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5: Law of Attraction
The fifth basic assumption is the law of attraction, a concept that is a laughing stock in some circles now. The concept itself is valid but too many people have jumped on the bandwagon and try to teach it without really understanding how it works. Frankly it doesn’t work without the other basic assumptions in place. If you don’t get that the world is your projection, if you’re not at cause, if you don’t understand creation, and if you’ve created the dichotomy that says you’re doomed to cycle back and forth between happy and sad, no amount of positive thinking is going to stop the slide into sadness.
If you look at a foundation as having four corners (the four basic assumptions), the law of attraction is the filler between the four corners that brings those four aspects to solidity. The law of attraction can be applied to each of those corners. I once thought you had to learn this corner first, then this next, then that. But the truth is that you need to learn them all at once. I do believe that there is an order to the basics that helps them make sense and be useful. The order that I presented them in this chapter seems the clearest to most of my students. However, you need to really focus in on all of these basics at once and really incorporate them. The law of attraction says that you will attract to you that which you hold in your consciousness. You will attract that which is similar to you. Angry people will create situations that make them angry. Sad people will experience situations that depress them. Fearful people will see hear and feel situations that scare them, and so on.
The law of attraction is just that simple: You call to yourself that which you hold inside you. The law of attraction does work. Though some people do teach the law of attraction and include the four other aspects, often the way it’s taught is too vague and ambiguous – and ineffective.
Those who teach that you only need to hold a positive thought to call happiness to you are not doing anyone any favors. Affirmations done that way just don’t work. To its credit, positive thinking can at least keep you open to possibility whereas negative thinking shuts you down completely.
But over 100 years ago, early psychologists discovered that positive thinking and positive-ness alone will not create the life you desire or make you into the person you want to be.
A classic example of this was James Mill and his son, John Stuart Mill. James Mill was a Scottish philosopher in the late 1700’s and early 1800’s. He believed that the mind had no creative function and the mind’s process was a predictable mechanical response to external stimulations. So he thought that he could completely shape his son John’s mind by rigidly controlling the stimulus he was given in early childhood. James Mill basically created the “perfect” environment for his son with everything that was happy, nothing negative. But the experiment backfired. By the age of 21, John suffered from deep depression. At one point, he almost committed suicide and went through his entire life experiencing periods of immense sadness*.
People who believe in positive thinking might refer to the study of the Transcendental Meditation experiment in Washington DC. In this study, researchers took an army of experienced meditators into DC for several months and the crime rates dropped significantly. Through their thoughts, these meditators affected the energy field in DC. This energy field is what Rupert Sheldrake called the morphogenetic field. I’ve seen the reports on how they meditated and I still discuss the study when I present the fundamental principles of quantum-physics in some of my trainings. But those guys in the study were serious meditators. They weren’t just thinking happy thoughts. They’d been practicing meditation for decades and were well armed with more knowledge than just the law of attraction. They thought positively, but they had 20 years of training going into it.
Law of Attraction and Self–Actualization
So, besides having the four basic assumptions in place, what does it take to make the law of attraction work? If you think about people you’d consider pretty together or self-actualized, don’t those same people seem to have a handle on the law of attraction? If so, it’s because what is inside of them is all in agreement, not only their conscious thoughts but their subconscious minds as well. These people don’t say that they want lots of money while harboring a subconscious belief that money is evil. They don’t try to go after a relationship while fearing that they’re unlovable. However they’ve gotten there, these people have integrated all parts of themselves and spend more time in the flow than others.
The law of attraction works all the time, not just when you’re trying to use it consciously. So whatever you see in your life is a reflection of the beliefs inside of you, most often in the unconscious mind. When you’re trying to invoke the law of attraction consciously, it’s critical that you have the unconscious on board with whatever you are trying to attract. Without that agreement, your conscious desires will get sabotaged every time!
One of my students had finished our Master Practitioner’s course in NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) and was starting his own practice. On his way to his first speaking engagement on the subject, he had a fender bender and had to reschedule. When the next scheduled time came around, he headed to the class and was sideswiped by another car. He rescheduled again. The third time, he was determined to teach the class. He got in his car and within the first mile he plowed into a truck and completely totaled his car!
Obviously, at this point, he stopped and asked what was going on. He finally realized that his unconscious was trying to protect him. He had an unconscious fear that he would fail as a speaker and that would end his new career. After he recognized and dealt with that fear, he went on to become a very successful speaker and coach.
1. What is your experience consciously using the Law of Attraction? Does it seem to work in some areas and not others? At some times and not others?
2. The Law of Attraction says that everything in your life is a reflection of what you are calling to yourself, consciously or unconsciously, intentionally or unintentionally. If that’s true, just look around you. Describe what you see and what you have been calling to yourself. Is it what you consciously desire?
*The unintentional benefit of this was that John Stuart Mill went on to develop more holistic theories about the mind and how it works.
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