Early September, in arrangement with the publisher Hay House,
a forum with publications from across the U.S. and Canada, including Edge Life, took
place by telephone with Wayne W. Dyer, Ph.D., who was announcing the publication
of his new book, Being in Balance: 9 Principles for Creating Habits to Match Your
Desires. Dr. Dyer, affectionately called the "father of motivation" by
his fans, is one of the most widely known and respected people in the field of self-empowerment.
Speaking from his home in Maui, Dr. Dyer offered the following comments, giving us
a glimpse into a being who is in balance.
On Being in Balance: A lot of people think of balance just as keeping your
life organized in such a way so that you have a certain amount of time for your family,
a certain amount of time for your work, and a certain amount of time for play. But
I don’t refer to balance this way at all. To me it’s really about balancing our habits
with our desires.
On Attracting Prosperity: I’ve always tried to stay in balance or to stay
aligned with what I would like to attract into my life. Prosperity is something that
exists in my life not so much because I’ve been lucky or because I’ve written so
many books. It’s because I have an alignment with prosperity that I’ve had since
I was a little boy.
On Creation: Nikos Kazantzakis, who is the author of Zorba the Greek and The
Last Temptation of Christ, said that when you passionately believe in what doesn’t
exist, you create it; that which we call non-existence has not been sufficiently
desired. By being "sufficiently desired," he meant that we just are not
balanced with what we’d like to attract.
On Realigning your Desires: Realign (yourself) in every thought…every action
that you take will be directed towards creating what it is that maybe doesn’t exist
now, but in your mind is something that you are now aligned with….Begin to shift
your thinking from, "It probably won’t happen," to "It’s on its way."…Most
of our habits of thinking are so out of alignment that we don’t give ourselves a
chance to act on those thoughts.
On Changing your Mind: It’s not like as soon as you change your mind that
matter’s going to change, but when you start to change your mind, you’re going to
start acting in a different way. You’re going to start acting in concert with what
it is that you would like to attract in your life, and the acting is going to come
from the way that you process every single event of your life. You just wake up in
the morning anticipating that things are going to be better, that things are going
to be good, that you are going to attract what you want in your life, that your relationship
is going to work. I just think it’s a beautiful way to go through your life, anticipating
that what you would like to attract is on its way.
On War: There’s hardly anyone on the planet who doesn’t say, "I want
to feel good. I want to have perfect health." In the carcinogenic world that
we’ve created, and through our own habits and through any number of things which
may even have something to do with genetics, we find ourselves in a state of non-well-being,
and immediately what happens…is that we begin to tell ourselves that this shouldn’t
be happening and isn’t this awful….This is how we learn to deal with things like
this. We have a war on cancer, very much like the war that we have on terrorism and
the war that we have on drugs, and the war that we have on crime. Whenever we declare
war on everything, it always seems to get worse and worse and worse, and we create
more and more and more of what we don’t want, because force creates a counterforce.
On Good Fortune and Misfortune: I’m writing a book about living the Tao. This
is 2,500-year-old literature…probably one of the most ancient of spiritual texts….There
are 81 verses to it and I’m writing 81 essays about how to apply these verses in
our life every day. One of the verses of the Tao says that in every good fortune,
misfortune is hiding – and in every misfortune, good fortune is hiding. The whole
idea is that the physical world that we live in is not a world that is straight.
It is crooked, with hills and valleys…whenever you’re on a peak, then you have
to head down into the valley, and if you’re in a valley, then what you have to do
as you keep moving and head back to the peak. We have to recognize that at the peak
moments of our life, misfortune is hiding there and it will show up. You will go
down into the valley, and then you will come back up. That’s the movement of life.
That’s the natural cycle of at work. That’s the nature of the universe.
On Fighting Cancer: Talk to it…welcome it. Say, "I know you’re an energy.
You’re welcome to exist, and you’re welcome even to exist in my body, but let’s coexist.
Let’s coexist together and make everything work beautifully." Start to love
this thing rather than fight it. The minute that you stop fighting it you’re back
in balance with the universe, because the universe is a loving place. It’s not a
On Being Human: I have eight children, and they’re all at different stages
in their life, from age 16 to 39. All of them have very separate needs. I’ve had
health challenges. I had a heart attack myself, which was a complete shock, because
I don’t do heart attacks. And there I was doing one, in the midst of all my disbelief.
