Norman Vincent Peale’s appearances in the Crystal Cathderal on the Hour of Power with Robert Schuller (1985-1987) includes 4 messages and an interview with he and his wife Ruth Stafford Peale.
This is an audiobook reminding us to stay positive in life to get the results you want and need. A reminder to stay positive, no matter what you’re going through. #PositiveThinking55:19image was changed and he was finally55:22able to pass his test without incident55:26everyone faces crises by anticipating55:30the worst we tend to freeze unable to55:33function properly but by substituting55:36the power of imagination by55:38Imaging throwing mind and heart over the55:41obstacle it can be overcome the result55:45inevitably follows the thrust of the55:47mind now for the fourth element of55:50successful achievement put strong55:53positive thoughts behind your goal never55:58let negative thoughts surround you for56:01the negative thinker unleashes56:04destructive forces that can destroy him56:08it’s the law of attraction at work like56:11attracts like thoughts of a kind have a56:15natural affinity by sending out negative56:18thoughts the negative thinker activates56:21the world around him negatively he tends56:25to draw back to himself negative results56:29the positive thinker on the other hand56:32sends out optimistic thoughts and thus56:35activates the world around him56:37positively on the basis of the same law56:40of attraction he draws back to himself56:43positive thoughts he works and keeps on56:47working he thinks and keeps on thinking56:50he believes and keeps on believing he56:53never lets up never gives in he gives56:57the effort the full treatment of57:00positive faith and action result his57:04dreams come true he can because he57:09thinks he can57:10[Music]57:18as you encounter life’s challenges or as57:23you dream your dreams never write off57:27anything as impossible remember you have57:32the mental capacity to think your way57:34through any problem if you draw fully57:38upon your mind think hopefully get your57:42mental powers really working and things57:46can turn out better than they now appear57:49here are some proven techniques that can57:52help you meet your setbacks head-on and57:54accomplish your goals57:56remember the problem-solving process57:59first no get to know your problem study58:04it until you find the soft spot then58:07break it apart second think use your58:11head your mind is a powerful tool stay58:15cool and think straight the answer is58:18there if you let it come third believe58:23believe in yourself trust your ability58:27to see your crisis through to the end58:29repeat to yourself I can I can I can if58:35you want to accomplish something keep58:38these thoughts in mind have a sharply58:41focused goal pray about your goal to58:46make sure it’s right for you picture58:49your goal clearly in your mind and don’t58:52let that image fade work and keep on58:57working always take a positive and59:00optimistic attitude when you maintain a59:03positive frame of mind good things are59:06drawn to you and ultimately they59:09influence the outcome of your endeavors59:12everyone encounters defeating factors in59:15life but those who think they can do not59:19give in by drawing upon their inner59:23powers of mind and spirit they simply59:27refuse to be defeated59:29they know that even the most difficult59:32situations can be overcome so they59:36proceed to overcome them the hopeful59:39thinker projects hope and faith both59:43miracle elements into the darkest59:47situation and lights it up as long as59:51you keep the crippling thought of defeat59:54out of your mind59:55defeat cannot defeat you you can be a60:00winner i’m norman vincent peale i hope60:05you’ve enjoyed this and i wish you the60:08best things always this has been a60:20presentation of simon & schuster audio
As the novel coronavirus has spread across the globe, President Trump has repeated one phrase like a mantra: It will go away.Since February Trump has said the virus will “go away” at least 15 times, most recently on May 15.“It’s going to disappear one day,” he said on February 27. “It’s like a miracle.”Invoking a miracle is an understandable response during a pandemic, but to some, the President’s insistence that the coronavirus will simply vanish sounds dangerously like magical thinking — the popular but baffling idea that we can mold the world to our liking, reality be damned.The coronavirus, despite Trump’s predictions, has not disappeared. It has spread rapidly, killing more than 90,000 Americans.In that light, Trump’s response to the pandemic, his fulsome self-praise and downplaying of mass death seems contrary to reality. But long ago, his biographers say, Trump learned how to craft his own version of reality, a lesson he learned in an unlikely place: a church.It’s called the “power of positive thinking,” and Trump heard it from the master himself: the Rev. Norman Vincent Peale, a Manhattan pastor who became a self-help juggernaut, the Joel Osteen of the 1950s.“He thought I was his greatest student of all time,” Trump has said.Undoubtedly, the power of positive thinking has taken Trump a long way — through multiple business failures to the most powerful office in the world.Trump has repeatedly credited Peale — who died in 1993 — and positive thinking with helping him through rough patches.“I refused to be sucked into negative thinking on any level, even when the indications weren’t great,” Trump said of the early 1990s, when his casinos were tanking and he owed creditors billions of dollars.But during a global public health crisis there can be a negative side to positive thinking.“Trump pretending that this pandemic will just go away is not just an unacceptable fantasy,” said Christopher Lane, author of “Surge of Piety: Norman Vincent Peale and the Remaking of American Religious Life.”“It is in the realm of dangerous delusion.”
