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The Whitstable Gazette: The Law of Attraction, 2012 and other strange conceits

Updated on January 3, 2017

Stories first appeared in the Whitstable Gazette.

The Law of Attraction

I keep getting emails from someone called Bethea. She claims to know me, addresses me familiarly as “Chris” at least once in every paragraph, and signs herself “your friend”.

One of the emails is entitled “Chris, it’s your birthright to be rich”. It turns out that it is an exclusive, risk-free offer which will give me the benefit of thousands of years of belief in traditional and spiritual artefacts that can lead to a better life.

It is, of course, a life-changing opportunity.

I’ve had at least nine of these emails in the last two weeks. Bethea has clearly been busy with the keyboard writing all of these individual, personalised letters to me. I wouldn’t dream of accusing her of having a computer programme which generates these letters automatically.

The “traditional and spiritual artefact” she is offering turns out to be something called a “Phaya Taoreuan” amulet.

Don’t ask me what “Phaya Taoreuan” means, but Bethea assures me that it really is possible for me to experience the security of a permanent flow of abundance and wealth.

Actually, I’ve just noticed how cleverly it is written. She talks about the amulet in one sentence, then she talks about wealth, but at no point does she directly link the two. It’s all implied.

In these times of economic hardship there is a definite market for this kind of hocus-pocus.

There is a whole spiritual sub-genre which goes under the name of “The Law of Attraction”. It claims you can make yourself rich by positive thinking. When people try this method and then fail to get rich it is always because they aren’t thinking positively enough.

They must have had a sneaky little negative thought which wiped out all of their positive, wealth-creating energy. Nothing to do with the fact that “The Law of Attraction” is little more than a giant pyramid scheme selling wish-fulfilment fantasy.

The only people who become rich using The Law of Attraction are the ones who are selling the books.

As to how the bankers in the City of London got to be so amazingly wealthy: we’ve found out their secret at last.

They must all be wearing Phaya Taoreuan amulets.

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Driver's License

My Dad has just had his driver’s license taken off him, having failed his compulsory eye-test. I drove him back from the test centre.

When we got home I told Mum. She gave me one of her furious looks and said, “They take everything off you when you’re old except humiliation.”

I thought, “but they haven’t taken your tongue off you yet have they Mum?”

The man at the test centre was very nice. You could see he didn’t want Dad to fail. He got him to read a number plate from varying distances, but it wasn’t till they got to nine and a half metres that Dad could see it clearly. You are supposed to be able to read a number plate from 21 meters apparently.

The question is, why would you need to read a number plate from 21 metres? Who needs to read number plates when they’re driving? The important thing is that you can see the brake lights, the indicators and the reverse lights.

Also, why 21 metres?

It seems that 21 metres is the distance between those chevrons they have on motorways which help you to judge your stopping distance.

In other words, 21 metres is the stopping distance for someone travelling at 70 mph on a motorway.

My Dad stopped driving on motorways years ago. He only used the car to pootle around town, or up to Tesco to do the shopping. He never travelled at more than 25 mph. He also never travelled in the dark. Whenever he had any distance to cover he would ask me to drive.

It seems a bit harsh to me. Dad is actually a good driver, very cautious and observant. I can’t remember the last time he had an accident.

Yes, maybe people above a certain age shouldn’t be allowed to drive on motorways, but to stop them driving altogether seems grossly unfair.

Meanwhile Mum is threatening to throw him out.

“You’re no good to me now are you?” she says, pointedly, and adds that she’s looking for an available taxi driver to take his place.


An Optimists Considers 2012

An optimist is someone who believes that things will always turn out for the best. A pessimist is someone who believes that things will always turn out for the worst.

They are both right about half the time, and wrong about half the time. The difference is that the optimist has a far better time while he's at it.

But it’s kind of hard being an optimist these days. There is so much bad news to contend with, what with global economic meltdown, wars, rumours of wars, nations rising up against nations and all the rest. It’s all getting very biblically apocalyptic all of a sudden.

And if you go on the internet it’s even worse. There are some very disturbing predictions going about. Try putting “2012” or “Nibiru” into your search engine to see what turns up.

According to some websites, Nibiru is an undiscovered planet even now reeling it’s way drunkenly into our solar system on a collision course with our world, while December the 21st 2012 is the day the Mayan calendar draws to the end of its 5126 year cycle.

