Books & Music Archives

Those of us who delve into the world of Law and Attraction are fully aware that our thoughts shape our world, and the power of affirmations.  But do you pass this onto your children?

I have come across a beautifully illustrated book that is ideal for encouraging your child to  develop confidence in themselves and to start their journey into the power of positive thinking.

I Create My World by Connie Bowen has a positive affirmation on one page accompanied by whimsical, vivid illustrations on the facing page.

A sample of these positive affirmations are:

  • I hold the keys that create my world
  • I am on the right track,
  • I love helping others to do well and succeed
  • I am a magnet, drawing good into my life

As you can see these are all positive statements that your child can identify with. Children pick up on the sayings and actions of adults very quickly so why not introduce your child to positive vibrations and this book will help you make the first step.

The paintings were drawn by the the author and they are truly delightful.

This is one book that you and your child will want to read over and over. It is available on both Kindle and itunes so it is one that you can take with you.

I Create My World is just as valid for adults as for children. Because the statements are powerful and uplifting, and presented in a simple, uncomplicated way I often find myself flipping through the pages.

Connie’s book “I Believe In Me” was just named by the Huffington Post as one of the “50 Inspiring Children’s Books With a Positive Message.”

We think of self-help books and groups as ‘new age’ and a modern phenomenon but in fact neither of them are anything new.  A book published in 1910 has become popular again because it inspired a contemporary author – but that book has never been out of print.  It all started back in the late 1800’s…

The New Thought Movement

This predominantly spiritual movement started in America in the late 19th Century.  It attracted an eclectic group of religious and non-religious members, authors, philosophers and those with metaphysical beliefs.  A hundred years ago, the members of the New Thought Movement believed in the power of positive thoughts, creative visualization, the laws of attraction and personal power.  Do those ideas sound familiar?

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby (1802 – 1866)

This gloriously named philosopher was the earliest follower of New Thought.  He also practiced mesmerism (today’s hypnotism) and healing.  He was also an inventor.  Quimby thought that illness was caused by believing in the ‘wrong’ things.  He argued that if a person held their mind open to the wisdom of God, then any illness would be overcome.  He called this the ‘mental healing movement’.

Wallace D. Wattles – author of ‘The Science of Getting Rich’

Wattles had used mental strategies that he learned from Quimby to overcome illness and feelings of physical discomfort.  Wattles called Quimby’s mental strategies ‘a certain way of thinking’.

As word spread about the power of the mind to heal, people began to wonder if this ‘certain way’ of thinking could have other powers.  Wattles began to apply the mental healing strategies to financial situations in the hopes of achieving material comfort as well as physical.

The Science Of Getting Rich’ is a book that was written by Wallace D. Wattles and published in 1910.  Wattles, a former Methodist, deliberately used the word ‘science’ in the title of the book to show his secular (non religious) approach to the mental strategies originated by Quimby.

Wattles also wrote two other ‘Science of…’ books: ‘The Science of Being Well’ (also published in 1910) and ‘The Science of Being Great’ (published in 1911).  These three were obviously intended to be a ‘self-help’ set as they were originally published in matching bindings for the discerning thinkers’ library shelves.

‘The Science of Getting Rich’ features chapter titles such as “How to Use the Will” and “Further Use of the Will”, in line with Wattle’s ‘certain way of thinking”.  This book spawned similar works by peers of Wattles, such as ‘The Master Key System’ by Charles F. Haanel (published in 1912), ‘Think and Grow Rich’ by Napoleon Hill (published in 1937) and works by a Methodist minister called Frank Channing Haddock – ‘Power of Will’, Power for Success’ and ‘Mastery of Self for Wealth Power Success’.

Criticism of ‘The Science of Getting Rich’

The Ankerberg Theological Institute criticizes the book for being centered on the individual instead of God.  The Institute claims that this striving for personal wealth ignores passages in the Bible that are against that way of thinking.  The Institute has a free pdf book called ‘Exposing the Secret’ available for download from their site.

