JH: We would like to discuss prosperity, Foster.
Most people believe that money is extremely important. To some
extent they also believe that they create the circumstances surrounding
them. Yet, how do you explain the many people around us who appear
to be doing everything possible to make ends meet, who seem to
have the proper attitudes and still they are having an extremely
Foster: You said one word, John, that I think
has a lot to do with it. The word is "appear." You
also mentioned that most people consider money very important.
Perhaps they consider it important but I want to draw a fine
line and say that perhaps they feel it's important but they don't
place an importance upon it. You see, anything in life upon which
you place an importance causes an energy to go out of you to
magnetize and draw to you the very thing you place the importance
on. Concerning money, individuals who place adequate enthusiasm
and importance on it start thinking the things, doing the things
and attracting the things and people that result in money. Others
have the feeling that although money is important, they do not
deserve it and if they do not deserve it, they do not get it.
JH: Are you speaking about self-esteem?
Foster: Yes. I am definitely talking about
self-esteem. That's what it boils down to. The individual with
low self-esteem isn't going to attract anything more than a mere
sustenance, nothing more than mediocrity.
JH: So, you are saying that one of the blocks to
prosperity is a poor or non-existent self-esteem?
Foster: Just call it low self-esteem.
JH: How do you think that happened? Some of these
people are extremely successful in certain areas of their lives.
Foster: Some are brilliant and some of them
have degrees that go on forever after their names and yet they
have no money.
JH: Please explain.
Foster: In many instances low self-esteem
came from their upbringing. For most males it is extremely difficult
to exceed the father, even though the father is long dead. It
does not seem to matter if their fathers may have done fairly
well , or perhaps, just average. There is the feeling as if the
father is in some way with them and if they exceed their father,
their father may not love them any longer, which is of course
absurd, but extremely valid. So they will do everything imaginable
to short circuit themselves. They will study, listen to tapes
and go to seminars. They will buy every book available on success
and prosperity and they'll start moving in the right direction.
And then, when it starts falling into place, they will do something
to short- circuit the whole thing so that they won't have the
responsibility that comes with greater affluence and they won't
offend or displease a living or a dead father. Of course, there
are many exceptions to this.
JH: Since most people are not aware of these things,
they must be deep in the subconscious.
Foster: Oh, very deep in the subconscious
but the effect, nevertheless, is devastating.
JH: Are there other obstacles that are very apparent
Foster: The number one block , as I see it,
is guilt. Guilt has one message deep, deep within, so deep that
you don't hear it consciously, but it is constantly saying throughout
a lifetime, "You don't deserve, you don't deserve."
This is guilt's only message. There are no others. Just as the
drip, drip, drip of water could wear away a rock, the repetition
of an idea imbeds it into the subconscious mind and it gradually
takes over. Can you imagine, John, that one brief sentence, "You
don't deserve, you don't deserve," all day, every day, week
in, week out, month in, month out, year in, year out and on and
on, how it builds in the individual? That person, therefore,
won't make the effort. Or, if the effort is made, the feeling
of, "I don't deserve" prevents the accomplishments
JH: Don't you think that there are many other reasons
just as important for a lack of money besides guilt? Also, how
do we deal with guilt?
Foster: No. I think that the number one reason
is guilt, I really do. And I am totally convinced by all the
studying and research I have done since the age of eight (now
being 64, that means 56 years) on mind attitudes etc., that the
greatest personal proof and technique ever to come down through
6000 years of recorded history is "forgiveness."
JH: Forgiveness? Did I hear you say, "forgiveness?"
Foster: Yes. Forgiveness is like a roto-rooter.
It will rid the subconscious mind of a lifetime of accumulated
negativities. This will permit a flow from within of love, praise,
joy, gratitude and enthusiasm and the gates of guilt cannot stand
up to this mighty flow. Yes, John. Forgiveness of self, forgiveness
of all others. Forgiveness done in a silent manner will work
itself through fear, anger, resentment, irritability, guilt or
any negative you can think of. At the moment, we happen to be
speaking about guilt. Forgiveness is the answer.
JH: How strange, Foster. We started talking about
money and we end up discussing some very spiritual things like
love, joy and forgiveness.
Foster: We are still talking about money even
though it doesn't sound like it. Money, you see, is God in action.
God, as you know better than most people, John, is all there
is in the universe. There is nothing that is not God. Therefore,
money couldn't possibly be the one exception in the universe
that is not God. And I like the expression, "Money is God
in action," because money is energy, money creates, money
builds everything that has ever been built. Furthermore, and
I like this, money is freedom, freedom to do, freedom to be and
freedom to have what you want when you want it.
JH: So, we find that true spirituality is more than
just happiness, love etc. It even ties in to money. What is it,
Foster, that transforms money from the invisible to the visible?
Foster: Loving service to other human beings.
When we give loving service, it is spirit that flows through
us into the world, then returns to the place from whence it came
in the form of physicality or money. So, when money comes to
me I know that it is my own energy that went out in the form
of loving service coming back to me. It's my money, my children
returning home. Or, in other words, my own energy transformed
JH: How do you relate giving loving service to giving
to charity or helping others by giving money?
