Because You are No-Thing, There is Nothing to Attract!

August 28, 2007

Perhaps the most radical statement I can make is the one that asserts in truth the law of attraction is a complete illusion and in the purest sense doesn’t even exist!  How can a law of attraction teacher say such a thing?  As my book Beyond the Secret shares the greatest secret you can discover has nothing to do with the law of attraction.  Rather it has to do with the secret of Spirit.  And, what the secret of Spirit reveals to you is that as Spirit you are already everything and everyone.  Which means you already have and are everything — so there is nothing to attract!  Which is why in my book I replace the steps of Ask, Believe, and Receive with Surrender, Align, and Contribute.

How can it be that you already have everything so there is nothing to attract?  Especially if your life appears to be filled with a mountain of lack, what I am saying here can seem totally ridiculous.  You may be able to point to a lot of things you believe you need to ask for, believe in, and receive.  You can easily tell yourself I lack the money I need, the car I want, the relationship that will make me happy, so forth and so on.

Yes, to live in this world you need a few things.  To stay alive you need oxygen, some water, and food now and then (it is anticipated that most people could still survive even if they had not eaten in ten days if they still could breath and had some minimal water).  Apart from this you mainly need the will to live.  Most people derive that will to live not because they believe they have something they need to go and get, but because they have something they still need to go out and do, or contribute.

Remember the “you” that comes from a place of lack is quite simply your ego.  It is that part of you that believes it is separate from Spirit (or God) and everyone and everything around you.  Because “you” lack, you need.  And, since the ego is hugely afraid of loss, it tends to fill up the empty hole of lack within by demanding to be filled up with a lot of outer stuff.   That’s what makes the law of attraction such a powerful tool for the ego.  It gives the ego an endless reason to keep experiencing lack, so it can use the law of attraction to keep asking what it believes God needs to keep giving it so it can keep receiving.  This creates a strange sort of confused thinking.  You believe you are “one with god”, but instead of letting that lead you to a place of fullness allowing you to feel at one with everything and everyone, it makes you feel separate, empty and full of lack!  How mixed up is that?  And, how does this distortion happen?  Because it is the ego that is doing the asking, believing, and receiving.  In fact, the really big ego even goes so far as to insist that it has the right to demand whatever it wants from Spirit and that Spirit should give the ego anything it asks for!  As Beyond the Secret reveals this is also known as narcissim and is about as far as you can get from any authentic spiritual teaching or practice. 

“But,” I can almost hear you gasping and sputtering, “it is so obvious in my life that I lack things, and therefore I need things — like health, money, relationships, cars, trips, etc.” As my book reveals, I agree!  From the standpoint of my ego time and again it makes sense to me that I have the things that my ego believes it should have.  Yet, over and over again when I surrender to what is, when I align with Spirit and let it guide me, lots of things my ego believes it should have turn out to be precisely the things that keep me from experiencing true at-one-ment with Spirit, which is the real source of joy, bliss, and inner peace.

In fact, an exercise that I practice on a regular basis (that was cut from my book due to length) is to assert to myself when my ego gets into its lack phase that as Spirit I am the no-thing.  Because I am no-thing, no amount of “things” can truly bring fulfillment.  As Spirit since I am also everything, I already have it all anyway, so what the heck am I complaining about?  The actual technique I use is quite long and perhaps at another point in time I will blog it here.  All I can say is when I am done with this process of emptying out my need to attract anything, I enter into a state of tremendous fulfillment.  I tap into a source of so much light, love, and power that at times it feels like the atoms of my body are going to explode.  No relationship, no fancy sports car, no home on the beach has ever, EVER, given me a fraction of the same inner fulfillment as these small tastes of Spirit give me when I am blessed to enter into them.  It has helped me to understand why some of the great mystics like Ramakrishna are constantly blissing out and so overwhelmed with joy!  It is like all their hormones are saturating the body with the powerful chemical reactions of deep connectedness with all that already is!  And, they are not attracting it.  They are just surrendering to it.  They are just open to receiving what already is.

