So I was watching my Tivo’d SNL this morning, the one with Julia Louis-Dreyfus. One of the skits pokes fun at Oprah and her promotion of the book The Secret which, according to the skit, says that you can control the universe with your mind. Curious, I searched for it, and found a fascinating article about it on Salon.
Go read it now. I’ll wait.
Now, Oprah is an amazing woman. Very smart, very powerful, really a self-made woman. And I’ll admit, I am predisposed to thinking that she’s a little too self-righteous and her followers are a little too willing to lap up blindly all she has to offer. But I couldn’t really place my issue with her until I read the Salon article, which nailed it for me.
Her followers are often just that: followers. They do things because Oprah says they should, because she says it will make them feel better. And of course, Oprah feeds off of that blind faith; in fact, her entire empire is dependent on that idolatry. Her show is basically a 1 hour infomercial and I bet few if any of her congregation recognize that.
Almost all the time, I agree with the message: eat well, exercise, help the needy, take care of your finances, love your children, read a book, have a positive attitude. And I think that there are probably many people who are living better, happier lives for listening to Oprah. I just wish more people would question the message before accepting it and question the messanger before following her.