This is the most important of the Twelve Principles of Prosperity™. Understanding why the rich keep getting richer and the poor keep losing what little they have is foundational to getting out of debt and building your financial net worth.
This lesson also reveals why there are intrinsic flaws to several ideas widely believed to be true. For instance, there is an age-old admonition that anyone can get ahead financially, regardless of circumstances, if they are simply willing to “Pull themselves up by their bootstraps”. I will show conclusively that those who are really poor often lack the bootstraps necessary to pull themselves up out of poverty.
There are also many well-meaning Christians who believe all you need to obtain wealth is faith in Christ Jesus. Those who preach this philosophy, whether it's presented as "Seed Faith", "Name-It-And-Claim-It" “Word Of Faith Movement”, “Giving and Receiving”, just to name a few, are “preaching another gospel”, one that is contrary to the complete gospel preached by Jesus Christ. As I'll point out in the chapters ahead, faith is vitally important, but without an understanding of the Rich/Poor Barrier and the Twelve Principles of Prosperity, the poorest among us will continue to find that faith alone is not enough. The only way these Seed Faith type philosophies survive is by ignoring the many cases where it didn't work, and focusing on the few that did.
The “Law” Of Attraction: What They Don’t Tell You Can Hurt You
And finally, a very current and
particularly pernicious idea has taken hold of the thoughts of millions of
people who watched the 2006
I recommend studying Andy Wibbels mind map for further insights and research on the subject. There you'll discover that the Law of Attraction, as well as the movie, “The Secret”, were based upon a 100 year old book, “The Science of Getting Rich”, written by Wallace D. Wattles. According to an editorial review for a new updated version of Wattles book, which I found on Amazon.com:
“Becoming rich is not a matter of environment or talents. Money and property come to us as a result of doing things in a certain way. This is a natural law -- the Law of Attraction -- that specific actions always produce like effects. As a result, anyone who learns to do things in a certain way will ultimately become prosperous.”
As you’ll soon discover, “The Secret” undermines the need for action by focusing people entirely on their thoughts. Here is a very insightful and revealing review of the movie, “The Secret”, which I quote from the blog, “Daylight Atheism” (truth can be found among all people regardless of their philosophy; I hope my readers think likewise):
“The idea that a person, by keeping an optimistic and hopeful attitude towards life, can notice opportunities they might otherwise have missed and succeed by persevering where a pessimist might have failed - this is un-controversially true. But that is not what The Secret is claiming. Its central claim is a far more radical one: that you can have literally anything you dream about or wish for delivered to you by supernatural power, with no effort required on your part, if only you believe strongly enough that this will happen. This is what the film calls the "Law of Attraction", or as it is summed up in the obligatory pithy slogan, "Thoughts become things". The film also states that this is an infallible natural law, as certain in its operation as gravity.
Some people have misinterpreted The Secret as saying merely that a person can achieve their goals through positive effort and hard work. Again, this is an incorrect description. The Secret is explicit in its claim, that no work whatsoever is required to make your wishes come true. All it takes is a clear expression of your desire and sufficient faith in the power of the "law of attraction". The film lists three, and only three, steps to having your desires fulfilled: "ask, believe, receive". In fact, hard work is actively discouraged, as in one section of the movie where an interviewee suggests adjusting one's attitude from the negative "You have to work hard for money" to the allegedly more positive "Money comes easily and frequently". The film goes so far as to compare the universe to Aladdin's genie, who in the original version of the tale granted not just three but an unlimited number of wishes.
Most New Age philosophies make at least a token effort to urge viewers to use their superpowers for spiritual growth and moral development, but The Secret is unabashedly materialistic in its implications. It is calculated to appeal directly to its viewers' sense of greed. It goes out of its way to dazzle with stories and images of multimillion-dollar bank accounts, mansions on the beach, luxury cars and speedboats, marriage to beautiful trophy spouses, and checks arriving in the mail apparently for no reason at all. All these things can be yours, we are told, if only you believe. To no one's surprise, I'm sure, there is no evidence whatsoever presented at any point that any of this works - only scattered anecdotes.”
The Law of Attraction is particularly appealing to those who consider themselves part of the New Age spiritual movement. By telling us that everyone can have what ever they desire, just by thinking about it, they have eliminated the need to first ask God if what we desire is within God’s will or at least in our own best interest at that particular stage in our life. Here is a quote from “Ezine Articles”, giving the reader some insight into its New Age roots (“vibrating feelings of wealth”) and summing up what followers of “The Secret” consider to be a remedy for overcoming one's poverty:
“Many people ask for proof that the Law of Attraction works. Some of them unknowingly proclaim its effects. You’ll hear these exact same people say things like “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer”. Of course they do! That is the Law of Attraction. We become what we think (and feel) about! The Rich are thinking about how to get richer and vibrating feelings of wealth and the poor are thinking about how bad things are and vibrating feelings of poverty and both are attracting more of the same.”
Why then, if it's so easy to overcome poverty, merely by “thinking about how to get richer and vibrating feelings of wealth”, do so few succeed? Do a Google search if you doubt this. I am certain the answers I've provided in this book, the “12 Principles of Prosperity for Spiritual Entrepreneurs”, are the missing parts of the equation, both for the Law of Attraction and for all those Christian prosperity ministries. All these prosperity philosophies totally miss what Jesus says about the rich and the poor and how both are affected primarily by two very different “laws”, the rich by the Law of Attraction and the poor by the Law of Subtraction (more in the section below: “The Rich Get Richer and the Poor Get Poorer”).
