In the introductory biography which precedes Haanel's work, the publishers highlight at least one reason why you might want to read this book:
"It is Silicon Valley's secret that almost every entrepreneur who made a fortune in recent years did so by studying the words Mr Haanel penned over eighty years ago....Since this book was no longer in print until recently, copies of The Master Key System became a hot commodity in the Valley".
Now I've no way of knowing if this statement is true, but such is the power of Haanel's system that it seems eminently plausible. I would not for a moment want anyone to think that Haanel presents some kind of 'cosmic ordering'-type, 'get-rich-quick' system, and neither is it a book about Law of Attraction. It is far deeper, and more important, than that. Haanel claims that his system can revolutionise your life. I've been working with this kind of system for years, and am emphatically convinced that it works.
At the heart of Haanel's approach is an analytical thesis that was pioneered by Thomas Troward (to whom Haanel refers in this book). Essentially, this thesis is that the universe is governed by an overarching creative process.
Haanel calls this "Universal Consciousness"; Troward called it "Spirit". Neither refers to "God", because the Universal Mind that they describe is an essentially impersonal, 'subjective' force, equivalent to the subconscious rather than the conscious in the human mind. It is more akin to a highest law of nature - a law of creativity - than to a deity. It is impersonal. You do not worship it, but you align your approach with it. Haanel's term "Universal Consciousness" is probably more apt than Troward's "Spirit" because the latter might carry connotations of the occult (though that was certainly not what Troward meant).
Haanel argues that everyone's subconscious is a part of the Universal Consciousness. This gives the individual access to great creative power, in any aspect of life. Anything that manifests in your external world, Haanel argues, has been manifested first in the inner world of your mind. The trick, therefore, is to learn how to discipline your inner world - in other words, to channel your thinking - so that inner creation is positive.
His method, originally published as a part-work, is to set out twenty-four stages of study, each including a mental exercise. Each chapter contains a list of numbered, very precise propositions. This is a very effective, very focused approach.
If you are sceptical about the idea of a universal creative process - and do not believe that thought drives the material - you are not going to like The Master Key System. But if you accept a Troward/Haanel-type analysis of cause and effect, you will find The Master Key System an extremely powerful and effective tool.