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February 20, 2007

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"However, you have been wrong on everything else, and you fail to cite any sources, so I am not holding out much hope."

You "people" attack me because I ask a simple question...So YOU PROVE IT!

Your questions are being ignored until I receive an answer to my question...Which, I am sure your short attention span has forgotten. So here it is again. If you like a simple 'yes' or 'no' will be just fine. However, please give careful consideration to your answer...If you answer 'yes' then I will be asking some questions about evolution. Without the so called "law of attraction" evolution cannot exist. If you answer 'no'...well, then that would mean all you have and are saying, is as they say, crap. So, the question...

Do you have any factual information (if you like, proof) to support your opinion? Yes or No?

This question is in my first post on this site and I am still waiting for an answer.

Without the so called "law of attraction" evolution cannot exist.

I believe you're falling into the trap of seeing evolution as "striving", What-The?. The giraffe has a long neck because it wanted to reach higher branches. This is the thoroughly discredited Lamarckian theory of evolution.

Certainly, if evolution involved "wanting", I would have thought hiccups, hangovers, PMT, baldness and many other niggles of everyday life would have been edited out.

However, none of the above prevents procreation, so the relevant genes persist.

Natural selection explains many such issues that Lamarckianism can't. How do you figure this "Law of Attrraction" works on evolution?

I would have thought it would have led to a world of pretty much identical beings, which is manifestly not what we see.

"I believe you're falling into the trap of seeing evolution as "striving", What-The?. The giraffe has a long neck because it wanted to reach higher branches."

Realy? I wonder where you get that belief from because I have not said what I see evolution as...let alone "striving"?

I would agree, however, that the giraffe did 'want' to reach the higher branches. But what is 'want'? A simple sum, that is what. Need + Desire = Want...Three of the basics of the Law Of Attraction.

Go to the top of this page. You will see the words "critical thinking for an irrational world".

(I use the "royal" you)

You are critical, but cannot be critised.

You demand "proof", but will not give it.

You demand answers, but will not be questioned.

You then say the World is irrational.
...................

I guess that a very simple 'yes' or 'no' answer is beyond reach...

"I would have thought it would have led to a world of pretty much identical beings, which is manifestly not what we see."

Oops...I meant to comment on this too.

I am not sure what world you see...When I look around, I see a world that is, as you put it, 'manifestly' identical.

When I put a dog over a bitch the pups are 'manifestly' identical. When I put a bull over a cow the calf is 'manifestly' identical. When I take a wheat seed and grow it, it grows the same as the parent plant..manifestly, of course.

If a pup has a white tip tail...that is not evolution. If a calf has two heads...that is not evolution. If the wheat does not head..that is not evolution.

Evolution, has in fact made this world very much, 'manifestly' identical. So much so, that many creatures are so identical that the only way to sex them, is wait for one to give birth.

You are critical, but cannot be critised.

You demand "proof", but will not give it.

You demand answers, but will not be questioned.

You then say the World is irrational.

You're allowed to criticize us. Unfortunately, you fail miserably at forming decent criticism.

Shifting the burden of proof is a logical fallacy. If you're making the positive claim, you're the one who has to provide evidence.

We demand answers, yes. We aren't obligated to answer questions that only serve as rhetorical trickery and actively attempt to obfuscate discussion.

When I put a dog over a bitch the pups are 'manifestly' identical. When I put a bull over a cow the calf is 'manifestly' identical. When I take a wheat seed and grow it, it grows the same as the parent plant..manifestly, of course.

You must not watch the world very much. I, for instance, have eyes different than either of my parents. Try learning about recessive genes.

If a pup has a white tip tail...that is not evolution. If a calf has two heads...that is not evolution. If the wheat does not head..that is not evolution.

Try shooting for comprehensibility.

Dog tail tip: Possibly determined by genetics.

2-headed cow: Developmental, not genetic error.

Wheat as we know it is the result of artificial selection, forced mutations, and so forth, so I don't know how messed up it is by now. Then throw in a little recent genetic engineering.

Evolution, has in fact made this world very much, 'manifestly' identical. So much so, that many creatures are so identical that the only way to sex them, is wait for one to give birth.

And yet, there's a lot of sexual dimorphism out there as well.

Of course, there's also a lot of genetic diversity out there. Just because we can't see it staring us in the face all the time doesn't mean it's not there. Take a look at wolves. Then take a look at a dog show. We squeezed almost all of that variety out of the wolf genome just by careful recombination of existing traits.

WOW...You are kidding..right? I mean, you are just joking, aren't you?

What do you have as eyes if they are not the same as your parents?..Watermelons maybe? Oak Trees maybe?

"Shifting the burden of proof is a logical fallacy." - AGREED

So why are you doing it?...Or at least making a poor effort to do it!

It is very simple, even for you it is simple, yes or no. One has only three letters and the other even less at two...yes or no?

If you answer 'yes' then I will be asking some questions about evolution. Without the so called "law of attraction" evolution cannot exist.
Now that's interesting, since evolution happened before cognition. Are you suggesting that single-celled amoeba have wants and desires? That sharks are just really positive thinkers? That one dinosaur was just really, really worried that an asteroid was going to hit the planet and wipe out all of them? Please, sir, explain what the flying hell you're talking about.
Do you have any factual information (if you like, proof) to support your opinion? Yes or No?
You've only been waiting for this because you refuse to read any of what has been put in front of you, either from us or from The Secret. Yes, we have proof. 1. It is claimed that the Law of Attraction is a "law like gravity" which works "100% of the time." This is demonstrably false; the law of gravity is standard for all things in all places in the universe. The Law of Attraction depends on a user's state of mind, the universe's ability to 'hear' a wish, and other arbitrary factors. 2. While the Law of Attraction folks will tell you that it is a scientific law, science disagrees. The quantum mechanical principles cited by The Secret do not actually support their claims. Furthermore, The Secret is constructed in such a way as to resist testing and falsification (if you don't get what you want, then your desire was tainted by worry, or you don't believe enough, or the universe only heard part of your request). This is unscientific, and it makes abundantly clear that The Secret is pseudoscientific at best. 3. There is no mechanism by which thoughts can directly influence the external world. They must first travel through a medium, such as speech or action. 4. Finally, the big thing, you don't always get what you wish for and often you get things that you not only wouldn't wish for, but would never have thought about. These two simple facts of life cut to the heart of The Secret, which suggests that everything happens to you either because you asked for it, or because you worried about it.

And so on.

But what you're doing is called "shifting the burden of proof." There's an old adage in the skeptical world, which says extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. When someone makes a claim, say "when you wish for something, the universe will grant you that wish," it is up to them to prove their claim.

So, I'll turn the question back on you: Do you have any proof for the Law of Attraction? I daresay you don't, and here's why:
1. Your conception of the Law of Attraction, and the concept promoted by the people behind The Secret, are very different. You equivocate "the power of thought" with "the Law of Attraction," when any brief look at the film or its associated blog will show you that the comparison is invalid according to the doctrines of The Secret. You say that anything which started as an idea is proof that thought influences reality, though that thought had to go through many mediating factors to become reality. The Secret says that thought directly influences reality with no mediating factors.
2. You and The Secret have proposed no credible mechanism by which thought can influence reality, or by which reality can grant individuals' wishes.
3. You said that thoughts cause reality, that if I think I am fat, that will cause me to be fat. We have shown through basic examples that this is not true. To be fat, you must have the genetic predisposition or the appropriate lifestyle.
4. You backpedaled on that claim to suggest that when you think you are fat, you are fat in your mind, which is something of a redundancy, and has nothing to do with The Secret, which suggests that if I wish to be fat, or worry about being fat, then I will "attract" fat, without any mediating factors.
5. You cited the Dead Sea Scrolls as proof, though you could not cite any passages. Cited passages from said scrolls go totally contrary to your claims and the claims of the Law of Attraction. You suggest that the words had different meanings 2000 years ago, but fail to account for the facts that the words have had fairly constant meanings in our language since the beginning of English, and that the scrolls were only started on the translation process within the last sixty years, and thus translations would reflect the modern meanings of words. And still you cannot cite any sources for these claims.

So, come on, What-The. Where is your extraordinary proof? Where is your support for the claim that the universe is our catalog and we shall not want?

I would agree, however, that the giraffe did 'want' to reach the higher branches. But what is 'want'? A simple sum, that is what. Need + Desire = Want...Three of the basics of the Law Of Attraction.
Desire is want. Jeez.

And this is still disproven Lamarckian evolution. Evolution does not occur based on what an animal wants, it occurs based on mutations. The LoA says that if a giraffe wants the fruit on the top of the tree, the universe will give it a longer neck, when in reality, the mutation doesn't spontaneously occur in an adult giraffe. At the very soonest, the long-neck mutation would affect the giraffe's offspring, which is contrary to the LoA.

Furthermore, this can be shown to be totally untrue by the simple fact that there are creatures without brains, without the capacity for want or desire, which still evolve. You'll say that they still need things, and I'll retort that the universe demonstrably doesn't give every creature what it needs, and there are starving children in Africa, people dying of uncurable diseases, and animals succumbing to rampant deforestation and loss of habitat, who all demonstrate that fact.

You are critical, but cannot be critised.
You ask questions, but will answer none.
You demand "proof", but will not give it.
You shift the burden of proof so that you won't have to show that you have none, and still ignore ours.
You demand answers, but will not be questioned.
Yeah, I just said that. Whatever happened to the different meanings of words, or the fat/ugly thing, What-The? You let those drop pretty quickly.
You then say the World is irrational.
And you say that it's rational to believe that the world will grant my every wish, even if I lack the capacity to make them.
Evolution, has in fact made this world very much, 'manifestly' identical. So much so, that many creatures are so identical that the only way to sex them, is wait for one to give birth.
And yet, if you place a frog above a stalk of wheat, they are not manifestly identical. All life started from one or a handful of common ancestors. If the LoA were true, there would only be one or a handful of species, all nearly identical, for having the same basic wants and needs, and having those all fulfilled by the universe-catalog. This is manifestly untrue. Of the billions of creatures on the planet, there are huge variations, from bacteria to blue whales, from redwoods to ravens. And they all adapted and grew though a worldwide genetic trial-and-error, not through wishing and having all its needs fulfilled.
So why are you doing it?...Or at least making a poor effort to do it!
You are making the positive claim: i.e., that The Secret is true. It is therefore up to you to show positive evidence which supports this claim. You are shifting the burden of proof by saying "you have to prove a negative." If I claim that my garage is filled with invisible pink unicorns, it's not up to you to disprove it. It's up to me to show some positive evidence which supports it.

"Where is your support for the claim that the universe is our catalog and we shall not want?"

Please explain...Exactly what part of "ignore" do you not understand? The "ig" or the "nore"?

I tell you what...Why not get yourself out of this hot water by showing exactly where I have claimed "the universe is our catalog and we shall not want".

Of course you cannot! Because YOU make things up! Maybe you saw something like that in a "movie" but you did not hear it from me! But then again, your 'logic' comes from "movies" does it not, Mr Spock?

I am sure that this site does not have enough band width to cope with a list of all your miss-quotes.

I did note though, that you answer "yes". You must therefore believe that the World was "created"!!!!!

Or do you wish to change your answer to 'no'?

What The?:
Do you have any factual information (if you like, proof) to support your opinion? Yes or No?

Yes.

Your questions are being ignored until I receive an answer to my question...

Now please answer the questions I posted asking about the secret and how you believe it works in the certain specific conditions I asked about. Since your condition has been met exactly, you now have no excuse not to.

Also, please answer the questions I posted about the Dead Sea scrolls and the words within as you interpret them, as well as their etymology. Since your condition has been met exactly, you now have no excuse not to.

I can repost all the questions I have asked you if you need me to.

If you answer 'yes' then I will be asking some questions about evolution.

Oh this I can't wait to see, but after you've answered my questions please.

I would agree, however, that the giraffe did 'want' to reach the higher branches. But what is 'want'? A simple sum, that is what. Need + Desire = Want...Three of the basics of the Law Of Attraction.

I tell you what though, maybe you should actually read a book on evolution first, because I guarantee if you keep that up you are going to look foolish.