Trump says Peale has made him feel better about himselfThough they were professed Presbyterians, it’s more accurate to call Trump’s family Peale-ites.On Sundays, Trump’s businessman father drove the family from Queens to Peale’s pulpit at Marble Collegiate Church in Manhattan.The centuries-old edifice was, and remains, the closest thing Trump has to a family church. Funerals for both of his parents were held there, and Peale presided over Trump’s marriage to Ivana at Marble Collegiate in 1977. Two of his siblings were also married in the sanctuary.The draw, Trump’s biographers say, was Peale, who elevated businessmen like the Trumps to saint-like status as crusaders of American capitalism.Known as “God’s Salesman,” Peale wrote many self-help books, including “The Power of Positive Thinking,” that sold millions of copies.Peale drew throngs of followers, but also sharp criticism from Christians who accused him of cherry-picking Bible verses and peddling simplistic solutions.But the young Donald Trump was hooked.“He would instill a very positive feeling about God that also made me feel positive about myself,” Trump writes in “Great Again,” one of his books. “I would literally leave that church feeling like I could listen to another three sermons.”Peale peppered his sermons with pop psychology. Sin and guilt were jettisoned in favor of “spirit-lifters,” “energy-producing thoughts” and “7 simple steps” to happy living.“Attitudes are more important than facts,” Peale preached, a virtual prophecy of our post-truth age.“Formulate and stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding,” Peale writes in “The Power of Positive Thinking.”“Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade.”
Peale has also influenced Trump’s spiritual advisersTo this day, Trump surrounds himself with Peale-like figures, particularly prosperity gospel preachers.One of his closest spiritual confidantes, Florida pastor Paula White, leads the White House’s faith-based office and is a spiritual descendent of Peale’s positive thinking — with a Pentecostal twist.White, a televangelist, belongs to the Word of Faith movement, which teaches that God bestows health and wealth on true believers.In a Rose Garden ceremony for the National Day of Prayer earlier this month, White quoted from the Bible’s Book of Job: “If you decree and declare a thing, it will be established.”“I declare no more delays to the deliverance of Covid-19,” White continued. “No more delays to healing and a vaccination.”The Book of Job, a parable of human suffering and powerlessness, may be a strange book for a preacher to cite while “declaring” an end to the pandemic. If it were so easy, Job’s story would involve fewer boils and tortures.But in a way, White perfectly captures the problem with positive thinking: It tries to twist every situation into a “victory,” even when reality demonstrates otherwise.“Positive thinking can help people focus on goals and affirm one’s merits,” said Lane, author of the book on Peale. “But it does need a reality check, and to be based in fact.”Sometimes, the reality is that you’ve failed and need to change course. But to Peale, that wasn’t an option. Even self-doubt was a sin, he taught, an affront to God.“He had a huge problem with failure,” Lane said. “He would berate people for even talking about it.”
Peale’s teachings can explain why Trump won’t accept criticismYou can hear echoes of Peale’s no-fail philosophy in Trump’s angry response to reporters’ questions about his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, said Trump biographer Michael D’Antonio.“Nothing is an exchange of ideas or discussion of facts,” D’Antonio said. “Everything is a life or death struggle for the definition of reality. For him, being wrong feels like being obliterated.”And that’s one reason why the President refuses to accept any criticism or admit to any failure. To do so would puncture his bubble of positivity, not to mention his self-image.So, despite his administration’s early missteps in preparing for and responding to the coronavirus, Trump won’t acknowledge any errors.Instead, he has misled the public, claiming in February that the situation was “under control” when it was not; promising a vaccine is coming “very soon,” which it is not; and falsely insisting that “anyone can get tested,” when they could not and many still cannot.Still, when asked in mid-March to grade his administration’s response, Trump gave himself a perfect score.“I’d rate it a 10,” he said. “I think we’ve done a great job.”Trump’s self-appraisal might not match reality. But Peale would be proud.
The genius in the White House has always believed that what makes him special is his ability to get things done without going through the steps others must take.
In school, he bragged that he’d do well without cracking a book. As a young real estate developer, his junior executives recalled, he skipped the studying and winged his way through meetings with politicians, bankers and union bosses. And as a novice politician, he scoffed at the notion that he might suffer from any lack of experience or knowledge.