Current followers of the ‘New Thought’ movement contend that everyone is a spiritual being and that God is a supreme, everlasting, infinite intelligence.  They say that “the highest spiritual principle (is) loving one another unconditionally…and teaching and healing one another”, and that “our mental states are carried forward into manifestation and become our experience in daily living”.

Advocates of the book say that its’ theme was misunderstood.  They claim that it helps people to reach full personal development – not just wealth – and that it brings a better understanding of how our spiritual wealth fits into God’s plan.

Why is the book in the news again now?

Rhonda Byrne claimed on Oprah Winfrey’s website that it was ‘The Science of Getting Rich’ that inspired her film and book – both called ‘The Secret’.

Rhonda found ‘the secret’ in 2004.  At that time, she was in “total despair” as she had terrible physical, emotional and financial problems and then her father died.  Her daughter, distressed at how upset her mother was, gave her a copy of ‘The Science of Getting Rich’.  Byrne said “Something inside of me had me turn the pages one by one, and I can still remember my tears hitting the pages as I was reading it…It gave me a glimpse of The Secret. It was like a flame inside of my heart. And with every day since, it’s just become a raging fire of wanting to share all of this with the world.”

Who is Rhonda Byrne?

She is an Australian television producer and writer.  She made a film called ‘The Secret’ in 2006, for Prime Time Productions.  The film contains interviews regarding the power of positive thinking and is available on DVD . The following year, she wrote a book of the same title, based on the film.

The book sold half a million copies in its’ first six months and has now sold several million.  The DVD has also sold in millions.

In 2007, Time Magazine included Byrne in its’ list of ‘100 people who shape the world’.

The book and film have been featured on the Oprah Winfrey Show, the Ellen show and on Larry King.  You can watch Oprah talking to Larry King about ‘The Secret’ here. It has also, inevitably, attracted negative press.  Try a Google search of criticism of the secret and you’ll see what we mean.

The book is available in hardcover (198 pages) and has attracted an amazing 2,490 comments by Amazon.com reviewers It’s also available from Amazon as an Audiobook CD (used and new).

The power of positive thinking…

…is nothing new as we have seen.  In these difficult times, thinking positively can do no harm and it has obviously helped a lot of people.  Why not buy the ‘The Science of Getting Rich’ and / or ‘The Secret’ and see if positive thought can help you?

Soul of Healing AffirmationsHow often have you heard people say “think positive”?  Affirmations may sound a bit way out but they are simply about thinking positive.  If it’s that easy, why aren’t we all doing it?

How we sabotage ourselves

We are masters at putting ourselves down.  We have a continuous dialogue in our heads or out loud that may sound like the following…“I’m such an idiot”, “I’d buy those jeans if only I was thin…”, “My skin looks awful”, “Everyone understood that except me but I’m too scared to ask because I’m so stupid…”  the list is endless but you get the gist.

This constant bombardment of negativity goes on hour by hour, day by day and so on.  Now, imagine a scene in a Supermarket where you see a Mother berating her child in a similar fashion.  Constant criticism.  Wouldn’t you think she was an awful parent?  You bet!  But that’s what we do to ourselves all the time and then we wonder why we feel stuck in a rut and unable to loose weight, go for that promotion, ask that cute girl out on a date, finally attempt to fix that leaking faucet…why should we bother?  We’re going to fail or mess up somehow so it becomes easier not to try.

We are creating our own reality

Let’s go back to that Mom in the Supermarket.  If she tells her child often enough that he / she is useless, worthless, hopeless, then that is what the child will become.  Let’s reverse that.  Now, she’s praising her child, paying attention to what he / she needs, listening, validating and appreciating.  Her child will grow up to be confident, comfortable in their own skin and ready to take on challenges and achieve their potential.  Isn’t it time you did the same for yourself?

Where do I start?

First of all, get used to the idea of using affirmations.  When you are so accustomed to subconsciously hearing a negative internal (or external) dialogue, it can make you feel very self conscious to even think about changing.  Why?  Because you are finally getting ready to take charge and take responsibility for your own self perception which will lead to a change in how others see you.  That can be scary.  Maybe you have become so used to how you are now that you are not altogether ready to make changes and push yourself forward.  You might be thinking that this sounds crazy.  Surely everyone wants to change for the better.  You’d think…but let’s examine what that means.