What gave me an edge for finding answers was my own past homelessness and poverty. I was determined to find answers for why “Seed Faith” didn’t work for me. Unless a person has been poor, I mean really poor, how can they understand the plight of the poor? How can they know how many try extremely hard to overcome their poverty, only to be beat back two steps for every one step forward? But it was also the failure of several business ventures, which I knew to be God's will, that forced me to search all the harder for answers. Those answers came to me gradually over a period of 3 decades, and are collected here in this book.
Talk show host Larry King has sided with the poor. He pointed out all the suffering in the world, especially third world countries and then asked this question of one of his Law of Attraction hosts:
The Wikipedia entry on the Law of Attraction gave this answer:
“The law of attraction only works because most of the anecdotes cited in books and movies are about people who live in a culture that has paths to allow people to overcome adversity, while this is not true for much of the world. ”
When you think about the above statement and other quotes I've provided, it becomes obvious that “The Secret” and the Law of Attraction practitioners are teaching people to focus on themselves and their material desires. They know it works for some but not all people because there are many, many people saying so. But like so many with a vested interest, they refuse to admit this, purposely ignoring any evidence to the contrary.
However, anyone should be
able to see that our culture provides so many more opportunities than third
world countries. There are many more opportunities
to borrow, to get grants or to tap into investment money from friends, family,
acquaintances and business investors. Those things are not available to someone
living in the bush in
People who lack such resources and contacts could think positive thoughts about money flowing to them all day long, but without the infrastructure of finance and a network of well-off contacts they could never realize the results that SOME Law of Attraction practitioners and SOME Christian followers of prosperity ministries here in this country experience.
I experienced this reality first hand as a young married man, when I donated our last $10 to the Oral Roberts Seed Faith Ministry. I can assure you I didn’t lack faith, so I fully expected a minimum 10 fold increase as promised. My rebirth in Christ had been total and was accompanied by signs and wonders. Though I had recently gotten married, we both shared the same deep faith. I knew our faith was greater than most of the people we came into contact with, but I never understood why until years later. When a person experiences a conversion that causes all the bad things they were doing to drop away (like drugs and other irresponsible behaviors) their faith is about as large as is humanly possible. And since “Faith worketh by love” (Galations 5:6), we know that when Jesus says a person who has sinned much loves all the more, he is also saying that such a person likewise has more faith (“Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little” Luke 7:47).
So, when I sent in my $10 I fully expected to get it back 10 fold or more. I imagined it and dreamed it and fully believed it would come to pass. But as days moved into weeks and my wife’s period came, I was crest fallen by the fact that she had to use rags because we sent in our last $10 and couldn’t afford even one package of tampons. This was the beginning of my three decades long quest for answers as to why things didn’t work as the Christian prosperity movement claimed. If I asked, and I believed, then I should have received according to them. The simplistic answer is always, “You just lacked faith” (or for those who practice its worldly corollary, the Law of Attraction, “You weren’t focused enough, or you didn’t put enough energy behind your thoughts”). But knowing myself better than those who would be so quick to make me the victim of what I supposedly lacked, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I didn’t lack faith, energy or focus! It just didn’t work for me and I was going to find out why if it took me the rest of my life. As it turned out, it took about half an average persons adult years (30 years) before I was able to piece all this together!
The truth is, there are millions of walking wounded, people of faith and perseverance who have failed to realize the promises of either the Christian prosperity movement or the Law of Attraction. The end result for most of these people is a sense of hopelessness. If you are one of them, I have good news. Prosperity can be had by poor people too, once they understand these natural laws of attraction and subtraction and the 12 principles needed to overcome them.
This fact, that current prosperity teachings don’t work for a majority of the poor and deeply indebted, is all the more obvious once you take their claims to the extreme. Do you seriously think that someone dropped off in the desert with a knife, an axe and enough food and water to last them a few months could get rich just by asking for riches and thinking positive thoughts about the outcome? When you take away our western culture's enriching infrastructure, their faulty prosperity premises collapse. Given the fact that these prosperity ministries and Law of Attraction practitioners come into daily contact with people who tell them it’s not working for them, it soon becomes a self perpetuating scam that blames the victims for their lack of results.
As I make clear throughout this book, I have been careful to proclaim that prosperity flows more easily to those who already possess the most money and resources, whose time is thereby freed to pursue even more opportunities, whereas those without a foundation of money and resources must work all the harder and smarter to get the same results. As you’ll soon discover, someone who is poor must learn to set aside seed money, to multiply what little they accumulate, to build up a network of people, to leverage their opportunities, and to believe they can use the supernatural realm to help transform the natural, thereby bringing about the desired outcome. But always, always I stress that this process requires hard work.
Of course, there are exceptions. But just as I have witnessed how Christian prosperity ministries showcase the exceptions and ignore the poor majority for whom their ministry doesn’t work, so I am discovering through online conversations that the same is true of those who promote the Law Of Attraction.
Many times over the course of my life I have heard stories of people getting unexpected checks in the mail. It has even happened to me, both before and after choosing to follow Christ. On the surface it may seem like a miracle, especially to those looking for a miracle. But again, think of the African in the bush where there are few roads (impassable much of the year) and mail is delivered infrequently, maybe only once a month. Think about what surrounds this African. Are there opportunities built into the system, like we have here, whereby anyone can find some sort of work, where the mail is delivered daily, where the vast majority of citizens are rich (from his perspective), where the money flows freely and daily because of a mammoth banking system, where there are lots of government programs like social security to pump money into the system everyday, and where goods are relatively cheap and abundant because of a mammoth distribution system of trucks and trains? The African living in the bush has access to NONE of that and therefore has far, far fewer possibilities regarding serendipitous events like getting an unexpected check in the mail.