One of my children has struggles with addictions. These kinds of things are part
of being human. I always say about the greatest spiritual teachers who have ever
lived that none of them were married and none of them had any children. I say, "I
could be a great Divine Guru, too, if I didn’t have to do all this other stuff every
day!" Give Jesus eight kids every single day who say, "Get a life, Dad."
On Good Days and Bad Days: I don’t really have bad days. Honestly, I don’t.
I think I came into this world with this. I lived in an orphanage until I was 9,
and a series of foster homes and orphanages. The first two years of my life I was
with my mom, and my dad disappeared and went to prison. My mom had no other choices…there
was a Depression going on…and a war. But she said that the thing about me, as opposed
to my other two brothers and all of the other cousins and so on, was that I was able
to always make everybody laugh, even when I was just a little baby. Even as a young
boy, there was something inside of me.
On President Jimmy Carter: I think (he) is one of the greatest people of our
time. He had these four words that he carried with him wherever he went, "This
too shall pass." I’ve been using those words for years, whenever things are
going on in my life that I would rather weren’t going on in my life, to remind myself
that this, too, shall pass. As I say these words to myself, it reconnects me to my
Source. Almost everything that I processed before, that seemed so difficult, gets
to be so simple. The passing of it takes place almost instantaneously when you realize
that there’s nothing permanent about what is taking place in this moment right now.
You can almost see it floating away. I use the technique of stepping outside of my
body and becoming the observer – observing the kinds of things that happen to be
going on right now in the family, the difficulties, the over-scheduling, the travels,
the going to airports and then having to have them take away your shampoo. Can you
imagine, especially for me, that they’re taking away my shampoo? I mean, one little
ounce is a year’s supply. How could they possibly do that!?
On his Morning Ritual: I live on Maui. Every morning, I get up and I either
do a yoga class or I do a long swim. When I do my swim, I do a mile in the open ocean
every morning. I’ve gotten to a place where I can actually watch my body go through
the water and my arms moving through and the breathing and all of that – and not
do anything. I’m literally not doing anything. It’s like being on automatic pilot.
I just watch my body being taken from this place to that place. I watch every stroke
– and I’m doing nothing. It’s like emulating the Tao. The Tao does nothing, but
it leaves nothing undone. It’s getting to that place within myself where it’s just
allowing it to flow.
On this Perfect Universe: This is a universe that has purpose in it. There’s
an organizing intelligence behind everything. I sit out here and I watch the sunset
every single night. I’m on west Maui, so the sun sets right in front of me every
day, and I think, "That sun is 93 million miles away. If it was one inch further
or closer, all the whole thing would be out of balance. Nothing would be able to
work. Everything would either be scorched or would be all frozen." That’s how
perfect this entire universe is, and this is just one little tiny speck in a universe
of trillions and trillions of galaxies…and it’s all perfect. And so are you. And
so is every thought that you have. And so is every action that is taking place.
On Arguments: Have you ever tried to pick an argument or a fight with someone
who just refuses to do argue back? That’s one of the things my wife taught me. I
used to be really good at being argumentative and being overpowering. She would respond,
"I’m just not interested. That’s just not the way I do things." And I found
myself saying, "Well, come one. I want to, I’m looking for somebody to fight
back." It helped me to become much more of a peaceful person just by being around
that kind of energy.
On what makes him angry: I did an interview for a magazine and they asked
me, "What is it that makes me angry?" My response was that the thing probably
that makes me the most angry is that we have disconnected ourselves from our Source
geopolitically in the world to the point where we refuse to talk to the people who
don’t agree with us. Condoleezza Rice was on her way to some resolution of the Lebanon
crisis and her announcement before she left was, "I will not speak to the Syrians.
I will not speak to the Iranians. I will not speak to Hezbollah and we will not speak
to Hamas. She said, "We will only talk to Israel and we will only talk to Lebanon
and the people who agree with us." The question we ought to be asking ourselves
is, "Why do we have so many people in the world who have so much hate directed
toward us?" And, "Why don’t we sit down with these people and say, ‘What
is it about us that you find so inhospitable, or that you find so hateful?’ What
can we do to live together in harmony?’"