I guess that a very simple 'yes' or 'no' answer is beyond reach..

Not at all. I gave you one, so please answer my questions.I have met your pre-condition for answering my questions exactly.

When I look around, I see a world that is, as you put it, 'manifestly' identical.

Really? So you are the same as a duck-billed platypus? No? But since we all started out from the same type of organism, why aren't we all identical since those original organisms would have had identical wants:
1. reproduce
2. feed
3. don't die before doing number 1

If a pup has a white tip tail...that is not evolution. If a calf has two heads...that is not evolution. If the wheat does not head..that is not evolution.

Actually it could be if there had been an advantage gained by a genetic ancestor for having any of those things. And as already stated, look up recessive genes before you start on evolution.

What do you have as eyes if they are not the same as your parents?..Watermelons maybe? Oak Trees maybe?

Yeah.. but.. and.. if.. but.. you. Oh what's the point? Yes What-The?, he meant that his eyes were footballs, not at all that they were a different colour.

One has only three letters and the other even less at two...yes or no?

Yes.

WOW...You are kidding..right? I mean, you are just joking, aren't you?

What do you have as eyes if they are not the same as your parents?..Watermelons maybe? Oak Trees maybe?

So, are you changing the definition of "identical"? My eyes have different color irises than my parents. They're also much more sensitive to light. And they also have different levels of acuity than either of my parents. It's pretty much guaranteed they have different retinas. My eyes are hardly identical to either of theirs.

"Shifting the burden of proof is a logical fallacy." - AGREED

So why are you doing it?...Or at least making a poor effort to do it!

Please describe precisely why I have the burden of proof.

Of course, we all know you'll wuss out of that.

Do you have any factual information (if you like, proof) to support your opinion? Yes or No?

1. I don't need proof: You're the one making the (ever-shifting) positive claim, hence the burden of proof is on you. If you want to show that I have the burden of proof, please go ahead.

2. YES! I gave the example about my car never being stolen despite always worrying about it. Further, there are already examples of that dealing with anorexics and such. Ignoring those counterexamples for The Secret is one of the many things you're being roasted over.

I tell you what...Why not get yourself out of this hot water by showing exactly where I have claimed "the universe is our catalog and we shall not want".

That's more or less what "The Secret" is all about, and you're supporting "The Secret." Of course, it doesn't help that you can't keep your opinion the same from post to post. Can't nail down a guy who's too afraid to put something other than rhetorical fluff on the chopping block.

What-The?

Your question about factual information, has been answered. I, and others, have quoted parts of the law of gravitation, which clearly does work every time. That’s how NASA manages to send up spacecraft and get them to go where they want.

You, on the other hand, have offered no evidence that The Secret and the LOA works the way stated in this film. The burden of proof is with the person making the claim – namely the makers of The Secret, Joe Vitale, and possibly you. So you need to provide evidence that unlocked bikes get stolen more than locked ones. And this was stated in the movie. Provide the evidence please or go away.

I am starting to get tired of your trolling. This is not your playground. Provide evidence the LOA works as stated or go away.

"poverty" is also a word that has changed in meaning. Today, it mostly means poor or lacking. Although, not used or rarely used anymore, it also means 'political power' or ability to influence people. This diss-used meaning is much closer to the original meaning of the word...and these Scrolls were written more than 2000 years ago!
That is a modern English translation. Which means that the English word "poverty" is being used in its modern usage. If the original Hebrew was talking about "political power", then that's what the translators would have put in.
Anyway, it's clear from the context that the author really does mean "poverty" as we understand it. He's telling his students (who, like religious seekers through the ages, are pretty broke) that being poor is needed for their spiritual enlightenment.
What dictionary are you using anyway, to get that meaning of the word? Every dictionary I have agree that it comes from the Latin for 'small' and 'infertile'
Please, stop behaving like an Alice in Wonderland character, twisting language and words like this ("Words mean what I want them to mean!!"). Especially the words of people who lived 2000 years ago and who struggled with hardships and circumstances that would have killed the pampered, well-fed 'teachers' of The Secret.
You're working really hard at seeing only what you want to see. Can't you cope with reality?

Please explain...Exactly what part of "ignore" do you not understand? The "ig" or the "nore"?
Oh, I didn't miss it. I just didn't see it as anything new. You've been ignoring the content of these comments and the claims of the Secret throughout this thread. In fact, nary a sentence has gone by that hasn't displayed your profound, arrogant, and willful ignorance.
I tell you what...Why not get yourself out of this hot water by showing exactly where I have claimed "the universe is our catalog and we shall not want".
That is the fundamental concept behind The Secret and the Law of Attraction, which you have been defending dogmatically this whole thread. The phrase "the universe is your catalog" comes directly out of The Secret movie.
Maybe you saw something like that in a "movie" but you did not hear it from me! But then again, your 'logic' comes from "movies" does it not, Mr Spock?
No, you feeb. You're the one defending a ridiculous philosophy that came from a movie. Yes, I absolutely took that line from a movie, the movie which delineates the doctrines of The Secret, the movie which describes the idiotic newage pap that you've been defending throughout this conversation. The movie which serves as sole "proof" of the existence and definition of the Law of Attraction. If you reject the idea that the universe is your catalog, then you reject the Law of Attraction, and that'd be the most sensible thing you've done since coming here.

And no, I take my logic from reality, specifically a reality in which thought alone does not alter the objective physical world.

I am sure that this site does not have enough band width to cope with a list of all your miss-quotes.
If it has enough bandwidth to contain your idiocy, then I'm sure it can contain my (comeplete lack of) misquotations.
I did note though, that you answer "yes". You must therefore believe that the World was "created"!!!!!
Um...no. I answered "yes" to the question "Do you have any factual information (if you like, proof) to support your opinion? Yes or No?" My "opinion" is that The Secret is irrational, unscientific, fairy tale garbage. And yes, there's oodles of proof for that. Not only have I not suggested anywhere that the world was "created," but I've never even seen what crazy train of illogic brought you to that conclusion. Who's "miss-quoting" now?
Or do you wish to change your answer to 'no'?
I keep the same answer: Yes, the Secret and Law of Attraction are unproven, unprovable garbage. Yes, I have proof for that claim. And so far, you can't back it up at all. I guess you're ignoring your own lack of evidence as well.

Hey, I think I just disproved the Secret again! What-The? has been ignoring reality this entire conversation, wishing that it doesn't exist, wishing there was proof for his points, wishing that we'd stop blowing holes in his flimsy claims, and yet, it keeps happening. Where's that Law of Attraction now?

Argh! This is getting more and more redonculous! There IS no Law of Attraction - no law, and no attraction involved. It's just a pseudo-scientific phrase for the simple truism 'self-fulfulling prophecy': you're in a bad mood, so everything SEEMS negative that day. That's it and that's all. It's the famous "All IN YOUR HEAD" idea. I thought everyone was familiar with that one by now.
What-the?: don't try to draw conclusions from ancient documents you can't read. Even if you HAD read a translation, which it doesn't seem like you have, you would have to question the choices of the translator before coming to conclusions. As someone who CAN read at least Greek and Latin, let me tell you, it AIN'T THAT EASY, BUB! That's why actual scholars are tentative about the conclusions THEY draw. It's about being intellectually honest.
madaha

I wrote this article today and afterwards I randomly looked online for people who share my same views. I couldn't be happier that many of my views are similar to many others out there.

Rhonda Byrne is a scam artist. Plain and simple.

https://merchantsthief.blogspot.com/

Tom Foss?

"Yes, the Secret and Law of Attraction are unproven, unprovable garbage."

Is that kinda like way back when "the world is round" was not proven, not provable garbage?

Skeptico?

"That Joe Vitale is pretty clueless."

Interesting observation ... clueless to what?
Your point of view?

Clearly his concept of the universe has flown over your head like the Stealth at mach.
So what?

You both have opposing viewpoints ... so what?
Just because YOU THINK he is clueless does not make that a reality other than in your own mind now does it?

Usually when someone starts calling someone else names in a debate they do so because they have exhausted any valid comeback ... that means they (you in this case) lose.

Kat

Is that kinda like way back when "the world is round" was not proven, not provable garbage?
No, because "the world is round" is a testable hypothesis which is easily verified. The fact that the world is round was discovered by early scientists through the scientific method of observation and inquiry.

Why do woos always bring up the flat Earth? They never understand it, and it always ends up biting them in the ass. The idea that the Earth was flat was asserted based on cursory observation and dogma, kind of the way that the Law of Attraction was just asserted based on no observation and dogmatic new-age psychobabble.

Interesting observation ... clueless to what? Your point of view?
Science. Scientific law. The scientific method. The fact that the universe doesn't grant your wishes. Reality. Need I go on?
Clearly his concept of the universe has flown over your head like the Stealth at mach. So what?

You both have opposing viewpoints ... so what?
Just because YOU THINK he is clueless does not make that a reality other than in your own mind now does it?


No, Joe Vitale is clueless because he claims that the Law of Attraction is a "scientific law" like gravity, and that it works 100% of the time. This is demonstrably false. He is clueless because he promotes a childish fairy tale about how the universe is a magical genie that will grant all your wishes. This is demonstrably false. It's not a matter of opposing-but-valid worldviews. It's a matter of fairy tale delusions vs. reality.

Usually when someone starts calling someone else names in a debate they do so because they have exhausted any valid comeback ... that means they (you in this case) lose.
That would be true if Skeptico's argument were "Joe Vitale is clueless, therefore the Secret is wrong." What you fail to grasp, or refuse to grasp, is that Skeptico presents several reasons why Vitale is wrong, here and in other posts. Calling Vitale "clueless," even if it weren't supported by the facts, is incidental to his argument. Calling Joe Vitale "clueless" does not invalidate all the other paragraphs of reason that Skeptico wrote in the initial post. Ad hominem is only a fallacy if it makes up the bulk of the argument; this insult is not the substance of the argument, and the argument stands without it.
Is that kinda like way back when "the world is round" was not proven, not provable garbage?

No, because "the world is round" was never an unprovable hypothesis. It was provable by measuring shadows in the ancient classical world, and Eratosthenes calculated the circumference to within 500 km using nought but a couple of sticks and the sun. It didn't take fancy spaceships or measuring devices to prove it. In fact, it's pretty self-evident. The shadow of the Earth on the moon is round, the mast of a ship is visible on the horizon before the rest of the ship, etc.

Interesting observation ... clueless to what?
Your point of view?

No, clueless about the nature of reality, clueless about science, clueless about quantum theory...Here's a hint: not all opinions are equally tenable. Sometimes people are just wrong.

Clearly his concept of the universe has flown over your head like the Stealth at mach.

No, we get it. He says that the universe is a magical machine that grants wishes if we just will hard enough, but punish us for being negative. That is what makes it (1) unproveable, because it is inherently unfalsifiable as any instance where someone wishes for a pony but instead gets a stab wound can just be ad hocked into "You didn't will it hard enough" and (2) completely out of touch with reality.

Just because YOU THINK he is clueless does not make that a reality other than in your own mind now does it?

According to Joe Vitale and "The Secret," it should, if we think it hard enough.

Usually when someone starts calling someone else names in a debate they do so because they have exhausted any valid comeback ... that means they (you in this case) lose.

When someone's name is "Kat" and she posts nonsense, that means she (you in this case) lose. See, I can make up non-sequiturs that lead to my victory, too! Here's another: When someone wears green on a Sunday, that means that person loses. It's fun for the whole family!

Here's a hint: Coming to a website expressing a viewpoint with which you disagree and ignoring all the substance and arguments in lieu of quote-mining a few short passages that are logically neutral isn't really the best way to prove your point. In fact, throwing around irrelevancies is about the worst way to do it.

If you're not going to post anything of substance, kindly go away.

Tom Foss?

"Why do woos always bring up the flat Earth? They never understand it, and it always ends up biting them in the ass."

Why do the skeptico's of the world always miss the point and follow with a statement like yours above?

No one gives a flip if the world was flat or round.
The point IS a vast majority of the people on it believed what was NOT YET proven.
Why did they believe that? ... because science had not yet closed the gap.
Are you closer to GETTING IT NOW (the point that is)?

