Do You Know the Secret?

On February 8, 2007, Oprah Winfrey devoted her television show to the word-of-mouth hit film The Secret ( The response has been overwhelming—thousands of people are clamoring to know more about the Law of Attraction, the subject of the film.

The Law of Attraction says that you get what you focus on. Many people misinterpret it. They assume that the Law of Attraction implies that you can imagine your way into results without taking action. That’s wishful thinking, of course. We are physical beings and, as such, designed for action.

Esther Hicks, who is interviewed in The Secret, has been a teacher of mine since 1997. What she has taught me about the Law of Attraction and how it works is that when you focus on what you want, you will be inspired to take action. And it is the action you take, not the wish you express, that ultimately produces the result you seek.

Consider: rather than shooting at a target in the sequence Fire, Ready, Aim (which is what we most often do, thinking that action is everything), the Law of Attraction says to us instead: Ready, Aim, Fire! That is, focus first, and then act!

The most profound example I know of the power of the Law of Attraction involves a boy named Brian. When Brian was two, his infant brother died. His parents grieved for a long time and Brian ached to see them happy again. He continually asked Suzanne, his mother: “Mommy, when are we going to have a new baby?”

On a Friday morning in 1999, when Brian was four, he and his mother were playing a game. Brian told her to close her eyes and make a wish. He then asked what she had wished for and Suzanne said, “It’s a secret.” Brian insisted, “No, Mommy, you have to tell me! I’m the Wish Master!” “I wished for a baby,” answered Suzanne. “Me too, Mommy! I want a baby, too!”

That evening, Suzanne went to a party for some neighbors who had just adopted a baby. She spotted her friend Sally who told her, “Suz, I just heard about a four-day-old boy up for adoption.” Exactly why Sally told her this, Suzanne wasn’t sure: she hadn’t been thinking or talking about adopting. Climbing into bed later that night, she mentioned Sally’s news to her husband. He sat bolt upright. “Call Sally right now! Let’s find out the details.”

There is much more to this story, but the bottom line is that on an ordinary day, Brian and his mother played what seemed a silly game of wishful thinking. By evening, the fulfillment of their wish was already in motion. Suzanne and her husband were inspired to take action: calls were made, appointments set and interviews soon held. Brian took action, too; he was on his very best behavior at the interviews.

In less than a week, the little boy, now named Christopher, came to live with Brian. Soon they would legally be brothers. Brian and his parents moved from crushing grief into full-blown living.

Anyone who has ever tried to adopt a child will tell you that this swift scenario is impossible; I would have told you so. But—I was the one interviewing Brian and his family, on behalf of my oldest foster daughter and her newborn son.

Did Brian and his mother merely think a little brother into their lives? Not exactly. What they did was create the pull and the Law of Attraction delivered. If they had merely been inspired but taken no action, my grandson Christopher would have a different family today.

I saw Christopher and Brian just yesterday. They and their parents are doing great. So is my foster daughter, by the way.

Sometimes, when I want something to happen quickly in my own life, I make it a point to mention it to Brian. After all, he is the Wish Master.

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