The following is the cover story feature article in this month’s issue of Austin All Natural magazine, by yours truly:
“Let me make you a paper weight.”
It was Dennis Rogers speaking. Many consider him the world’s strongest man. Celebrities call on him for advice on performing and getting strong. He’s performed over 2,600 feats of strength shows. He’s a legend.
We met over lunch. He wanted to give me a gift, or rather make one for me.
He wrapped his hands in a thin leather protective covering, and then began to bend a wrench before my eyes. I couldn’t comprehend how he did it. I had felt the wrench beforehand and it was a genuine metal tool, heavy and solid. But it bent like it was warm butter.
By now the kitchen staff had seen the bent wrench and saw the small lunch crowd forming around Dennis and me.
“Would you like me to roll a frying pan for you?” Dennis asked the cook and staff. “It can be a souvenir you can hang in the kitchen.”
They all agreed, their eyes bugged out and waiting.
Dennis pulled out a frying pan, put his fingers over the edge, and began to slowly roll it like it was a tortilla. It was astonishing to see. It was surreal. Dennis was clearly focused, breathing hard, putting his life force into his efforts.
He handed the completely rolled up pan, now of no practical use, to the chef.
None of us could believe it.
I had seen strongmen and feats of strength before. When I was in Russia, a man billed as the world’s strongest man – I guess there can be more than one – bent a heavy nail before my eyes. He, like Dennis, used sheer power and intense focus to get it done.
I admired it. I could see applications in other areas of life. I wanted to know more.
The origin of strongman feats of strength goes back to prehistory, maybe even back to caveman picking up boulders and protecting their caves.
The first of the recorded characters was probably Milo of Croton, an ancient Greek wrestler, circa 558 B.C.
His training was simple: find a young calf, lift it.
Next day, find a heavier calf, lift it.
Next day, find a heavier calf or cow, lift it.
It was an early exercise routine today named progressive overload. But that’s the ancient Greeks for you. They didn’t name it. They just knew the process made them stronger.
But feats of strength were performed throughout history, right into the circus and on the vaudeville stage throughout the 1800s.
As time went on, strength displays were broken into categories, such as power lifting and bodybuilding.
I admire men and women who use intention and strength to accomplish something the rest of us might consider virtually impossible.
Some of these early strongmen, most notably Joseph Greenstein, whose stage name was the Mighty Atom, also pursued strength as a means of mental and spiritual development.
Authentic strongman and strongwomen don’t use magic tricks to get their results. They want to impress themselves as well as you.
This is one reason I’m attending Dennis Rogers and Dave Whitley’s Oldetime Strongman University Training in Austin September 19-20. http://www.dennisrogers.net/oldetime-strongman-university-seminar/
I want to learn what it takes to be a modern walking Hercules, able to bend nails, wrenches, frying pans or your car keys, but doing it as a type of meditation. Using it to stretch myself into bigger possibility thinking.
Dennis told me, “The area of strength that David Whitley and I will be teaching is the artistic display of physical strength. I say this because you must certainly build your body, particularly your core and grip, but it also requires a creative mind and artful presentation.
“It is the art of the old vaudeville and Coney Island strength stars. Men like Eugen Sandow, Siegmund Brietbart, Warren Lincoln Travis, and ‘The Mighty Atom.’ “
According to author and strength historian David Willoughby, “It was Sandow who raised feats of strength out of the grunt-and groan category and made them spectacular and entertaining.”
But it’s not about the bent item, it’s about learning to use your mind and muscle to get results. That’s priceless anywhere.
David Whitley said, “It is the bodily expression of the mind’s power.”
And that’s why I trained with the “old school” bodybuilders, like multiple Olympia winner Frank Zane, who advised me, “Watch your thoughts. Most people let their mind talk themselves out of what their muscle can do. Push past the voice.”
And Steve Reeves, the legendary early bodybuilder who played Hercules in the original movie, said he would visualize his muscles growing as he worked them. Arnold does the same thing.
It’s mind over muscle.
