Upton Sinclair: The Profits of Religion

Book Six - The Church of the Quacks

"Dollars Want Me"

I turn to the shelves of pamphlets. Here is a pretty one called "All Sufficiency in All Things," published by the "Unity School of Christianity," in Kansas City; it explains that God is God, not merely of the soul, but also of the Kansas City stockyards.

This divine Substance is ever abiding within us, and stands ready to manifest itself in whatever form you and I need or wish, just as it did in Elisha's time. It is the same yesterday, today and forever. Abundant Supply by the manifestation of the Father within us, from within outward, is as much a legitimate outcome of the Christ life or spiritual understanding as is bodily healing. ... "Knowing that I am God - all of God, Good, all of Good. I am life. I am Health. I am Supply. I am the Substance."

And here is W.W. Atkinson of Chicago, author of a work called "Mind Power." Would you like to be an Impressive Personality? Mr. Atkinson will tell you exactly how to do it; he will give you the secret of the Magnetic Handclasp, of the Intense, Straight-in-the-eye Look; he will tell you what to say, he will write out "for you Incantations which you may pronounce to yourself, to convince yourself that you have Power, that the INDWELLING PRESENCE with all its MIGHT is yours. Mr. Atkinson rebukes mildly the tendency of some of his fellow Bootstrap- lifters to employ these arts for money-making; you notice that his magazine, "Advanced Thought," does not decline the advertisements of such too-practical practitioners.

Next comes a gentleman with the musical name of Wallace Wattles, who tells in one pamphlet "How to Be a Genius," and in another pamphlet "How to Get What You Want." The thing for you to do is -

Saturate your mentality through and through with the knowledge that YOU CAN DO WHAT YOU WANT TO DO. ... Look upon the peanut-stand merely as the beginning of the department store, and make it grow; you can.

And Mr. Wattles wattles on, in an ecstasy of acquisitiveness:

Hold this consciousness and say with deep, earnest feeling: I CAN succeed! All that is possible to any one is possible to me. I AM success. I do succeed, for I am full of the Power of Success.

Imagine, if you please, a poor devil chained in the treadmill of the capitalist system - a "soda-jerker," a "counter-jumper," a bookkeeper for the Steel Trust. His chances of rising in life are one in 10,000; but he comes to the Metaphysical Library, and pays the price of his dinner for a pamphlet by Henry Harrison Brown, who was first a Unitarian clergyman, and then an extra-high Bootstrap-lifter in San Francisco, an Honorary Vice-President of the International New Nonsense Alliance. Mr. Brown will tell our soda-jerker or counter-jumper exactly how to elevate himself by mental machinery. All calculations of probabilities are delusions of the senses; if you have faith, you can move, not merely mountains, but Riker-Hegeman's Macy's, or the Steel Trust. "How to Promote Yourself" is the title of one of Mr. Brown's pamphlets, in which he explains that -

Your wants are impressed on the Divine Mind only by your faith. A doubt cuts the connection.

A second pamphlet, which we are told is now in its 30th edition, bears the thrilling title of "Dollars Want Me!" In it Mr. Brown lays claim to being a pioneer:

I believe that this little monograph is the first utterance of the thought that each individual has the ability so to radiate his mental forces that he can cause the Dollars to feel him, love him, seek him, and thus draw at will all things needed for his unfoldment from the universal supply.

"What are Dollars?" asks our author; and answers:

Dollars are manifestations of the One Infinite Substance as you are, but, unlike you, they are not Self- Conscious. They have no power till you give them power. Make them feel this through your thought-vibrations as you feel the importance of your work. They will then come to you to be used.

"What is Poverty?" Mr. Brown asks, and answers himself:

Poverty is a mental condition. It can be cured only by the Affirmation of Power to cure: I am a part of the One, and, in the One, I possess all! Affirm this and patiently wait for the manifestation. You have sown the thought seed.

And our author goes on to hand out packages of these thought-seeds - "Affirmations" as they are called, in the jargon of the New Conjuring:

I desire a deep consciousness of financial freedom.
I desire that the flow of prosperity become equalized.
I desire a greater consciousness of my power to attract the dollar.
The Indwelling Power cares for my purse.
I own whatever I desire.
I can afford to use dollars for my happiness.
I always have a good bank account. I actually see it.
My one idea of the law is to use, use, USE.

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