Are you really ready to change?

Let’s say that you get ready, start using affirmations and gradually see a change.  Because that is what is going to happen.  You may have thought that you want to lose weight for a long time – but what are the consequences of that?  You will undoubtedly attract more attention from others – are you able to deal with that?  Is your spouse or significant other able to deal with it?  If you finally get up enough confidence to go back to school, or get that haircut you’ve been dreaming of, or even just start wearing more make-up…all of these things will create further changes around you.

You probably think that we sound like real kill-joys.  You haven’t even started yet and already we are throwing obstacles into your path.  Actually, what we are doing is making you aware that you will be leaving a ‘comfort zone’ that you have been safely cocooned in – maybe for a long time.  You need to be absolutely sure in your own mind that you want these positive changes.  If you don’t do this at the beginning, any affirmations will become mere words and you will soon be self-sabotaging again to return to that safe, warm place…and that would be such a shame.

Ready and willing

Great!  Now, you may or may not have been aware of your own subtle (or not so subtle!) put downs.  The first step is to become very aware of them.  They are not helping you and are a barrier to you progress, so they are the first things to go.  If you don’t do this, you can say as many affirmations as you like but a little voice in the back of your mind will be replying ‘Yeah, right!’ and you’ll have an internal argument going on which will drive you nuts and have you racing backwards.

So, listen to what you say to yourself.  Pay attention.  Every time you catch yourself saying or thinking something negative about yourself – stop, and correct it.  When you look in the mirror first thing in the morning and think ‘Yuk!’ stop right there.  Take a good look at yourself, smile and say ‘good morning!’.  If your internal voice criticizes your weight, stop and think, or say – ‘We’re not going to do that anymore’.

It sounds too simplistic…

It might do – but it works.    The next thing to do is to find out which kind of affirmations will suit you best.  People fall into natural groups – some respond best to visual stimuli, others to sound.  You will know already which one you are in.  Think back to a situation such as a wedding you went to.  What do you remember?  How beautiful the bride looked?  How amazing the reception room looked?  You would be a visual person.  If your main memories are of the music and the words of the ceremony, you’re more likely to be primarily auditory and therefore will respond best to sound.

The Mirror – An exercise for ‘visual’ people

Choose a time when you are alone in the house and not likely to be disturbed for a while.  Find a full length mirror and stand in front of it.  This works best if you are in your underwear or not in any clothes at all – so make sure you are up to this and be brave!  Start looking at yourself in the mirror and work your way from top to bottom or vice versa, thinking or saying as many good things about your body as you can.  You may find that you feel very embarrassed and don’t even want to look to begin with but this is normal.  Just try and stick with it.  Before you start, you may think that you hate everything about your body but keep it simple.  Look at your feet.  They carry you around all day.  That makes them good feet.  Look at your hands.  Think of the hundreds of ways they help you every day.  Good hands.

The more you do this, the easier it will become and the more you will like yourself and the nagging voice in your head will start to change.

How to make this an ‘auditory’ exercise

Simply repeat the exercise above but make sure that you speak your thoughts out loud.  This will help to impress them upon your brain and emphasise the message.

How else can I do this?

If you’re not happy with this idea, try writing things down.  Start with a simple list of ten things that you would like to change about yourself.  Make yourself read it out loud to help to re-inforce it.  Put a date on the page and then put it somewhere safe and set a reminder in your diary, on your cell phone or on your pc to go and check that paper in a weeks time.  During that week, you carry on with ‘catching’ your negative thoughts and turning them right around to positives.  When you check your page a week later, you might be surprised at how you feel when you read what you wrote…

Need more help?

Go to Amazon.com and put Affirmations into the search box.  You will be shown hundreds of books and audio cd’s to choose from.  Stick with it and watch your life change.  You’ll wish you’d done this years ago.  Don’t waste any more time or energy on allowing negativity to hold you back.  You deserve better!  Good luck!