Dennis Rogers once told me that most people give up in trying to bend a wrench right before the wrench is going to bend. “They let their minds talk themselves out of what they can achieve,” he explained.
David Whitley said, “We tend to think of the physical first, but being strong is something that goes beyond the physical performance of feats and encompasses the entire being. It is a means of discovering, unifying and expressing the True Self.
“The essence of being an old-time strong man in my opinion is recognizing and acknowledging the infinite potential of the human mind. The ability to bend steel, rip decks of cards, etc., has its roots in the same place as every great invention or work of art we have ever seen: The Imagination.”
You can see how relevant this is to all aspects of life, not just in the gym or on stage. It’s about using your mind and body to achieve your intentions. It’s about training in a way to exceed your own “personal best” and proving to yourself and others that virtually nothing is impossible.
Now, stand back, as I’m going to break that chain around my neck on the cover of the magazine…
PS – If you are in the Austin, Texas area, you can find the current issue of Austin All Natural at places like Central Market, Whole Foods, and leading edge book stores and yoga studios. You can read it online right here.
When I attended my fourth transformation camp with legendary Body-for-Life fitness icon Bill Phillips, I briefly told the group (at Bill’s invitation) about the power of “I AM.”
Afterward, Bill told me, “We could do an entire seminar on just ‘I AM’.”
Here’s why Bill is right:
Anything you say after the words “I AM” creates your future.
You can say, “I AM broke” and your mind will create that reality.
You can say “I AM alone” and your mind will mirror that affirmation, too.
You can say “I AM ill” and your mind will manufacture a life to reflect your statement.
You might think that you are simply speaking what you are observing, but in reality you have created your current reality by your previous “I AM” thoughts, and your current “I AM” observations are creating the future you are about to experience.
This will get clear in a moment.
By the same token, you can take the same two words and attract something positive.
“I AM wealthy” will begin to create a life that attracts wealth.
“I AM loved” will begin to attract a life where you are loving and loved.
“I AM healthy” will begin to morph your body into one of health and fitness.
In other words, your new statements of “I AM” will begin to attract and create a life that will match it.
At first it might feel awkward, or even a lie, to say “I AM wealthy” when you don’t yet see wealth, but it’s those previous “I AM” observations about lack that created the current lack.
Stick with me.
This technique can transform your life forever.
Why do these two simple words have so much power?
Neville Goddard, one of my favorite mystical teachers, wrote:
“I AM wealthy, poor, healthy, sick, free, confined were first of all impressions or conditions felt before they became visible expressions. Your world is your consciousness objectified. Waste no time trying to change the outside; change the within or the impression; and the without or expression will take care of itself. When the truth of this statement dawns upon you, you will know that you have found the lost word or the key to every door. I AM (your consciousness) is the magical lost word which was made flesh in the likeness of that which you are conscious of being.” ― Neville Goddard, Your Faith is Your Fortune
In other words, you have already been practicing this technique of reality creation.
Whenever you said or thought, “I AM losing” or “I AM struggling” or “I AM not popular,” you were creating your own reality, not just observing it, albeit unconsciously.
All of your self negations, or statements of negativity, or lack, were actually attracting the very life you were complaining about.
It probably felt like you were just commenting on “what is” but in reality you were affirming what will be.
Neville also wrote —
“Chance or accident is not responsible for the things that happen to you, nor is predestined fate the author of your fortune or misfortune. Your subconscious impressions determine the conditions of your world. The subconscious is not selective; it is impersonal and no respecter of persons. The subconscious is not concerned with the truth or falsity of your feeling. It always accepts as true that which you feel to be true. Feeling is the assent of the subconscious to the truth of that which is declared to be true. Because of this quality of the subconscious there is nothing impossible to man. Whatever the mind of man can conceive and feel as true, the subconscious can and must objectify. Your feelings create the pattern from which your world is fashioned, and a change of feeling is a change of pattern.” ― Neville Goddard, Resurrection
The secret to creating a new reality is in first noticing what you are saying right now after “I AM” and then noticing how you are feeling.
If you don’t like either, you can change them.
