Posts Tagged ‘Oprah’

Meryl Davids Landau, author of the new spiritual women’s novel, Downward Dog, Upward Fog, writes an article asking the ultimate (I’m being facetious) question: Does the James Arthur Ray Trial Mean There’s No Law of Attraction?

I was shocked to discover that her answer to the question is a simple, No, of course not!

Wow. This was not at all what I expected to read from the Huffington Post. Quite the opposite indeed.

The few in this world who succeed to the point of having multi-millions and even billions of dollars at their fingertips find the concept of random circumstance too frightening. It ignores the ego. The notion that is has nothing to do with your goodness or greatness is inconceivable.

Believing that they were/are special is much more comforting than believing they got lucky. Indeed, our ego hungers to believe it received because it believed, making it exceptionally special. Godlike. As a species, we’ve spent thousands of years mimicking the gods in attempt to get close to what they’ve achieved. So when we achieve it, we believe we’ve arrived at that secret formula. So why not package and sell it? The rest of us also hunger for that validation. (The foundations of solid marketing here.)

Yet, there are far more Willy Loman’s in the world (Death of a Salesman, fellow who believed if he could just walk the walk and talk the talk then he too would become successful – a fundamental “belief” at the core of the so-called “Law” of attraction) than there are Oprahs. But LOA advocates easily rip this point to shreds by mindlessly stating that the Willy Lomans simply do not think, feel, or believe the right things. Akin to blaming the victim.

LOA is landmine of destruction. Sure, there are a few towering trees (a favoured LOA metaphor) that loom over the masses in the forest, but statistically most saplings will die before they can even cast a scrawny shadow. Not because of their thoughts, but because of the random placement on this earth, in this universe. Their potential for growth was doomed by a larger cast shadow. Or some random hungry cow. Whatever.

Statistically speaking, the popularity of motivational speakers increase in times of economic upheaval. The Great Depression launched Dale Carnegie’s career. Depressions, recessions, and natural upheavals invite the human hunger to know (and tap into the power of) God.

A fire here in Alberta recently wiped out one third the entire town of Slave Lake. Norman James’s house was left standing amidst the ruins, and he quickly commented that there must be a higher power looking out for him.

“All I can say is if anybody believes in God or a creator or whatever, I believe it’s a miracle,” said James. “I believe my house is still standing because of a higher power.”

What that blissfully simple  statement pleasantly ignores is that that same God finds James’s neighbours unworthy of the same level of protection.

Yes, it’s easy to believe in a God when you’re succeeding. Our ego craves this. And it’s easy to cling on to the notion of a God when your desperate to find your way out of disaster. It’s called Hope, and it’s there for us all. But to charge money for that, and then to blame Willy Loman for not thinking the right thoughts is where, in my books, an ethical line is crossed. When lives are lost, it becomes criminal. I think the people on the jury– not God — needs to find James Arthur Ray guilty.

Luck is random and subjected to the whim of time, place, nature, and the influence of others. Governments, banks; family and neighbours. Success is being prepared when an opportunity (should the opportunity arise) crosses your path. You can’t think that opportunity into existence. You can’t justify it into existence, using the exception (ie Oprah) not the rule (Willy Loman) to back it up.

Huffington Post, you’ve seriously let me down.

Tags: , , , , , ,

The law of attraction “gurus” like to purport that all you have to do is look around you and you will see how abundant nature really is.

That’s a load!

Sure, you can look around and see the tallest trees in the forest, and you can see the dandelion pushing through the minuscule cracks in the sidewalk. But think about it. In order for that one tree to get as tall as it did, hundreds of saplings didn’t make it. Nor with others grow in the shadow of the great oak tree. And that incipid dandelion? How many dandelions got dozed over and cemented under before this one eeked through? Have you ever watched Planet Earth and seen the vicious struggle in the animal kingdom for the quest for basic survival? It ain’t pretty, my friends, and it certainly isn’t abundant.

The gurus view on Law of Attraction is from the top down. Napolean Hill writes of Andrew Carnegie’s success using thoughts-create-the-universe principles. Hell, Carnegie could have told him he ate nothing but mouldy watermelons and lo! that would have become the secret success formula.