There’s talk of volcanic eruptions and giant comets, not to speak of polar shifts and mass extinctions which will wipe out the majority of life on the planet. Some people even say that it is the end of the world as we know it.

Mind you, people have been telling me it’s the end of the world for as long as I’ve been alive. The difference is that in the old days they just stood on street corners and shouted at you.

That’s the trouble with the internet. You might think it’s very high tech and modern, but actually it’s more like a million crazy people all standing on a street corner and shouting at you at the same time.

Personally I’m an optimist. I realised a long time a go that when human beings talk about the end of the world, what they really mean is the end of the human race.

And maybe that wouldn’t be such a bad thing after all.


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    • AskAshlie3433 profile image


      7 years ago from WEST VIRGINIA

      I have looked into all of this and I am a believer. I thank something will happen. There are too many civilaizations, saying the same things, for it not to be somewhat true. Great hub CJ Best wishes.

    • profile image 

      7 years ago

      The problem with the Law of Attraction is the lag time for manifestation. We are always using the law of attraction to create our realities. We just are not very good at it collectively.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Thanks Sue, I know. If you look I've incorporated it into the article.

    • profile image

      Sue Brand 

      7 years ago

      The song about the ant and the rubber tree plant is 'High Hopes'

      Loved you articles CJS, look forward to more

    • profile image

      Sha'La Lightwolf 

      7 years ago

      i also get emails from Beathea, i order a couple of things. not rich yet. i am glad i read your post. it is sad but true.

      i think karma is real because i have definally experienced it. and what goes around comes around. i try and do and be good and i suggest others do to. maybe Beathea believes her stuff can make a difference i don't know about all those things but if she is just out for quick buck she will have someone do her the same way. any way hope you have a nice ,commplete and happy day.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      DC: No, the pessimist has exactly the same amount of water in his glass, he just spends more time moaning about it.

    • profile image

      D.C Gallin 

      7 years ago

      ...and a pessimist must be kind of thirsty all the time...The optimist knows there is enough water in the glass :)

    • Bard of Ely profile image

      Steve Andrews 

      7 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      Chris, I have outdone myself with manifesting strange things into my life and applying the LOA: I have now, and after many years of searching, located a box of my LP records that were never delivered from 1994 and have the possibility of getting some at least. The only problem is they have been in a damp and mouldy cellar in Germany where there are rats! The guy who released the album all those years back and promised to release Fred Frantic as well but never did, says they will need cleaning and the box is "rotten with rat crap." He has found 8 that are clean and OK though and is sending them. Wish I could attract some money though cos I still haven't been able to manifest that!

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      kimh039: glad you like my writing style. Mostly I just write to amuse, so it's probably wise to ignore my opinions on most things.

      Nellieanna, why not check out the Mayan calendar on the internet? It's a fascinating subject.

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 

      7 years ago from TEXAS

      Ah. I now know more about the Mayan calendar. But the cycles, like the counting of time itself, is a formality, a convenience for humans to deal with the vast ALL in which we are such a minor part. I would love to know more about these cycles which the Mayans honored. Thanks for the peek.

    • kimh039 profile image

      Kim Harris 

      7 years ago

      CJ, I was wondering where my friend Bethea had gone! I bet if you had forwarded her emails to your Dad, he'd still be driving! (just kidding, and sad about your Dad) I enjoy your skilled writing style so much, it doesn't matter so much whether I agree or disagree with your opinions! Thanks.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Mr Happy, I will amend my last comment. Does it work? Probably not.

      Anne pleased to hear you are altering your neural pathways for free. You could set up a workshop and charge people money to come to it.

      Paraglider: my Dad probably wishes he could still drive around in 2nd gear. He's got one of those buggies now which at least means he gets around, but ain't so good for the self-esteem.

      Pammie, yes I remember that song too. Whoops there goes another rubber tree plant. What was it called?

      Nellieanna: the Mayan calendar is an astonishing achievement, the greatest time-keeping device in history, until the advent of the atomic clock, incredibly accurate, but as to why it stops in 2012, that may be just that that is when the new cycle begins, that's all. It's not that it ends, it's that it "clicks over" into another cycle.

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 

      7 years ago from TEXAS

      Excellent observations and cautions, CJ. You are always so clear-headed and also keep a sense of humor about it.