As Neville pointed out, your subconscious/unconscious will ignore the outer and focus on the inner: your predominant thoughts and feelings.
It will then go about creating a mirror to what you are doing inside yourself.
Obviously, it would be wise to start speaking what you prefer and feeling it as already real.
Instead of letting your thoughts and spoken words be about what you don’t want, think and speak what you do want, and feel as though it is already real right now.
Speak as if what you desire is here: “I AM happy” versus “I WANT to be happy.”
The first phrase will begin to attract that reality now; the second phrase pushes it off in the distance and leaves you in a state of “want.”
You don’t want to want; you want to be right now.
As Neville said –
“Dare to believe in the reality of your assumption and watch the world play its part relative to its fulfillment.” ― Neville Goddard
The power of “I AM” is not new.
Every great New Thought teacher from Joseph Murphy, Walter C. Lanyon, Walter Devoe, Lillian DeWaters, Emmet Fox, Ella Wheeler, Christian D Larson, Edna Lister, Wayne Dyer, Joel Osteen, Oprah, and Thomas Troward have written or spoken about it.
What might be new is actually using it with conscious intent.
The other day, when I went into my gym for an upper body weight lifting session that I had learned from Bill Phillips, I told myself “I AM strong!” and “I AM a strongman who can lift more than ever!”
Those two words helped me have one of the most intense workout sessions of recent memory.
They triggered an inner strength that attracted an outer strength.
And all I did was leverage the two most powerful words of all time: “I AM!”
I AM confident you will love it. 🙂
Around 2010, my father started recording his life story on cassettes.
It took him five years.
But he did it.
Earlier this year he sent me a box of ninety-minute cassettes, a cassette player, and an envelope with photos in it.
I then had the tapes transcribed, edited, and formatted into a book.
On June 4th, my father’s 90th birthday, I presented his published autobiography to him.
He was speechless.
He held it like a newborn baby.
He was flushed, teary eyed, and truly moved.
And so was I.
My father found time to record his life story because it was important to him.
And he did it while being the primary caretaker of my bedridden mother, now 84.
And he did it while maintaining his own exercise routine of working out two hours a day.
And he did it while cooking, cleaning, running errands, dealing with harsh winters and hot summers, and his own medical challenges.
But he did it.
If a ninety year old man can complete one of his dreams, then you can, too.
You simply begin and then stick with it.
Before too long, your dream comes true.
Just like my Dad’s.
You can watch my Dad’s reaction to receiving his book at https://youtu.be/jMTuOZJ4V64
PS – My father’s book, The Most Contented Man, will be available on Amazon soon. And he’s planning to record a second book: What I Would Do If I Was President of the United States. 🙂
Thank you for your prayers for the residents of my city, Wimberley, Texas, which was hit by catastrophic flooding and made the front page of the mainstream news all around the world.
The storms have stopped, the flood is over, the rain has gone, and people are rebuilding.
While people are still in shock, they are also moving onwards.
You can’t stop the human spirit.
When I asked you to hold benevolent intentions in my recent blog post, I also invited you to use The Secret Prayer, which is recorded by me and available to hear for free at The Secret Prayer website.
Today I’m excited to announce the release of my latest book, The Secret Prayer.
It reveals a three step formula for attracting miracles that always works.
The book explains the secret.
It became a #1 bestseller in three categories the day it was released on Amazon.
