Monday, February 1, 2010

Money and the Law of Attraction

Usually I like to see reviews of a book before I choose to read it, but I’m less careful with books I listen to on CD rather than read. It’s a good idea to read (or listen to) ideas outside your usual sphere once in a while. I recently took a flier on Money and the Law of Attraction by Esther and Jerry Hicks because the title sounded money-related. What a train-wreck.

Did you know that children born with disabilities chose to be born that way?

Did you know that all disease and other health problems come from failing to focus exclusively on being healthy? Did you know that aging and disease can be banished by focusing only on being healthy?

Did you know that you can achieve anything you want by just “vibrating” your “source” properly? Whatever that means. Did you know that you can attract any amount of wealth you desire through this source vibration?

I actually managed to listen to the whole book, but not because I really wanted to. It had a car accident kind of draw, but this wasn’t enough to keep me listening. I just didn’t think it was fair to write a review without listening to the whole thing.

To the extent that this book made any sense at all, it preached maintaining a positive attitude. Beyond that it is extremely repetitive, hard to make any sense of in places, and contains fantastic claims of the type I listed above. If I used a star rating system, I’d be making a new category for a negative number of stars.


  1. So I guess we will see Oprah recommend it any day now ?

  2. I'm gonna attract money, I'm gonna attract money, I'm gonna attract money .... nope didn't work. Jeez, that's a surprise.

    My unscientific conclusion about books is that if they do not start well, as in the first 20 pages, they almost never get better. Just like late projects almost never catch up to the original timetable.

  3. Andy R: I've never checked out Oprah's book list, but I do pay attention to movie reviews from critics I almost always disagree with. Sometimes a bad review is enough to give me good confidence that I'll like a movie. If you find that Oprah recommends books you don't like then maybe she's doing you a service. I can just see you at a book store thinking you might like the book you're holding, but you decide to make a last-second Google search to see if Oprah recommended it. "I'd better put that one back ... Oprah gave it 4 stars."

    Canadian Investor: Maybe you didn't do it long enough. The book says 68 seconds are required to change something to do with vibration. Yes, expecting a book that is bad in the first 20 pages to get better works about as often as waiting for a "delayed" child to catch up. It happens, just not all that often.

  4. Always look on the bright side of death...(whistle, whistle)

    Just before you draw your terminal breath ...

    As I have said all along it's your fault, it can't be mine!

  5. Well, at least we don't have to ask you for a disclosure as to whether you were sent a free copy or paid to do this review. :-)

  6. Patrick: Full disclosure: The library (temporarily) provided me with a free copy of the CDs for this audio book.

  7. I don't have any problems with the principle of the Law of Attraction.

    When you focus on something, it can/will happen. Normal people call this setting and focusing on goals and achievements.

    When the physical properties of the universe come into play, then it goes BEYOND kooky.

  8. Sampson: I have no problem with the idea of focusing on goals and maintaining a positive attitude. For example, if you want to be a better basketball player, then it helps to believe you can improve and to focus on playing well. However, when it comes to the lottery, good thoughts make no difference. It's important to understand what will help you in your life and what won't. Sitting around and wishing for more money won't help. Formulating a reasonable plan to make more money may help.

    Thicken: LOL -- good one. On a more serious note, I wonder whether Obama's message of hope played any role in pulling the US out of recession faster. It seems plausible that if more people believed in a better economic future then some of them would have gone out and done something to make their futures better. Of course, a good many would have sat around hoping for a better life to come to them without doing anything themselves to make it happen.

    1. The second reply above is to Thicken My Wallet's comment:

      I hear Obama is willing away the deficit with positive thoughts.

      Yes we can!

  9. This stuff sells. Remember how Oprah gushed over a similar idea? "Secrets" was the title - or so I believe.

    Hype is everywhere.

    Sadly this garbage is published and it's up to the rest of us to be intelligent enough to know that it's garbage.

    Sadly, not everyone can recognize what nonsense it is.

    This stuff sells. the authors make money and they will not stop publishing.

  10. Regarding Obama's message of hope.

    To me, it was hope that something new was going to happen in Washington. That ethical behavior would find a rebirth. That 'politics as usual' would come to an end.

    I believe that he truly believed that he could change the system. And I believed - or shall I say hoped - that it could happen.

    I'm extremely disappointed that he cannot do that. It was naive of me to believe that he could.

  11. Mark: You're right that it's much easier (and probably more profitable) to make people feel good temporarily with some inspirational nonsense than it is to give them concrete useful ideas to improve their lives for the long term.

  12. Be careful about vibrating your source in public, Michael - sounds borderline illegal.

    These books are garbage, of course, what's amazing/alarming is the number of otherwise sane people who seem to love them. Well done on making it through one though!