“The philosophy of positive thinking means being untruthful; it means
being dishonest. It means seeing a certain thing
and yet denying what you have seen; it means deceiving yourself and others.”
Once Gautam Buddha was asked, ”Why don’t you teach your people to pray?” It was an obvious question –
a religion without prayer is simply inconceivable to many people. And the answer Buddha gave is as fresh today as it was twenty-
five centuries before, as new and as revolutionary. He said, “I don’t teach my people to pray because their
prayers will harm them. Right now they are not conscious enough to ask for anything, and whatsoever they ask will be wrong. First, let them become conscious enough. I teach them how to become more conscious and then it is up to them.The philosophy of positive thinking means being untruthful; it means being dishonest. It means seeing a certain thing and yet denying what you have seen; it means deceiving yourself and others. Positive thinking is the only bullshit philosophy that America has contributed to human thought
nothing else. Dale Carnegie, Napoleon Hill, and the Christian priest, Vincent Peale
all these people have filled the whole American mind with this absolutely absurd idea of a positive philosophy. And it appeals particularly to mediocre minds.
Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends a
nd Influence People, has been sold in numbers just next to the Christian Bible. No other book has been able to reach that popularity. The Christian Bible should not be a competitor in fact, because it is more or less given free, forced on people. But Dale
Carnegie’s book people have been purchasing; it has not been given to you free. And it has created a certain
kind of ideology which has given birth to many books of a similar kind. But to me it is nauseating.
… Dale Carnegie started this whole school of positive philosophy, positive thinking: Don’t see the negative part, don’t
see the darker side. But by your not seeing it, do you think it disappears? You are just befooling yourself. You cannot change reality. The night will still be there; you can think that it is daytime for twenty-four hours, but by your thinking it, it is not going to be light twenty-four hours a day. The negative is as much part of life as the positive. They balance each other. After Dale Carnegie, the great name in the tradition of this positive thinking is Napoleon Hill. Think and Grow Rich is his greatest contribution to the world
a beautifully written book, but all crap.
Think and grow rich… you don’t have to do anything, you only have to think in absolutely positive terms and
will start flowing towards you. If they don’t come, that simply means that you have not been thinking absolutely
positively. So these are beautiful games in which you cannot defeat the man who is proposing the game. He has the key in his hands. If you succeed by chance, then he succeeds because his philosophy
think and grow rich
has succeeded. You have been thinking and thinking and thinking and positively thinking that dollars are showering on you
these are not snowflakes but dollars showering on you
and suddenly your uncle dies and leaves you a big inheritance. Naturally, positive thinking works!
But if you don’t succeed… and ninety
-nine percent of the time you are not going to succeed
you know perfectly well that your positive thinking is not absolutely positive; you know that there is doubt. Once is a while you open your eyes to see whether they are dollars or just snowflakes. You see they are just snowflakes, and you again close your eyes and start thinking that dollars are showering. But the doubt is there, that these really are snowflakes. Whom are you trying to befool? All these thoughts are going
on: “This is just nonsense, I shouldn’t waste my time, I could be earning some dollars; this way I am losing rather than gaining.”