OK!  Digressing from this spiritual practice and lofty place, I understand.  The ego is a really tricky thing.  Mine does a great number on me all the time of trying to convince me that I lack this and need that.  I stumble through life tripping into focusing on what I want and feeling all sad that I don’t have it and wanting to demand I get it as well.  The shift from Ask, Believe, and Receive to Surrender, Align, and Contribute is not always easy.  Like you I am a work in progress.  But, I hope together we can bridge the gap between using the law of attraction in an egotistical versus a spiritual way, and bring greater peace, understanding, joy, and love into all of our lives as we do.    

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Psychic Powers Rubbish?

August 27, 2007

Psychic Disbelief

Sometimes I think the nuts really have all rolled out to California.  Unfortunately, your site is only another proof that they are rolling back to the East as well.  Even here in Memphis we are being invaded by all kinds of rubbish.  For example, lately I have had a few friends yap on about seeking out psychics for therapy.  They quote popular psychics who have best-selling books on the market.  Isn’t this all just a figment of people’s imagination?  Can you really justify any of this as being real?

Mark
Memphis, TN


Dear Mark,

As someone who formerly lived on the East coast I can empathize with your basic worry that California and its “New Age” views may be spilling into more traditional belief systems around the country.  When I was a teenager, we too often gave a skeptic glance towards the “Golden State.”  When a minister of ours began to pick up on some New Age ideas he was given his walking papers and exiled from the church.  

Perhaps it is just my personality, but his exile did more to stir up my curiosity than anything else.  Maybe this was because I found him to be one of the most loving and caring individuals I had ever met.  He possessed an open mind and an open heart that left its mark on me.  It also led me into a curious phase where I dutifully read the Bible every night along with my Billy Graham study lessons, and at the same time read books on New Age ideas including the notion of reincarnation. 

During this phase, this same curiosity led me to my first encounter with a psychic, found in a small town in southern Michigan.  She was able to tell me things about my life and family that were very accurate.  When I went home and told my father (a natural skeptic even to this day), he simply didn’t believe my story.  He would rather believe I was a liar, than consider that psychic powers might exist.     

Over the years, I have met a number of psychics.  I have even had my own series of psychic episodes.  Not surprising then, that when I rolled out to California myself for graduate school, I would eventually be attracted to a few parapsychological societies, and even attend an accredited college where some of the professors were known world-wide for their attempts to do serious research on paranormal and psychic phenomenon.   

I could tell you more about their research, but since you seem a natural skeptic, it may be that your mind is made up against psychism and no amount of proof will persuade you otherwise.  I could give you a list of books and societies you could explore to test for yourself the validity of some psychic claims, but I am not sure it would do any good.  

Instead of going this route, I will tell you something my own experiences have taught me.  Ironically, the learning comes from a Biblical source, since psychic phenomena was well known and commonly believed in in ancient times.  The source is from Corinthians and reads as follows. 

1 Corinthians Chapter 13

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not Love, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not Love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not Love, it profiteth me nothing. 

Love suffereth long, and is kind; 
Love envieth not; 
Love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, 
Doth not behave itself unseemly, 
Seeketh not her own, 
Is not easily provoked, 
Thinketh no evil; 
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; 
Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

 Love never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. And now abideth faith, hope, Love, these three; but the greatest of these is Love.
1 Corinthians 13

In short, psychic powers do exist, but one of the greatest powers of the psyche (or soul) is its power to love, to heal, and to extend a loving hand to others. In fact, there are some teachings I have found that bluntly state that these “higher” psychic powers”, are much more spiritually advanced and difficult to attain to, than the “lower psychic powers” of speaking in tongues, reading auras, having telepathic experiences, etc.  In my own life experience, this has been true.  I have met many psychics, some using their powers to inflate their own sense of self-importance, others genuinely trying to serve and help others with their gifts.  But I have met very few truly loving and compassionate spiritual people.  These are the people who through the very power of a glance or a smile can heal a broken heart, instead of report accurately to me that I might have one.  