In meditative prayer this
morning this bit of wisdom came to me. When Jesus said we could get whatever we
ask for if we believe we'll receive it (“And all things, whatsoever ye shall
ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive”) he said this in context with all
his other teachings – and those teachings ALWAYS put God and God's will for
one's life first. Remember, Jesus taught us to, “Seek you first the
However, this is at odds with “The Secret” and it's Law Of Attraction, because it doesn't tell people to get in tune with God and consider God's will before asking for anything. As pointed out by the movie review above:
“The Secret is unabashedly materialistic in its implications. It is calculated to appeal directly to its viewers' sense of greed. It goes out of its way to dazzle with stories and images of multimillion-dollar bank accounts, mansions on the beach, luxury cars and speedboats, marriage to beautiful trophy spouses, and checks arriving in the mail apparently for no reason at all. All these things can be yours, we are told, if only you believe”.
It is obvious to most that Jesus did not preach a gospel of prosperity to the masses. He rightly pointed out the dangers of riches and how hard it would be for a rich man or woman to enter into the Kingdom. He also told the rich ruler to sell all that he had and give it to the poor before he could follow him. For someone who was bound by greed and riches, this would be a necessary requirement, but for those who were not bound by their riches, he made no such demand. For instance, we are told in the scriptures that Joseph of Arimathea was “a rich man” and “a disciple of Jesus”. Joseph of Arimathea is the one who went to Pontius Pilate and begged for the body of Jesus, so that he could bury him in his own tomb.
Jesus preached in parables for a reason, as we find out in Matthew 13, when the disciples ask, “Why do you speak to the masses in parables”. Jesus replied,
“It is given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given... I speak to them in parables because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand... for this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them”.
The deeper spiritual truths, we are told by Jesus, are reserved for those who have spiritual eyes and ears, who have been converted and healed. But also, according to Jesus, unless a person first humbles their self before God, becoming like a little child, unless they are open to hearing God speak truth into their heart and mind, even truths that run contrary to what all the religious ministers or New Age proponents are teaching, they will remain on the surface of the parables, never understanding their deeper meaning.
“You ought to be teachers... them that are of full age, even those who be reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (Hebrews 5:12-14).
This is what is so lacking among those who preach and teach prosperity, the ability to sort out spiritual truth from spiritual deception. My understanding of this passage is that only those who seek to know God’s will and then step out in faith to do that will, can claim to “have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil”. This is called the power of discernment and without discernment we are “carried about with every wind of doctrine”.
“That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive” (Ephesians 4:14).
Spiritual discernment, the kind that allows us to KNOW what is good and what is evil, is only available to those who regularly butt heads with the system, with the way the world does things, with the way the world’s religions do things. You have to step out in faith and get burned over and over again (that’s “having your senses exercised”) before you have enough experience to get spiritual discernment. You also have to step out in faith and get burned over and over again before you learn to hear God’s still small voice speak the Living WORD into your mind and heart. You have to crawl before you can walk, and you have to walk before you can run. Unfortunately the vast majority of religious people never even try to crawl on their own, being content to have someone else tell them what it’s like!
Over the past 4 decades I
have watched a unique philosophical movement emerge. It has it’s origin in the philosophies of
An ever growing number of people have not only given up on trying to determine the truth about anything, they have given up on the idea that people should even try to discern good from evil. This is because they have bought into the Far Eastern idea that such so-called dualistic thinking is an illusion perpetrated by western civilizations. Tied to that belief is the idea that our “self” eventually merges with and becomes God. What is most striking to me is that regardless of whether these ideas are true or not, we live in this world and there most certainly are people who do both good and evil things to one another. So, why not try to understand what causes it rather than deny that it exists?
Unfortunately, those who prefer to read about other people’s spiritual experiences (whether in the Bible or in New Age classics) and who lack the self-discipline to meditate long enough to understand God’s will for their life (“Be still and KNOW God”, and “The Kingdom of God is within you”) cannot possibly exercise their senses in the pursuit of truth, let alone teach others anything. And yet, in today’s world of sales hype and pseudo spirituality, we have plenty of charlatans teaching their half-truths and out right lies. I am appalled by what I hear and read from supposed experts, and that includes these popular Christian and New Age prosperity teachings.
Just like the special
teachings that Jesus delivered to his disciples, those he chose to initiate
into the mysteries of God's spiritual kingdom, these “12 Principles of
Prosperity for Spiritual Entrepreneurs” are not meant for everyone. They are meant for those who will use their
riches wisely, primarily in the service of the
We who are spiritual know that our money, our time and our resources are not to be wasted, nor used up until there is no more. Rather, as is clearly pointed out in the parable of the Ten Talents (Matthew 25:14-30) we are to multiply what we have even if it is very little, so that what we are entrusted with might be multiplied many times over. This is what a “Spiritual Entrepreneur” understands and does. Unfortunately, as seen in the later writings of Jesus' disciples, they often failed to understand what Jesus had preached to them. As time passed his disciples moved farther and farther from these truths as Jesus first delivered them (see my blog post, “Did Paul the Apostle Preach Another Gospel”).