.. doubled down on his belief that smashing conventions is the path to success but underscored his lifelong conviction that he wins when he’s the center of attention.
.. “To go into those campaign rallies with just a few notes and connect with people he wasn’t at all like, that takes a certain genius. His genius is he’ll say anything to connect with people. He won by telling the rally crowds that the people who didn’t like them also didn’t like him.”
.. familiar tactics: a bold, even brazen, drive to put on a show and make himself the star.
.. he tweeted that he did use “tough” language — a long-standing point of pride for the president, whose political ascent was fueled by his argument that, as a billionaire, he is liberated to say what some other Americans only think.
.. “He needed to be stroked all the time and told how smart he was,”
.. The way we got things done was to approach him with an idea and make him think it was his. It was so easy.”
.. “Donald was always a forest person; he never knew anything about the trees. He knew concrete was brought in on trucks, but he really didn’t know how to run a project. What he had was street smarts — good instincts about people.”
.. he has always encouraged people around him to view him as someone who could see things that others could not.
.. “He means, okay, he didn’t hit the brains lottery, but he’s brilliant and cunning in the way he operates. He’s amazing at taking the temperature of the room and knowing how to appease everyone. You want that kind of instinct in your quarterbacks, in your generals. It’s not what we’ve ever thought of as what makes a great president, but he’s never going to be the guy who makes great speeches. This is who he is.”.. Being something of a genius was central to Trump’s self-image.. Everyone around him learned to cater to that — even his father.. In the first major newspaper profile of Trump, in the New York Times in 1976, his father, Fred Trump, describes his son as “the smartest person I know.”.. Throughout his life, Trump has believed that his instincts and street smarts positioned him to succeed where others might struggle... His father often told Trump that “you are a king,” instructing him to “be a killer.”.. Fred Trump was a student of Dale Carnegie.. and an acolyte of Norman Vincent Peale .. who preached a gospel of positive thinking... “I know in my gut,” he said in an interview last year. “I know in 30 seconds what the right move is.”.. “He can’t collaborate with anybody because he doesn’t listen to anybody,”.. “He doesn’t trust anybody, except his family. That’s why [his former wife] Ivana was involved in everything and why now his children are too.”.. also believed he had something more: a genius for showmanship, a knack for surrounding himself with the trappings of success, thereby creating the perception that he was uniquely capable of big, bold action... Genius and ego were both essential elements of success on a grand scale, Trump said.. every great person, including Jesus and Mother Teresa, found the path to success via ego:.. In Trump’s vocabulary, “genius” is perhaps the highest praise, and it refers to a street-level ability to get things done... Trump often referred to his lawyer and early mentor Roy Cohn as “a total genius” or a “political genius,” even if he was also “a lousy lawyer.”.. Trump explained in one of his books that his own true “genius” was for public relations: Rather than spending money on advertising, he said, he put his efforts toward winning news coverage of himself as a “genius.”.. Trump has also had moments of extreme self-doubt. Biographer Harry Hurt described a period around 1990 when, as his marriage to Ivana Trump was breaking up, he occasionally spoke about suicide
The basic idea of his “gnostic medicine” was that we’re sick only because we think bad thoughts. Illness and death are an illusion.
.. The Word of Faith movement was largely the brainchild of E.W. Kenyon (1867-1948), who blended Quimby’s Emersonian transcendentalism with his more evangelical “Victorious Life” beliefs. “I know that I am healed,” he wrote, “because [God] said that I am healed and it makes no difference what the symptoms may be in my body.”
.. Kenneth Hagin, revered as “granddaddy” in Word of Faith circles, gave the faith-healing movement its theological core. It included odd teachings about us all being “little gods.” Those who are born again, Hagin said, “are as much the incarnation [of God] as Jesus of Nazareth.” “You don’t have a God living in you,” says Hagin’s student Kenneth Copeland. “You are one.” Creflo Dollar adds, “[The] only human part of you is the flesh you’re wearing.”
.. In the 1950s, American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr described Peale’s message as a false gospel: “The basic sin of this cult is its egocentricity,” he said. “It puts ‘self’ instead of the cross at the center of the picture.”
.. the movement teaches that Jesus went to the cross not to bring forgiveness of our sins but to get us out of financial debt, not to reconcile us to God but to give us the power to claim our prosperity, not to remove the curse of death, injustice and bondage to ourselves but to give us our best life now. White says emphatically that Jesus is “not the only begotten Son of God,” just the first. We’re all divine and have the power to speak worlds into existence.
.. God spoke and created the universe; you have creative power to speak life and death! If you believe God, you can create anything in your life.”