Foster: I was talking about giving service
in your own business or profession and I see giving as another
form of the same thing. In putting out loving service, there
is an expectancy of money coming back. That expectation is extremely
necessary because expectancy is a magnet that draws to you whatever
you are expecting. Giving is like planting a seed. The farmer
stands in his field and gives the seed to the soil and he expects
a manifold return in the form of a harvest. Similarly, giving
money is like planting "money seeds." It doesn't matter
whether you are giving to a church, a charity, a brother, a human
being standing on the street corner or a panhandler, because,
all is universal, all is one great soil waiting for the seeds.
JH: There is a Catch-22 here, Foster. I have met
many people who say that when they get more they will give. Isn't
it the other way around?
Foster: Precisely so. When you are worst off
financially is when you most need to be giving, even if it's
only the widow's mite. Whatever amount you have, give some of
JH: This seems to be simplicity itself. Is it really
that simple, Foster?
Foster: Yes, very definitely. I've never seen
it fail. NEVER. As the individual increases his giving and loving
service, he gets a larger return of money. It's like the farmer.
The more seeds he puts in the soil, the larger his crop.
JH: Why then do more people not follow this process?
Foster: Because most people think, "This
is all the money I have, and if I give some, I will have less.
Seeds? I can always go to the seed store and buy more seeds,
that's no big deal. But money? Take anything but don't take my
JH: Simple, but not easy. Foster, I understand that
you are one of the very few people who spent time with the famous
Dr. Napoleon Hill. Is this correct?
Foster: Yes. I believe I am the last person
on earth still on the lecture platform who was associated with
JH: Many of us have read his world-wide best-seller,
Think and Grow Rich. I personally know a number of people who
became millionaires by following the principles that Dr. Hill
set down in his book. What were some of the wealth-creating secrets
he told you? Or did you just pick them up from his book?
Foster: No. They were identical because he
lived and taught exactly what was in the book. He spoke of the
truly simple ways to become rich. In my lectures and tape series
I have explained his teachings and have tried to make them more
practical for today's generation.
JH: Would you say that Napoleon Hill has had a profound
effect on your life?
Foster: An enormous effect. The teachings
that have influenced me most in life are, first, those of Jesus
and then secondly, Napoleon Hill. Hill was a twenty year prodigy
of the world's first billionaire, Andrew Carnegie. Napoleon Hill
worked for Andrew Carnegie for those twenty years. Then I became
associated with Napoleon Hill, so I have to bill myself as the
Andrew Carnegie-Napoleon Hill connection! And it is my great
responsibility, as I see it, to continue to proliferate these
JH: Foster, there are certain unique things about
you that I and others who know you truly admire. Here you are,
thousands of miles from home sharing your time and wisdom with
me. I think I am pretty close to the truth when I say that it
doesn't appear that you need to work for a living. Why then,
do you keep travelling and teaching?
Foster: Well, it's true that I do not need
to work for a living but I strongly feel that when someone has
a talent, either one he was born with or one he developed over
the years, he has an enormous responsibility to share that talent.
I am a collector of ideas. Since the age of eight, I have been
collecting ideas and I feel it is a sacred trust to get those
ideas out where they can be heard and used by tens of thousands
of people. Then, it's their responsibility to use them or not
to use them, but I've done my part.
JH: When you were a very young man, did you use
the "Law of Expectation"?
Foster: Yes. In twelve years of public school,
I was expecting to get high grades and I got all A's. Then I
was expecting to go to a fine preparatory school and I did. I
graduated a year after our former president, George Bush. He
was in the same prep school as I. Of course, I was expecting
to go to a fine university and so I went to Yale. I expected
to do well in everything but I also worked extremely hard. I
gave tremendous energy to whatever I wanted. Work for whatever
you want and expect to get it.
JH: Foster, you certainly have had an impressive
body of friends and acquaintances. For example, president George
Bush. Are there others whom we may recognize?
Foster: Oh, in my dormitory alone in prep school,
in addition to George Bush were Jack Lemmon, the movie actor,
Do Pabst of Pabst Beer, John Ford, the grandson of Henry Ford.
Then there was Tom Sarnoff whose father was General David Sarnoff,
Chairman of the board of RCA. There was a Rockefeller, a Harris
and so it went on and on. And there I was, a hick from the sticks,
having two dollars a week in spending money, while they had unlimited
JH: Would you say that your association with such
successful people might have been one of the keys to your success?
After all, if you fly with eagles, you will become like an eagle.
Foster: Yes. And I determined that someday
I was going to have that kind of money. Yes, you bet! I had an
enormous determination about that.
JH: Foster, do you think that everyone is capable
of becoming wealthy?
Foster: There are really three basic requirements
combined with the attitudes we mentioned earlier. First, you
must be of average intelligence. Second, your body must be warm
and third, you must be breathing. If an individual has those
things, there is no limit to what can be accomplished.
JH: This has been a very enlightening experience,
Foster, and I hope that we can do more in the future. I know
that you have an excellent set of tapes that speak in depth about
what we discussed. I myself have been helped to a great extent
by them. I understand that they can only be obtained at your
seminars, but could they be made available to our readers?
Foster: I have a variety of sets of tapes.
There is one set in particular that specializes in money and
that is called the "Millionaire's Seminar." People
who are interested in money really love that set. "Dare
to Prosper" is another popular set. And yes, I will provide
the tapes through your office for those who are interested in
them. You have my permission to distribute them if you so desire.
JH: Thank you, Foster, for your time and wisdom.
This has been delightful and "learningful," all at
the same time.
Foster: I've loved every minute of it.