As recorded in the second chapter of Acts, we see the emergence of a pattern that lasted for a few centuries at least, the establishment of communities of faith wherein people lived and worked. This pattern was a natural outgrowth of increased love and the need to meet the needs of their people. And their establishment was also in obedience to Christ’s command, that his followers “Love one another as I have loved you” (the first official act of his ministry was to gather a group of disciples into a community of faith; living, working, ministering, and eating together). Today, having moved farther and farther from this truth, delivered to us by the example of Jesus Christ gathering his followers, we see in its place the establishment of church buildings, places where people only come a few times a week to study, worship and sing praises to God.
But as we read in Acts 2, concerning the establishment of the second Christian Community (the first being the one Jesus established) we have the first indication that his followers are moving away from the Principles of Prosperity Jesus taught and explained through his parables. In the establishment of this second community they fell back on what was familiar and easier to do, the use of a common purse. The common purse was not part of Christ's teachings but it was the method of financial management used by the first community Jesus formed.
However, we have to keep in mind that if you're building something like a community in a cash-starved third-world country, it just makes sense to ask everyone to put their money into one big pot and in that way finance the community. This form of sharing works best in very small communities, like the one Jesus created when he gathered his 12 apostles and a few close disciples. Everyone knows each other and everyone is motivated to do whatever it takes to promote their mission. But the Holy Spirit revealed to me that the reason the first and second Christian communities were recorded in the bible, the reason they were based on socialism, was so we would have an example of what NOT to do.
It is now obvious that even these two small, early Christian communities failed. Socialism, by taking from those who work the hardest and make the most money, in order to give to those who work the least, believing as it does that everyone should have a similar standard of living, robs people of the very rewards they need to work hard and produce a superior product. A reading of Acts 2:44-47 leaves no doubt that they experimented with socialism:
“And all that believed were together, and had all things common; and sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, praising God, and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”
It is important to understand the conditions back when Jesus walked this earth, so we can understand his natural motivation to use a common purse. Jesus lived in a culture where there was no banking system, no easy to apply for small business loans, no venture capitalists, no investment bankers, no advertising, marketing or public relations firms, not even an easy way to write and publish his ideas. There were no paper factories, no publishing houses and no distribution network of book stores! And as Jesus himself stated, he knew he would die soon. The vast majority of people, certainly including the Apostles and early disciples he ministered with, were dirt poor, lacking both business and community financing skills.
I believe that knowing these things, Jesus chose to spend those three short years of ministry getting his message out by the only sure-fire way available to the poor in that day and age, by public speaking. And the only simple and sure-fire way to finance his travels, so he could get the word out, was to use a common purse.
Jesus didn't have time to establish anything permanent; he didn't have time to write down his teachings and publish them; he didn't have time to use the 12 Principles of Prosperity “hidden” within his parables to leverage and multiply what little money he and his disciples had. The fulfillment of his teachings would be up to those who had ears to hear and eyes to see those mysteries behind the parables he preached. I believe these are all reasons why he told his disciples they would do greater things than he, for surely, as is so clearly recorded, they did not exceed Jesus in miracles or other measures of spiritual power.
But there is a “down” side for those who want to walk in the footsteps of Jesus; who want to be part of the fulfillment of his prophecy that we would do even greater things; who want to “seek first the Kingdom of God”; who want to understand God's will for their life so they can best use these “12 Principles of Prosperity for Spiritual Entrepreneurs” to obtain wealth and use it in the service of God’s purposes. The down side is that we must be prepared to suffer.
Jesus and his disciples taught that it would be so, that to follow him would be to enter into the “fellowship of suffering”. I am under no illusions, for me to speak these truths and write them down in this book means I am limiting my market. Unlike “The Secret” video and book, both of which sold millions, I will be fortunate to see my numbers rise into the tens of thousands. So be it. I would rather speak the truth and have little or no financial gain, then to tickle people's ears with the lies they want to hear.
The message then, for those who are seeking to become more spiritual or to be Spiritual Entrepreneurs, is that first we seek God’s will before we seek financial riches. This will put us at odds with the world’s present system so we must be prepared for a certain amount of suffering. If you are beginning to see the truths behind what I’ve written so far, then you will want to begin putting these principles taught by Jesus into effect. The best way to accomplish this is to:
“Present your bodies a living sacrifice... And be not conformed to this world but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you might prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12).
The moment you choose to sacrifice what YOU may have originally desired for your life in order to pursue a higher calling, by seeking what God wants for your life (which more often than not is not the same) you have chosen the path less traveled, the narrow way and, like Jesus, you will find yourself standing against this world's systems (“be not conformed to this world”). As a spiritual non-conformist you are like a “Pilgrim in a strange land” because people tend to associate with those that believe as they do.
Those who are not
spiritual (which is the vast majority) will either avoid you or they will try
to destroy you. Somewhere deep down inside they know you represent what they
are trying to avoid, the
This is why it has taken me thirty-four years just to begin to accomplish what God had set before me through visions and dreams and my heavenly sojourn. There are no guide books for standing up against the institution of Christianity and its false teachings. As a ministry I could not do as others so often do, and use the existing network of churches to promote my message. I could not go to an accredited school and get trained in four to six years so I could officially launch my ministry, as a credential minister. I could not do this because God spoke to me clearly, that I should take those words of Jesus literally, where Jesus told us he was sending the Holy Spirit to be our teacher and that we had no need of any man to teach us the things of God.
