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The Fools' Journey & The University of Fools
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On which we join the Fools on their quest for enlightenment
On which we join the Fools on their quest for enlightenment

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The Fool on The Hill.
The Seventeenth Tabloid of The Fools' Journey.

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The University of Fools Induction Programme is here. For those who seek a more grounded approach to personal spiritual development.

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What's so Secret about The Secret?

You have probably heard of The Secret, even if you're quite new to the whole personal development thing. In a nutshell for those who aren't familiar, it's Rhonda Byrnes' remarkably popular and shiny 2006 self help programme that takes positive thinking ideas and cranks it up a notch, promising all manner of material riches by the power of the laws of attraction. Super glossy book, backed with very high production value videos, on the principle of thinking yourself rich.
Now, I'm certainly not knocking the Laws of Attraction.

Much of the content of The Secret works. But, I ask again, what's so secret?

There is  a niggle. A noise within me that gets louder and louder, and I will try to explain why. A Google search will bring up the text file of the many now out of copyright documents and books on The Laws of Attraction. Napoleon Hill's The Law of Success and Think and Grow Rich are both great sources of information- the latter being one of the best selling books of all time, so that hardly constitutes secret.  Wallace Wattles' The Science of Getting Rich published over a century ago didn't do too badly either. Sure, you may well have to click through a few pages as marketing and powerful self promotion has pushed the “send lots of money” and more commercially aggressive sites to the top, but you will find them without too much effort.

There's nothing really 'sellable' in a plain .txt document though, is there? But, what you could do is flow that text into an attractive new template, change the fonts. That's better. Still, needs something. Something to give it more gravitas in this commercial age... but it still needs to look a bit esoteric, doesn't it? Let's use an Ancient Egypt motif- parchment and sand- we new agey types like Egypt, don't we? Hmmmm. Make the S a snake- that gives us some mystery, that'll hook them in.  How about a wax seal? That'll give it the gravitas of endorsement...

I say again, I love the The Laws of Attraction. What winds me up is seeing someone take some public domain documents, do some basic rewording and re-purposing to make it current, sling a few thousand dollars worth of nifty effects, get a few famous self help personalities to endorse it for a cut of the proceeds or the right to be associated with the brand, then sit back and count the millions rolling in. All I can say is The Laws of Attraction certainly worked for her, Esther Hicks and a whole host of those millionaire lifestyle gurus. Now, I can’t say that’s EXACTLY how it happened, but it’s where the evidence points if we step back from the marketing and packaging and give a little scrutiny.

I ask though, you people of a spiritual bent, is that What the Law of Attraction is? A way to pursue and achieve material wealth and financial prosperity?

I understand those bankers and venture capitalists wanting to draw more and more wealth out of the system. I get why they'll shaft one country's economy in order to boost the assets of their clients and ultimately themselves in huge bonuses. That is their motivation and driving force.  But what of those who espouse a better world... do any of you stop to think where this richness you're thinking for yourself is coming from? Because I doubt very little of it will be coming from those who are really wealthy enough to redistribute. The economy doesn't work that way.

In The Fools' Journey the Law of Attraction is championed. With a caveat.

By all means think yourself healthy, confident, at one with Creation. Indeed, we'll be showing off the why and how to apply The Law of Attraction to those things and lots more too. We’ll use it to help you find your inner self, not your speedboat or Malibu beach house.

The idea that licensing someone else's beliefs to franchisees to sell a dream to the disadvantaged and gullible will bring you closer to enlightenment and your divine self is a secret too far for me.
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