You can go get it for your Kindle reader, as a paperback, or on audio at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XV1Q9JG
Here’s what some early readers are saying —
“Joe did it again!! I love his new book…. It’s inspiring, filled with practical wisdom and massive insight!” ~ Janet Bray Attwood, NY Times Bestselling Author The Passion Test and Your Hidden Riches
|“An absolute delight to read— The Secret Prayer is mind expanding, heart opening, and overflowing with love.”|
~ Marci Shimoff
#1 NY Times bestselling author, Happy for No Reason and Chicken Soup for the Woman’s Soul
|“Joe Vitale has done it again! What an awesome compilation of the best and most powerful prayers from different disciplines! I love how Joe shares the most effective processes and how to get the most out of the wonderful discipline of prayer. I constantly pray — I pray in the most curious ways at times — and my life is filled with love, miracles, prosperity and contribution to others… Thank YOU, Joe, for your wisdom, commitment and your love of people!|
~Dame DC Cordova
CEO, Excellerated Business School® for Entrepreneurs / Money & You®
|“The blockbuster movie The Secret awakened the world to the mystical power within each person to manifest what they desired. But it raised more questions than it answered. Joe Vitale, one of the stars of The Secret, has finally answered all those questions in this long-awaited and historically-significant newest book, The Secret Prayer.”|
NY Times Bestselling Author
|“Joe Vitale’s book is stimulating you to pray again with gratitude for who you are and what you have. In his own unique style, he gives you new tools to revise and deepen your connection with the Universe. This book touched me deeply.”|
Global Transformational Leader, Speaker and Author, Star in The Secret
|“Few people truly ‘get it.’ Joe gets it, he got it right in The Secret, and he totally nails it in the The Secret Prayer. This is the book that will lift people out of misunderstanding prayer, invites them to take responsibility for their divine inheritance, and thereby unleash their unimaginable power over all things. A book that can put any life on a fast track to greater happiness and fulfilment.”|
NY Times Bestselling author of Infinite Possibilities and Leveraging the Universe
|“The Secret Prayer holds the key to fulfilling your heartfelt dreams, goals, and desires. I love this book. Read it and use it. It will change your life!”|
~Dr. Susan Shumsky
The Secret Prayer contains short chapters, deep insights, fascinating stories, and more.
I believe this is what we need today, for ourselves, family and friends, and planet.
Please get copies for yourself and people you care about.
After all, what if it really works?
The audio of the book, read by me, is here: http://www.audible.com/pd/Self-Development/The-Secret-Prayer-Audiobook/B00XWDOBCA/
PS — Here’s an excerpt from the introduction to The Secret Prayer:
According to The Psychology of Prayer, 97% of all Americans pray at least once a week. Even atheists admit that they sometimes pray.
But as we all know, it doesn’t always seem to work.
What’s the secret to having a prayer deliver?
That’s what you’ll discover in The Secret Prayer, where I reveal the three-step formula for attracting miracles through this particular prayer. And I’m talking about anything and everything you could name as a “miracle.”
When you think about it, what is impossible?
Since we’re talking about enlisting the help of “Something” greater than you, what could be impossible to attract?
Unless you’re trying to bend or break the laws of physics, or have an unreal fantasy such as riding a unicorn around the sun, can’t you have, do, or be anything you can imagine? Aren’t the only limits the ones you believe in? Aren’t your beliefs open to inspection and change?
I also want to face reality here. Many “new agey” people claim, “It’s all good.” While everything is all good from a Divine perspective, from a physical perspective, we have work to do.
There are plenty of problems in the world. There are people suffering and starving. You may know some of them. You may be one of them. Dismissing the problems and challenges of life is a form of denial and self-sabotage. You have to be honest and note the issues before us.
And you want to look beyond the issues to Source. When you focus on the peace behind the problem, you begin to clean up the perceptions creating and attracting the problem.
This is why The Secret Prayer is so helpful. It assists you in reconnecting with the essence of life, the Divinity of life, the Source of life. The more you can allow prayer to bring you home, the faster you will nullify the causes of the separation. And then you can see the miracle of right now.
It’s worth revealing how I came across The Secret Prayer. You may know me from my books, audios, and movie appearances. You may consider me an inspiration, since I write self-help books, or a huckster, since I sell self-help books. You may like my methods or think they are simply mental diversions from living a life of hard work and struggle.
What you may not know is that I am a seeker like you, and have been since the 1960s, when I was a teenager. Others looked for outside thrills; I looked for inside awakenings. I wanted to know how the world worked, and I wanted to teach it to others. As I discovered new things—such as Ho’oponopono—I would share them in books, such as Zero Limits and At Zero. I simply regarded myself as a scout looking for gold. Whenever I found it, I shared it. I still do that today.