On what makes news: I took a group of people to Lourdes and to Assisi about
six years ago. When we were in Lourdes in France, where St. Bernadette had these
miracles, there were 15,000 to 25,000 people who came every single night. Nobody
tells them what to do. Everybody takes these candles and they walk through the city
of Lourdes singing, "Ave Maria," with all of the crippled people in the
very front of the procession – and this goes on every single night, 15,000 to 25,000
people from Korea, from South Africa, from Europe. We were there for a week. After
we left there, I thought, "This is an amazing thing." And I didn’t even
know this was going on. It was one the most beautiful experiences of my life. Then
we get to Paris and turn on the TV set and there was something going on between Gaza
and Israel. About 100 people were throwing rocks at each other, trying to stone each
other and getting angry with each other. That dominated the news. And I said to my
wife, "My goodness! Wouldn’t you think that 25,000 people showing up every night
in a peaceful way would be much more newsworthy than 200 people throwing rocks at
On Acts of Kindness: We have to remember that for every act of evil in the
world, even though it gets promoted like crazy, there’s a million acts of kindness
taking place all over the place. We saw that with what happened in the tsunami. We
saw this when it happened with Katrina. We saw what happened at 9/11. When there
are crises in the world, humanity comes together. Our aircraft carriers were sent
down to Indonesia to distribute food and blankets, whereas before they were distributing
the fear and the threat of nuclear annihilation.
On World Leaders: I don’t think our political leaders are leading us anywhere.
I don’t think of them as leaders at all. I think of Nelson Mandela is a leader. I
think of Oprah Winfrey as a leader. You are seeing the shift. It’s taking place right
now. Look towards the shift that is taking place. The shift is that we are sick and
tired and fed up with this war….Lao Tzu said 2,500 years ago that when a country’s
energy is directed towards breeding horses of battle and on weapons of destruction,
it is out of sync with the Tao, until the energy shifts to building tractors and
building homes, things that help everybody live in peace.
On Organized Religion: If you try to reconnect to Source through religion,
you’re almost always going to have a lot of difficulty with it. Carl Jung said that
the central purpose of organized religion is to prevent each person from having a
direct experience of God. It’s like, "We’ll keep you away from that. We’ll take
care of that for you. Just put your money in the plate." I love the idea that
a Truth is a Truth until you organize it, and then it becomes a lie. The organization
becomes about the organization rather than about the Truth. I think that people who
have moved away from organized religion very often have a much greater opportunity
to make direct, conscious contact with God, and they know within them that they don’t
need a set of rules and a temple, mosque or a church to find that. It’s within each
and every one of us.
On Fear: We are immersed in a world of fear. We have terrorists promoting
fear everywhere, and then we have governments who react to the terrorists by promoting
even more fear. I just wrote a story the other day about how they discovered now
that terrorists have figured out a way to weave explosive devices into clothing.
So now we just can’t put people on airplanes anymore with clothing on. Everybody
just has to fly nude. So we have these airplanes flying back and forth across the
ocean with all these nude people. And then they’ve discovered through fiber optics
that an actual human hair, one human hair, can trigger an explosive device. So we’re
going to have to shave everybody before they get onto the airplane. And then the
government officials have just decided that it’s just too dangerous to even be flying.
But we don’t want to ruin the airline business, so we’re just going to have airlines
flying empty across the skies, back and forth, and have all these naked shaved bodies
standing by hoping that they might be able to get on. It’s all about fear.
On Alignment with Spirit: I’ve often said that there are three ways to reach
enlightenment. One is called enlightenment through suffering, when you go through
an experience in your life and then you look back on it from a perspective of 10
years having passed and you say, "Now I know why I went through that, but I
had to suffer to go through that." Then you move to a place where you’re in
the midst of something and you’re beginning to feel some kind of an inner feeling
that there’s something going on, and in the moment you say, "So this is what
I am going to get out of this and why this is happening." The third level is
where you get out in front of any particular difficulty or struggle and you begin
to see it coming. You anticipate by being out in front of your life, because there’s
no time anymore. You’re absolutely stopping any negativity from coming into you,
and you’re listening for these cues on a regular basis. When you have a very strong
sense of enthusiasm or passion about a thought, about something, the very presence
of that passion or that enthusiasm is evidence that Spirit is speaking to you and
that you have within you the capacity to manifest it. That’s all the evidence you
need to know Spirit is aligned with you, that it’s manifestable – "I can make
it happen." Listen to the emotion. Listen to the excitement.