"dogmatic new-age psychobabble"

How about considering dogmatic age-old psychobabble ... since this thought process was around long before the world was flat.

Not a history buff huh?

psychobabble? You a Rush Limbaugh fan?

"No, Joe Vitale is clueless because he claims that the Law of Attraction is a "scientific law" like gravity, and that it works 100% of the time. This is demonstrably false. He is clueless because he promotes a childish fairy tale about how the universe is a magical genie that will grant all your wishes. This is demonstrably false. It's not a matter of opposing-but-valid worldviews. It's a matter of fairy tale delusions vs. reality."

Tom can we face the truth here?
Your No is no better than his Yes.
If he is clueless so are you.
YOU can not prove he is wrong and he can not prove he is right.

That scientifically makes you standing on equal ground SO FAR.

Well sort of on equal ground because YOU will never be able to prove him wrong.
Why?
You do not have the tools and probably never will.
That does not bother me and hopefully it does not bother you either ... it is simply fact.

Akusai?

"No, clueless about the nature of reality, clueless about science, clueless about quantum theory"

You are a scientist?
What do you know about quantum theory?
Anything other than a wisp of what you have been told?
Are you in the trenches working on a project of any kind?

Are you familiar with the "string theory"?
Do you know some of the most brilliant scientists of today are busy trying to PROVE that THEORY?
Do you know the research of a young woman is the most promising to prove "the string" along with the "existence of parallel dimensions"? She will have an opportunity to test her theories when the Large Hadron Collider comes online this summer?

It does not surprise me if any/all of this is foreign to you.

The point is: (since "the point" seems to be obscure to a few of you) we are dealing with an unknown ... NONE of us can PROVE the rightness or wrongness of any of this ... AT THIS MOMENT ... that does not mean tomorrow will not change things.

If you can prove your point (again let me make the point clear ... there is no "law of attraction") ... bring it on.
I personally want to SEE your PROOF.
In fact the WHOLE WORLD wants to see your PROOF.
The scientific community would be totally thrilled with YOUR PROOF.
I am not interested in what you think ... because frankly the YOU (plural of) here have no status on the believability meter.

"Here's a hint: Coming to a website expressing a viewpoint with which you disagree and ignoring all the substance and arguments in lieu of quote-mining a few short passages that are logically neutral isn't really the best way to prove your point. In fact, throwing around irrelevancies is about the worst way to do it.

If you're not going to post anything of substance, kindly go away."

My Goodness!
Interesting ... so much pseudo-intellectual jabber.

I do not recall saying I disagreed with YOUR concept of "the law of attraction".
Wait let me guess you are a so called "woo" in disguise and secretly have a crystal ball tucked under your left arm pit?
Do you just make stuff up as you go along to suit your argument?
Maybe you are just a little "reading comprehension" impaired?
At worst you are pawing the ground looking for a fight because you have nothing better to do in your day?
Substance?
Relative to whose definition?
Ohhh let me guess yours of course ... well that makes a real impact doesn't it?

Kindly go away?

Thank you for the biggest chuckle of my day ... so this is how you treat people who just happen onto your playground and make a comment "you don't like" about your flawed methodology?

You are right I do need to go away ... trying to keep a logical dialog (of any kind) going with anyone who is so mired in the "rightness of self" that they see NO bigger picture (no matter what that picture might be) ... is totally fruitless and a waste of time.

Perhaps you might want to consider that and then just maybe this thread will attract some REAL intellectuals :)

Have a good one guys and gals,
Kat ;)

Kat:
The point IS a vast majority of the people on it believed what was NOT YET proven.
Why did they believe that? ... because science had not yet closed the gap.

And they believed something that science showed to be wrong, and the theory that showed it to be wrong was available as was the evidence.

So to take your analogy and fit it to this discussion:

Many people believed the earth (the secret) was flat (granted you what you wished for). The scientific evidence to dispute this was available but the people didn't believe or didn't understand it. People continued to promote the erroneous view that the earth (the secret) was flat (worked). Science then showed that the earth (the secret) was round (did not work) and that the early theories that had been available were correct.

Actually, your analogy was a big help in getting the skeptical point across, thanks.

Again, a post filled with nothing but empty personal attacks and appeals to "science was wrong before" and "science doesn't know yet." You're not doing "The Secret" any favors by acting like an arrogant ass.

Because I am not a quantum physicist or a string theorist (which I might advise you to leave out, because string theory has made no real significant progress for most of its existence and isn't really a fantastic theory) doesn't mean The Law of Attraction is true or even close to it. Besides that, we have actual scientists around here who really understand (as far as it is possible) quantum physics, and have explained many times why it does not support The Law of Attraction. You merely attack

It's trivial to show that The Law of Attraction is false. All you have to do is look around at the world where people are constantly not getting what they want. Of course, "The Secret" says that this is just evidence that they didn't wish hard enough. That is what makes The Law as stated unfalsifiable, and that unfalsifiability is what makes it unscientific. It cannot be tested in any meaningful way. It differs from the old "flat earth" canard because the concept of a flat earth was not unfalsifiable in principle even if for a short (very short) time, Western culture believed it was the truth. The LoA is stated so as to be unfalsifiable in principle. You cannot falsify a "law" for which there are no possibilities for failure, and the LoA is such a "law." Any result will be taken as evidence for its truth. Sorry, but that's not how science works.

Relative to whose definition?
Ohhh let me guess yours of course ... well that makes a real impact doesn't it?

No, relative to the conversation. Your post lacked any substance, evidential or logical. None of your "points" were true and your arguments were fallacious. That is what one generally means by a substanceless post. A post that basically says "You're all stupid and mean and you don't know what you're talking about" is lacking in substance. Attacking my perceived knowledge while offering no evidence of your own is substanceless. Arguing semantics? Also generally substanceless.
It does not surprise me if any/all of this is foreign to you.

Cripes, you're arrogant, and still wrong.

Both of your posts are textbook examples of the ad hominem fallacy. You make irrelevant personal statements or attacks and then claim that we are wrong based on those statements or attacks. This is all you've done so far, excepting this statement:

The point is: (since "the point" seems to be obscure to a few of you) we are dealing with an unknown ... NONE of us can PROVE the rightness or wrongness of any of this ... AT THIS MOMENT ... that does not mean tomorrow will not change things.

A point which is patently false, and has been shown to be false repeatedly in the various Secret-related threads here. The LoA is not "an unknown," it is a ridiculous assertion that does not at all fit with the known nature of reality and is little more than feel-good drivel marketed toward those that favor wishful thinking over the scientific method and reason.

Your statements make it clear that you have an abysmal understanding of both of those things. And let's make this crystal, here: I am not saying, like you "Kat isn't a scientist so she's wrong." I'm saying "Kat has repeatedly made statements that show she is totally ignorant of science and reason, specifically what constitutes a valid scientific hypothesis, what science has to say about the world, and how to avoid logical fallacies."

You're not the first person here to spout the same damned drivel. You're not novel or special. Everything you said, and I do mean everything, has been dealt with ad nauseaum and I'm willing to bet that I'm not the only one who is sick of it.

Kat:Do you know the research of a young woman is the most promising to prove "the string" along with the "existence of parallel dimensions"? She will have an opportunity to test her theories when the Large Hadron Collider comes online this summer?
How about telling us the name of this young woman, what university she's with, what papers she's written, who she's working with, and so on?

No one gives a flip if the world was flat or round. The point IS a vast majority of the people on it believed what was NOT YET proven. Why did they believe that? ... because science had not yet closed the gap.
Uh, no. The majority of people believed that the world was flat without any proof. People started believing the world was round when folks like Eratosthenes showed them proof, namely the shadow made on the moon and the fact that the mast of a ship approaching on the horizon appears before the rest of the ship does, something which only would happen on a round Earth.

Get the progression there? People believe something stupid (Earth is flat) with no proof -> A hypothesis is made (Earth is round) based on observation -> Evidence shows that the hypothesis is true -> People believe the conclusion (Earth is round).

That's the scientific method, lady. You believe something after proof is shown to support it, not before.

Are you closer to GETTING IT NOW (the point that is)?
Yeah, I get the point: the law of attraction is like continuing to believe the Earth is flat. There's no proof for it, there's plenty of proof against it, and it's flipping stupid.
How about considering dogmatic age-old psychobabble ... since this thought process was around long before the world was flat.
You don't seem to understand: the world was never flat. Nor do you understand the problem of newage, mainly that it dresses up ancient stupidity in colorful new language. The term "newage" (rhymes with "sewage") is as much ironic as it is descriptive.
psychobabble? You a Rush Limbaugh fan?
No, I think he's a fat conservative butthead with the face of a horse's ass. But when people start spouting off shit about "positive thinking" and "actualization" and whatnot, terms that are intended to sound psychological and scientific, but actually aren't, "psychobabble" describes it pretty well.
Tom can we face the truth here? Your No is no better than his Yes. If he is clueless so are you. YOU can not prove he is wrong and he can not prove he is right.

That scientifically makes you standing on equal ground SO FAR.


Only if you have absolutely no understanding of the scientific method. In science, the burden of proof is on the person making the positive claim. Science assumes the null hypothesis--that X does not exist--until some proof is shown to support a positive hypothesis--that X does exist. It's not up to me to disprove him, it's up to Joe Vitale to prove his claims. Scientifically, he has no standing and his claims have no validity until he demonstrates some proof for them.

Well sort of on equal ground because YOU will never be able to prove him wrong. Why? You do not have the tools and probably never will. That does not bother me and hopefully it does not bother you either ... it is simply fact.
The cornerstone of science is falsifiability. Essentially, you've just said that Joe Vitale's claims are unfalsifiable. Guess what: if something is unfalsifiable and has no positive evidence to support it, then it is not science. There goes that equal footing.

And all that ignores the centuries and millennia which show that the Law of Attraction is simply not true, that the universe doesn't just grant your wishes, and that it actually functions according to knowable, constant, objective laws which do not depend on the thoughts of individuals. The evidence on my side just keeps piling up.

You are a scientist? What do you know about quantum theory? Anything other than a wisp of what you have been told? Are you in the trenches working on a project of any kind?
I guarantee I know more about quantum mechanics than you do. I guarantee that by reading some of what I've written, Akusai has a better understanding than you do. Tell me, Kat, what value is represented by the expression < a | a >?
Are you familiar with the "string theory"? Do you know some of the most brilliant scientists of today are busy trying to PROVE that THEORY?
Are you familiar with the fact that, until such proof is shown, String Theory is still a hypothesis? Are you aware that there are several different variations on the theory being proposed? Are you aware that other theories, such as Loop Quantum Gravity and Supersymmetry are currently just as valid and likely as String Theory (and M-Theory)? Are you aware that equally brilliant people (including Lee Smolin, author of "The Trouble with Physics") think that String Theory is a waste of time, because it makes too many assumptions with too few testable predictions?

Personally, I think the most likely of these various "Theories of Everything" is James Gates's team's version of String Theory, which doesn't require an extra half-dozen dimensions for the math to work. I haven't heard much about it since I saw him speak on it a few years back, so I'd be curious to see what progress they've made. Even so, until there's something more than a mathematical model, they're all just ideas.

Do you know the research of a young woman is the most promising to prove "the string" along with the "existence of parallel dimensions"? She will have an opportunity to test her theories when the Large Hadron Collider comes online this summer?
What young woman? Does she have a name?

A lot of things are being promised by the LHC. I'm still waiting for the Higgs Boson, and recent experiments at Fermilab suggest that maybe the Higgs isn't quite what they thought it was.

The point is: (since "the point" seems to be obscure to a few of you) we are dealing with an unknown ... NONE of us can PROVE the rightness or wrongness of any of this ... AT THIS MOMENT ... that does not mean tomorrow will not change things.
And that's all well and good. But what it means is that until tomorrow does change things, it's unscientific to believe that these things are true.
If you can prove your point (again let me make the point clear ... there is no "law of attraction") ... bring it on. I personally want to SEE your PROOF. In fact the WHOLE WORLD wants to see your PROOF. The scientific community would be totally thrilled with YOUR PROOF.
Besides, again, the simple observable fact that the universe doesn't just respond to your every whim and wish, the scientific community would much rather see the proof for the existence of the Law of Attraction. Such proof, should it exist, would require major changes in all scientific models across all disciplines, because it would suggest not only that the universe does not work according to constant universal laws, but that there is some unknown mechanism by which the human brain can alter the very fabric of reality.