.. Of course, to be a “little god,” you have to do your part, often involving a financial commitment. It’s what they call “seed faith.” White even gives her viewers the words to tell themselves: “So I’m going to activate my miracle by my obedience right now. I’m going to get up and go to the phone.” When you do that, she says, and “put a demand on the anointing,” you’re “going to make God get off His ivory throne.” “Don’t you miss this moment! If you miss your moment, you miss your miracle!”
.. In fact, one gets the impression that God isn’t necessary at all in the system. God set up these spiritual laws and if you know the secrets, you’re in charge of your destiny.
.. But it is striking that Trump has surrounded himself with cadre of prosperity evangelists who cheerfully attack basic Christian doctrines. The focus of this unity is a gospel that is about as diametrically opposed to the biblical one as you can imagine.
“We don’t need a religious president,” said Burns, who was touched by the gift and recounted the story in a recent interview. “We need a president who can build relationships with people.”
.. And now, that transactional cycle seems likely to shape his White House agenda on issues of interest to the religious right.
.. But as much as religious conservative leaders respected Bush’s personal evangelical bona fides, they say that Trump — a man who has struggled to articulate his faith principles and is unapologetic about his tabloid-worthy personal life — has made more concrete commitments. They range from his pledge to appoint only Supreme Court justices who oppose abortion rights — a commitment Bush wouldn’t make — to his vow to defund Planned Parenthood.
.. He ultimately won the support of nearly every politically prominent Christian leader and landed 81 percent of the evangelical vote, a higher percentage than Bush netted in 2004.
.. “I think that he understood that his best and likely only chance to win the nomination and ultimately the presidency was to compete for and win the support of voters of faith,” said Ralph Reed
.. “I will say, having been involved with administrations from Reagan’s forward, this is the most solicitous that any incoming administration has been for input from evangelicals concerning personnel decisions that I’ve experienced,” Land said
.. ‘He’s very grateful for the faith community, he wants your input.’ That didn’t even happen under George W. Bush. They were willing to take our recommendations, but they didn’t actively solicit them three times before inauguration.”
.. He has not yet reached out to National Presbyterian Church, which has a rich political history — Ronald Reagan attended services there, Dwight D. Eisenhower laid a cornerstone there
.. “I think Norman Vincent Peale is the definition of a kind of transactional religion where it’s all about getting ahead,” said Blair, who has also written about Peale’s effect on the Trumps.
.. “Norman Vincent Peale’s message was, do whatever it takes to be successful, everything is transactional,”
.. Members of the evangelical advisory board certainly don’t question Trump’s faith, but they tend to be more voluble in describing his policy promises than in the particulars of what he believes. And to them, that’s what matters most.
.. “He said, ‘the only way I’m going to get to heaven is by repealing the Johnson amendment,’” which restricts tax-exempt churches from engaging in political activity, Land recalled. “Immediately, one of our people on the call said, ‘No, sir, the only way you’re going to get to heaven is by trusting Jesus Christ as your personal savior.’ Mr. Trump said, ‘Thank you for reminding me.’”
“They said, ‘We understand this is where Marla Maples met Donald Trump,’” recalled the choir director and organist at the time, Kevin Walters, “‘so we thought we’d come and see if we could hook up with a billionaire, too.’”
.. He describes himself as a Presbyterian, but Marble is not a Presbyterian church — it is part of the Reformed Church in America,
.. the Trumps were prominent parishioners at a church close to their home, First Presbyterian Church in Jamaica, Queens. Like Marble, it is a church with a history: It describes itself as the oldest continuously worshiping Presbyterian congregation in the country.
.. But in the 1960s, the Trumps gravitated to Marble. The lure was Dr. Peale, a household name since the publication of the 1952 best seller that transformed “the power of positive thinking” into a national catchphrase.
.. “Everything he does is about winning,” Gwenda Blair, the author of “The Trumps: Three Generations of Builders and a Presidential Candidate,” a biography of the family, said in a recent New York Times podcast. “It’s only about winning and losing — those two are the only principles that are involved. That’s a very Norman Vincent Peale notion — that notion of success above all.”
.. Richard M. Nixon worshiped at Marble after he lost to Kennedy, and Dr. Peale supported him even as the Watergate scandal doomed his presidency.
.. “I don’t respect Mr. Trump very much,” he was quoted as saying. “I don’t think the image of Norman Vincent Peale that comes through Donald Trump is any connection to the idea I have of him.”
.. Mr. Trump said that contrary to what the two women had told the usher — and contrary to a famous tabloid headline, “They Met in Church” — his first encounter with Ms. Maples was not at Marble. But as the relationship developed, so did the awkwardness for some at the church.
.. This was really embarrassing, that this man was married and having this big-time affair and the church was connected with it.”