Today we’ll be taking a look at the top five sages of wealth, who they were and what exactly they taught. Let’s kick things off with number five:
5. Napoleon Hill
Oliver Napoleon Hill was an American self-help author. He is known best for his book: ‘Think and Grow Rich’ which is among the 10 best selling self-help books of all time. Hill’s works insisted that fervid expectations are essential to improving one’s life. Most of his books were promoted as expounding principles to achieve “success”.
During 1937, Hill published the best-selling book Think and Grow Rich, which became Hill’s best-known work. Hill’s new wife Rosa Lee Beeland contributed substantially to the authoring and editing of Think and Grow Rich. Hill’s biographers would later say this book sold 20 million copies over 50 years. A “secret” of achievement was discussed in Think and Grow Rich, but Hill insisted readers would benefit most if they discovered it for themselves. Although he did not explicitly identify this secret in the book, he offered, 20 pages into the book:
“If you truly desire money so keenly that your desire is an obsession, you will have no difficulty in convincing yourself that you will acquire it. The object is to want money, and to be so determined to have it that you convince yourself that you will have it…You may as well know, right here, that you can never have riches in great quantities unless you work yourself into a white heat of desire for money, and actually believe you will possess it.”
4. Joseph Murphy
At number four on our list is Joseph Denis Murphy (born May 20, 1898), an Irish-born American author and New Thought minister, ordained in Divine Science and Religious Science. Dr. Murphy could not accept all the thoughts of orthodoxes. He made his Belief in the Power of Human mind and brain, peace and meditation. He was greatly affected by the Hindu philosophy. The Hindu ideas about love, faith, desire, inner peace molded his thoughts and he then successfully spread these ideas all over the world. He taught people how to unleash their inner energies of brain to gain skill and success. In 1949 he became the minister of the Los Angeles Divine Science Church, which he built into one of the largest New Thought congregations in the country.
In his book: ‘The Power of Your Subconscious Mind’ he wrote:
“I like money, I love it, I use it wisely, constructively, and judiciously. Money is constantly circulating in my life. I release it with joy, and it returns to me multiplied in a wonderful way. It is good and very good. Money flows to me in avalanches of abundance. I use it for good only, and I am grateful for my good and for the riches of my mind.”
3. Neville Goddard
At number three is Neville Lancelot Goddard (1905-1972). Neville Goddard was a prophet, a profoundly influential teacher, and author. He did not associate himself as a metaphysician, with any ‘ism’ or ‘New Thought’ teaching as commonly advertised by these collective groups. Goddard was sent to illustrate the teachings of psychological truth intended in the Biblical teachings, and restore awareness of meaning to what the ancients intended to tell the world. In books, radio, TV, recordings, and lectures, Neville revealed the law of imagining–creating wishes fulfilled by using certain imaginal techniques. In: ‘Your Faith is Your Fortune’, he wrote:
“Change your conception of yourself and you will automatically change the world in which you live. Do not try to change people; they are only messengers telling you who you are. Revalue yourself and they will confirm the change.”
2. Wallace Wattles
At number two on our list we have Wallace Delois Wattles (1860–1911), an American New Thought writer. He remains personally somewhat obscure, but his writing has been widely quoted and remains in print in the New Thought and self-help movements. Wattles’ best known work is a 1910 book called: ‘The Science of Getting Rich’ in which he explains how to become wealthy.
In 1896 in Chicago, Illinois, Wattles attended “a convention of reformers” and met George Davis Herron, a Congregational Church minister and professor of Applied Christianity at Grinnell College who was then attracting nationwide attention by preaching a form of Christian Socialism. After meeting Herron, Wattles became a social visionary and began to expound upon what Florence called “the wonderful, social message of Jesus.” According to Florence, he at one time had held a position in the Methodist Church, but was ejected for his “heresy”.
Through his personal study and experimentation Wattles claimed to have discovered the truth of New Thought principles and put them into practice in his own life. He also advocated the then-popular health theories of “The Great Masticator” Horace Fletcher as well as the “NoBreakfast Plan” of Edward Hooker Dewey, which he claimed to have applied to his own life. He wrote books outlining these principles and practices, giving them titles that described their content, such as Health Through New Thought and Fasting and The Science of Being Great. His daughter Florence recalled that “he lived every page” of his books.
A practical author, Wattles encouraged his readers to test his theories on themselves rather than take his word as an authority, and he claimed to have tested his methods on himself and others before publishing them. Wattles practiced the technique of creative visualization. In his daughter Florence’s words, he “formed a mental picture” or visual image, and then “worked toward the realization of this vision”.
Florence also said of her Father, that: “He wrote almost constantly. It was then that he formed his mental picture. He saw himself as a successful writer, a personality of power, an advancing man, and he began to work toward the realization of this vision. He lived every page. His life was truly the powerful life.”
1. Ernest Holmes
And at the top of our sages list is Ernest Holmes, an American New Thought writer, teacher, and leader. He was the founder of a Spiritual movement known as Religious Science, part of the greater New Thought movement, whose spiritual philosophy is known as “The Science of Mind.” He was the author of The Science of Mind and numerous other metaphysical books, and the founder of Science of Mind magazine, in continuous publication since 1927. His books remain in print, and the principles he taught as “Science of Mind” have inspired and influenced many generations of metaphysical students and teachers. Holmes had previously studied another New Thought teaching, Divine Science, and was an ordained Divine Science Minister. His influence beyond New Thought can be seen in the self-help movement.
In 1919 he published his first book, The Creative Mind, and after almost a decade of touring Holmes committed to remaining in the L.A. area to complete his major work, The Science of Mind. It was published in 1926. Holmes taught New Thought in a Christian context in his church. The primary teaching of New Thought is that physical form is created by a Universal Mind, or God, which manifests — or literally reflects — the dominant belief system of all living persons. In his book, the Science of Mind, Holmes described this God-force as follows:
“There is a Universal Mind, Spirit, Intelligence, that is the origin of everything: It is First Cause. It is God. This Universal Life and Energy finds an outlet in and through all that is energized, and through everything that lives.”
Holmes argued that human beings have access to the power of this Universal Mind by directing their thoughts — in particular, their beliefs about the present or the future. In his book, he described this as follows:
“Experience has taught us that the subjective tendency of this intelligent Law of creative force may consciously be directed and definitively used. This is the greatest discovery of all time.”
In the Science of Mind, Holmes explains how it is possible to direct this power by controlling one’s thoughts. A sustained belief in a particular outcome will invariably create that outcome. In other words, good events proceed from a belief in good. Evil events proceed from a belief in evil. Holmes emphasized the importance of only focusing on good:
“Never look at that which you do not wish to experience. No matter what the false condition may be, it must be refuted. The proper kind of denial is based upon the recognition that, in reality, there is no limitation, for Mind can as easily make a planet as an acorn. The Infinite knows no difference between a million dollars and a penny. It only knows that IT IS.”
In order to get results, Holmes emphasized that it was necessary to think one specific thought, with complete certainty. If one is continually thinking different thoughts, the Universal Mind will not have a dominant belief that it can manifest, or create, in the physical world. Holmes explained this idea as follows:
“So plastic is mind, so receptive, that the slightest thought makes an impression upon it. People who think many kinds of thought must expect to receive a confused manifestation in their lives. If a gardener plants a thousand kinds of seeds, he will get a thousand kinds of plants; it is the same in mind.”