Wattles, who had formerly been a Methodist, ran for office as a Socialist candidate in Indiana in 1916. He included the word science in the title, reflecting a secular approach to New Thought though also thereby borrowing from the then-rampant popularity of Christian Science and its offshoots as he wrote about business prosperity, mind training, and success in the material world. The mental technique that he called “thinking in the Certain Way,” was intended to establish a state of positivity and self-affirmation. The contents, with chapter titles like “How to Use the Will” and “Further Use of the Will” advance Wattles’s concept of the “Certain Way.”
The Science of Getting Rich preceded similar financial success books such as The Master Key System by Charles F. Haanel (1912) and Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill (1937). In the 100 years since its publication, it has gone through many editions, and remains in print from more than one publisher.