A major part of our
3Circles Church Communities ministry will be to teach others how to be still
and meditate and receive the Living WORD of God, so they can know the TRUTH
first-hand. And since I am also to tell
the world that the bible is only a shadow of the real thing, that it is the
written word about the LIVING
The Rich Get Richer (the Law of Attraction) and the Poor Get Poorer (the Law of Subtraction)
Whether or not you believe Jesus is the Son of God, you should at least acknowledge him as one of the most influential teachers ever to walk this earth. His insights into life have changed many, many lives throughout 20 centuries. And so I ask those readers who do not consider themselves Christians, please read this with an open mind and then draw your conclusions regarding my interpretations.
In the 13th Chapter of the Gospel of Matthew we learn Jesus had just finished teaching his famous “Parable of the Sower” to a huge crowd gathered by the sea (more on this parable in a later chapter). His disciples came to him afterward and asked him why he spoke to the crowds in parables and then later, away from the crowds, explained the deeper meanings to them. Why not tell everyone those deeper meanings so they too could understand?
Here is Jesus’ reply:
“He (Jesus) answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand… For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.” Mt 13:11-15
As a Christian I’ve heard many, many sermons on the spiritual implications of those passages, but not one sermon on what God revealed to me during my meditations, that this lesson is also applicable to the world of nature and its influences on commerce.
What I want to discuss concerning those passages in Mt 13:11-15 is not the obvious spiritual lesson concerning how we must allow the Holy Spirit to draw the hearts of men and women, being careful not to invite into the kingdom those who are unable to discern the truth of Christ's message, who would trample upon the sanctity of kingdom principles by their own spiritual darkness and hypocrisy (which is why our churches today are filled with such people, those not drawn by the Spirit of God but rather manipulated into the kingdom by hell fire preaching and/or the false teaching that only Christians will be admitted into heaven). Instead, I am going to talk about the real world application of the other truth contained in these passages, the truth about abundance and scarcity.
Jesus makes a simple statement about an age old truth, one that many politicians have proclaimed in this way: “The rich get richer and the poor get poorer.” If that were all there was to it, there would be nothing special about what Jesus said and I wouldn't have revealed anything hidden or “secret”. Ah, but the deeper truth about the rich and the poor and how a poor person can break their bondage to being poor didn’t come with the first reading. Let me explain.
As I was meditating on what Jesus said in Mt. 13, I began to see analogies in the physical world, analogies that helped me see its wider implication to mankind’s daily struggle to climb out of the poverty pit and succeed against multiple behemoth forces, both natural and manmade. For instance, imagine two bodies of water, the first being a small pond fed by a similarly small creek. This creek runs strong throughout the summer and for generations people have gone there to fish and enjoy some much-deserved peace and quiet. The second body of water is much larger, a lake fed by several streams, a river and an unknown number of springs. People likewise use it for some R&R and its large enough to accommodate a few commercial industries that use the water for their production processes.
Imagine a drought that has lasted 5 years. One year into the drought that little pond’s single source of replenishment dried up and stopped running. By the second year of the drought that pond is totally dry. There are no fish, no frogs and no geese stopping by on the way south to feed and rest. Locals who used to come for some R&R no longer bother… there’s nothing left to use or enjoy.
Now imagine that lake in the same drought. The water level might drop 20, 30, even 40 feet (as has happened in some California droughts) but the lake remains, the fish remain, geese still stop by to feed, people still go there to get some R&R and those industries are still able to turn out marketable products. Yes, one or more streams dried up totally, but the lake remained because it was so large and had so many sources feeding it.
But what if there was a temporary lull in the drought, say a single storm that dumps several inches of water; what would happen to the pond? Well, in this case, nothing. You see, that one small creek feeding this pond was in turn fed by another small pond, but that upper pond dried up too. So, even if this one storm succeeded in putting some much needed water into the upper pond, it still wouldn’t be enough to cause an overflow into the lower pond.
The small pond represents the poor. That upper pond could be one of their relatives or friends, someone they might have relied on for help in the past. But they too, being relatively poor, were adversely affected by the long financial drought and dried up.
On the other hand, the rich, being like that large lake, always have enough capital reserves to “stay afloat”. Their reservoir of resources is lessened, but it remains in tact, allowing them to easily recover when their financial drought is over. More importantly, they have multiple streams of income flowing into their lake. If several of those income streams dry up, they’re not left high and dry.
So, are you beginning to see how it is for the rich and poor from this new perspective? The rich are a magnet for all sorts of people, including the media. The economic footprint of the rich is so much larger than the poor, attracting to themselves and their businesses an abundance of financial resources and interaction with the lives many, many people (i.e. their employees, their salaried managerial staff, the large number of professional services they require to keep everything moving forward). Thus, they naturally dominate in most every endeavor. The same natural law that allows a large lake to survive the longest and most severe droughts mother-nature can throw its way, also allows them to survive in spite of long and adverse financial circumstances. These processes of natural attraction exist for all large systems, not just very rich humans and their attendant organizations. Think weather systems like hurricanes and tornadoes; think ecosystems.
These understandings should be enough to discredit the present teachings on the Law of Attraction, because the more you think about it and research it, the more you realize the Law of Attraction doesn’t work like its being presented today. As you saw from previous quotes, thinking thoughts of wealth and riches is their focus.
