February 17, 2007
Oprah Peddling Snake Oil
On February 8 Oprah aired a special about the film, The Secret. Oprah has 49 million viewers a week, so the cat is out of the bag. Due to popular demand a follow-up will air on February 16. The feature length movie was released last year and is â€œso powerful that it can change the course of your life.â€ The Secret is now offered on DVD. The producers promise that itâ€™s the secret to everything, â€œthe secret to unlimited joy, health, money, relationships, love, youth: everything you have ever wanted.â€ Sound too good to be true? Snake oil usually is.
From the DVD we learn that the world is on the brink of a new era that will open up to humanity unleashed power, riches, creativity and all that we ever dreamed of, including losing weight. A bargain at $29.95.
The â€œsecretâ€ has been hidden for centuries. Oddly, no one knew about the scroll â€“ until now. Weâ€™re in luck! Itâ€™s being made available to all. From the website we learn that â€œThe Secret Scrolls contain inspiring words to assist you in living in the magic of The Secret. Also within the scroll will be exciting information about upcoming Secret Events all over the world.â€ The website offers products and other special offers for the seeker. Visitors are also directed to other websites, books and teachers who are masters of The Secret. â€œThe Secret Scrolls is a positive and uplifting gift we know will be a joy for you to receive.â€
The Secret is the brainchild of Australian-born Rhonda Byrne. Everything in Byrneâ€™s life was falling apart and she was in deep despair. That's when her daughter gave her a copy of The Science of Getting Rich, a book written in 1910 by Wallace D Wattles. Reading the book changed her life.
The Secret is not a movie or documentary, itâ€™s a video seminar featuring a series of prominent authors, philosophers, doctors, quantum physicists, and â€œspiritualâ€ practitioners. The most well-known of the â€œteachersâ€ is New Age guru Jack Canfield, author of Chicken Soup for the Soul and The Success Principles.
What is The Secret, exactly? Itâ€™s the Power of Positive Thinking! Watch the movie and youâ€™ll learn how thinking optimistically can be applied to attracting wealth, better health, and relationships; in a word, happiness. â€œThe Secret is the Law of Attraction,â€ says Byrne, â€œwhich is the principle that like attracts like." She calls it â€œthe most powerful law in the universe," and says itâ€™s working all the time. â€œWhat we do is we attract into our lives the things we want, and that is based on what we're thinking and feeling."
The law of attraction means that every good or bad thing that happens to us, we draw to ourselves, be it positive or negative. "If you were at a restaurant,â€ says Lisa Nichols, â€œand you ordered something, you fully expect it to come served that way. That's how the universe is. You're putting out ordersâ€”consciously and unconsciously. So if you say, 'I'll never have a great relationship,' you just placed an order." http://www2.oprah.com/spiritself/slide/20070208/ss_20070208_284_103.jhtml
How does The Secret work? Just name it and claim it! Ask for what you want, believe it, and youâ€™ll receive it. For the pessimist who is resigned that nothing will ever change, then nothing will.
The Secret teachers from the past and the present are used to reveal hidden knowledge. Byrne claims that Plato, Newton, Beethoven, Shakespeare, Einstein, Thomas Edison, Abraham Lincoln, Dale Carnegie, and others had this secret knowledge. She came to believe that it â€œwas part of every religion, including Christianity, Hinduism and Buddhism." (For all their success, some of the aforementioned didn't exactly live happy or even prosperous lives.)
Lighthouse Trails Research describes the genie that appears in the trailer of the movie on the website: â€œIt begins by showing a genie from a lamp, who tells the beholder â€˜your wish is my command.â€™ Research analyst Ray Yungen explains this concept:
â€˜[T]the genie represent[s] the Higher Self, who was reached through meditation by staring at the flame of an oil lamp. It was believed that a person could have whatever he or she wanted, once in touch with it. Our word genius comes from this Latin word for spirit guide and now means a person with great creative power.â€™
â€œThe premise of this is that we all have a divine essence within us, and we just need to get in touch with it. In other words, as panentheists teach, God is in all of creation, including all human beings, and once a person becomes aware of this, there are no limits to what he can achieve. Yungen elaborates:
â€˜Once a person merges with the Higher Self, he is on his way to empowerment, meaning he is capable of creating his own reality. Basically, all power is within the Higher Self, so when one is in tune with it, he can run his own show....
â€™Metaphysicians believe that we all create our own circumstances anyway, so when we are guided and empowered by our Higher Self, we can consciously co-create with it.â€™â€ http://www.fromthelighthouse.com/blog/#4
How does one define higher self? According to Ronald Holt, itâ€™s not all that easy but he gives it his best shot in his essay â€œExploring the Higher Self.â€ Holt says, â€œAll dimensions, beings, and planes of consciousness exists equally right here and now, within and around us. This requires that we as individuals open our senses sufficiently so we can participate with other beings, the higher self and/or with the other planes of reality. Sometimes experiencing another plane, dimension, or being can appear as though they are separate from us or that we have exited completely from this 3D plane and arrived at a totally different place.â€ http://www.floweroflife.org/higherself01.htm
Hog wash! Individuals would be better off to open their senses sufficiently so they can participate in a personal relationship with the living Lord of the universe who created them and loves them.
Hereâ€™s my point. Every week 49 million viewers get their marching orders from Oprah, and that includes many Christians. Oprah is not a Christian. Far from it. Oprah Winfrey is steeped in New Age Spirituality. Whatâ€™s baffling to me is that when she recommends a book on â€œspiritualityâ€ hordes of self-professed Christians rush to their local bookstore to purchase it. (Hopefully not a Christian bookstore.) And Oprah isnâ€™t the only celebrity promoting the DVD. Larry King calls The Secret the "most profound information he has run across in 40 years." Winfrey and King have helped put the DVD in the #1 position on Amazon.com. And you ainâ€™t seen nothinâ€™ yet, folks.
Those who are reading this article have all the facts they need to assess the merits of the film. The discerning Christian will not purchase the DVD. Moreover, the discerning Christian will not spend time watching a woman who blatantly denies the Lordship of Jesus Christ and leads her followers off the straight and narrow path, down a road that leads to destruction.
Oprah Winfreyâ€™s message comes straight from the pit of hell. Think about it for a moment. Who else but Satan would be behind such a diabolical movie? Why would any serious follower of Jesus Christ worth their salt waste his or her time watching Oprahâ€™s show? Christians (wittingly or unwittingly) are entering into practices that are contrary to the Word of God. Whether they know it or not, their actions are counterproductive to the cause of Christ. My love and concern for them is what drives me to speak the truth in love.
Copyright by Marsha West, 2007. All rights reserved.Â