It is our hunger for these secret formula’s that causes us to push the gurus high upon their pinnacles. And the irony is, for all their teachings, they are absolutely and utterly dependent on their followers’ lack of success, else who would be pushing them up skyward?

Consider Oprah, dear dear Oprah sitting from up high gazing down on her admiring masses. With a single show she can lift a motivational speaker from the grind of the circuit into the light of fame and fortune, as she did with James Arther Ray. But does she do that for all her followers? No, that would be ridiculous. Can she do that for all her followers? Of course not. Would she if she could? No, because then who would be left to feed (aka fund) her empire? Right. No one.

Yes, I know that Oprah started from the bottom. As did Carnegie. As did James Arthur Ray. As did Bill Bartmann. As did T. Harv Eker. As did ___________ (insert your favourite guru here). Yawn. The story is getting rather tired.

But what about the likes of the Trailer Park Boys? Or Earl and friends (from the wonderful show, “My Name is Earl”)? These are the dustbins of poverty, and these people portray the unfortunate saplings and rolled over dandelions you never ever see when gazing from the sun in godike wonder of the world you created.

The top needs the bottom to survive. The top needs the bottom as the platform to stand upon. And the top can spin it’s lovely sounding message that rings so sweet in my ear, but it makes it no truer than say the dramatics of the cast on a soap opera.

After all, have you ever noticed that the characters never even once watch TV never mind a soap? It’s because their adoring audience is doing it for them, they are creating the space for their existence. So they don’t need to perpetrate that truth (of watching the soaps) because their adoring audience is doing it for them. Likewise, we are creating the forum for the gurus to spin their golden threads because they do not want for money. That’s our job.

Tags: , , ,

I just read an interesting blog calling on Oprah to step up to her plate so-to-speak and explain her 2007 endorsement of James Arthur Ray. I’ll bet my socks (not that anyone would want them) that that ain’t gonna happen.

I’m personally very surprised at the entire industry’s silence on the issue, not just Oprah’s. Jack Canfield teaches what T. Harv Eker teaches, who teaches what James Arthur Ray teaches, who teaches what Bill Bartmann teaches, who teaches what … well, you get the picture here.

As an industry-in-cahoots, it appears that each is stepping away from the chastised and diseased child, and are quietly continuing plying open the wallets of those looking for a better way. Sure, they’re probably continuing with their firewalks, sword-to-the-throat, here’s-the-the-homeless and board breaking exercises, but you can bet your sweet bottom that they have the proper disclaimers and medical staff on hand these days. One man pays the price and the others now better know how to cover their own butts.

While Oprah isn’t in bed with industry, I do think she’s the one who gave them the gilded bed to begin with. (Yes, I realize I’m loosing my own chance of appearing on Oprah but I’m okay with that. Oddly enough.)

I think looking to Oprah is like looking to the Pope to explain the sex scandals rocking the pulpit: it ain’t gonna happen my friends. It’s over to bloggers like us!

Tags: , , , , ,

10
Dec

Jill and Julia on the Law of Attraction

   Posted by: Britt    in On The Secret

Here’s a little video ditty from Jill Sobule, singer/artist extraordinaire, and Julia Sweeney, new on my list of people to follow, performing at TED in 1997. Oprah gets slagged. That takes guts for anyone in the public eye as Oprah is a millionaire maker.

Buh-bye (Oprah) money, hello (Oprah) funny! How cool are they?

Tags: , ,

Oprah was a principle supporter of James Arthur Ray.

  • On the Oprah website, “The Secret is Out” slide show.
  • The Oprah Community discussion on J.A.R is available here.
  • The Oprah Community calls on Oprah to apologize here.
  • The link to the Oprah/J.A.R show is available here.

Personally, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. I’m not really a big fan of Oprah. I think her show is voyeuristic and sensationalized, though I admire the distance she has traveled in life. I also don’t believe she needs to apologize for the actions of a guest, two years after their appearance on the show. There’s an explosion of information out there through the Internet, and really it’s incumbent upon us, the individuals, to do our research.

Also interesting how it took an extreme event to swing heads around. J.A.R. was doing what he has been doing for years now. So in a way, people are reacting to the results instead of to the event itself.

Just thought I’d throw that out there, and see what comes back.

Tags: , ,