      Since no one really knows the future, and all subjective attitudes are matters of subjective personal choice, nothing wrong with choosing a positive one, which does, indeed, "color" one's view of whatever DOES happen, which isn't a future event when it happens, but simply another present moment.

      So long as one realizes that it is an insecure reality in which one WILL have one's personal ups and downs and WILL have one's personal end, then if there is an end to humanity as a whole, who will be around to bemoan it or say "I told you so"? haha. Of course the stock in trade of these commercial promoters of future expectations of doom (why never nirvana? maybe people are more sceptical about postitivity?) - is their implied promise that if one follows their lead, somehow one will sidestep the annihilation. If it were actually so, quite a bargan for $10.99 or whatever the price of the book, seminar, or program! Ha! And who will be around to claim a refund in the event it's not so? haha.

      I'd never heard of The Law of Attraction or even The Power of Positive Thinking when I decided to raise the sites of my mental attitude to think positively and noticed it seemed to at least shine light on cheerier views of the reality which is in progress. After all, one's mind regulates many of the body's functions and takes its cues from expectations, and much of any personal experience of an occurrence is one's own reception and perception of it. But it's silly to ignore factors which are not.

      I realized that I'm "an optimistic realist" or a "realistic optimist". No one promoted it or made a penny off it. It came from personal experience and clear view of reality. Otherwise, I might have succumbed to negativity (also a salable commodity - just watch the commercials for prescription drugs!) We're all well-advised to question and weigh what comes into our line of vision. We must be alert and aware and use a clear-eyed filtering system for what comes IN and perhaps more realistic and accepting sense of our own innate wisdom.

      I laugh at the idea that the Mayan calendar-makers possessed some super-sense of the future. It simply had to stop somewhere. The calculations were just that, not a crystal ball. In fact, it was pretty far-reaching & ambitious for those people to project it over 5000 years into the future! Maybe they considered stopping @ 4000 years but one old diehard said "Oh come on, guys. Are you trying to limit our culture? What will people in the future think if we just stop it arbitrarily?"

      Then someone else was miffed when he wanted to go on past 5126, but objector #1got a hand-delivered message from his wife and had to go home and rake leaves, so he called a halt to the calculations and dismissed the crew while this other diehard tried to keep them on it, thinking 6000 had a nice ring to it and they were so close, and why not trudge on? But they all welcomed a break and said maybe they'd come back later and go for 6000, but once they were out of there, there was no way they'd come back and resume the tiresome project!

      They were human and had their individual and community ambitions & limitations just like other humans. A repetitious project beyond any possible foreseeable use was bound to be abandoned at some point. Enough is enough. For them it was at 5126 years and ended in what we think of, with our own arbitrary calendar, as 2012. There have been numerous projected "end of the world" moments in time which have passed along with the others. Their advocates did indeed end when they reached "a certain age" - but they didn't foresee that accurately, either, more than likely.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Hello CJStone,

      enjoyed both and had smile at the driving one but poor Dad,jandee

    • Karanda profile image

      Karen Wilton 

      7 years ago from Australia

      That was a great read Chris. Gave me a laugh at the end of the day. I, too, am an optimist so I was determined not to let the day pass with out some good coming from it. Your story gave me that 50/50 feeling so I guess I'm halfway up now.

    • Jeremey profile image


      7 years ago from Arizona

      Very enjoyable read, thanks. I have to go google Niburu!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      This is not a new way of thinking I remember being young and there was a rather bad song always being played on the wireless about ants moving a rubber tree plant ( if they believed they could ).

      Fab read Thankd Chris

    • Paraglider profile image

      Dave McClure 

      7 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

      Hi Chris - My mum gave up driving gradually, one gear at a time. At 82, she never got past 2nd gear but was still tootling daily to her coffee mornings. And in 2nd gear, who needs brakes? Lift your foot and the car just stops!

    • profile image

      Anne Stewart 

      7 years ago

      Law of Attraction costs money apparently................we can all alter our neuro pathways......we don't have to pay for it!

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      Haha, I love Mrs. Lynda's comment!