A decade or so ago, I earned one of my doctorates by completing a dissertation on New Thought healers and how they use prayer and “mind treatment” to help people. I found it fascinating but didn’t do anything with it.
Then, after the movie The Secret made the Law of Attraction mainstream, and made me internationally famous, I wondered how the law blended with prayer. Others wondered, too. People would ask me if I believed in God, or if the Law of Attraction replaced God, and so forth. It made me curious about how we use prayer—if we used it all—to align ourselves with God—or whatever we call The Great Something—to have, do, or be whatever we imagine.
Was that even possible?
As usual, I continued my research and meditating. I was led to rereading the books of Emmet Fox, an author I’ve always loved. His “mental equivalent” went a long way in helping me realize that everything begins with vivid thought.
Rereading Wallace Wattles’s famous book, Financial Success through Creative Thought, or, as it is better known by its subtitle, The Science of Getting Rich, reminded me that everything comes out of some great energy vortex, and we call it forth with thought and action.
Reading the letters of Brother Lawrence, the beloved monk of the 1600s who taught us to “practice the presence of God,” meaning to spend every moment looking for, feeling, and loving the Source, helped me realize the power behind all manifestation was this Divine “Something.”
And then one day I had an “aha!” experience.
In some of my books, such as The Awakening Course, I explain that we can have peeks into All That Is, and those glimpses are called satori experiences in some cultures. I had such an awakening. Somehow the blend of prayer and Law of Attraction merged together into a new formula; a synthesis of ideas that created a powerhouse new system for attracting virtually anything.
I became as excited as if I had been hit by lightning or the heavens opened and some Great Being had spoken to me directly. This new prayer was powerful. It is powerful. I put up an audio of me leading people through The Secret Prayer on www.TheSecretPrayer.com. Instantly, thousands of people went to it, used it, and began to rave about it.
Will it work for you, too?
How can I say that?
When you realize that you are already a manifester and are already living a miracle for which you are grateful (the first step in the formula), then you can stop there. You already attracted something incredible. But add the next two steps—detached request and inspired action—and your further results are virtually guaranteed.
I’m calling it a “secret” prayer because your prayer should be between you and your inner connection to “All That Is.” I’ve learned that sharing your prayers with others could weaken their power. Rather than invite doubt or negativity, keep your prayer to yourself. Let it be a “secret” between you and Divinity.
Go get the book The Secret Prayer for your Kindle reader at http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XV1Q9JG
Or go get the audio version of the book, read by me, at http://www.audible.com/pd/Self-Development/The-Secret-Prayer-Audiobook/B00XWDOBCA/
Bob Bly inspired me to become a copywriter back in the late 1980s.
His books, such as The Copywriter’s Handbook, always informed me in a practical way. I began my business career as a copywriter in Houston because of him. He occasionally wrote me snail mail letters of encouragement. I stay in touch with him, too.
Today he is the author of 85 books.
I remember he once said he felt like he hadn’t produced much – that was back when he had “only” written fifty books – because he knew Isaac Asimov had written or edited more than five hundred books.
Boggles the mind, doesn’t it?
I’m running as fast as I can to catch up with Bly and Isimov.
Right now I have about fifty books out, am working on two books, editing an autobiography from my father, completing three music albums, working on new presentations for mega-talks I am giving this year around the world, developing a new process for faster attracting, practicing my saxophone, the guitar, and the synthophone, reading more books a week than most people do in a lifetime, and of course still maintaining my fitness program, writing these blog posts, handling social media, promoting my past projects (which is a giant catalog), helping my Miracles Coaches, and more. (And, of course, keeping my relationships alive and well.)
Some say I’m a “force of nature.”
Others say I should switch to decaf. 🙂
Why so much productivity?
What drives a man like Bob Bly or me? What drove Asimov?
An answer is in the new book, Create or Die: A Manifesto for Fearless Creators Everywhere, by Morgan Giddings, PhD.
Her basic premise is that unless you keep creating, you begin to die.