A much wiser teacher once said:
“And he said unto his disciples, therefore I say unto you, take no thought for
your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.
The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.
Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor
reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth
them: how much more are ye better than the fowls? And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one
cubit? If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least,
why take ye thought for the rest? Consider the lilies how they grow: they
toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory
was not arrayed like one of these. If then God so clothe the grass, which
is to day in the field, and to morrow is cast into the oven; how much more will
he clothe you, O ye of little faith? And seek not ye what ye shall eat,
or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind. For all these
things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.
But rather seek ye the
There are a lot of half-truths circulating today, which it seems the majority of people decide to accept without question. Half-truths like, “You are what you eat” or “You are what you think”. It should be obvious that though what we eat influences our health and how we feel, it is only one of many factors. The same holds true for our thoughts. It seems people are getting dumber rather than smarter when they believe that all you have to do to become and remain wealthy is think positive, wealthy thoughts. But that is what “The Secret” and it Law of Attraction are teaching. Do you honestly believe that the people at Lehmann Brothers, a 150 year old investment bank made up of the worlds best educated, wealthiest and most influential individuals, were all thinking thoughts of poverty? There are many forces in life beyond our control, but those who believe The Secret, and teach the Law of Attraction, are teaching falsely that we can control everything and achieve whatever we can conceive.
The rich, who already have plenty of money, have no problem getting more because banks and other lenders know they’ll almost always get paid, whereas those who need it the most, the poor, are unable to get much needed loans precisely because they do not have multiple streams of income, do not have a large reservoir of investments and real estate and rich friends that could bail them out if their idea fails. You know that old saying, that “S_ _ _ Happens!”; well, a truer saying would be “Life Happens”. It is a natural process of life that those who have much, will be given more, while those who have little, will have even the little they own taken away. Those who are already rich want to stay rich, so they hang around with people in the know, who might share their latest investment tip, who might offer to bring them in on a lucrative joint venture.
The Law of Subtraction is a saying I coined to describe the opposite of the Law of Attraction. As recorded in Matthew 13, Jesus revealed there are two principles or “Laws”, one governing the rich and one governing the poor. The rich, because they are already rich, naturally attract more riches. But the poor, because they are poor, naturally tend to lose what little they have.
There is no mystery to this. It’s like having one single kernel of corn. Imagine if it were the last kernel on earth. Every seed eating bug and every seed destroying microbe is lined up against that single seed. Now imagine a whole grain elevator full of thousands of tons of corn seed. There are millions upon millions of seeds and no matter how many seed eating bugs or seed destroying microbes there are, most of those seeds will survive and thrive when planted. One seed plus one carelessly placed foot means an instant end to one’s seed wealth. But you could walk through those fields planted with all that corn in the elevator, purposely trying to crush out every last newly sprouted corn plant, and those fields would be harvested before you could stomp them all out!
To further illustrate the Law of Subtraction, imagine you are deep in debt with a low-paying job that nets you a few hundred dollars a week. You have no savings because there is never enough money to meet your family’s basic needs. You don’t have the cushion of multiple streams of income should you lose your job; you don’t have money to cover sudden unexpected auto repairs like a busted transmission ($2,000 or more!); you don’t have rich friends who can step up to the plate and loan you enough to get through a crisis; maybe you don’t have the education or the skills to do many different types of jobs, drastically limiting your choices for finding new employment; then there are sudden health issues that could attack a child or one of the working parents, causing further indebtedness or loss of income. Any of the everyday problems we all face could send such a family over the edge into homelessness. It happens to many everyday.
However, those who promote Christian prosperity ministries or The Secret and it’s Law of Attraction still insist on telling hard working people of faith, energy and focus, who desire above all else to be free of their poverty and their bills, that it’s not working for them because they lack faith or the right thoughts and focus. All they are doing is adding to their hopelessness and robbing them of the possibility of overcoming their poverty.
In order to overcome poverty one has to first acknowledge that there is a natural Law of Subtraction working to undermine the efforts of those who “have little”. Then one has to know there are remedies specific to the needs of the poor, remedies taught by none other than Jesus Christ himself. And finally, one has to read and reread and put into practice the Principles of Prosperity he taught, the same principles you now have in your possession. Neither the Christian prosperity ministries nor the “The Secret” understand or provide this knowledge.
believe It is time for people everywhere to start being thankful for the rich
rather than complaining about how much they have, compared to us. The relatively rich create the corporations
and small businesses that form the financial backbone of our economy, not the
It’s sometimes infuriating to see small communities giving away the store just to attract a large corporation to their local industrial park, while all the local small businesses have to scrounge for every penny they earn, but that is part of the Law of Attraction too. You read about it in your local newspapers over and over again, how the town commissioners have voted to provide years of tax free operation to some major business, while offering no such incentives to their many small community based businesses. It doesn’t sound fair does it? But then, nothing in this world is “fair” in that sense of the word. And it shouldn’t be. One factory paying no taxes or drastically reduced property taxes for a number of years means that the hundreds of employees they are going to hire (including those that moved to the local community just to get the job) WILL be paying taxes and in the end that adds up to more tax revenue and a win-win situation for everyone.
