This month’s practical magick lessons are focused on abundance and prosperity. I would be remiss if I didn’t bring up the Law of Attraction in relation to this month’s theme, since the LOA is featured most prominently when it comes to abundance and prosperity work specifically.

The law of attraction is a popular concept, with celebrity endorsements and all kinds of seminars that are built upon using the principle of the LOA to make your life more fulfilling in whatever capacity you feel you are lacking. But is this philosophy true, and is it truly helpful?

I wrote a post a little while ago about the importance of critical thinking in the intuitive arts, and how there are many half-truths being peddled that end up doing more harm than good. The law of attraction in its popular form is one of those half-truth pieces of poo. I feel it deserves its own post. So, here’s the deal.

It’s said that if you want something and set the intention that you will have it, and visualize and work hard and make sure to think positively all the time, you will get that thing you want. In nature, like attracts like, they say.

When I was really little there was this stuffed animal raffle at an away basketball game that my sister was in. I wanted this stuffed lion so bad. I visualized having it, I thought positively about it the whole game, I got my mom to enter me into the raffle, and waited as patiently as a little girl can for the raffle winners to be announced. I was sure it was mine. Someone else won. Did I do something wrong? No. You can work hard for something, believe in it, visualize it, and still not obtain it.

This is experientially true. The purpose of this post isn’t to rationalize the reason you don’t get what you want, so I won’t go into that, but it’s important to remember that we do not always get what we want regardless of what any guru or celebrity promises and regardless of how badly we want it.

For a universal law to be a law it has to be true all the time. The LOA as it is popularly understood is, demonstrably, not true all the time. The law of attraction (popularly) states that if you focus on positive thinking, positive things will happen to you, and if you focus on negative thinking, negative things will happen to you. I’m about to be very blunt, so brace yourselves. Did a crack baby not think positively enough in the womb? Did an abused child invite the abuser into their life? Did Jewish people invite the holocaust with negative thinking? Did women invite the patriarchy? Did minorities invite racism?

Of course not. In this context you can see how this philosophy is at worst victim blaming, gaslighting, and atrocious. Or conversely, how would a proponent of this butchered principle explain the good things that happen to chronically pessimistic people, or depressed people, or anxious people who spend all day focused on the worst possible outcomes?

The blame cycle of the LOA exists to make sure that you don’t question the validity of its claims. If you don’t get what you want or if something awful happens to you, you get blamed for not practicing the LOA fully or the right way. And it’s worth considering who that really serves. It really serves the people who are doing horrible things, because it absolves them of any responsibility if the LOA is true.

This is nefarious pseudo-spirituality and pseudo-metaphysics. This is what makes it such a dangerous rabbit hole. It is the root of toxic love and light culture.

Positive thinking (or as I would like to consider it, having some measure of good faith in the ability to experience good things) for an individual is helpful because it is what leads to taking action. Taking action is what leads to changes and results. Results, however, are not ever guaranteed.

Ditch the shame game that is the LOA and work your will by actively committing to and going after what you want without the excess concern about whether or not you’re thinking positively enough. Make the efforts in good faith and forget the outcome. You can’t control outcomes, but you can influence them. You don’t need to believe in fake science or take on the baggage that comes with it. Believing in yourself, taking action, and accepting life for the crapshoot it is will get you much further with a lot less shame and oppressor-positive baggage than clinging to the false principles of the law of attraction.

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featured image via pixabay.

2 thoughts on “The Law of Attraction is a Dangerous Lie

  1. Toxic positivity and LOA are not one in the same. Toxic positivity is blaming or shaming people for not doing something right and that’s why law of attraction didn’t work. There is actually much scientific theory validating law of attraction, regarding quantum physics and brain chemistry. Neural pathways in the brain are indeed changed by positive thought, causing us to think and react differently, thereby moving ourselves in the direction of obtaining what we want . . . or attracting it. To say LOA is simply thinking positively and believing is glossing over the changes in brain chemistry, attitude and taking actions for obtaining what you want. Not once, not even the celebrity Gurus who are out to make a buck, has the LOA been presented that you can just thinks something, without doing something too, and get what you want.

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    1. I appreciate your thoughts on the topic, however I believe it is important to note that I did not write that toxic positivity and the LOA are the same. I said that LOA is the birthplace of toxic positivity.

      Pop LOA (that which I criticize) is the belief that the universe creates and provides what you focus your thoughts on.

      This is not consistently true. And it victim blames.

      Neural pathways in the brain can be affected/changed by both positive and negative thinking, but they’re mainly changed by consistent action that supports the change (ex: if you want to be a person who loves themselves, you can think up a self-love affirmation, write it nine times a day for 30 days, and take specific actions that communicate love to yourself consistently over time until self-love is now an ingrained part of who you are). This is what cognitive behavioral therapy does. Any consistent change of behavior affects neural plasticity. However, this does not equate to all experiences you have in your life reflecting the quality of your thoughts, which is a main tenet of pop LOA.

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