365 Days in Aspen

Law of De-traction

law of attractionSo much is said these days about the so-called "Law of Attraction" that I have to clarify my point of view. In fact, I wrote a post for today about "Positive Pessimism" that I'm delaying until tomorrow so I can address this subject first. 

I get the appeal of this so-called "law." It's simple, it's straightforward and it's seductive. All you have to do is get your thoughts focused and "Presto!" you get what you want. 


With messages like: "Seek and ye shall find," "Ask and it is given," and "You are never given a wish without being given the power to make it true," it's easy to get sucked into the rhetoric. To buy into the "dream."

Sorry to burst that bubble, but life just doesn't work that way. 

Here's the part of it that DOES work: What you focus on, you "attract." Well, in a way. If you look for good things, you'll see more good things. If you look for the best in people, that's what you will find. The converse is, of course, true. If you look for the worst, if you complain about your problems you'll have (or at least see) more problems. And if you look for synchronicities and serendipities and connections, you'll likely find them. That part is spot-on. 

But when "they" (whoever "they" is) say that if you want something bad enough, if you keep focused and positive, you'll get "it," well, that's not how things work. And when they say it's a "law," well, that part really bristles the hair on the back of my neck. 

Even if it is a kind of "law," there are other laws. And laws with more impact. Like the Law of Karma for example. And whether it's been defined as a "law" or not, Destiny is a much more influential law than the "law of attraction." 

For example, if something is not in your destiny, and/or if it's not for your highest good, then you can wish-wish-wish (or even work-work-work) all you want, but it's very unlikely you'll get it. And if for some reason you do, you'll find out that it wasn't all you thought it would be. (Which is probably the lesson – to be careful what you ask for). 

The key, really, is to get your wishes in alignment with your destiny – and with the Divine, not to make sure your destiny is in alignment with your wishes. Said another way, to try to make sure what you're asking for is what's best for you. And sometimes what's "best" isn't fun. Or easy. Or particularly pleasant. 

We decide on our lessons
The paths we will take
Awards we might go for
And mistakes we might make

For life isn't easy
And not always fun
But easy is boring
Like games always won

(from my children's book, "Sometimes I Wonder."  

We're here to learn and grow and, hopefully, contribute. To look for the joy and fun and happiness and peace; sure. Of course. But to expect it 24-7-365? To think all we have to do is wish for it and we'll get that Ferrari or miracle cure or multi-millon dollar book deal? 

Look – if it happens for you – GREAT! I'll be cheering you on. I'm just saying that for most of us, life isn't that easy. 

And that can be a good thing.