Sunday, March 04, 2007

The Secret's Out!

Can't seem to keep this genie in the bottle!

The Secret is out and it's generating a lot of press - both positive and negative. I have found some balanced resources, though, and thought you'd like to get in on it before the whole universe knows about it. :-)

Here are some like-minded (and probably better stated) perspectives on The Secret and the secret behind this amazing marketing phenomenon, the Law of Attraction.
  • Back in July, 2006, Kelly of Women by Grace has this to say:
    "As is always the case, when people find something that works 'universally', they have bumped into one of God's Laws for His Creation - but they're viewing it through a skewed lens, leaving Him out of the picture - or even worse - redefining Him to be Personless."
  • More recently, Tom Sims of The Dream Factory states (HT to Ryan at Design Guru) :
    [The Secret] "presupposes an impersonal god called "The Universe" without specific will or personality that is more like "The Force" than God. There are forces in the universe that God created and set into motion. I am reluctant to employ them without first acknowledging their/my Creator and understanding His will. They can make me effective and successful without being centered in His purposes. I don't want that."
  • In one of the most thorough reviews and biblically informed critiques of The Secret, and especially of Rhonda Byrne, the force behind this movement, Don Whitney of the Baptist Press exposes the heresy that has co-opted this biblical principle.
    But in the final analysis, The Secret is nothing more than so-called Name It-Claim It, Positive-Confession, Prosperity Theology (minus God and the Bible), built on a foundation of New Age self-deification. In other words, the book is just a secular version of what some TV preachers have taught for decades: Namely, if you will sustain the right thoughts, words and feelings, you will receive whatever you want. But The Secret adds this important twist: your thoughts can bring anything into your life because you are god.

    Books that promise health and wealth for their practitioners are published every day. But few associate such promises with Byrne's breathtaking audacity. She proclaims to her readers, "You are God in a physical body. You are Spirit in the flesh. You are Eternal Life expressing itself as You. You are a cosmic being. You are all power. You are all wisdom. You are all intelligence. You are perfection. You are magnificence. You are the creator, and you are creating the creation of You on this planet" (p. 164).

    If that weren't blasphemous enough, realize that the book your neighbors and co-workers are reading more than any other also tells them, "The earth turns on its orbit for You. The oceans ebb and flow for You. The birds sing for You. The sun rises and it sets for You. The stars come out for You. Every beautiful thing you see, every wondrous thing you experience, is all there for You. Take a look around. None of it can exist, without You. No matter who you thought you were, now you know the Truth of Who You Really Are. You are the master of the Universe. You are the heir to the kingdom. You are the perfection of Life. And now you know The Secret" (p. 183).

    This would be beautiful if it were addressed to the God of Heaven. But as Byrne thinks this is what we should say to the person in the mirror, it is the heresy of heresies. Her "Secret" is nothing less than Satan's original lie in the Garden of Eden, "You will be like God" (Genesis 3:5).
Well now. Hard to state it much more succinctly than that. But that shouldn't end the conversation. Tell me what your opinion is in the comment section below.

Other Christian critiques include...
1) The Secret: Creating One's Reality, by Russ Wise
2) The Secret: A Cosmic Dream Machine, by Marcia Montenegro
3) Also visit my archive on TheSecret


Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for taking the time to put this up. I read about this book and its popularity in a quite prominately set newpaper article in San Francisco last week. I picked up the video tonight to take a look and see what all the hubbub is about. I figured it must be New Age if it was on Oprah, but thought it's probably only a matter of time before someone I know brings it up in conversation.

I think the challenge to followers of Christ is to refrain from simply arguing with people in a way that will lead them farther from Christ. Rather, we ought to acknowledge that the world is in fact starving for truth, and in light of that acknowledgement, humbly share when asked why it is a good thing that I am not God. More importantly, to share that God is so good, He shed His blood for us.

Anyway, thanks again for the post.... it led me in a good direction to find out more about the background of this book!

george g., Seattle

Lyn Perry said...

Thanks for that gentle reply. You are spot on with regard to the way in which we should respond to others who are buying into these teachings without discernment. Christians need never alienate others through communication style - although I'm sure there are times when open rebuke is in order (see the Apostles Paul, Peter, etc :-)

It seems to me that the truth will stand the test and we have but to point people to the truth in a loving, compassionate manner. I hope I'm doing this with my blog. Come again and comment any time. lgp

cdomigan said...

Lyn, thank you for posting about this. I just watched "The Secret" special on Oprah and immediately wondered what some of the Christian reviews would say :)

All deceptions such as this employ half-truths - just enough truth to suck people in. Yes, we are spiritual beings. Yes, there is meaning to the universe. Yes, no doubt there are some benefits to approaching life with a positive goal-oriented mindset. But when we take the glory and power for ourselves we tread on very dangerous ground. The glory is God's and His alone - He doesn't share :)

The overlap between the philosophies and spiritually of "The Secret", and that of the Name-It and Claim-It crowd (as Don Whitney mentioned) is particularly disturbing. I'm always disappointed that books with this type of content seem to populate the Christian section.

There are so many people out there lapping this type of stuff up. They give their lives over to this very dangerous spirituality, not realising what they are getting themselves in to.

More than ever we need to be willing to share the truth and good news with boldness and compassion.

Thanks once again and God bless,

Chris Domigan
New Zealand

Lyn Perry said...

Chris, thanks for your comments. I agree that discernment is of the utmost importance when dealing with books and resources of this nature. Keep up the good work, lgp

Anonymous said...

Many people I care about have bought into this Secret. I knew in my heart it was of the enemy. Then I watched it. I am so blessed that the enemy can't pull the wool over my eyes.
In trying to stand up for the truth as I am blessed to see, I have found myself in heated debates in which I had to, just bow out of. I instinctively knew that other saved Christians would see through this lie so clearly as I did.
I would like to thank you for your article. Together we must stand for the truth. Thanks to you, I will simply direct people to Genesis 3:5. That says it all!
We are called according to His purpose. Not ours. To Him be the glory, not us.

Robin @ Heart of Wisdom said...

Thanks for the post.

I just blogged a red flag post about the Secret. Many baby Christians are being deceived by the twisted Scriptures used to promote this book.

Same ol lie as in the Garden of Eden, dressed diffeently trhough history. We need to be in prayer.

Robin @ Heart of Wisdom said...

Besides prayer...
we need to visit blogs and articles exposing the Secret and bookmark and comment to get the truth higher in the search engines. Please contribute!