Here’s another illustration that will help you understand the Rich/Poor barrier. Suppose you have exactly 100 seeds of corn, enough to plant about three, twenty foot rows. There has been a major terrorist attack and food supplies are being continually disrupted. That corn can mean the difference between life and death for you and you family (of course if you have seed corn you probably have collected other seeds too). Fortunately, it’s a good year for corn: no hurricane force winds to blow down your crops; no smut or other diseases; just lots of hot dry weather with weekly thunderstorms. But, not so fortunately, a family of possums has moved into your neighborhood. You don’t know it because they’re invisible until your corn gets just about ripe enough to pick. Then suddenly, in one night your crop is ruined. As anyone who has lost corn to possums knows, they don’t eat the whole ear. They ruin it by pulling back the husks and nibbling kernels randomly. You’re totally wiped out. But things get worse, the terrorist situation doesn’t improve and martial law is declared, further disrupting the economy and supplies. Seeds are impossible to get because of hoarding. And because you lost your entire harvest, you can’t even save seed corn for next year. Actually, even if you had a good harvest the truth is you wouldn’t have had enough seed to supply fresh corn for your family, let alone save seed! You would have starved anyway!
Now imagine a different scenario. You and your spouse have enough first hand experience with raising a garden to know that your measly 100 seeds of corn wouldn’t be enough to supply your needs. You’ve also experienced bad weather, disease, deer and other critters of the night. As a result you know you have to do something to increase the size of your crop and therefore increase the likelihood of a good harvest. But what should you do? The seed shortages and the interrupted supplies have left all your friends in the same boat. No one is going to sell you any of their precious seed.
Then one day, just before planting time, you have a brainstorm of an idea and call a meeting of everyone you know. You tell them of your predicament. Neither you nor any of your close friends have enough land to grow a substantial crop of corn and individually no one has enough seed to plant sufficient acreage. As the meeting progresses one stranger stands up and offers to turn over 2 acres of her 3 acres of lawn but admits she doesn’t have any seed corn whatever. From around the auditorium people offer to share their seed, totaling 20 pounds of seed, enough to plant one acre. So it’s decided to turn over the remaining acre in anticipation of planting two acres next year and to plant potatoes on that second acre. Potatoes are a good source of nourishment, keep for months in a good root cellar, and they are the perfect crop for newly tilled land, able to outgrow most weeds. This will help destroy weeds and make it better for planting to corn the following year.
So, what happens to an acre of corn when that same family of possums comes along? You lose a small percentage rather than all of it (you’ll lose an even smaller percentage if you have some good dogs and a gun!). Because of the larger planting, you’ve protected your crop and multiplied your harvest. You'll also get a larger harvest because a larger planting yields better pollination (corn is pollinated with the help of the wind, so lots of rows in close proximity increases yields). Now everyone has enough corn to eat and there's more than enough for seed. Next year they can plant two acres and sell off the surplus.
Through my meditations I began to see powerful economic principles at work here, principles that later were reinforced and expanded when I began reading the parables of Jesus with this new knowledge.
As the 3Circles Empowerment Principle indicates, it's vitally important to know where we're putting our time, money and resources. In this scenario the system was falling apart, which forced people to start working together. However, if you want to make money and rise above all those natural forces, forces which, by nature, work against those of us who have little to begin with, then you have to begin thinking ahead and not wait for those forces to kick you in the you-know-where!
You’ve taken the first step; you’re reading this book. The next step is to apply what you read. That means reinforcement and reinforcement means networking with others of like mind. If you haven't already done so, why not drop what you're doing right now and go to our 3Circles website where you can take action by signup for some of our programs?
If you’re tired of being a “little pond” and want to become a “large lake”, then here are Five Ways to Grow Your Estate™:
1) MEMORIZE the “Nine Character Choices that Keep Us Poor” (see Chapter 1) applying the golden rule as an enlightened steward in your dealings with money, people and the earth.
2) INCREASE communications and networking with those of like-mind; gather with those who hold to the same principles, who share your goals and who will share your workload, thereby multiplying everyone’s time.
3) CHOOSE where you put your time, money and resources, so your energy will be spent towards building a better world rather than feeding the people, businesses, and organizations that are destroying the environments we all move and live in (physical, economic, spiritual, political, and emotional environments).
4) CREATE multiple sources of income and multiply your money through application of the principles contained in my “Seven Steps to Breaking the Rich/Poor Barrier”.
5) INVEST in and multiply non-monetary resources you need for survival: the tools, the skills, the materials, the training and the land. The best way to get training is to find someone who’s been there and done that... a mentor!
To help you remember those Five Ways to Grow Your Estate™, think MICCI, which stands for the five action verbs I underlined: Memorize, Increase, Choose, Create and Invest. Memorize what you need to know; Increase your successful people network through regular communications; Choose to put your time, money and resources into building a better world; Create, multiple sources of income; Invest in acquiring the resources you need for survival and success.
Looking at the Five Ways to Grow Your Estate™ one might conclude that success is simply a matter of will power and perseverance. But, as anyone with a modicum of wisdom knows, there is an element of luck and serendipity to any person’s ultimate success. However, it is equally true that opportunity comes more often to those who seek it. Those who have learned what to look for and are able to focus on their goals will attract more opportunities. And as I have discovered through my rebirth in Christ, followed by a close meditative relationship, we acquire a far better vision of what lies ahead when we understand, through experience, that God does intervene in the affairs of mankind, both individually and corporately. If God is not part of your equation for Growing Your Estate, you’re missing out on the greatest opportunity of all, maintaining a dynamic relationship with the creator, the source of all life, the harbinger of every opportunity worth pursuing.