Life is designed to urge you to create, to move forward, to constantly expand, grow, develop, change and challenge.
In fact, challenging yourself is one of the best ways to maintain the exuberance of life.
According to Dr. Giddings, you don’t have a real choice.
Yes, you can decide to “do nothing” but life itself, being the great creative force it is, will move you off your bed if it has to get others to move you and it out the door.
And yes, as Asimov proves, you can create and still die.
But real living comes from persistent creating.
It’s not about the end result – as that will change again in time – but about creating.
There isn’t a “finish line” or even a “perfect” solution.
There will always be something else to create. Another problem to solve.
Life is about creativity. Period.
All of the problems in your personal life – and on the planet – can be resolved with creativity.
Whether oil shortage or climate change or anything else you are worried about, there is an answer, and that answer will come from creativity.
New problems will occur, but that’s just the nature of life’s ever expansion.
And that’s an opportunity for more creativity.
The wise approach is to challenge yourself by choosing your creative projects.
Let your passion lead the way.
Let your enthusiasm for an idea burn bright in your life.
One of my favorite sections in Dr. Giddings’ book is where she reveals the formula for attracting money.
It goes like this:
1. Use your creativity to create something of great value.
2. Use your creativity to effectively communicate the value of your invention, product, or service to others (market it).
She says everything else is just “playing the lottery.”
She also points out that you need a clear idea of what you want money for, and you need to be clear of any limiting beliefs about money, in order to actually have her formula work.
She writes, “Though a surface-level desire for money exists, it gets distorted and watered down by all these other beliefs that are floating around contradicting it. The contradictory beliefs dilute the singular focus that’s necessary for the kind of creative action that leads to results.”
I’m not sure what Bob Bly would say, and the late Asimov is no longer talking or writing, but in my own case, I am driven by the need to communicate what I am excited about.
It’s not about money – it’s about passion.
Money becomes the pleasant side effect of creating value and sharing it with the world in creative ways.
I am driven to create by the impulse of creativity itself.
My hunch is that everyone has this impulse — yes, even you — but most people are pros at rationalizing why they shouldn’t create.
Excuses are easy.
Wimping out is easy.
Just coasting is easy.
The challenge – and the voltage of life itself – comes from creating.
Ray Bradbury, the legendary sci-fi writer who wrote classic books and unforgettable stories – who wrote every day of his life – once said in an interview:
“There’s an Egyptian myth I heard about years ago that when you die as an Egyptian and you go off to visit the gods the first question asked of you at the gates of heaven is ‘Did you have enthusiasm?’ And if you answer negatively you don’t get in. My response to everything in life that I really loved has been enthusiasm.”
You most likely have a desire to create something.
A book, song, movie, business, product.
I have no idea what your secret creative urge might be.
But you do.
Dr. Giddings is giving you a wake up call.
Either create – or die.
And ignore the skeptics, critics, and cynics.
Dr. Giddings writes, “Cynicism is rooted in fear…Worse, it’s toxic to creativity. To be creative, it’s essential to express yourself fully, from your own unique vantage point.”
Critics and the like are living in fear and building themselves up by tearing others down.
Ignore them and pursue your dream.
“Creativity is an inside game,” Dr. Giddings writes. “It’s never about pleasing external critics. It’s about producing something that you feel is great, and then connecting with the right audience who will like whatever it is that you produced.”
I’m sure Bly and Isimov would nod in agreement.
Before I dismiss class today, here’s a final thought to consider:
One of my favorite authors during my development as a writer was Jack London, who once wrote –
“I would rather be ashes than dust!
I would rather that my spark should burn out
in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot.
I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom
of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.
The function of man is to live, not to exist.
I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them.
I shall use my time.”
Now, don’t you have something to create today?
PS – I didn’t want to write this post. I was tired, my eyes were blurry, I had other things to do. But the creative urge in me pushed from inside and said “Write this.” I obeyed. And guess what? I am not tired, my eyes are not blurry, and the other things I have to do are next. Follow your creativity. Live your dreams. Expect Miracles.