Open Future NZ  

The Secret, Zeitgeist, The Venus Project, Free Energy, Thrive and other distractions.

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The Secret - Popular but Misguided Film

The film "The Secret" takes over an hour to make mysterious something that's not a secret at all. It's a professional production designed to deceive you. They talk about both God and The Universe more or less interchangeably. Although the main message of the film is bunkum there is a lot in the film that is perfectly correct. Where does sense become non-sense? That is the problem.

The "Law of Positive Thinking", commonly proudly proclaimed to be important, is I believe the most destructive force commonly found indoctrinated into the fabric of peoples lives. If you want to see how the "law of positive thinking" destroys people, look at the disgraceful presidency of GW Bush. He says, "mistakes have been made", but he didn't make them. So he can go on and repeat the same mistake again. Positive thinking is destructive when it stops you seeing what's real.

The Secret is set up to sell the false idea that the "Law of Attraction" is some sort of hard-wired certainty in Gods World. In this hard edged form, it's pure nonsense, vastly damaging and destructive in the lives of ordinary gullible people, especially if reinforced by the idea of positive thinking.

Like every good con, "The Secret", has some truth to tell.

"Begin where you are."
"The mind affects what it's possible to see."
"You become what you think about."
"You can only control yourself."
"You are the artist who creates your own life."
"Most of us live by default: we don't choose to choose."
"The moment you begin to think properly..." different things become possible.

There are messages from Napoleon Hill here, the value of keeping your eye on the objective and the necessity for persistence in pursuit of your objective. But then this goes on to "The Universe will create in your life whatever you choose to have. ... There is one law: the Law of Attraction. ... The Universe will manifest your reality into existence." Taken as a whole I believe these statements are nonsense. But the misdirection is subtle, and deceptive.

It's quite true that "you create your life" and that "you bring your reality to the world, whatever that may be." Meaning that, "you can only see the world with your own eyes and you can only understand it with your own mind". Certainly not meaning, as "The Secret" implies that everything in our lives good or bad was created by the "Law of Attraction" and was therefore our responsibility. (You caused your own cancer, or tooth ache, or car accident.)

In the sense that I say, "you can only see the world with your own eyes and you can only understand it with your own mind", the world you see is truly "YOURS". The remaining question is, how close to what the world is really like is the understanding of reality you have built for yourself. If you believe in the hard-wired form of the "Law of Attraction", then I claim your reality is deeply flawed. On the other hand if you believe that people generally get back what they contribute, that what goes around comes around then I suggest that's quite a reasonable expectation.

The real message of The Secret is no secret at all. It's here in these words: Your real work is to explain to yourself how you are and how the world is and to choose what to do. That is a nutshell is your own responsibility.

"Your real work is to choose", but to choose with knowledge and with proper preparation and proper recognition of the risks involved. Making that sort of choice demands courage. Most people lack the courage to make hard choices like that. They choose "easy" targets like "I will be a millionaire", and of course most of them won't be.

The Zeitgeist Movement

Today many young people are attracted to the Zeitgeist Movement. Zeitgeist is the creation of Peter Joseph. Loosely translated the term mean "spirit of the age". In the movie "Zeitgeist: Addendum", many of the problems of modern Western societies are spoken about. The alienation of the individual, the mundane nature of work, the lack of real freedoms, the failure of political process, and the control of the money supply by the banks and particularly the function of central banks. Surely in a modern scientific and computerised world we could design a society that was much better for us all?

Thus the Zeitgeist film begins with a sensible analysis of the world's problems and then proposes a fantastic mechanistic solution that pays no attention to the realities of energy supply or our wealth. The solution is a "resourced based economy", where money had been abolished and goods and services are produced by automation, and distributed to everyone according to need. It's a crazy idea. Many of Joseph's solutions were based on the Venus Project (See below).

The Venus Project

Forty years ago it was common to imagine a future that was dominated by technology that involved elaborate transport systems and homes that were fully self sufficient.

The inspiration for "The Venus Project", comes from Jacque Fresco, and it was conceived in 1975. There was a recession in 1972, which reminded Fresco about the depression in the 1930s. As an engineer, he thought of an engineering way to build a modern and efficient city that would meet most of it's own needs internally. Given the knowledge of the time, Fresco's ideas would be seen to have merit, by most people. Certainly to be worthy of discussion. Given what we now know about the reality of "Limits to Growth" (1972) Fresco's ideas seem as silly as proposals for inter-galactic space travel.

The Thrive Movement

The Thrive Movement believes that there are solutions to all our problems. They have created a sector navigator, with twelve parts, much like I've done with the twelve features I offer as necessary transitions in this Open Future@trade; web site. They offer; Health, Infrastructure, Justice, Media, Relations, Science, Spirituality, Arts, Economics, Education, Environment and Governance.

The creators of The Thrive Movement, Foster Gamble and his wife Kimberly Carter-Gamble see that the old way of running the system is falling apart, and they propose using the Sector Navigator model to analyse what's wrong and to find solutions. It all seems so reasonable and practical. There's more than a little truth here.

But then the proposals they make go haywire. "I found a code" and we hear about hidden facts, UFO landings, and free energy. Foster Gamble believes there is a model that will produce abundant free energy that will transform the way people live on Earth.

"Looking back on almost half a century of research, including thousands of books, films, interviews with experts from diverse fields, if I were to pick one common denominator to all the facets of my quest, it would be the TORUS, the fundamental energy pattern that invites our alignment at every level of our existence for us to survive and thrive."
- Foster Gamble

There's a lot of research in the production of "The Thrive Movement", and many of the people quoted are people I know and admire, but I think some of the quotes are out of context. It could be that many of the statements made falsify the intention of the speaker. Some of the people speaking are in my view, entirely off their rockers. You be the judge.

This is harder to deal with than "The Secret", and much harder than "The Zeitgeist Movement" and "The Venus Project". Much of what Foster and Kimberly Gamble have put together is excellent, but some of it is completely beyond belief. When that happens you become unsure about the intention of the authors, and the quality of the things you are reading that you thought were "good".

Thrive did introduce me to Angel Kyodo Williams, and I recommend that you listen to her on You Tube. Two other individuals I tried to research are complete charlatans in my view.

Building Your Own Expertise

Yet young people in particular find these ideas very attractive. That's a problem, people don't understand reality and don't think properly. So they make quick choices and they choose badly. My suggestion is to keep a journal to explore the ideas that attract you. My telling you that it's nonsense won't help. You have to come to whatever conclusions you make, yourself. You begin by keeping a written record. What are the problems? What sorts of solutions occur to you? In your work, focus is on understanding more about what the real world is like, and finding sources of expertise and help.

Try keep out of fairyland, and try to deal honestly with truth. Truth about yourself, and truth about your community and the world beyond. To the extent that you understand and accept "truth" you can make better decisions for yourself and be a more reliable guide to others. In this way you give yourself an Open Future™

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