Is Esther and Abraham-Hicks a Cult?
A Law of Attraction Cult?
It's a little hard to believe at first glance, isn't it?
Claims about an Abraham Hicks cult first stirred after Rhonda Byrne's movie and book, The Secret, became an unexpected hit.
They also learned that all the footage involving or mentioning Abraham Hicks had been deleted after a dispute between Byrne and the Hicks, one which was settled with a substantial payout from Byrne.
Esther, Jerry & Abraham Hicks
Quick Look: The Abraham-Hicks Phenomena
Esther Hicks performances as Abraham, a collection of "nonphysical entities" of approximately one-hundred, including Jesus, and, more recently, the deceased Jerry Hicks, earned standing ovations as her popularity spread.
Adulation had her giddy as a school girl. She even called friends late at night, just to tell them about it. "They gave me a standing ovation," she purred to one friend, dropping any pretenses about Abraham.
To herself, Esther Hicks was the star.
There was a huge jump in interest about the Law of Attraction Cult, following the "Teachings of Abraham," the source material used to guide followers, some of whom tithe, like members of established churches. Concerns about a spiritually based cult circulated but, until recently, it seemed unfounded.
Heck, The Secret wasn't a secret anyway, and Esther and Jerry never claimed that the Law of Attraction was one, although they did falsely claim that it was invented by Abraham.
As reported in Kyra's Diary, they made a phony claim they'd originated the idea, a claim rebuffed when they applied for a trademark. The term had been in circulation since the New Thought Movement, early in the Twentieth Century.
Times change, of course.
The marketing focus from Abraham-Hicks Publishing grew fast in response to their widening popularity.
This once simple philosophy of exuberant, feel good abundance based on mental practices was being turned into a self-renewing sales vehicle, enrolling followers in subscriptions for repetitious material and a wide range of offshoot products.
The question is, is the Abraham Hicks Cult being retooled to better capture spiritual seekers and hold them in a web of narcissism for profit?
Following Jerry Hicks' death, in an early, revived workshop series, Esther Hicks hints strongly that she will be steering things hard toward cultism with an expanded claim on who she (as Abraham) is.
Here is what she told a San Diego workshop:
"We would like to speak on behalf of Seth, and God and Jesus and Buddha and all that have come before, and take it one step further into clarity and say that all of us from non-physical are having this moment."
Speak on behalf of Seth, God, Jesus and Buddha...?
A crazy claim, yes, but who imagines Seth, God, Jesus and Buddha need Esther Hicks to speak for them, unless they wanted to help her secure even more cash?
Some of The Best Teachings Are Ancient
Simple and straight forward rules to live by. Truth never gets old.
Basic Teachings of The Abraham Hicks Cult
The Law of Attraction (now the Vortex of Attraction)
I've listened to the earliest tapes Jerry Hicks made of his conversations with Esther acting as Abraham, who is claimed variously to take over Esther's vocal chords or to relay to her "blocks of thought" to be interpreted as verbal expressions.
When they still talked about Abraham s taking over Esther's voice, the speech was freaky and a bit off-putting, a man-ish voice with a strange, guttural accent, suspiciously like the one Sheila Gillette uses when she channels Theo.
(Esther and Jerry met with Sheila before Abraham came along.)
As their following grew, the accent gradually disappeared and the process went from a physical takeover to those "blocks of thought" that Esther interprets instantly in front of live audiences.
What else evolved were the teachings?
After Esther and Jerry began touring and selling books, the teachings coalesced around a simple three-step process.
First, You Ask
"First comes the asking," as Esther repeated a thousand times. Followers need to ask "the Universe" or "Source," dodging the use of God as a term, for what they want.
This is done by mentally focusing on the desired condition or object, and it was empowered by pressing emotions into the thought.
Often, they were desires as simple as better cars and even parking places, mostly practical things, and good health, money to pay off debts. Think of a big Cadillac and get the feeling of joy in driving it.
That's what worked.
"Step Two is not your work. The universe answers your request every time exactly. No exceptions!"
If you were perplexed because no car showed up in your driveway nor was there instantly a corner store with all your favorite flavors of ice cream just waiting, there was an answer for that: You weren't "lining up" with your desires.
"Step Three is your work. You have to let it in."
Esther Hicks preached something that had resonance for a lot of people.
In what they falsely claim as their first book, which lists "Jerry and Esther Hicks" as authors, the claim was that Abraham seized Esther's hands and forced her to start typing.
Initially, what came out was crude and rough, but the message from Abraham was, "We are going to write a book together."
The Abraham Hicks Cult Messaging
In Esther's Words
The simple message, none of which was really new, but was put together convincingly and with an attractive upbeat quality, was not going to be enough for too many seasons of seminars and cruises.
Elaborations began to be developed that added proactive complexity.
There were focus wheels, workshops and other exercises that Esther and Jerry pitched. More recently, there is the vortex.
As clearly as I can explain it, the vortex is that place where all the things you haven't let in rest in wait for you or, in a new twist, for the right timing.
The Vortex has been the subject of books and seminars, of course, and now, the Abraham-Hicks machine has started hard-selling guided meditations.
In a pitch so transparent it made me laugh a little, Jerry exclaimed:
"Abraham says, 'This will get you into the vortex!'"
So, they now had nonphysical beings shilling products directly.
Abraham-Hicks has the same qualities as other commercial entities. Momentum must be sustained or a collapse starts.
Fresh products and services must be developed and sold. Usually, commercial entities are wrestling for your cash, not your soul, but that's another story.
A strategy seems to be developing that may be geared to corralling their followers into a cult-like gathering.
Because the teachings were always so upbeat, it seemed a less likely direction for them to take.
Then came this: Esther Hicks, speaking as Abraham:
"In other words, those of you who are physical counterparts of the Non-physical family of teachers, in this case, specifically of ABRAHAM, are highly evolved beings who know your power, and so there is this feeling, sometimes, a frustrating one of being trapped in the mundaneness of the physical. It would be like knowing you are an eagle who can soar and then having somebody clip your wings, and say, You are an eagle, but here, eagles don't fly. And so, you're walking around on the ground, knowing, remembering what it was like to fly, but not being able to get off the ground. And that is the whole point of our discussion with you, here."
What was striking initially was that Abraham had always previously expressed envy at the joys of physical life, which they argue is a cutting edge expansion of the nonphysical realm in search of happiness.
Suddenly, we had the "being trapped in the mundaneness of the physical."
The scary part came next when Esther informed followers that they were specially chose...
"physical counterparts of the Non-physical family of teachers, in this case, specifically of ABRAHAM, eagles with their wings clipped."
Setting followers apart as special people who had their "wings clipped," especially as it's a radical departure from what came before seems nothing short of segue into cult-building.
Guided meditations, where good old, every day meditation like the rest of us use and what had for twenty years been more than good enough for Jerry and Esther, now draws in a little of the mind control spice that flavors all cults.
Esther and Jerry Hicks insist that they were "guided" by Abraham, the collection of about one-hundred nonphysical entities, to produce these guided meditations that Abraham says will get you "into the vortex," which they claim is where your real self resides, no longer just your unfulfilled wishes.
Clusters Arrive at The Abraham Hicks Cult
A new twist
As a final note, I'll quote Esther (as Abraham) one more time:
"Also, this is what you're reaching for. It's big, and it's accurate and you know it, and we'll say it anyway.You come forth in clusters with intentions to enhance one another's experience. And when you meet up with your cluster, it's really fun!"
The long established individuality is being replaced with "clusters.""...and you know it..."
Time for Your Opinion
Is Abraham-Hicks a Cult?
© 2010 David Stone