So far, Joe Vitale and his cronies have shown no such proof. As such, science doesn't care about their claims. Like the millions of perpetual motion machines, claims of psychic phenomena, solipsistic claims that you create the universe with your thoughts, and other unscientific mystical bunk that get thrown out every year, the Law of Attraction simply asserts itself as "scientific fact" with no supportive evidence, no testable predictions, no falsifiability, and no scientific validity.

You are right I do need to go away ... trying to keep a logical dialog (of any kind) going with anyone who is so mired in the "rightness of self" that they see NO bigger picture (no matter what that picture might be) ... is totally fruitless and a waste of time.
My irony meter done broke.

"Rightness of self"? "Rightness of Self"? Girl, "rightness of self" is the basic building block of the Law of Attraction! It's reducing the entire universe down to the will of the individuals, while ignoring the bigger picture of a universe where laws apply objectively and universally, and don't give a flying pony's cojones what you think.

Oy gevalt.

Oh, sorry, this is what the Limbaugh link was supposed to head to.

You know, you can be very skeptical about a movie like this, but i look at it from a different angle, if it helps people to achieving their dreams by just doing it and keep persisting on doing their actions, it will payoff. It is not really what you think that is essential, it is your attitude that sincerely does perform something when other folks noticing it. I'ld rather hang around with someone who believes in The Secret than someone who likes to call up Murphy's laws every dang situation.

You know, you can be very skeptical about a movie like this, but i look at it from a different angle, if it helps people to achieving their dreams by just doing it and keep persisting on doing their actions, it will payoff. It is not really what you think that is essential, it is your attitude that sincerely does perform something when other folks noticing it. I'ld rather hang around with someone who believes in The Secret than someone who likes to call up Murphy's laws every dang situation.
If "The Secret" were about how positive thoughts and a positive attitude, coupled with hard work, optimism, sticktoitiveness, and persistence, could help you achieve your dreams, I'd totally agree. But it isn't. It's about how you can get whatever you want by just sitting back and wishing really hard for it.

And I'd much rather work with a dour pessimist who quotes Murphy's Law than someone who's going to sit back and try to "attract" positive effects while I do all the real work.

As far as Murphy's Law goes, it really is the dark mirror of the Law of Attraction: it's not empirically proven but is asserted as a law without evidence, it's essentially untestable and unfalsifiable, and it's all about mindset affecting reality.

The difference, of course, is that no one seriously believes that Murphy's Law is a scientific law of the universe.

Vince, if you only look at a short-term range of possibilities, you are right in saying that the Secret (tm) isn't that bad. By the same token, the Nazis weren't all that bad: Hitler's immediate influence on Germany's economic prospects was so impressive to the Volk that they believed he was the right Ubermensch for the Fatherland.

I have a feeling that the people ~*inspired*~ by the Secret (tm) would be better served by Cognitive-Behavioral therapists, but hey, maybe shimmery fairies are playing with my mind.

I just turned 20 and I have read the secret. I use to feel hopeless and not have faith. I had deep depression. I felt like no one liked me. Then I got help for the depression. Then a while later, my Mom gave me the best gift ive ever got. And it was the book "The Secret".

You guys can bash it all you want. But it worked for me. Girls find me attractive again, Im in the best shape of my life, I am confident, I am free of my depression, I love Life again, I love everything. The book gave me so much hope, I put the things in it to practice and most of them have worked. Becuase I am not perfect at using this "law" yet.

No girls were interested in me for some time, like 5 months, not one new girl came along. Then all of the sudden after practicing some unique stuff of my own based off the secret, it just seemed as though every girl wanted me. I had like no good friends left. and then i used the secret and bam, i gained back my good friends, and even added more.

The only way I found this negative site, is from a google search about "The Secret." Skeptics are negative thinking people in a great sense. They spend more time thinking about what is not, or what could possibly not be, rather than thinking and doing what they believe in. It's very sad, I know how it can be, since I too use to be a pessimist like you guys when i was depressed. I just hope you'll all find your real selves again, and become full with hope and love and not worry about petty things like whos right and wrong, but to accept everything for what it is and to move on to live and enjoy another day.

Funny, I never thought of myself as being a pessimist, nor as being a negative person.

Just a person who believes in working towards a goal, not one who appeals to a wish fairy.

Why do "The Secret" folks feel they need to project attributes to us without any evidence?

Gary, here's a word of advice. If you want to portray yourself as somebody who feels sexually confident and successful, drop bigballerguy as your email nick.

Gary:

Girls find me attractive again, Im in the best shape of my life, I am confident,

You sure you didn't just get a Bowflex gym?

No girls were interested in me for some time, like 5 months

No way?!?!11>?!? 5 whole months. And you a stud like that as well. Now that I am skeptical about. 5 months. Jeez. Horrifying. Come on, stop pulling our legs. Guys look, the secret does work because Gary didn't have any interest from new girls in like, 5 months, and then he did.

it just seemed as though every girl wanted me.

What I like most about your average secretoid, is their unassuming modesty.

Skeptics are negative thinking people in a great sense.

Boring. Heard it from absolutely every secretoid who has posted here already. It's still wrong. I've posted why on the site several times, I'm not going to post it again.

They spend more time thinking about what is not, or what could possibly not be, rather than thinking and doing what they believe in.

Wrong again. Said before. Answered before. Thanks for playing.

since I too use to be a pessimist like you guys when i was depressed.

Wrong again. You are so not, like, original.

I just hope you'll all find your real selves again

What the hell does that even mean? If doing this isn't my real self, then how can I be doing it?

and become full with hope and love and not worry about petty things like whos right and wrong

Oh.My.Frakking.god. Thank you Oprah. So, deciding what is right and wrong is petty? Tell that to everyone who died in the concentration camps in Bosnia and Serbia. Tell that to those dying in the Darfur. Tell that to those who died on 9/11/01. Hey, as long as you're getting the girls, right Gary?

Do bleevers even read what they cut and paste from the Woo Central Repository?

At least we know why the secret is so popular, there's one born every minute. How do people like this even manage to reach adulthood?

I swear, there's a script somewhere.

Due to the excessive vitriolic and uncivil nature of this comment I have deleted it. I have also instigated comment moderation and it will stay on until people such as this unnamed poster learn to be more civil.

This is not your playground. If you want to rant and insult freestyle – get your own blog.

- Skeptico.

Hello all,

I would like to ask a huge favor from you. I am a senior student at a Hungarian University, and writing my thesis on US popular culture, in which I am interested in the Law of Attraction's effects on the people in the US. Pro and contra. Why is it such a big hit and why does it cause such a great commotion and controversy?

As my thesis is about US culture, I need some help from Americans..:)) Please, if you can and you want, take a few minutes and answer these questions for me. Even is in just a few words… it would be a huge, HUUUUUGE help.

So, the questions:


1. How old are you? Male/Female?

2. Where are you from?

3. How have you heard about The Secret? (a friend told you? Seen on Oprah or on Larry King, or elsewhere?)

4. Have you seen the movie?

5. Have you read the book?

6. What do you think, why does the movie and the theory of LOA has such a great impact on so many people? (in a cultural aspect)

7. Why do you think, it causes such a commotion and controversy?

8. Is the LOA useful at all to any area of life? (Which? Why? Why not? )

9. Do you find The Secret dangerous or harmful? Why?

10. Any other thoughts, opinions?


THANK YOU in advance to all of those who spend some time on it!!

Have a wonderful week!

eva

The teachers of “the secret” are persistent if nothing else. They are a public relations and marketing machine with the financial backing to get their message to the public in a big way. The question remains however, “What is their message?” In my recently released book, The Secret Seduction & The Jesus Syndrome – The Hidden Agenda of the Creators of The Secret I revealed the hidden religious and victimization strategies of the creators of “the secret.” In this short article I will point out the new pitiful strategies the “teachers of the secret” are employing to solidify their sect.

I want to reiterate my position on several subjects. From an entrepreneur’s prospective I have to admire the creators and teachers of the secret. The marketing and public relations campaign is pure genius. They (the creators and teachers of the secret) have actually topped the “diet pill” industry in the ability to sell something that contains nothing while simultaneously getting people to believe it is “working for them.” I am sure the teachers of the secret are running programs right now in which they will “prove” their “law of attraction” works (and that if it isn’t working for you, then you better jump on their bandwagon so you can be saved).

Once again, let’s get real. Here’s the new marketing strategy of the creators and teachers of the secret:

John Asaraaf on Larry King Live (March 8, 2007) – “…every time there is a phenomenal breakthrough about to happen in mankind, there are people who take advantage of it and people who want to run for the hills.”

James Ray on Larry King Live (March 8, 2007) – “…any time a new idea comes to force, it goes through three phases. It’s first ridiculed. Then it it’s violently opposed. And then it’s finally accepted as self-evident, normally after the opposition dies.”

Bob Proctor on Larry King Live (March 8, 2007) – “Attraction is a law and you attract things into you….I don’t know why 9/11 happened but I do know this. That all down through history, things like that have happened. And we automatically believe death is a bad thing. Death is a transition. It is much the same as birth.”

“Doctor” Michael Beckwith on Oprah (February 16, 2007) – Yeah, Mediocrity always attacks excellence. So if you’re going beyond yourself and other people are staying mediocre, they have an agreement with mediocrity, they’re going to attack you.”


So here is the revised and up to date position of the teachers of the secret. The law of attraction works every time except for people that are killed in terrorist attacks (if they were “good people” then they just got in the way or really wanted to die and transition to the next phase of their lives…if they were “bad people” they attracted the terrorist attack or the holocaust or at a minimum they agreed to participate in it.” How convenient. A law of attraction that can be selectively applied according to the “philosophers” that are teaching it.

Oh, and by the way, if you are opposed to the magic fairy dust approach to the creators and teachers of the secret, then you are also opposed to the most phenomenal “breakthrough” in the history of mankind. You are just a “mediocre” person attacking the “excellence” the “magnificence” of the creators and teachers of “the secret.” The “breakthrough” the creators and teachers of the secret just happened to learn about by reading and re-packaging a royalty free version of Wallace Wattles book The Science of Getting Rich (first published in 1910). I wonder what percentage of the income the creators of the secret are paying to Mr. Wattle’s estate in the form of royalties? The secret isn’t a new breakthrough. The concepts in the secret were pilfered from a book written in 1910 and have been re-packaged to appeal to the current day “prey” who want to believe it’s something new (so the current teachers can “save them.”) Also, Napoleon Hill used the terms “The Secret” and “The Supreme Secret” in his book Think and Grow Rich as far back as the 1920’s. I understand we all have hypocrisy in our lives, me included, but this really takes first prize. The bottom line (of the creators of the secret) is this; believe in us and send us your money or you are opposed to the elevation of mankind. And by the way, if the law of attraction isn’t working for you (because the law of attraction works every time), then it’s just an unexplained circumstance that you must have created or agreed to participate in. If you are sick or dying or broke then it can’t be that “teachers” with our sophistication level and understanding (after all we are “philosophers”) have a lack of understanding. It must be your fault you pathetic unenlightened person. Send us some money and we’ll save you. After all Bob Proctor, John Asaraaf and others are willing to enlighten you for anywhere between $2,000 and $25,000 (as well as other teachers of the secret) and pay out part of the fee to a pyramid of other people who support their “philosophy.”

The teachers of the secret continue:

Joe Vitale on Larry King Live – (March 8, 2007) – In response to a question about a recent illness he had “attracted.” First of all, I had an appendectomy. And I did indeed attract it. I would have denied it the day it happened because going to the emergency room, never been in the hospital, never been in the emergency room, no fun whatsoever. I attracted it. Why did I attract it? I needed a vacation. I was working hard…and I wasn’t booking my own vacation. I remember telling people if I don’t book a vacation, something bad is going to happen. (John Alexandrov’s comments - I laughed for 5 minutes straight when I read this one – Joe Vitale – one of the most enlightened people on the face of the earth…a philosopher and teacher of the secret – needed to attract appendicitis in order to take a vacation???). It probably would have been unenlightened to call his travel agent and book the vacation ahead of time. Yes, I guess there is a new age of understanding being ushered in by the teachers of the secret. I just can’t figure out what it is. Maybe we should all get sick or work ourselves to exhaustion and then attract illnesses before we take vacations. That will certainly improve the world and prove the law of attraction at the same time.

