would cease to be God. Also, if He changed, He would cease to be God (Mormon 9:19). If He lied, He would cease to be God. Apparently, there is a framework that God operates within. He has to follow certain laws, not in a dragging sort of way–like “I can’t, I’m Mormon”, it’s more like He has mastered the way The Universe operates and now he uses it as a tool to build his worlds without end. (*think of the Matrix*). So I believe that there is a larger Universal system at play. Laws and energy that exist independently. God has mastered them all and now He builds and exalts using them as tools.
But that is not to say that you couldn’t bypass Him and still get things. You could send your vibe out into the Universe and get a new car or a boat or your dream job. But the Universe doesn’t care if that is what you need. If that will destroy your family or lead you to jail or off a cliff. A loving Heavenly Father cares though. So directing your “wishes” or prayers through Him allows Him to help you get what you really need and what will benefit you the most.
So using the Secret is really just praying. But what I loved about the movie (I haven’t read the book) is that I am not limited in what I should ask for. I have always believed that I shouldn’t pray for things like more money or a hot boyfriend (when I was single), that those things were unimportant to Heavenly Father because they were so temporal and superficial. But actually, we can pray about anything. We are currently praying for the means to replace the carpet in our house. We can also pray to find a way to get that new van or new house or dream job.
The Secret tries to educate people in what to ask for–not to focus on things to the exclusion of relationships and health and spirituality. Which, I think, is the foundation of my former thinking that I shouldn’t ask for things at all. Once I realized though, that I could “Ask and ye shall receive” about anything, anything, anything–it has made me more discerning about the things that I really want. And at the top of the list is just peace and patience. I want to live a peaceful life and it is honestly materializing one step at a time.
The funnest part of using the Secret is Dream Talking. That’s what my brother and I called it the other day when we were imagining his artists’ compound coming soon to a Levan near you. We just talk things out (in this case–how much space, how to design the buildings, the gardens, the website, the workshops). My husband and I love to do this on road trips. Let’s talk about how to fund our kids’ college education, our future house, our trip on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela, our next trip to Russia. We don’t foresee any of those things happening for at least 5 more years but we want to have it set in our minds how we want it to unfold. Otherwise, we won’t realize any of it (Principle #3 – You have to know what you want to get it).
The next part is praying about those things and trusting that God hears your prayers and will unfold it for you when the time and circumstances are right. And then you wait, and watch and be ready to act on any impression that you get. Line upon line, it comes.
Maybe it seems obvious and simple. But it has really changed my life and my level of hope. I realize that God can give us much, much more than we are currently asking for and we just need to step up our prayers. It has also made me a happier person to try to get rid of the negative thoughts and habits I’ve formed. Its reall–OH MY GOSH! I think I just won a trip for four to CANCUN!!!
(and now that my intention is known, don’t be surprised when we end up there)