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The Secret of The Ages Summary: 18 Lessons Worth Learning!

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Friday, February 02, 2024

Here are the top 18 lessons you should remember from Robert Collier’s book, The Secret of The Ages!


When I first read Robert Collier’s book, The Secret of The Ages, I was blown away.

I originally knew him as someone with great advice to give for copywriting and marketing — from his amazing book, The Robert Collier Letter Book.

But I had no idea his other books contained so much wisdom in the realm of personal development.

Personally, his idea on "The Genie-of-Your-Mind"​ was revolutionary for me.

And so I’ve compiled some of my favorite lessons from one of my favorite books here — if you love these then I highly recommend reading the full book for yourself (which you can get access to if you’re a Secrets of Success member — audiobook and digital copy!).

1. See Yourself Doing It

Visualization is a powerful technique for achieving your goals. It involves seeing yourself already in possession of your aim, thus setting a clear direction for your subconscious mind. This method not only clarifies your goals but also primes your mind to recognize and seize the opportunities that lead there.

"There is a little poem by Jessie B. Rittenhouse that so well describes the limitations that most of us put upon ourselves that I quote it here: 'I bargained with Life for a penny, And Life would pay no more, However I begged at evening, When I counted my scanty store...For Life is a just employer, He gives you what you ask, But once you have set the wages, Why you must bear the task.'"

2. Unlimited Capabilities

The lesson here is about recognizing the boundless potential within ourselves. The only limitations are those we self-impose. Understanding and believing in the inexhaustible supply available through our subconscious mind can lead us to extraordinary achievements.

"Remember that the only limit to your capabilities is the one you place upon them. There is no law of limitation. The only law is of supply. Through your subconscious mind you can draw upon universal supply for anything you wish."

3. Law of Attraction

The Law of Attraction is not just a mystical concept but a practical tool. It's about the power of giving and receiving. By generously sharing what we have, whether it's ideas, resources, or time, we set ourselves up for receiving greater abundance in return.

"It is the truth—the principle of giving and receiving—only there are few men who go the limit on it. But going the limit is the way to unlimited returns! What you have, give—to everybody. If you have an idea, do not save it for your own use only; give it. It is the best thing you have to give and therefore the thing best to give—and therefore the thing that will bring the best back to you."

4. Setting Goals

Setting goals is a critical step in achieving success. Goals should be clear, practical, and aligned with our aspirations. They should provide immediate rewards, future opportunities for growth, and help build networks that support our broader aims.

"Every position should yield you three things: 1. Reasonable pay for the present. 2. Knowledge, training, or experience that will be worth money to you in the future. 3. Prestige or acquaintances that will be of assistance to you in attaining your goal."

5. Health, Wealth, and Happiness

Health, wealth, and happiness are interconnected aspects of a fulfilled life. This lesson emphasizes that through understanding and applying certain principles, one can achieve radiant health, increase wealth, and find lasting happiness. The key is to impress these desires upon the subconscious mind.

"He Whom a Dream Hath Possessed - The Bars of Fate - Exercise - Your body rebuilds itself entirely every eleven months. You can start now rebuilding along perfect lines. Is it wealth you wish? In the chapter on success, I will show you how you can increase your income, how you can forge rapidly ahead in your chosen business or profession. Is it happiness you ask for? Follow the rules herein laid down, and you will change your whole outlook on life."

6. Open Mind and Understanding

An open mind is the gateway to understanding and wisdom. This lesson teaches that preconceived notions and prejudices limit our potential for growth and learning. Embracing an open, childlike mind allows us to explore and understand the principles behind great movements and ideas, leading us to greater truths.

"Universal Mind for guidance. You need never fear the outcome for if you heed its advice you cannot go wrong. Always remember—your mind is but a conductor—good or poor as you make it—for the power of Universal Mind. And thought is the connecting energy."

7. Prayer as Desire

Prayer, in the context of Collier's philosophy, is more than a religious act; it's the expression of our soul's sincere desires. These earnest desires, whether expressed or unexpressed, are what we truly seek from life. Such genuine prayers are heard and answered by the Universal Mind.

"Prayer is the soul’s sincere desire, uttered or unexpressed. It is our Heart’s Desire. At least the only prayer that is worth anything is the prayer that asks for our real desires. That kind of prayer is heard. That kind of prayer is answered."

8. The Genie-of-Your-Mind

The subconscious mind is likened to a genie, capable of granting our deepest wishes. This concept emphasizes the importance of our thoughts and beliefs in shaping our reality. By understanding and harnessing the power of the subconscious mind, we can turn our deepest desires into reality.

9. Mastering Your Fate

Mastering your fate is about realizing that you have the power to shape your own destiny. This lesson encourages taking control of your life by understanding that your choices and actions directly influence your future. It's about not leaving your fate to chance, but actively directing it towards your desired path.