Joe Vitale on Larry King Live – (March 8, 2007) – In response to a caller who asked “Where does God come into the whole “secret.” Joe responds: God is the secret and everything about it. This is a law from God. There are three great laws in the world. Law of gravity, the law of everybody loving Italian food and the law of attraction. These are all from God. (John Alexandrov’s comments – should I even respond to this? Okay, I can’t resist). Which God does the law of attraction come from? I’ve never had a clergy, theologian or a biblical scholar (or a scholar of any religious order) refer to a law of attraction. Oh, I get it now…the law of attraction comes from “the secret God”…the God that allows you to participate in holocausts and plagues and famines because it’s in your best interest or because you really wanted to “transition” to another life. I guess Hitler was just an agent of the secret God that helped people transition to a better life somewhere. Thanks Joe (Vitale) and Bob (Proctor). It’s all clear to me now.

Lisa Nichols on Larry King Live – (March 8, 2007) – (John’s comments – Who is Lisa Nichols anyway? Probably another “philosopher” who is much more enlightened than the rest of us). Lisa Nichols states “I’ve talked to many people who have had a situation with a health challenge and were actually grateful for it because it taught them something (it taught them) that we’re not all meant to be fit and healthy with two arms and legs you know – that’s just not how the Universe works… (John Alexandrov’s comments – Are you kidding me? I guess “the secret God” is so wonderful and so kind that “the secret God” creates horrible circumstances so you can learn from them and be grateful your child has one arm or one leg. Thank you “the secret God,” for all the wonderful blessings and for giving me those lessons. If there is a law of attraction that also means since from time to time I may focus my “attention on the fact” that my child has one arm or one leg, my next child will also have one arm or leg as well. After all, that’s what I am “attracting.”

James Ray on Oprah (February 16, 2007) – “Just consider that Jesus The Christ said, the kingdom of heaven is within…and so is it possible to consider that the “Kingdom of Hell” is within (us) as well?” My, my, my…the Kingdom of Hell. Okay James, if there is a heaven and a “kingdom” of hell, I guess that means all of us who don’t understand or know how to apply “the secret law of attraction” are going to be punished and exiled to “The Kingdom of Hell.” Have any of you ever heard a reference to a “Kingdom” of hell…ever? I guess I better tidy up on my mysticism.

A caller on Larry King Live calls in and asks John Assaraf, “He (John Assaraf) keeps talking about the brain. I would like to know if he (John) is a neuroscientist or has done any research that he’s published in peer reviewed journals that supports his claims? He (John) keeps talking about that he (John) does research. John Assaraf responds:

“Actually that’s a great question. I’ve had so many experiences with the law of attraction and our clients had so many experiences. I was “retired” for the last 6 years and I did my own research on books that were published, white papers that were published what was happening in my life, what was happening the lives of our clients and how we were able to achieve the success we were achieving. I studied other people’s work. I read voraciously, I researched voraciously other people’s works. And there’s more than enough evidence at a quantum physics level or physics level and neuroscience suggests this is true.” (John Alexandrov’s comments - Really John (Assaraf). Which books? Which physicists and neuro-scientists? As a wise old woman once said on national television…”Where’s The Beef?” There isn’t any beef. There aren’t any reports or books or peer reviewed articles on the law of attraction because they don’t exist. I have to admit Assaraf does a great job of avoiding the question. After all he has quite a bit of experience doing so. Six years of voracious research and he can’t even quote 1 article, book or white paper?

John Assaraf states, “You know, this morning when I knew that I was going to be on the show, we had about 200 of our business owners on a call. And I asked them to send us an email about how the secret law of attraction worked in their lives. Within 10 minutes we had 57 emails from people telling us how the secret law of attraction worked in their lives.” (John Alexandrov’s comments – Well there it is. Solid evidence. 57 emails from people who have a vested interest in claiming the law of attraction works so they won’t look like fools for paying money to be in John Assaraf’s coaching program. That definitely is as least as credible as a peer reviewed article published by a neuro-scientist; after all it was 57 emails from “our business owners.”

And finally (don’t be too disappointed…I’ll be writing many more articles in the future).

Joe Vitale on Larry King Live (March 8, 2007) – Joe Vitale states, “Well you know, there is one critic that said the movie (referring the DVD the secret) was missing the “idea” that it (the secret) doesn’t talk about action. I told him I agree with you, the movie does not talk very much about taking action in order to get results. But the movie is telling you one secret of the Universe. Its not telling you all the secrets of the Universe. That’s why we are going to have a sequel to this thing….There are other secrets including the law of right action.”

So there you have it. The law of attraction is NOT the only secret. As a matter of fact, its not a secret at all. It’s not a law. It never has been and never will be. So the teachers of the secret are now creating a new secret, a new mythology, a new hoax called “the law of right action.” Aren’t we all lucky that the “philosophers and teachers” of the secret are the only ones who know all the secrets of the Universe. And they are willing to share them with us for the enlightenment of humanity. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. I guess I’m just destined for the “kingdom of hell.”

I doubt this'll be read but here goes:

1. Male
2. East Texas
3. Variety of skeptical blogs.
4. Not yet. Plan on watching and writing extensive review that'll probably go Agony Booth.
5. No.
6. It doesn't really have much impact. It's just the latest rehash of old newage (rhymes with sewage) stuff. It'll most likely be forgotten fairly quickly by the general populace.
7. Because it's an archetypal example of woo: Wish for what you want, and you'll get it. Don't ask questions about it, because people want to believe in their kind delusion, and think it's the basis of their happiness.
8. No. There's no evidence for it, and plenty of counterevidence.
9. Yes, because it encourages sloth: It suggests doing nothing but wishing for your goals. It can also be inferred from the LoA that anything you worry about can't be helped because your worry will trigger the unscientific Murphy's Law.
10. It's just the latest in the long line of rehashes, and seems intent on undermining science by recasting many great achievements as the result of divine revelation and positive thinking, rather than hard work and discipline.

For anyone who hasn't seen the secret yet, you really should, especially if you are a skeptic. Heres the link for the torrent:
https://torrentspy.com/torrent/947269/The_Secret
It's pretty tough to get through, but at least this way is free and you won't be putting more money in Rhonda Byrnes(and whoever elses) pockets. If you are criticizing it, you should watch it once, if only for more fodder.
If anyone does not know how to download torrents, let me know and I'll try to walk you through it.
(it might be illegal in your country, but it isn't in mine :) )

It is being read :) thanx:)

1. How old are you? Male/Female?

23, Male.

2. Where are you from?

Illinois, United States.

3. How have you heard about The Secret? (a friend told you? Seen on Oprah or on Larry King, or elsewhere?)

Who mentioned it first? Was it on PZ's site? I'm pretty sure I saw it on Pharyngula first, though I've learned most about it from right here.

4. Have you seen the movie?

The portion that's available online. I'm thinking about trying to find it elsewhere, so my buddy Jon and I can MST3K it this weekend.

5. Have you read the book?

No.

6. What do you think, why does the movie and the theory of LOA has such a great impact on so many people? (in a cultural aspect)

It doesn't have a great cultural impact. The only reason I've even heard of it is because Oprah mentioned it on her show. A bunch of people have bought into its claims, as bunches of people do for every crazy philosophy that comes down the pike each year. The Secret is a single drop in an ocean of popular newage idiocy.

7. Why do you think, it causes such a commotion and controversy?

Well, first, because Oprah promoted it, and people trust Oprah far more than they should. Second, because the philosophy of The Secret is solipsistic, lazy, and childish to the point of delusion. Third, and this is the big one for me, because the people behind The Secret claim that it is scientifically valid and try to prove it using their misunderstanding of Quantum Physics. This is manifestly untrue and only contributes to the scientific illiteracy in this country.

8. Is the LOA useful at all to any area of life? (Which? Why? Why not? )

No. It's useful to have a positive attitude and to be optimistic, but the extreme to which the LoA takes those notions is absurd, unrealistic, and wholly useless.

9. Do you find The Secret dangerous or harmful? Why?

Yes, because it promotes sloth and legitimizes blaming the victim. It dismisses outright the atrocities faced by people around the world by claiming that they wished for their condition. And, as I said, it worsens the already terrible state of scientific literacy in this country.

10. Any other thoughts, opinions?

There has got to be a more worthwhile project with regard to American culture than studying this particular brand of idiocy.

This is why it's dangerous:
Oprah addressed the Secret briefly today - clearly to show that she's not buying it hook and sinker, although that it's clear she is. She had a viewer on who is sadly not contacting doctors for her breast cancer, but rather taking vitamins and trying to "Secret" her way out of cancer for a while first. Oprah, instead of apologizing for peddling this tripe, scolded her as "irresponsible" for not going to a doctor. Which, of course, it is, but it just seemed harsh to bring her on the air just to scold her. Then Oprah sagely (note sarcasm) stated that the Law of Attraction is just one of many laws, and it's a tool, more than anything. She didn't explain that one, just begged the question during the discussion. But, as we've seen, you can't explain it anyway, because it's balderdash.
madaha

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Wow, are you in the wrong place.

Oprah, instead of apologizing for peddling this tripe, scolded her as "irresponsible" for not going to a doctor.

At least she chose a lesser evil.

Sad that that's about as optimistic as we can get with one of the leading media people.

yeah, it was clear that Oprah didn't want to say she was wrong, but without revealing too much, she didn't want to be held responsible in any way for this benighted woman's lack of treatment for her cancer. It was rather disingenuous, but you're right BD, probably the best we can expect. BUT JUST GOES TO SHOW HOW DANGEROUS THIS SECRET CRAP CAN BE!!! Oy. I hope this lady quits gambling with her life and goes to a doctor toute de suite. scary.
madaha

Is the Law of Attraction self-refuting?

I came across this blog while trying to find people who have written about a couple of obvious problems with the Law of Attraction. I would like to hear from both sides.

Problem one is something Skeptico has mentioned: If the Law of Attraction exists, why are its most vocal followers attracting so much skepticism? To take this further, why are its most vocal followers resorting to laborious verbal defenses of the Law of Attraction, when an easier method of performing mass conversion would be to use the power of thought and think the mass conversion into existence? No need to communicate with skeptics at all.

Problem two is something I have yet to see mentioned in any detail: There are people out there whose thoughts include the firm belief that the Law of Attraction does not exist. Does not exist and does not work for anyone. For anyone in any subjective reality, or for anyone in any possible world, or for anyone in any quantum reality, or for anyone in any anything. What then? Has the Law resulted in its own nonexistence? Followers of the Law are willing to say that the Law has become nonexistent in my reality, but my reality is that the Law does not operate in any possible reality, so have I not eliminated the Law from the reality of the follower? Maybe there is a logical escape from my argument in some form or other. Or maybe the followers can add a few limits to the Law and clean up that way. Still quite interesting, huh?

Let me know what you think.

Thank you John A - an interesting article (I'll get round to reading your blog soon.)
I noticed the quote by James Ray: “Just consider that Jesus The Christ said, the kingdom of heaven is within.."
Nope, J the C didn't say that - he referred to the 'kingdom of God' - a rather important difference, especially to a religious teacher. But, while we're on Bible quotes, I'm wondering if any of the Secret "teachers" have ever quoted J the C's own version of the LOA, as outlined in Matthew 17:20.
If not, then they're even more ignorant than I thought.

thanx Tom and mahada;)

Just to dispell any misapprehension - I'm no kind of a christian. It's just that I had a good catholic education; the Jesuit who taught me how to think could wipe the floor with any the self-styled 'philosophers' who sell this scam.

I'll play too, I guess if only to reinforce Tom Foss's and BD's opinion that there are plenty of really neat things you could be studying relative to American culture other than nonsensical beliefs.

