The Delusion of the Law of Attraction (2)
In my previous article here on Conscious Life News, The Delusion of The Law of Attraction, I shared my personal view that the idea of “manifestation” in New Age circles is typically simplistic and naïve. I outlined one important distinction (one of a dozen I outline here), which is as follows:
Conscious intention is important and influential in bringing a vision into real-world reality, but it cannot (with perhaps the odd remarkable exception) transcend the physical, economic and social systems in which we live, work and create.
In this second article I am going to get practical. What does all this mean?
It means that – ideally – you have to honour the most significant aspects of the current social and economic system in which you intend to work as you “manifest” your vision. You need to be aware of how each domain operates. You need to be smart. Being smart means being mindful of both opportunities and potential roadblocks at that level. Just how much you need to know about a domain will depend on your situation and what you are looking to do.
For the sake of clarity, I identify five domains that have to be negotiated: mind and inspiration, the street level, the social/systems domain, worldview/paradigm, and the realm of myth/metaphor.
I suggest that as you read what follows, think of a particular goal or dream that you are really passionate about, and how you can apply this knowledge to your vision. Or consider something that you tried to create in the past.
I present the following as questions, because this is the best way to get you to start thinking deeply about the issues they highlight. They certainly aren’t the only questions you may need to ask, but they are some of the most important.
THE DOMAIN OF MIND AND INSPIRATION
This is the domain that is commonly addressed in New Age philosophies (although usually it is disconnected from the other domains). It concerns how you employ your mind both consciously and unconsciously. The conscious part is relatively simple. You should take the time to follow your deep intuitions, then visualise and affirm them as if they are already here, now. Since this domain is already widely discussed in spiritual circles, I will not comment at length about it here.
• What are my gifts, my passions. What is my genius?
• What do I feel intuitively that am I here to do and be?
• How can I turn that into a real world career, service or pastime/hobby?
• How can I activate and utilise my spiritual guidance as I go about creating my vision?
• Am I allowing greed, lust, fear, self-doubt, parental messaging or social conditioning to cloud my vision – or completely distort it?
• Is my passion really something that I want or need to turn into a profession or even a pastime?
• Am I ignoring my genuine intuition as it tells me that something is not right here?
• Am I failing to listen to my intuition on an ongoing basis as I work on actualising my vision – and not just at the initial idea-creation phase?
• Do I have any restrictive belief structures within me that might prevent me taking affirmative action towards actualising my goal?
• Do I believe that I have to be perfect and “negative-belief-free” before I can be successful? (this is not true).
THE STREET LEVEL
This is the domain of practical application; of people, markets and money. At the street level we deal with the nuts and bolts stuff that any dream requires to become a reality. Sometimes these things can be dull and repetitive.
• Can you see an opportunity for your passion in the world of money and markets?
• Is there a gap in the market place that you could fill with your genius or passion?
• Have you done some research to find out if anybody else is doing the same thing, and if so, how they are faring?
• Who can help you?
• Do I give up as soon as the initial excitement of my dream begins to fade?
• Have I failed to learn about my product or service, and its potential market?
• Have I done sufficient research into the marketing of my idea? Am I willing to learn about marketing?
• Does my budget cover my expenses?
• Do I need to develop better people skills?
• Do I need help?
THE SYSTEMS/SOCIAL DOMAIN
Whether we like it or not we have to live and work in society. And organisations have their particular ways of operating, their systems. You will have to acknowledge this if you want to work with people out in the “real world”. Many spiritual folk actually despise the world. When this is the case, they will not only get drawn into “drama” and conflict, but they also lose all opportunity to shine their light in the world.
• Do I begin my personal introductions, writings and presentations with references to common social and cultural experiences that I share with my audience?
• In regard to my product or service, what trends or potential developments are occurring in society which could lead to exciting opportunities in the short to medium-term future?
• Am I looking to other societies and cultures (other than my own) for inspiration?
• Do I seek to make friends with strangers who are different from me? You can learn much from such people.
• Do I take opportunities to travel? This will expose you to new ideas.
• Do I look for worldview similarities rather than focussing upon the differences?
• Do I need to ground my vision in the real world of money and markets? Is it too “airy fairy”?
• Am I failing to speak a language that my intended market will understand?
• Do I believe myself to be culturally or spiritually superior to others?
• Have I rejected the world? Am I angry and judgmental towards others who don’t see it the way I do?
• Do I despise people who are non-spiritual? Do I refer to them as animals, sheeple or drones?
THE WORLDVIEW/PARADIGM DOMAIN
Typically people who work with the idea of the Law of Attraction are coming from a different paradigm than the mainstream – a different way of looking at the world. This is something they need to consider carefully.
• What are the great gifts that the dominant paradigm has given us?
• Do I look for worldview similarities rather than focusing upon the differences?
• How can I draw from the knowledge of the dominant paradigm to assist me in developing my vision, and in helping others to understand my vision?
• Do I reject the dominant paradigm and the people who espouse it? This is a problem if you are dealing with such people on a regular basis. You are rejecting your audience.
• Am I ignoring important and crucial truths from the dominant paradigm, such that my own knowledge base is being unnecessarily restricted? I simply suggest that you do not reject science. Acknowledge its limitations, but be grateful for the great advances it has brought us.
• Am I living the New Age/Romantic vision and unconsciously imposing it upon others or believe that it is an inevitable future for everyone? This would be an example of “hegemony”.
• Am I assuming that people within the dominant paradigm can see beyond it, simply because I can? You may need to gently lead people towards questioning their worldview. Just because you read Kuhn’s The Nature of Scientific Revolutions thirty years ago doesn’t mean everybody did.
THE MYTH/METAPHOR DOMAIN
• Can I turn my idea into a powerful and attractive story that touches something deep within the human spirit?
• How can I use metaphor and language in a way that makes my story easy to understand, and which reaches into the human psyche (not just the intellect).
• Where can I find/create images that resonate powerfully with my audience?
• Are my metaphors incompatible with my audience’s, or simply outdated?
• Is my story clichéd and stale?
• Does my story contain elements of victimhood, blame and projection?
There are a lot of questions here. I don’t expect you will want (or need) to answer them all in depth. But do reflect upon those that you feel are relevant to your journey of creation.
Finally, remember that God put you in this world. It is where you are meant to be. Working with the system and with the people of this planet is a great opportunity for spiritual growth. So don’t make the mistake of rejecting the world and its people. Use your creation journey as an opportunity to grow, to love forgive and to love. That is something even more important than the act of creation itself.
Marcus T Anthony