American speaker and author Jack Canfield arrived in the city on Wednesday morning, a day before his first-ever seminar in India. While the 67-year-old motivational guru, best known for co-authoring the ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ series, has been here twice before for private seminars and conferences with select audiences, this will be his first event that is open to the public.
Canfield has been a motivational speaker for nearly three decades, holding seminars in 41 countries around the world. Speaking about his love for India, Canfield said, “A lot of my principles are inspired by teachings in Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism and Islam. So, in a way, it’s a little ironic that I’m coming here to speak about these concepts.”
After a power brunch with leading industry magnates on Thursday morning, he will be speaking at Nehru Centre, Worli, on Thursday evening. He will also be holding the same seminar at Bangalore on Saturday.
Acknowledging India’s growing superpower status and the contrast between traditionalism and modernity, he said he feels that India is erring by following the consumerist culture prevalent in the West. “I know a lot of billionaires in the United States who have a lot of ‘stuff’, but don’t have happiness. At the same time, I have a friend named W Mitchell who is a quadriplegic and has burns on 75% of his body from two separate accidents. He uses a wheelchair to get around and needs to have a personal assistant around him all the time. However, he is one of the happiest people I know,” Canfield said.
Canfield’s belief is that every situation can be overcome by the use of a simple formula: Event + response = experience. He said, “When you get frustrated or upset at not getting a taxi, or perhaps not getting into a university of your choice, it is your response that can balance out that equation and make it a positive experience.”