1. How old are you? Male/Female?

26, Male

2. Where are you from?

Lincoln, NE USA

3. How have you heard about The Secret? (a friend told you? Seen on Oprah or on Larry King, or elsewhere?)

Actually I'd never heard of it until Skeptico mentioned it.

4. Have you seen the movie?

No.

5. Have you read the book?

No.

6. What do you think, why does the movie and the theory of LOA has such a great impact on so many people? (in a cultural aspect)

People in the United States believe in silly things for silly reasons. The ability to get whatever you want just by thinking about it seems much more attractive than reality, just like going to live in the sky with your Magic Sky Daddy in heaven forever sounds much more attractive than "you go in the ground and rot".

7. Why do you think, it causes such a commotion and controversy?

The "Law" of Attraction is unproven nonsense yet people espouse it as fact. People don't like to find out they are wrong.

8. Is the LOA useful at all to any area of life? (Which? Why? Why not? )

No, because it's utter bullshit that doesn't work.

9. Do you find The Secret dangerous or harmful? Why?

It is very detrimental to people. Placing blame on victims of crime in particular makes my stomach churn.

10. Any other thoughts, opinions?

Again, there are about 10 million better things that you could research with regard to American culture, like "Why does Tide get clothes so clean?"

D'oh! That was me!

Hello again. I am a bit surprised to see this debate still going on. Both sides seem so ingrained in their beliefs, I doubt many minds will be changed by anything I say, but I’m gonna say it anyway, ‘cause I’m a writer, so that’s what I do - LOL

I was called a "woo" earlier. I’m not even sure what that means, but it was used in a negative connotation so I’m guessing it’s a bad thing. I’m not sure what you’d have seen on my blog to label me that. I am a humorist. I make jokes. The post that was current then had the first line, "Do you believe in miracles?" But it was a joke, not a serious thesis on miracles.

Do I believe in a Higher Power? Yes. Do I think it’s an old man with a long white beard? No. Do I believe in The Secret or Law of Attraction? Somewhat. Why? Because I used to work in a hospital.

(Many are scratching their heads at THAT leap - LOL)

The connection between what your belief can create, and a hospital, is seeing the placebo effect in action. I’ve seen patients with measurable physical symptoms, such as fever or high blood pressure, get a placebo...a pill or shot that contained NO medicinal ingredients. But the patient BELIEVED it would relieve their symptoms, and there was a measurable change in their physical continence. Their fever went down. Their blood pressure was reduced. Just because they believed it would.

Second point: Those who believe that the methods in The Secret will help them, are doing it for exactly that reason - to help themselves. It is not a method for being able to make your neighbor dance a jig and squawk like a chicken, it is personal...you, trying to have an effect on your own life.

Third point: As I stated in my earlier post, I think there are times when people pray, or "ask the universe" for something, that God (or the universe) is going to say "no". I don’t know why. Many believe in reincarnation, and think that the problems in this lifetime are an atonement or "karma" for how a previous life was lived. Many also believe that before entering this life, our soul has been in on the plan, but that while we are in this physical realm, we are not privy to that higher plane, and therefore don’t understand how or why things are so damned hard or screwed up. Suppose you gave your cigarettes to a friend and saying, "I want to quit, so keep these away from me, no matter how hard I beg." Then two hours later you’re saying, "I changed me mind, let me have them." Should your friend hand them back over? Is that what God (or the universe) is doing when we ask for something but don’t get it?

Maybe. LOL

And for the student, you can learn all about me at my
"People Who Matter"
page.

I send good wishes to all of you. Do whatever you want with them - LOL

Peace.

Hi

You missed the whole point of 'The Secret', completely utterly missed the point !

perhaps you should watch the whole film before commenting.

The point of the film is basically - Positive and repeative Thinking about wanting to become something or gain somethign that through constantly thinking about you will move towards that stage through your OWN actions.

The stuff about laws etc, is to make yuo think positively about it, obviously its hyped beyond what it is namely positive thinking. But for those with an ounce of intelligence watching it, recognise the hype and the purpose of it.

I found it useful, in that it helps to reinforce what i already know. That if you concentrate on your goals, then you will achieve them through a series of steps that you will only implement because yuor thinking about your goal. If you don't sent goals or work towards them then yuo will drift through life.....


Wait. So you're saying that they invented all this "Law of Attraction", "thoughts become things" stuff because it's EASIER to understand than:

If you want to achieve your goals, keep focused.

Anyone else feel insulted?
madaha

I’ve seen patients with measurable physical symptoms, such as fever or high blood pressure, get a placebo...a pill or shot that contained NO medicinal ingredients. But the patient BELIEVED it would relieve their symptoms, and there was a measurable change in their physical continence. Their fever went down. Their blood pressure was reduced. Just because they believed it would.
High blood pressure, to a large degree, is due to stress and psychological factors. The placebo effect--a psychological effect--is of course going to cause change in things that have psychological causes. Fevers typically break on their own, especially if the patient gets rest and fluids. The placebo effect is going to make it easier to rest (because there is less psychological tension) and the rest is just waiting.

So, when you say "I've seen the placebo effect work," it's still a stretch to extrapolate that to "if you wish for something, it will happen." It would be irresponsible and unethical for a doctor to prescribe a placebo for a life-threatening fever or a case of high blood pressure where the main cause was atherosclerosis, because the placebo effect can't do anything about these real medical conditions.

it is personal...you, trying to have an effect on your own life.
And trying to do it with the easiest shortcut available. People have always wanted the panacea to solve all their problems, and there have always been charlatans ready to sell them precisely that. No one wants to hear "work hard and think positively and you'll be happy." People want to hear "take this pill or make this wish or read this book and you'll get everything you ever wanted." People are going to do a lot more to help themselves if they drop the snake oil and the silver bullets and accept the basic realities of life.
Third point: As I stated in my earlier post, I think there are times when people pray, or "ask the universe" for something, that God (or the universe) is going to say "no". I don’t know why.
I don't know either, but I have a good idea. Namely that neither prayer nor asking the universe for things has any effect whatsoever. There's equal amounts of proof for the existence of God and the existence of a consciousness or sentience to the universe.
Many believe in reincarnation, and think that the problems in this lifetime are an atonement or "karma" for how a previous life was lived.
A doctrine at least as reprehensible and unprovable as the Law of Attraction.
You missed the whole point of 'The Secret', completely utterly missed the point !

perhaps you should watch the whole film before commenting.


You know, every supporter of The Secret in this thread has come up with a completely different "point" that we missed. Perhaps they should make the film more clear.

The point of the film is basically - Positive and repeative Thinking about wanting to become something or gain somethign that through constantly thinking about you will move towards that stage through your OWN actions.
That's not what the film says ("thoughts become things," for instance) nor is it what folks like Joe Vitale have said outside of the film.
The stuff about laws etc, is to make yuo think positively about it, obviously its hyped beyond what it is namely positive thinking. But for those with an ounce of intelligence watching it, recognise the hype and the purpose of it.
Really? Because then there are quite a lot of people around without an ounce of intelligence, including the creators of the Secret. I'm not disputing you, naturally.
That if you concentrate on your goals, then you will achieve them through a series of steps that you will only implement because yuor thinking about your goal. If you don't sent goals or work towards them then yuo will drift through life.....
And that's great...but it isn't a Law, it doesn't require one to mangle Quantum Mechanics, and it certainly isn't what's being conveyed when the authors say "thoughts become things" and whatnot.

In other words, just because you're a reasonable person and came away from the film conforming its advice to a real, reasonable worldview, doesn't mean that we're the ones who missed the point. Especially when you consider that many of the same people in this were claiming in "What the Bleep" that you "literally create your day with your thoughts."

People have always wanted the panacea to solve all their problems, and there have always been charlatans ready to sell them precisely that. No one wants to hear "work hard and think positively and you'll be happy." People want to hear "take this pill or make this wish or read this book and you'll get everything you ever wanted."
I can confirm that. A few years ago a medical-student friend of mine decided that he would publish a book. The book was about male sexual health, and concentrated on how to have a good sex drive through vitamins and good diet, and develop a larger penis via a set of special stretching exercises (called, I think, 'jelque').
I proof-read the MS and couldn't see any reason why my friend's prescription of healthy living and daily exercises couldn't achieve the stated goals. My friend was convinced it would be a best-seller and spent quite a lot of money on self-publishing it. As he said "Every man wants a bigger d---! This is going to sell millions!"
The book bombed.
As I had suspected right from the beginning, nobody is interested in spending months getting a bigger organ by taking vitamins, living healthily and spending a little time each day doing exercises. People (in general) only want to pop a pill and wake up the next morning with their desires fullfilled.
Which of course is something that any spammer knows perfectly well. And the peddlers of The Secret know it too. That's the secret of 'The Secret'.

Marti:

Do I believe in a Higher Power? Yes.

That's a good sign that you are in fact a woo. You're obviously not at the 'Holy crap that's crazier than Ann Coulter.' end of the scale, but it is there none the less.

Some people don't use the term woo for religious belief, but I see no reason not too.

Do you believe in ghosts or spirits?
Do you believe people have a soul?
Do you believe psychics exist?
Do you believe in any alternative medicines such as homeopathy, acupuncutre, reiki?
Do you believe there really is something to the secret?
Do you believe in reincarnation or karma?

It is not a method for being able to make your neighbor dance a jig and squawk like a chicken...

That is precisely what the supporters of the secret say it can do though, provided you want it and believe it enough.

...you, trying to have an effect on your own life.

If that was the only claim they made, I might agree with you.

As I stated in my earlier post, I think there are times when people pray, or "ask the universe" for something, that God (or the universe) is going to say "no". I don’t know why.

Forgive me, it's early and I haven't had my first coffee yet so I may have missed the joke or irony in this statement. Wasn't that what you actually joked in your first post, not stated? I am just a humourless and miserable skeptic after all, just living up to the stereotype some here have so eruditely identified.

Suppose you gave your cigarettes to a friend and saying, "I want to quit, so keep these away from me, no matter how hard I beg." Then two hours later you’re saying, "I changed me mind, let me have them." Should your friend hand them back over? Is that what God (or the universe) is doing when we ask for something but don’t get it?

This is the sort of example a believer in the secret might use (note I am not saying you are one, you are not clear on your exact beliefs). If your friend gave them back then it's because deep down you wanted them. If your friend didn't it would be because deep down you still didn't want them or that you didn't want them enough.

Either way they would argue the secret did it, via the universe. That's why it's a load of crap. You can't prove it one way or the other because whether it works or not, they say it works.

What the secret most certainly is not is placebo effect. Placebo effect does not cure cancer, ask a secretoid if they believe the law of attraction can cause or cure cancer. The answer will certainly be illuminating for someone who has worked in the medical field.

Skeptico replies to Nadeem Walayat

Re: The point of the film is basically - Positive and repeative Thinking about wanting to become something or gain somethign that through constantly thinking about you will move towards that stage through your OWN actions.

The stuff about laws etc, is to make yuo think positively about it, obviously its hyped beyond what it is namely positive thinking. But for those with an ounce of intelligence watching it, recognise the hype and the purpose of it.

If you read my post above towards the end (perhaps you should have read the whole post before commenting), you’ll see I wrote:

Equivocation

As with What the Bleep, you should watch out for equivocation. Expect believers to point out that being positive, confident etc will make people react more positively towards you, will tend to make you more successful etc. And it will. But they are equivocating about a lesser version of The Secret – a lesser version that does not support the “thoughts become things” and “it always works every time” woo version.

Thanks Nadeem for doing exactly what I said believers would do, and for proving my point.

