Josh Irby

Live from Sarajevo

Does “The Secret” work?

A man in Utah got a new job. A woman in New Zealand escaped the claws of depression. A young man in New York is buying his mom a million dollar home. All thanks to . . . The Secret.

What is The Secret?

The Secret is the philosophy of Rhonda Byrne, an Australian TV and film producer. In the book and movie of the same name, she explains the core of her New Age thoughts—the “Law of Attraction.” In short, the Law of Attraction states that the Universe sends our way that which we draw to us. We are magnets, attracting either  good or evil, poverty or wealth, sickness or health. If you focus your thoughts on positive things, you will attract positive things. The control is in your hands.


Does The Secret Work?

I recently read an article about the woman who writes much of the hits played on top forty radio. She once was a struggling artist until she read The Secret. Following Byrne’s advice, she started cutting out magazine pictures of the life she wanted—a new mercedes, an expansive mansion, expensive jewelry—and pasted them on her wall. Each morning she would look at her “ideal reality” wall and believe that life was already hers. Now, she has the car, the house, the jewelry and attributes it all to the Law of Attraction.

Perhaps one of your friends has also seen positive results. Does The Secret work? Is the Law of Attraction true?

The short answer is a soft “Yes” and a hard “No.”

There is no long-lost secret law that guarantees a life of health, wealth, and happiness. In fact, the Law of Attraction is an extremely dangerous concept. If true, it means that everyone with cancer is directly at fault for their situation. They attracted the cancer to themselves. Had they only thought more positively, they would be healthy. You can see the danger of this philosophy.

(As an aside, always be skeptical of TV producers who suddenly find a secret hidden in some lost ancient manuscript.)

However, The Secret seems to work sometimes and for some people. Why does it work if it is so obviously wrong? I have an idea.

Why The Secret (sometimes) works

The “success” of The Secret is a testament to how completely unfocused we are most of the time. We wander through our years without much more than a rough sketched plan and wonder why our life seems scattered. We wake. We work. We sleep. Each scene is only loosely connected to the ones before and after.

What happens, though, when we focus all of our energy on a task or a mission? The result is so powerful that it seems magical. Not because it is magical, but because we are so unaccustomed to a focused life.

When we focus on a goal—movement, book, job, family, house—we do whatever it takes to succeed. We make a budget. We wake up earlier. We waste less time. We sacrifice. We bleed. We face challenges. And, eventually, we succeed. Not because we are magnetic, but because God has created us to work optimally when we are focused.

This is no secret. The Universe is not giving you what you think about. This is how we were designed to work.

Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. (An actual verified ancient manuscript called Proverbs)

The Real Secret

The real secret to a happy life is not knowing how to get whatever you want, it is in wanting the right things. Will the Utah man be happy with his new job? Will the mom’s life be better in her million dollar home? It’s not guaranteed.

Real happiness comes when we are vitally connected to our Creator and dynamically focused on what He created us to do. (feel free to tweet this)

How about you? What are you focusing on? Let me know in the comments below.


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