one has been at the bottom, or even midway on life’s economic ladder and then
moved up, obtaining a greater level of success, the tendency is to say, “If I’ve
done it, anyone can do it”. But that gross oversimplification is
not very accurate. It’s what I like to
call a “half-truth”. Yes, we all have the potential to overcome
life’s obstacles and yes, if one uses one’s skills and works hard and perseveres,
then one will E
When I first read that passage in Mt. 13 about the rich and poor I was awestruck by the power of what was being proclaimed. It explained why, when I was dirt poor and had no resources to fall back on, my early business successes eventually failed. It also explained why approximately 90% of business startups fail by the fifth year. For those who start out with deep pockets the chances of your success are increased dramatically. Your business will be sustained through the inevitable learning curve experienced by all business startups. The natural calamities of supply and demand and all the cash flow glitches that happen to every business can be dealt with and overcome if you have a lake of resources to sustain you. Understanding these natural laws, the Law of Attraction and the Law of Subtraction, will prove to be a powerful asset. But everything depends on how much you understand and how willing you are to apply the secrets I reveal here in my book, especially the Seven Steps to Breaking the Rich/Poor Barrier™.
I would venture to say there’s not one reader who hasn’t heard the popular expression “pull yourself up by your bootstraps”. The symbolism seems sound, that people should do for them selves, should accept responsibility for making their way in life. In today’s political climate you’ll be more likely to hear a conservative tell someone to pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
The liberals, who have seen that this is not so easy, actually got this one right. It’s near impossible for those who are really poor to pull themselves up by their bootstraps alone. Without a helping hand the laws of nature will rob them of the little they have, before they can even get ahead. But the liberal solution, more government programs, is downright stupid given the government’s track record for “helping the poor”. By any real-world measurement the 40+ year “War on Poverty”, began by President Lyndon Johnson in the 1960’s, was a total failure.
As we now know, government welfare programs have created generations of welfare dependent families. I was on welfare once myself. From first hand observation and conversations with other welfare recipients I can tell you unequivocally that government handouts tend to breed generations of lazy people who no longer believe they can take care of themselves through their own creativity, initiative and hard work. The welfare system also penalized marriage and intact families, rewarding welfare mothers who got pregnant out of wedlock with bigger checks. Welfare recipients were further marginalized and stigmatized by housing them in government built projects that became havens for criminals and drugs. Government officials with little real world experience have wasted billions and billions of American’s hard earned money.
By understanding the teachings of Jesus on the rich and the poor we realize that the Law of Subtraction works against the accumulation of wealth among the poor. For people with very limited resources, each step forward often results in their being forced by life’s circumstances to take two steps back.
In short, you cannot tell someone to pull themselves up by their bootstraps if they own no bootstraps! However, as I stated earlier, the answer is not more government programs. The answer is to teach the poor about the Rich/Poor barrier. Teach them the "12 Principles of Prosperity". Mentor them until they see it's possible for anyone, even the poorest of the poor, to create and build up their own Investment Savings Account (more details on the ISA in Chapter 10). And show them how they can acquire the bootstraps they need to succeed!
What exactly are "Bootstraps" anyway? Here’s my “Bootstraps List™”, a list that is by no means exhaustive. I haven’t even mentioned skill-sets (people skills, employment skills, specialized on the job training, professional short courses completed, etc.) which often make a difference when seeking employment or starting a business.
2. Inherited wealth
3. Savings, retirement plans or other financial assets
4. Medical benefits
5. Real estate
6. Home ownership
7. Rich relatives, friends or acquaintances
8. Friendship with those who know investors or other money people
9. Fewer possessions but possessions that are newer, in good repair and which would contribute to establishing a home-based business
10. Good character traits like honesty, integrity, perseverance and self-discipline
11. Seeking opportunity and a willingness to take risks
12. Faith that God will help you chance your “fate”
13. Finding a mentor willing to teach you how to do what he or she did to become successful
What if your education is limited and you therefore don’t really know how to put together a dynamite resume, let alone have the job history to justify one; what if you are so poor that your resources are almost non-existent; what if you’ve had to move frequently because you’ve had great difficulty finding steady employment and paying your bills; what if you have no savings, no 401K or IRA retirement plans, no stocks and bonds, and no real estate; what if your constant moving has made it even more difficult than normal, to make any lasting friendships and because you’re so poor you have no network of rich friends who could bail you out in a time of need; what if everything you own, your car, your lawn mower, your washer dryer, your kitchen appliances, your computer, even your families clothes, were all so outdated and old, that their repair and upkeep constantly put demands on your already limited time; what if all your relatives are also dirt poor so you’ll never luck out with a big inheritance of money or real estate; and finally, what if your lack of technological savvy in this increasingly hi-tech world prevents you from seeing and taking advantage of the countless Internet related opportunities?
What I described in the paragraph above is a typical poor person who lacks the “Bootstraps” I've listed. The more Bootstraps a person lacks, the more difficult it will be for them to break free of their poverty. Conversely, the more Bootstraps a person has, the more they are protected against unforeseen natural forces that can and do indiscriminately ravage what a person invests in, works hard to create, or already owns.
In understanding how to overcome nature’s barriers, so that you and your family might become a large lake of prosperity, we touched on the importance of multiplying your efforts through the leveraging power of networking and community. In the next chapter we're going to cover them in much more detail. The First Step necessary for “Breaking the Rich/Poor Barrier” is what the next chapter is all about. You'll learn all the details about how to "Leverage Your Time, Money and Resources via Mentoring, Networking and Community".