Eckhart Tolle and the Power of Now

Eckhart Tolle The Power of NowIf you are an Oprah fan then you will know who Eckhart Tolle is and you will be aware of his bookThe Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment.  If you’ve never heard of him, or his New York Times bestselling book, then read on…

Who is Eckhart Tolle?

Eckhart Tolle (pronounced Toe-Lay) was born in Germany in 1948.  He lived with his father in Spain from the age of 13 until he was 19.  Between the ages of 13 and 22, he received no education as he refused to go to school, finding it a “hostile environment”.  However, he studied literature, languages and philosophy on his own and graduated from the University of London.  He then commenced a Doctorate at Cambridge University but didn’t finish this.  He suffered from suicidal depression until the age of 29 when he experienced an “inner transformation”.  He claims that the first books that he read after his awakening, which deepened his understanding, were the New Testament, the Bhagavad Gita (an important Sanskrit Hindu scripture, revered as a sacred scripture of Hinduism), the Tao Te Ching (an ancient book central to Chinese religion) and teachings of The Buddha.

He has lived in Vancouver, Canada, since 1996.

The Power of Now

This was the first of Tolle’s four books.  It was a number one New York Times best seller and has been translated into over 33 languages.  It was slow to catch on but when Oprah Winfrey announced on her show that it was one of her favorite books, it shot to the top of the bestsellers list.  Many have called it one of the most important spiritual books of our time.

The main message of the book is that to find the path to happiness and enlightenment, we must learn how to live in the here and now.  The idea is not a new one but Tolle is great at explaining complicated concepts in easy-to-understand language.  The book teaches you how to stop thoughts and emotions acting as a block to finding peace – and therefore happiness.

There is a lot of information to take on board, including the source of chi (according to Chinese culture, this is an active principle forming part of any living thing and frequently translated as “energy flow”), how to enjoy enlightened relationships, how to use the mind in a creative way and how to understand the cycle of life.  If that sounds like quite a challenge, Tolle has included ‘break times’.  When you reach one of these, he advises that you put the book down and think about what you have just read, to help it sink in.

Tolle’s Other Influences

Anton Schneiderfranken – (who became known as Bô Yin Râ following his enlightenment).  An author on spiritual matters and painter who claimed to have painted Christ as he actually saw him.

Meister Eckhart – Eckhart von Hochheim, (c. 1260–c. 1328), a German theologian, philosopher and mystic.

Advaita Vedanta – a sub-school of the Vedanta school of Hindu philosophy.

Sufism – the inner, mystical dimension of Islam.

The poetry of Rumi – a 13th-century Persian poet, Islamic jurist (a professional who deals with the law), theologian, and mystic

Zen Buddhism – Zen Buddhists believe that all creatures that can feel have ‘Buddah-nature’ – the inherent wisdom of universal nature.  The aim of Zen is to find Buddha-nature within each person by means of meditation and the consideration of what has happened during the day.  Practitioners believe that this gives fresh insights on and perceptions on existence, which will ultimately bring enlightenment.

Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895 – 1986), a renowned Indian writer and speaker on philosophical and spiritual subjects.

Sri Ramana Maharshi (1879 – 1950), an Indian sage who taught by remaining largely silent.  This stilled the minds of his followers who were attuned to it.

Barry Long (1926 –2003) an Australian spiritual teacher and writer.  An advocate of stilling the mind and controversial because of his views on relationships and tantric sex.

Whether you already like Eckhart Tolle from seeing him on Oprah or dislike him, his books are required reading for anyone with an interest in spirituality.  With influences like the list above, they have to be at the very least, fascinating!

Other books by Eckhart Tolle

  • Practising the Power of Now – a collection of extracts from the original book ‘The Power of Now’.

  • A New Earth – this was chosen by Oprah for her book club and had Tolle as a guest on her Soul Series.  The book topped the New York Times bestseller list in March 2008.
  • Stillness Speaks: Whispers of Now – emphasising the art and importance of attaining inner stillness.