"‘I am the Master of my fate.’ Until you have learned that, you will never attain life’s full success. Your fate is in your own hands. You have the making of it. What you are going to be six months or a year from now depends upon what you think today."

10. The Power of Mind

The power of the mind is central to achieving peace and discovering untapped treasures. This lesson explores how the mind, as part of the Universal Mind, has access to infinite knowledge and potential. By aligning our thoughts with this universal power, we can unlock remarkable possibilities.

"Every man who is honestly trying to use the power of mind in the right way is doing his part in the great cause. For it is only through Mind that peace and plenty can be gained."

11. Mind as the Creator

This concept revolves around the idea that the mind is the ultimate creator of our reality. Everything starts with a thought. Understanding that controlling our thoughts leads to controlling our circumstances, this lesson emphasizes the power of belief and visualization in manifesting our desires.

"All wealth depends upon a clear understanding of the fact that mind—thought—is the only creator. The great business of life is thinking. Control your thoughts and you control circumstance."

12. Working with the Universal Mind

Working with the Universal Mind is about understanding and utilizing the all-powerful, all-knowing force that governs the universe. By recognizing and tapping into this universal power, we can inspire and elevate our work to new heights, performing what may seem like miracles.

"Begin with the realization that Universal Mind is man’s working power. Your work is inspired to the extent that you realize the presence of Universal Mind in your work."

13. Guidance from the Universal Mind

Seeking guidance from the Universal Mind is about trusting in a higher wisdom for direction and decisions. This lesson highlights the importance of using our minds as conduits for the power of the Universal Mind. By doing so, we can ensure that our actions are aligned with a greater good and purpose.

"Universal Mind for guidance. You need never fear the outcome for if you heed its advice you cannot go wrong. Always remember—your mind is but a conductor—good or poor as you make it—for the power of Universal Mind."

14. Continuous Growth

Continuous growth is a fundamental principle of life and success. This lesson emphasizes the importance of never ceasing to grow and learn. By continually expanding our understanding and capabilities, we can fully utilize our mind power and achieve our true potential.

"Like the gold seekers of ’49, he has panned the surface gravel for the gold swept down by the streams. Now he is starting to dig deeper to the pure vein beneath... The greatest waste of all we pay no attention to—the waste of our own potential mind power. Professor Wm. James, the world-famous Harvard psychologist, estimated that the average man uses only 10% of his mental power."

15. Right to Win and Dominate

This lesson emphasizes the belief in one's inherent right to succeed and have dominion over personal affairs. It's about understanding that with the right mindset, particularly one aligned with the Universal Mind, you can attract the resources and opportunities necessary to achieve your goals.

"If you need money all you have to do is to send up your vibrations to a strong, courageous receiving station and someone who can meet your needs will be attracted to you or you to him."

16. The Four Steps to Achievement

The four steps to achievement outlined in the book are: having a sincere desire, visualization, faith, and gratitude. These steps form a powerful framework for realizing one's dreams, emphasizing the importance of not just wanting something, but truly believing in its achievement and being thankful for it.

"Remember the first thing necessary is a sincere desire, concentrating your thought on one thing with singleness of purpose. The second is visualization—SEEING YOURSELF DOING IT. Next is faith—BELIEVING that you HAVE this thing that you want. And the last is gratitude."

17. Realizing One's Full Potential

Realizing one's full potential is about tapping into the vast reservoir of capabilities within ourselves. This lesson drives home the point that each individual has access to Universal Mind, which can provide all the knowledge and resources needed to achieve any right desire.

"Everything that has been done, thought, gained, or been is in Universal Mind. And you are a part of Universal Mind. You have access to it. You can call upon it for all you need."

18. Harnessing Universal Forces

This lesson teaches the importance of understanding and utilizing the power of the Universal Mind to overcome challenges and fulfill desires. It's about recognizing that we have access to an infinite source of power and wisdom, and it's up to us to tap into it.

"If you have any lack, if you are prey to poverty or disease, it is because you do not believe or do not understand the power that is yours... To bring you to a realization of your indwelling and unused power, to teach you simple, direct methods of drawing upon it, is the beginning and the end of this course."

Want to learn more?

When I first delved into the pages of Robert Collier’s "The Secret of The Ages," I knew I had stumbled upon something extraordinary. It's one thing to read about personal development and the power of the mind, but it's another to see these principles laid out so clearly and compellingly.

You've just had a taste.

But imagine what diving deeper into these teachings could do for you! You can become a Secrets of Success Member by clicking below and get access to our full library of courses, audiobooks, book club, and exclusive podcast where we share all the lessons from amazing authors like Robert Collier, Napoleon Hill, and Elsie Lincoln Benedict.

You just have to say “maybe” 🙂

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