-----This post is going to stretch over a couple of entries divided into parts, if you will; mostly because it covers quite a few books, ideas, and explanations. We're getting right deep, eh.-----
There's a woman we know who believes that what she thinks actually affects her life; her immediate life; her future life; and even her prosperity. In other words, if she thinks and concentrates on good things, good things will happen to her. Conversely, bad thoughts, bad things happen. Therefore, every day was a battle for her because she struggled to keep the positive thoughts foremost in her mind, while desperately shunning the negative ones. This was particularly difficult on dismal, rainy days when her usual sparkling personality was dredging the depths---she falls hard and deep. This taxing of her emotions caused her mind to tangle into a knotted mess which issued in anxiety and later a troubling depression. This depression, mild as it was, caused more anxiety simply for the fact that she realized she could not bring into her life any form of good unless she actually felt positive. She was a mess. After talking to a close friend of hers, she consented to go to a psychiatrist for an evaluation. The shrink put her on a mild tranquilizer, and told her to join a quilting club and stop thinking so much. She did so, and feels much better now. And you should see her quilts! She's making money from them, and is quite happy.
THE SECRET, by Rhonda Byrne (oh dear). As you can guess, the SECRET is actually not a secret at all. It's quite old, going back about a hundred years or so, and probably longer than that. It's the old LAW OF ATTRACTION principle that's been popping its head up every so often, assuring people that their minds or state of awareness can indeed change their situation. It goes this way: Thoughts have an energy which attracts whatever it is the person is thinking. If you control this energy, you can get anything you want.
This pseudo-scientific Law of Attraction, which is no more than "positive thinking", has spawned many get-rich books. (it's odd that people who support this theory will turn it into a means to make money, as if that's the only thing worth striving for) Books such as: THINK AND GROW RICH by napoleon Hill, PROSPERITY THROUGH FORCE by Bruce MacLelland--"you are what you think, not what you think you are". Others are: THE SCIENCE OF GETTING RICH by Wallace D. Wattles, THE POWER OF POSITIVE THINKING by Beal, LOVE, MEDICINE AND MIRACLES by B.S. Siegel--here you can think yourself well. The list goes on and on, so this is no groundbreaking thought or theory presented to us by Ms. R. Byrne. Rhonda Byrne knew exactly what she was doing, which was making a boodle of money for herself, and she had a champion to her cause by the great one, Oprah, who apparently devoted two shows to this dubious seer and her concocted book.
Some Sociologists say that because of the decline of religion and a belief system in a higher power, people are testing out these strange new theories. They say that most people today are much better educated and far to astute to believe in unfounded myths about a supreme being in heaven, so look for other ways to express their spirituality. All the new "systems of thoughts and beliefs" that are coming down the pipes today are loosely based in Quantum Physics. Quantum Physics is that spooky branch of science where the laws of psychics seem to have turned upside down: everything is connected, things appear and disappear, one particle knows what another particle is doing, everything runs on probability. The most unusual of these strange occurrences is the one where the scientists ALWAYS sees the particular particle he/she WANTS to see. In other words, the particle materializes because the scientist wants to see it; when he doesn't want to see it, it's not there. Cool. In other words again, the scientist is actually bringing the particle into being, because he wants to see it. The new " religions" think that everyone can do the same---you want a million dollars, think about it. I don't think it's that easy. Scientists cringe.
I'm closing off for today; I'll continue on a few days from now. It's raining to beat the band out, and the north wind is blowing---that wind always unnerves me. My good wife is home, and we intend to take to bed and read for the whole day. I'm thinking I would like a pizza delivered right now, and if I think hard enough, maybe, just maybe one will appear......