A documentary came out in 2015 entitled The Abundance Factor by a gentleman named Riley Dayne. Mr. Dayne is from Canada and states that after a near fatal experience, he made the choice to basically live life in a new way. This film is a record of his journey to find out more about living “abundantly.” The film also served as a way for Mr. Dayne to actualize himself.
The plain and basic truth is that aside from a few points made about fear, I did not like this movie.
The movie purports to be either better than or just as good as The Secret (which I also did not like). Whether it is, isn’t, or is halfway between the two is up to the viewer to decide. To me, they were both just as bad and just as hokey. However, The Abundance Factor made some excellent points regarding fear and failure, things which many individuals demonize and misinterpret as absolute in their state of being. In my book The Perspective Essays, I make a point to talk about fear. What I state in the book is that fear is a biological and chemical response from the body. Though many people claim that fear is “an illusion” (and it may very well be from their physical perspective), fear is actually a mechanism that merits recognition but not to dwell on it endlessly. That is the trap most people fall into when it comes to fear. Whatever fear is given may be disproportionate to how much the object of fear really merits. The point is to recognize it, understand it, work it, and move on. The film doesn’t claim this, I do. What the film does is recognize fear as a factor in decision making and feeling, at least to a point.
About 44 minutes into the film, I had enough and shut the film off. Much of what I had heard was the same motivational psychology which I and many others have heard a billion times before so there was no point in hearing it again. It was the same repetitive rhetoric that other people have stated over and over since this whole personal motivation thing began. Also, the manner of delivery was the same as if someone were doing a voice over for Coca-Cola- fast, highly inflected, and energized. I suppose one can’t talk about improving their life sounding like the economics teacher from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. In that sense, the film was gimmicky to me. In addition, the manner of reasoning used by some of the presenters was, to me, incredibly limited. Not all of it, just most of it. Besides, from my perspective, it is easy to talk about “abundance” when you have it just like it is, as the saying goes, easy to be a saint in paradise. Talk about abundance to someone in South Central Los Angeles, inner city Detroit, or Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and if you haven’t been shot to death then you’ll probably end up just as slapped across the face with that reality as anything.
Another point that Mr. Dayne and perhaps one other presenter makes is that their past was not all rosy and full of glory. Aside from Mr. Dayne, the other presenter stated that they had few friends who were not nice to him at all (that doesn’t sound like a friend to me). Meanwhile, most of the other presenters did not mention what their life was like before they achieved their self-actualization. It may not be necessary to spew out every abuse and detail of that abuse to everyone but it may have been helpful to understand some of the situation before going into how one recognized the potential for an improved state of being. Otherwise, most people figure that the presenter’s life is full of wealth and carefree living that comes with no responsibility. It would have affirmed the film’s message more than for the presenters to just say whatever it was that they said with no point of reference and then leaving it at that.
The film talks about money. One of the presenters in the film is a fairly recognized money-magnet type speaker. In my book, I state how all of these “be wealthy” type of people have no clue or idea (or rather they do and don’t want to talk about it) about the effects of fractional reserve banking and its effect on not just the system of money but on the socio-economic condition around the world. For the moment, the current monetary system is broken and requires a serious overhaul. However, that will not happen as long as individuals continue to work the system blindly. Like any film of its kind, it does not make mention of this and instead continues the outdated notion that the value of money in and of itself is absolute.
Although the film recognizes some of the failures of the educational system in the industrialized world, it does not say anything about changing it or affecting it in a more life-affirming way. It just states its failures (at one point, one of the presenters states that it “sucks”) and that people end up being programmed by it just for some to discover that they can deprogram themselves from it. Its intent is honest but its delivery and manner of reasoning is, again, limited.
Perhaps one of the biggest (if not THE biggest) failure of the film is that it does not help the viewer recognize the things that could be or already ARE working in their life. Like all films of its kind, it presents an idea to the viewer that the way they’re living their life is totally broken and that they need to be “fixed” from all that institutionalized programming and failure they’re experiencing. The presenters are shown as the ideal expression of “success” while talking down to the audience, it seems. At least, that’s the impression I get from these kinds of documentaries: the viewer is too uneducated to visualize how their life could be like the presenter’s and is left wanting to experience what the presenter is living. In basic terms, these films talk down to the viewer in a manner disguised as uplifting them. For me, that is outright snobbery. There was a film a few years ago called Sirius that did that in the worst and most offensive way. I watched it on YouTube after someone had uploaded it illegally and I wanted to punch the computer after seeing that fucking movie.
That is all I can really say about The Abundance Factor since I didn’t watch all of it. It is not like the Zeitgeist film series or Thrive which pretty much kicked my ass out of complacency. Even then, I have since evolved from some of those philosophies into something that is more my own. It may not be right or wrong but it is what I have created and it is not to say that it will not evolve further on down. I believe The Abundance Factor was not for me but for someone else who may very well need those ideas to get out of their complacency. That is, if they have not heard those ideas already. To me, the film is no different than The Secret or even You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay (which despite liking Louise Hay, I could not stand that wretched film). I think it may be that those films or those kinds of philosophies just aren’t for me. Go figure!
I believe that what is called improvement is actually an evolution. Anyone can evolve into whatever state, whether it is into financial well-being, emotional balance, or socio-economic displacement. The question I pose in the book is, how are the choices made into that evolution being influenced? Where do those influences come from? How is one processing those influences? Again, one of the failures of The Abundance Factor or any other film of its kind is that it accepts the external conditions as absolute. They don’t have to be. The film could have been better if it had established that instead of sounding like every other motivational film out there. The few points that work in the film’s favor is its recognition of fear as a factor in the decision making process for some individuals and the effects of institutionalized education in the industrialized world. The overall rating of what I have seen of the film is C-.