I wonder if any of you realize the impact that “The Secret” is having in most every town/city? Check out www.meetup.com . There are literally thousands of groups that are meeting in the backrooms of Denny’s and IHOP every night of the week. No money is changing hands (with the exception of some networking between members). Most members describe miracle changes in their lives. Whether real or imagined, or perhaps just focused attention, most are realizing that their experiences are just being interpreted in a different light.
For example, looking at a loss of your job as a gift … a chance to re-evaluate what you really want to do, as opposed to reacting to the catastrophic loss of income with depression and shock … Interesting view. Some members have not even read the book or viewed the film, yet proclaim that their view of life is forever changed. One woman proclaimed that her life will never be the same again after viewing the Oprah show about “The Secret”.
Each group has a “leader” or organizer, and each has their own spin on what positive attraction means. Some groups “affirm” what their intentions are to improve their lives (at least there is a plan here, not just wishing), and then the group ‘sends’ them energy in a sort of prayer like fashion, either by holding hands or by holding up their palms in a ray like fashion towards the person. Other groups work more like a 12 step program, where each member stands up, introduces themselves and gives a story about how much life sucks and what they expect will change now that they have found their group. I am sure that there are as many versions of this group therapy as there are groups.
My view:
Positive: Any activity or therapy that teaches people to view life experiences from a non-reactive level is a good thing. Too many of us go on autopilot and REACT on impulse. Viewing crisis as an observer and taking the time to evaluate what is going on … then responding appropriately is a good thing. (in theory, of course … even Mother Theresa was observed flipping out on occasion)
If attending a meeting sparks an idea, an epiphany of brain storm … a business partner is found … a friendship is made … a sense of meaning is found … even the finding others of like mind means a measure of some kind of group therapy … these are good things.
Negative: Where do I start? This all is very much the mantra of not so long ago which professed the wealth or prosperity consciousness of money manifestation through positive thought. Message boards galore sprang up on the sites of various gurus professing that bills were being paid through miracle miscalculations in bank balances, and $5,000 checks were being written to pay off accounts because the ‘knowing’ was so strong of money manifestation, that there was no doubt that by the time the check was presented, it would certainly clear the bank. Well, after a couple of years, it all dissipated. The guru sites are down, or have been re-directed, the message boards are down and I imagine that some of the bad check writers suffered some complications when the money did not manifest.
So, what is this exactly? Is it a form of religion? Is this a ‘seeking’ to fill the empty hole of our modern lives? Perhaps.
It seems to me that this will go one of two ways, and perhaps both will happen. Firstly, there is sure to be some self appointed authorizing accrediting entity that will certify group leaders for a hefty fee so that they may become official “Secret Therapists” or perhaps, Certified Law of Attraction Ph.D’s. This will assure that the message stays clear and will assure that the original gurus have the mailing lists of all of the followers for future sales, seminars, cruise opportunities and such.
Secondly, once the every night members see that their lives are just busier now because of the meeting schedule, and that their lives are basically otherwise, just as before, they will find reasons to not attend. Most unsuccessful people suffer from LAS (Lazy Ass Syndrome), and that will most certainly kick back in after the initial enthusiasm wears off. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

But what about that woman who was on Oprah on Monday - who has cancer, but won't seek medical treatment? Oprah had to TELL her to go to the doctor, and she said she'd try the Secret first. That goes WAY beyond materialistic and shallow. That's a dangerous world view. We don't need a Secret to not be lazy. Sure, it helps for someone to cheer us on: "you can do it, I know you can!" but no one needs prayer for that. I think that the fact it's sweeping the nation is REALLY CREEPY. So much for the enlightenment.
madaha

Convincing yourself that you can cure your body of cancer (not in conjuction with medical treatment) by watching funny movies and "knowing" and being grateful for already being cured is more than just scary! That is my biggest problem with the Hicks (Abraham) cult-like "teachings" !
Esther Hicks was involved with the original version of The Secret.

Thank you for the polite conversation. It is nice to have reasoned discourse on what is clearly a sensitive subject which arouses intense emotional responses. I am not an evangelist for any position, I was simply expounding on my personal opinions. I respect each persons right to their own viewpoint.

I enjoyed reading all of the comments, and appreciate the time and thought everyone put into them. There is no single correct answer to the mysteries of life. Those who believe there is, usually end up as, "Corpse # 2" at some cultist-gone-wrong outpost - LOL

Wishing all of you peace and joy.

Oh, I meant to ask...Jimmy Blue, do you have a website or blog, or are you a contributor here? I was going to visit, but clicking your name only gave me an e-mail link.

Thanks. :)

LOL :)

I have to wonder if people replying to my post actually read it :)

I did say that the stuff about being a LAW is more or less BS, it is exaggerated, but to reinforce something it needs to be drilled in.

Unlike many negative posters here, who have yet to watch mroe than 20 minutes. I'm a natural skeptic, and for the first 20 mins, I thought this is BS, especially the intro, but watch it all and you the basic message, is as someone points above. In that FOCUS ON YOUR GOALS

BUT ! Yes, I am afraid you do miss the point.

In that saying Focus on your goals and actually doing it, is not enough, but what this 1 hour 30 min program does is to get you into a positive frame of mind and focusing on your goals i.e. positive reinforcememt.

Being a natural skeptic, I don't believe in the natural law aspect, it made me laugh and smile watching it, but its better to make you laugh then cry !

There are many practical useful tips in the film. I.e. one is the board where you have pics of where you want to be stuck on it, stuck on the wall, that acts as good positive reinforcement towards your goals.

Yes most people are too lazy to achieve their goals, maybe they need some spiritual mumbo jumbo to help convince them to do soemthing ?

Anyway its been fun :)

We've been over that at least 4 or 5 times by now, Nadeem.

Marti.

I don't have a blog, I have thought about it but looking around it seems to eat up too much time. So I just eat up other people's time by posting on their blogs.

Forgive me for being blunt though, another sign of a woo is avoiding answering direct questions. Obviously you are under no obligation to answer them, but a polite conversation doesn't usually involve ignoring people.

There is no single correct answer to the mysteries of life.

Maybe not (and that's a pretty bold assertion to make let's face it), but I'll put money on the secret not being the answer.

Somebody thinks they're funny:
https://skeptical-lunacy.com

I've read through it. They aren't.

Thanks for that link Tom - that's hilarious.

I'm flattered.

What I like particularly is Kat complaining about us skeptics not liking to be challenged and kicking her off the blogs, and then she doesn't allow comments on her site.

Priceless.

What are you afraid of Kat? Don't like being challenged? Afraid we might have a rebuttal to your, well I won't dignify it with the title rebuttal. More like mindless rant.

And she accuses us of being childish.

In my experience it's very rare for skeptics to boot anyone, and it almost never has anything to do with their position: There are a lot of hateful, nihilistic, and overtly dishonest woos out there who make big displays about deliberately avoiding the issue. We often have to do something to force people to stay on topic when one of them shows up. All they're out to do is stifle discussion by cranking up their volume.

I really considered effectively banning WoMI by deleting all of his new posts, but I chose not to: Compared to what he posted as time went on, his silence would have made him look better than letting him ramble on about whatever silliness he let out. We last saw him moving from Cretinism into HIV/AIDS and germ theory denialism before he vanished on his own.

Of course, I addressed all of his points that had some vague semblance of relevance.

I went to read that link and was going to throw in my two cents worth, only to find that no comments are allowed.
What a cowardly site. Reminds me of Joe Vitale deleting comments that might cause someone to use their brain.

I would say "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery", but I think rather that it shows a lack of the mental faculties necessary to come up with something original.

Keep up the good work. I have learned a lot in regards to critical thinking by reading through these posts. And I actually do read them from the beginning (unlike some of the posters that keep bringing up the same crap that has been addressed time and again).

I admire your patience.

Sorry, I also meant to add that I was dragged to see the big secret (hah) and sat through the whole thing. My initial thoughts were that it reminded me of how religious folks regard prayer.
For one example, the guy that was so busted up that it took an amazing amount of talent and work of doctors, therapists, etc. in order to be able to survive and the credit goes to "The Secret" instead of where it rightfully belonged. That makes me gag.

Sorry, I also meant to add that I was dragged to see the big secret (hah) and sat through the whole thing. My initial thoughts were that it reminded me of how religious folks regard prayer.
Yeah, I explained the Secret briefly to my old Quantum Physics professor, and that was her immediate reaction---"sounds a lot like prayer." I really hadn't considered it until she said that, but it really is. It just replaces "God" with "the universe" and "faith" with "law like gravity."

Tom Foss:Somebody thinks they're funny
So Kat emailed you, too?
What a waste of web space.

Nah, she posted on my blog. Something about Skeptico deleting her posts to silence her. Guess what, Kat, I saw your post (and responded to it) before it was deleted, and there was nothing about your sour-grapes website in it.

I thought the movie was going to be a 1.5 hour lingerie show. Was disappointed.

Hello again.

I was not trying to be rude by not answering your questions. I knew if I answered in the affirmative, that my opinions would be discounted as the ravings of some lunatic ‘woo”. However, I am not afraid of ridicule, I was merely trying to be brief - LOL! If you chose to believe I am crazy, so be it. If you chose to call me names, that is your pejorative. I am comfortable and happy, and try to remain open-minded. I am a competent human being who respects the opinions of others. I certainly don’t claim to have all of the answers. I do not “preach” any particular doctrine, other than laughter is good for you - LOL

I was unclear when I said that sometimes the answer to prayer is no. I was saying it in a joking manner in my original post, because I often use humor when I don’t have a clear answer. Although I believe that prayer and positive thinking are not harmful, I do not have an answer as to why bad things happen to good people, or why there is injustice in the world. I don’t know why some people who appear to be quite fervent (we can’t know what really goes on in another person’s mind) are denied what they re asking for.

So to answer your questions. Yes.

I live in a haunted house. I am not hallucinating, dreaming, intoxicated, on medication, or getting the lottery numbers from those souls (yes to #2).

I am not psychic, do not know anyone who claims to be, nor have I ever visited a psychic, but I do believe that some people are intuitive to that other realm.

I am not really familiar with alternative medicines, so I can’t make a definitive statement. I would suspect that many who get better from alternative treatments are experiencing the placebo effect. And your discounting of the placebo effect as coincidence, is as untenable as belief in it. And I am quite skeptical of the medical profession, having been involved with it. Much of the business of medicine is done for profit, not for the greater good of humanity.

I think The Secret has some validity, but I also think a lot of it is showmanship and hucksterism. I think any adult should be skeptical of claims that something works “every time for everything”. I believe adults should be responsible for themselves. I think far too many people are looking for a magical solution to their problems. To think that merely wishing, praying or believing hard enough is going to solve all of your problems, with no active input and responsibility, is childish and lazy.

I believe in reincarnation and karma. I do not believe in hell or the devil. I consider myself more spiritual than religious - I do not attend church, although I am educated in the beliefs of many major religions. I do believe there is evil, as the flip side of good. I don’t know of anything that only has one side, so acknowledging that there is good logically leads to the opposite being evil. But I do not see things in terms of black and white, because there are so many shades of gray.

So, there are my answers. I imagine you have very different beliefs. That’s fine. I respect that. I am neither ashamed of my beliefs nor evangelical about them. I’m not trying to convince anyone of anything - LOL! I think each person should study, learn and decide for themselves what their personal beliefs are, and be open to new input.

Yes, blogging can be quite time consuming!

I hope you all have a wonderful day. Peace and joy to you.

https://www.squidoo.com/marti/”>Marti

Marti.

Thank you for taking the time to answer.

... and try to remain open-minded.

As do skeptics. A word of caution, please don't fall into the usual trap of assuming skeptics are close minded because they don't accept woo beliefs without reliable evidence. That wouldn't be a good way to start here.

So to answer your questions. Yes.

From looking through your website I had already guessed this, but thanks for your honesty.

I live in a haunted house.

I'd disagree and say you believe you live in a haunted house.

I am not hallucinating, dreaming, intoxicated, on medication, or getting the lottery numbers from those souls (yes to #2).

None of which proves that you live in a haunted house. You don't have to be insane, sick or stupid to believe weird things.

I am not psychic, do not know anyone who claims to be, nor have I ever visited a psychic, but I do believe that some people are intuitive to that other realm.

On what evidence? Are you aware of such things as cold reading, warm reading and hot reading? Selective memory? Confirmation bias? Wishful thinking? I recommend taking a look at the online Skeptics Dictionary and the James Randi Educational Foundation.

And your discounting of the placebo effect as coincidence, is as untenable as belief in it.