As for California?  Yes, it has its share of nuts.  Almonds, peanuts, there is quite a variety here.  When I first moved here the diversity of beliefs and cultures was a bit overwhelming.  But, in the past twenty some years of living here, I have found plenty of open minds and open hearts.  Much like the minister I met in Michigan long ago, there is a desire to move past judgment, or even tolerance, in the confrontation of the many differences that exist in this great state.  There is a genuine attempt to understand and come to care for each other.  This “psychic” power of the heart of most California people needs no justification.  It speaks for itself.    

From the heart,

Lisa


Channeling or Inspiration?

August 27, 2007

Dear Dr. Lisa,

I consider myself a creative person.  Part of my interests are singing, storytelling, talking, channeling to groups.  I’ve known for a past decade that I need to get more involved in these activities. It’s not the “New Age” typical channeling of a spirit guide, I’m not sure what it is.  Anyway, I need to follow it, but I’m not sure if I need some sort of spiritual protection when I do it.  This is because the flow of energy at times leaves me feeling overwhelmed and shakey. Maybe it is just the adrenals kicking in to compensate for my anxiety, but I also feel there is much more to it.  What are your impressions? 

Tammy
St. Paul, MN  USA


Dear Tammy,

You have brought up an interesting question, namely “What is channeling?”  First and foremost, channeling is putting one’s mind into a state of receptivity, so one can be open to creative insight and ideas.  Where these ideas come from is a matter of some debate.  Some people consider that they come from a “creative muse.”  In ancient and even modern times, this creative muse was often thought to be a real person, existing in the spiritual realms.  In some spiritual traditions, these ideas come from “the raincloud of knowable things.” In simpler terms, they come from a general source on etheric (intangible) levels.  Anyone who can tune into the right “frequency” or “channel” where the inspiration lies, can have access to it.  The ability to tune into more rarified levels, brings about those terrific ideas that revolutionalize the thinking of human kind. 

In our enlightened era this creative muse is often thought to come from one’s own sub-conscious.  In essence, one is really channeling one’s self, and only believing the source of inspiration is out there some where.  For those who believe in reincarnation, there is even the idea that one is channeling a past life.  This is an updated version of “you” channeling “you”, only the you is really in a distant past. 

Unless one wants to be a materialist and a skeptic (who reduces everything down to “its all in your head”, or brain), channeling is most likely a mixture of one’s own sub-conscious and some real ability to tap into, or be overshadowed by, inspirational levels and beings.  

Beyond this discussion, which could get rather scientific and stodgy if pursued too long, I hear the deeper issue in your question, is how you deal with your own creative power.  What you are asking is what every great singer, author, public speaker, artist, musician, asks at some time or another.  Namely, how do we surrender to the creative flow, so inspiration can come, while keeping our egos (with all the fears, criticisms, and anxieties) out of the way?  

My suspicion is when your adrenals kick up (related to the fight and flight mechanism), you are really struggling with the overwhelming sense of what it could be like to really be seen as a powerful, creative, and vibrant human being.  Any creative act, especially one like singing, that leaves our inner core exposed to others, has an element of risk and danger in it.  When it is our creative and vital self we let out, and other reject, it can be one of the most painful experiences.  Over time, if we have experienced this often, we can close down our creative juices altogether.

Fortunately, I have been lucky enough to work in recent years with some terrific creative people who teach others healthy ways to witness and hold the creative expression of others.  What is absolutely essential is the ability to keep the judgmental and critical mind out of the way.  This was really brought home to me   in a class where we all did some work with clay.  When we were finished we went around the “art gallery” to view each other’s sculptures.  While we were observing one piece of clay, my critical mind came in and silently judged another person’s  art.  To my surprise and embarrassment, when the person shared what her intention was in creating the piece, I realized it was exactly right!  It was what it was, an expression of the individual in its purest form.  I have never forgotten that realization.

What I would wish for you then, is the ability to get to some great workshops with people who would really help you work beyond the inner critic and fear.  They would not be intent on judging or analyzing your “channeled” flow, they would hold it in their hearts, letting it be perfectly what it already is.  Overtime, with practice in being in a loving creative presence, you would build the courage it takes to allow your inner nature to be channeled into manifestation.  Then, in a sense it won’t matter what the source is, the end result will be the same.  You, will be more in touch with YOU, and more ready to be the magnificent Being you are. 

From the heart,

Lisa