      Indeed I do not think the Law of Attraction is a law. It is (in my opinon) a good way to think and act positively. I heard a native man say that to be a man you have to think with your mind and your heart. I find many people nowadays only think with their head so to speak. I do not think that by thinking with your heart something bad can come out of it (except when it comes to lustfull love I suppose). The thinking with the heart is in most cases I would say, positive thinking. That must be used with reason, logic and perseverance and as the saying goes: "Nothing's impossible, it just costs more."

      I for the most part try to think positively although I see much grief.

      P.S. Here you go thinking negatively Mr. CJStone by saying the Law of Attraction doesn't work. lol I'm joking - to each their own, that's what I say.

    • someonewhoknows profile image


      7 years ago from south and west of canada,north of ohio

      I think if,the story of Noah and the ark is,in fact true then,he would be percieved as an optimist by some as he was utilizing his talents to build the very item that would be his saving grace.

      Those who had not believed in his warning could be seen as pessimists or optimists depending on what happened.

    • lmmartin profile image


      7 years ago from Alberta and Florida

      The magical thinking of I want it to be, so it shall be is not only the foolishness of individuals, but governments. The culture of positive thinking is just another way to slough of responsibility. If you're poor, it must be your own fault, your own negative thoughts. When did this begin? When did we become the dupes of such an obviously flawed mentality? One finds it in all avenues of life -- health care: a positive mental attitude can beat cancer -- did you know?

      The Law of Attraction is not a law. Gravity is a law. The Law of Attraction is another scam to make us avoid seeing the real problems. I want it, therefore it will come... We should have outgrown this by the age of six.

      Good hub. Lynda

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      It's OK to think positively Mr Happy, as long as it doesn't undermine your critical faculties or give you a false view of reality. As for paying for the book, that's OK too. Someone spent some time writing it, so they deserve to be paid. The question is: does it work? And the answer is: no.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 

      7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      For the Law of Attraction to work you don't need to buy anything or go to any seminars. A teacher is not required. To think positively cannot do one any harm I would say. Thus, I have nothing against the idea behind the Law of Attraction and if I spent a few bucks on "The Secret" I do not regret it because it was an interesting read anyhow.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Yes I do know this. I'm used to my Mum's humour. I had to grow up with it remember.

    • msorensson profile image


      7 years ago

      I am so glad you can take your Mom shopping. That was so funny what you wrote. Women do say such things..."You're no good to me now"..but only as a form of endearment.

      I am sure you know this.

      Yes..we all have those moments of stupidity...even the must have been a requirement to be a fool before one becomes wise, or is it the other way around?

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      No problem Marie. Glad you liked it.

      Amanda, yes he's been a bit glum ever since he lost his license. It was a blow to his sense of independence I suspect. As for 2012: that is the end of the Mayan calendar, that's all. No significance beyond the fact that the Mayan people stopped calculating beyond this point.

    • Amanda Severn profile image

      Amanda Severn 

      7 years ago from UK

      Your poor old Dad. I remember when my Dad had to give up driving for similar reasons. And of course my Mum never learned to drive, so that was the end of their country jaunts. Too sad.

      Strangely enough three different people have mentioned 2012 to me today. Maybe it's the Law of Attraction in action? I wonder whether something strange and wonderful will indeed happen in 2012. Only two years to go and we'll find out for sure. Perhaps it will be like the Millenium bug panic.

    • profile image

      Marie Frabutt 

      7 years ago

      Chris as usual you have written another great article. Thank you for sharing this with me.

    • CJStone profile imageAUTHOR

      Christopher James Stone 

      7 years ago from Whitstable, UK

      Hello msorensson, that was very quick! Glad you agree re the Law of so-called Attraction, and wise not to comment on intergalactic wars. My Dad is fine, it's me who has to take my Mum shopping these days. I quite enjoyed Bethea's emails as it reminded me of how stupid people can be - myself included I suspect. We all have our own particular blind spots.

    • msorensson profile image


      7 years ago

      To this, I must agree "The only people who become rich using The Law of Attraction are the ones who are selling the books."

      I shall not comment on intergalactic wars, alien invasion and ascension.

      I am sorry about your has to come to all of us sometime. The older I get, the more careful I am, and I am not even affected by people honking at me because I refuse to take that millisecond intervals between cars when I an turning right at the stop light. I have time. I can wait, and I am never in a hurry to go anywhere.

      I hope Bethea has gotten your message that you are not interested.


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