I'm not sure where you got this from. I accept the likely existence of the placebo effect and its oft demonstrated results. The placebo effect explains the a lot of faith healing and alternative medicine success stories. What I said was that it doesn't cause or cure cancer like the secret bleevers claim the secret can, so your linking the two was not really valid.

And I am quite skeptical of the medical profession, having been involved with it. Much of the business of medicine is done for profit, not for the greater good of humanity.

And who isn't skeptical of the medical profession? That doesn't mean though that alternative medicine is valid because there are things wrong with scientific medical treatments.

I think The Secret has some validity

In what sense?

I believe adults should be responsible for themselves.

That's good, but the secret and its followers don't. They think the universe does it for you.

To think that merely wishing, praying or believing hard enough is going to solve all of your problems, with no active input and responsibility, is childish and lazy.

Now that we can definitely agree on.

I believe in reincarnation and karma. I do not believe in hell or the devil.

Why the one but not the other. There's no evidence for any of them, so why make a distinction?

I do believe there is evil, as the flip side of good.

No arguments with that. Why would there be?

But I do not see things in terms of black and white, because there are so many shades of gray.

Again, don't make the mistake that skeptics believe things are black and white. It is my experience that skeptics see more shades of grey than most woo bleevers do.

I think each person should study, learn and decide for themselves what their personal beliefs are, and be open to new input.

I agree mostly with this statement, with the difference that people should study, learn and decide based on the evidence, and be open to new evidence.

I live in a haunted house. I am not hallucinating, dreaming, intoxicated, on medication, or getting the lottery numbers from those souls (yes to #2).
And I'm sure there aren't any number of prosaic physical, physiological, and psychological explanations for your experiences. We are often unaware of the nature of the tricks played on us by our senses and our preconceptions.
I am not psychic, do not know anyone who claims to be, nor have I ever visited a psychic, but I do believe that some people are intuitive to that other realm.
What other realm? What proof is there that some people can access this undefined realm?
And your discounting of the placebo effect as coincidence, is as untenable as belief in it.
The placebo effect isn't coincidence, it's coincidence plus psychology. What it isn't is an effective treatment for serious ailments.
Much of the business of medicine is done for profit, not for the greater good of humanity.
These two things are not mutually exclusive. Much of all science is done for profit; that's the nature of the beast. But your reasons for doing something do not invalidate the results or conclusions of that action if all the facts and procedures are valid.
I think The Secret has some validity...To think that merely wishing, praying or believing hard enough is going to solve all of your problems, with no active input and responsibility, is childish and lazy.
And once you make those concessions, there's nothing left of The Secret.

I don’t know of anything that only has one side, so acknowledging that there is good logically leads to the opposite being evil.

I know of something that has only one side: a Mobius Strip! Maybe good is non-orientable.

But I do not see things in terms of black and white, because there are so many shades of gray.
Good, that's reasonable.

I think each person should study, learn and decide for themselves what their personal beliefs are, and be open to new input.

Agreed. I just wish people were more careful about what input they accepted.

Deleted by Skeptico - not understandable in English.

Note - this comment may have been in Serbian or another language. Sorry, but if I don't understand it I have to delete it.

Edited to add:

Yes it was Serbian. And using this online translator I discovered it was somewhat insulting.

Nice try Savrshen at 87.116.176.101 posting from Sombor in Serbia. And piss off.

Whaaa...?

(PS - move your pinky finger about 7/16 of an inch to your left and press once. Thanks.)

Comment deleted by Skeptico.

Since the persistent insulting and content-free comments of The Secretrons has forced me to moderate comments and look at each one before approving – since I’m having to do this anyway thanks to the Secretrons – I’m going to enforce strictly the no “content-free; insults-only” comments like this one by DB Cooper that I have deleted.

- Skeptico

I would be curious to hear from some people who are supportive of "The Secret."

What have you learned from using this product that you didn't already know?

I understand how exciting it must be to finally feel like you have a say in what happens to you in your life, but I feel like the power of positive thinking is well-documented. Of course it works to think about what you want. Why wouldn't it?

Why do you need "The Secret" to explain something you most likely already knew?

Again, what about this product represents "new thinking" to you? What does it offer you that you did not already know?

The last thing I want to do is bash people for improving their lives, but the science just doesn't seem to be there with this for-profit product, and it seems to me that the spooky quantum science angle is the thing that is sealing the deal, for many people.

I ask because I am genuinely concerned by this money maker, not because I don't want people to feel better, but because I deeply question the motives of those who are profitting from it. Ask yourself why someone with this kind of insight would want to make so much money...

Tom Foss: Belated response to your comment on Shakespeare and God March 25th (law_of_attracti.html#comment-64304852). Shakespeare writes the plays but great actors who perform the drama may identify so completely with the part they are playing that they forget the script (become unconscious) and perform it as it it were their own inspiration and feelings. It may not be what Shakespeare had in mind, but the actor is free to do so within limits or until he is replaced. We are unconscious in a similar way, living in ego, and thinking the part is entirely written by us. Leaving aside the issue of freewill, I am just illustrating that even when there is another originating consciousness, the consciousness of the doer counts. It too can create. That is true for the actor and for us as individual centers of consciousness.

Shakespeare writes the plays but great actors who perform the drama may identify so completely with the part they are playing that they forget the script (become unconscious) and perform it as it it were their own inspiration and feelings.
This would be a valid response, except we weren't talking about Shakespeare and actors, we were talking about Shakespeare and characters. My response specifically was to the statement that Shakespeare's characters are "manifestations of his creative imagination," and actors didn't enter into the picture at all.

So, you're right in that the consciousness of the doer is important in things where there are multiple "doers." But in the original quotation, the "doers" were characters, not actors playing characters. And when you're talking about fictional characters, the only real "doer" is the author.

Remember the piece where a person stated that in 95% of cases when he imagined a parking place will be free - it really was, as soon as he arrived to the parking lot? As if the universe arranges this parking for him as a result of his thoughts?
Well, I heard about this idea a long before the movie from an old friend who was advocating it eagerly. So I decided to make an experiment: every day for one month I was altering positive and negative thoughts about a parking place will be free when I arrived to my company's usually packed parking lot. I wrote down the results along with the thoughts.
Guess what: no statistical significance has been observed as to correlation between the positivity of thoughts and an open parking.

Gosh, I was really worried my girlfriend was pregnant. I mean, really, really worried.

Now she says she's not. Whew!

According to The Secret, though, we must have created a new form of life that does not register on pregnancy tests. Some kind of wierd alien or ghost child, I'm guessing.

Wonder how long gestation will take...?

Has anyone researched Joe Vitale's ouevre and noticed that among his works, he wrote a book about P.T. Barnum?

Makes me smile. I'm not sure Vitale is so clueless after all. I think he's just making a living.

Which way to the egress, Joe?

I hadn’t noticed that Algernon – pretty funny.

And I agree – I’m sure Joe Vitale knows exactly what he’s doing.

I'm assuming you have to pay for this crap so why don't the authors just cut to the chase and wish for money, wouldn't that be easier?

I have an opposite law. The Law of anti-attraction!!! It is based on a scientifically proven ;-) observation of something that is sometimes called a card player's rule: the more you whine and lament about how bad a hand you got, the better the cards you will recieve from now on.
This law works every time! You just have to whine seriously :-). Anyone likes to take me on this?

I am going through a period of personal/emotional vulnerability recently and fell for The Secret somewhat (after seeing the Oprah spot). Because it is just so nice to believe all that.

But I must say, after reading the arguments of Skeptics vs the Woos....I am starting to get my reality verve back again.

Seriously, the woos on here (love that term, btw) are offering up terrible, illogical and sloppy arguments. I have been de-convinced.

I guess, where I do have an eensy bit of woo in me (which probably made me ripe for The Secret in the first place) is that I have had some strong intuitive experiences where I function beyond my 5 senses.

Science would explain this as illusory but I am not ready to accept that.

In any case, great arguments on here. I think I will just be an observer and enjoy the exchange. :-)

I guess, where I do have an eensy bit of woo in me (which probably made me ripe for The Secret in the first place) is that I have had some strong intuitive experiences where I function beyond my 5 senses.

Science would explain this as illusory but I am not ready to accept that.
Suzanne, I have to say you're wrong there. Science can explain "intuition" as using all of the senses you already have.
From a Psychology Today article:
"Today, cognitive science is revealing a fascinating unconscious mind that Freud never told us about: Thinking occurs not onstage but offstage, out of sight. Studies of automatic processing, subliminal priming, implicit memory, heuristics, right-brain processing, instant emotions, nonverbal communication and creativity unveil our intuitive capacities. Thinking, memory and attitude operate on two levels: the conscious/deliberate and the unconscious/automatic. "Dual processing," researchers call it. We know more than we know we know."
Don't make the mistake of thinking that "science" is all negativity, close-mindedness and denial; it's in fact incredibly exciting, mind-expanding, joyful even. Every new scientific discovery stretches our mental horizons.

What's this continuous frick about "5 senses" that's always coming up? First, humans have more than five senses (though no paranormal ones have been found yet), and second, science uses countless senses we don't have. We can't see radio or microwaves, and yet we use them all the time for many different applications. We can't see gamma rays, either, and yet astronomers are busily studying things like gamma ray bursts to learn about the universe.

In my experience, it's woodom that would limit us to a handful of senses and label everything else we know or think we know as magical, unknowable sources. Full stop. Don't ask questions. Don't have an opinion the latest book/movie/celebrity didn't put in your head.

Sophia---that is an interesting article. I definitely have the sense that intuition is often a focused effort of all the senses working at once (like a superfast computer) to size up a situation and interpret it. It is the quickness of processing the information that makes it seem so astounding...

I was talking about something slightly different though--I think. I have had numerous experiences with what appears to be telepathic communication. And I do understand that some scientists are looking at this possibility as radio waves or something akin to that. But I have had skeptical/logical types suggest to me directly that my mind is rearranging the sequence of events and tricking me into thinking it is telepathy or esp.

I had one experience in particular...that blew my mind. To this day I will never understand it...but it was real because others witnessed it. it involved finding a tiny earring on a city street, in the dark, that my sister-in-law lost a couple of hours before. I am myopic and this thing was not seeable. In fact, I never saw it. I just bent down and picked it up because I knew it was there.

I know I sound like a woo. I know. But this really happened. I wish it would happen more often!

I've had similar things occur...but that was grand!

it involved finding a tiny earring on a city street, in the dark, that my sister-in-law lost a couple of hours before. I am myopic and this thing was not seeable. In fact, I never saw it. I just bent down and picked it up because I knew it was there.

I know I sound like a woo. I know. But this really happened. I wish it would happen more often!

I fail to see where the woo lies here. How many times have you found something that has absolutely no attachment to a relative? Of the many things you've ever "found", this is the only one you remember because it sounds like woo. It's called selective data, confirmation bias and a host of other common fallacies.

The anonymous poster above covered it pretty well. But here's one thing that really stuck in my craw:

To this day I will never understand it...

That defeatist attitude is one of the big obstacles that we have to overcome when trying to get simple points across.

I once saw a magician's trick I couldn't wrap my brain around. Then a little generic discussion of magic by Randi at Princeton gave me a sudden realization I made a false assumption. If I were a woo, I'd probably attribute the trick to the demon invocation the magician was telling us about in the history of the trick.

*Sorry, I accidentally posted annony*

Stupid work...

So are you all saying that there is nothing strange or incomprehensible about my finding an unseeable earring in the dark, on a city street, by some mysterious sense unknown to me?

If you understand this wonderful oddball event, please explain it to me. Because I still don't see how I could've done it.

It was akin to a blind person being able to find a tiny piece of banana in the grass through heightened sense of smell (although earrings don't have a scent).

What sense was I using??????

Suzanne:

I put forth 2 situations to you:

1. You were magically driven by some power that will never be understood to the exact location of a magic earring that called out to this sense that can not be understood. The magic earring directed you to itself, when you spontaneously-for-no-reason bent down, happened to put your hand down and pick it up.

2. You happened to be on a street that you/your family have visited before and picked up a visual cue - a sparkle that should not have been there perhaps - even subconsciously. Since the human brain automatically thinks "Sparkly...mmmm...gooood" you picked it up with out thinking.

Which sounds more plausible?

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