My dad has been telling me to watch The Secret ever since the moment he stumbled upon it on Netflix in July. It’s funny because my dad has a weird talent for finding the most random, low-budget, borderline terrible films on the internet, and he loves hyping them up to us on family movie nights so that we’ll cave and watch it together and then immediately regret our decision. So I’ve grown to take his suggestions with a grain of salt, to even resist them when the decision making power swings too closely in his favor. But last night I lost, so last night, we all watched The Secret.
I believe the movie is a film adaptation of a popular self-help book from 2006, and the main premise of it all is a belief in a form of psuedo-science regarding the law of attraction. These random philosophers, psychologists, writers, and more all claim that we attract all of our circumstances and situations with our state of mind and our thoughts– and thus, with a change in our perspective and attitude, we can change our whole lives. They give a story about a guy who put a thought out into the universe that he was going to make $10,000 within the end of the year (and spoiler alert, he did it). And there’s another story about a painter who painted all the things that he wanted in life and when he painted himself with a family, he found a wife shortly after.
I called bullshit on this entire theory (and I’m not the only one– I’m pretty sure the ‘criticism’ section of this book’s wikipage is longer than it’s synopsis because duh.) because I don’t believe in such a simplistic view of society and fate. The guy in the movie describes it like you are picking out of a catalogue of everything the universe has to offer, and once you ask for the things and believe they will come, they’ll just come. I could go on and on about how I don’t like that and I can’t believe that this book was so wildly popular and believable at some point (actually I can, people always wanna see their dreams become reality with little effort in, right?) But it’s been a day now, and when I reflect on this movie, I find a part of it very curious– the part when I realize I totally live the ideology in my day to day life.
In fact, exactly two hours before I watched the movie, I was just telling my friend Praptee about this new thing that I was doing where I was taking time to actualize my goals– by writing them down in a journal or just telling them to other people– to make myself more confident and accountable for them. It was like me ‘speaking it into the universe’, I said.
Which, when you add a little bit more fluff and magic and uncontrollable fate to the mix I realize now, is exactly what this whole Secret movie is about? Like it’s truly literally just a flashier and more enticing way of trying to get people to face their dreams and have unwavering faith?
So while I stand by my opinion that the packaging of this ideology was trash and extra, and that my ‘speaking into existence’ is different from ‘picking from the catalogue of the universe’ because at least I’m being a lot more proactive about what I want from the world– I have to admit both of them employ the same brand of wishful thinking. And perhaps I, in an effort to shit on my father’s newest movie choice, may have been too harsh in my initial response.
The Secret is no secret, is not going to magically change your life, and is not based in any form of science– but it is comforting. It’s the extra push of confidence or reassurance that we all sometimes need when we’re going after something monumental and overwhelming in our lives. It’s going to do anything miraculous on its own, because the universe doesn’t reward people who are all talk, but if it motivates you to recognize your goals and aspirations and get a move on them, then what’s the harm, right?
Anyway, I just had to work through my thoughts on that movie before I could continue to speak my own positive and hopeful thoughts ‘into existence’ and move forward with my day. As always, thanks for stopping by!