The Law of Attraction and the Principles of Psychology Involved
Recently there has been a lot of buzz about the law of attraction and how we can have whatever we want as long as we believe it so. Rhonda Byrne wrote the book called The Secret and she was featured on the Oprah show. Yes, the Law of Attraction is making big waves. Its underlying premise is that we can attract positive energy from the universe and make anything that we want to materialize happen. The law of attraction states that we will bring into our lives what we attract by our own thoughts.
History about the law of attraction
The Law of attraction is considered a concept of New Thought teachings. Though its origins go back to the occult, the first time the phrase the law of attraction ever appeared was in an 1879 newspaper, and the concept has evolved over the years.
The electrical engineer and physicist, John Ambrose Fleming described physical matter “ as an unquenchable energy of attraction.”
Thomas Troward who was a big influence on the new thought movement first wrote about the energy of thoughts manifesting in the physical world as early as 1904 – 1910.
Think and Grow Rich, the famous book published in 1937, by Napoleon Hill is based on the Law of attraction.
The Husband and wife team, Esther and Jerry Hicks also made the New York Times Best seller list with their new thought book called The Law of Attraction: The Basics of the Teachings of Abraham. Esther Hicks is noted for channeling through an entity called Abraham. Abraham is not one personality but several from another dimension who channel messages to the human race through Esther who acts as the medium for communication.
Although these messages are very positive, do they stand the test of rigorous scientific methodology?
The Law of Attraction and Science
Scientists concur that the claims made by the law of attraction violates scientific principles and the scientific community’s understanding of the world. Physicist Ali Alousi, is just one of the scientists who say that the law of attraction just cannot be measured for its accuracy.
Still others state that the law of attraction will led to ”blaming the victim mentality.” Have you ever noticed when you tell a follower that you tried to visualize the thing you wanted most and it didn’t happen, they will automatically say that you are doing something wrong. They will never say the law of attraction could be wrong.
In order for something to have scientific validation it must be able to be proven either true or false. In fact every scientific experiment starts with the null hypothesis which states that whatever you are trying to prove is wrong, and the onus is then on the scientist to prove that their hypothesis is right.
The law of attraction will not allow the law to ever be wrong, only the people who try to follow the law can be wrong. The Skeptical Inquirer Magazine has criticized the law of attraction because it isn't being measured or proven right or wrong through scientific methodology. The Skeptical Inquirer Magazine states that all claims are anecdotal and slanted towards positive and very selective reports. Negative reports from people trying out the law of attraction are never mentioned in the literature.
The way the law of attraction operates is that the follower must follow basic conditions:
Determine what you want
Then ask the universe for it
Behave as if you already have what you are asking for. For example, if you are poor and you are asking for a windfall to come to you, take your last dollar and spend it. Forget about the bills or whatever else you should be spending it on. Spend it on whatever you want because you have that windfall already.
Then be open to receive what the universe will send you.
There is no room for negative thinking in the law. As long as people continue to think from a negative or needs point of view, they will continue to attract negative thoughts and situations into their lives
Other scientists such as Victor Stenger and Leon Lederman refute the connection between the law of attraction and quantum psychics. They state that the law of Attraction is misrepresenting the electrical impulses of brainwaves. They claim that the Law of Attraction is simply modern pseudoscience.
Another criticism of the Law of Attraction is that it that the principal only works for people who are in a lifestyle that allows for it to happen. If we take the example previously mentioned of someone who asks the universe for a windfall, that situation would more likely become reality for a big investor than a street person or someone near destitution.
Should we scrap the Law of Attraction completely?
Of course not since the Law of Attraction has taken several psychology principles.
The concept of the self-fulfilling prophecy defends the premise that our thought patterns will determine our behavior. If we see ourselves as a failure we will be one and if we see ourselves as a success we will be that as well.
If you want to get that university education, do not think you are not smart enough, or you will not get a job at the end of it because then you will self talk yourself out of going to university all together and for sure you will not get that dream job at the end of it.
On the other hand, if you want to write that book, or start a business, don’t just believe you will do it, don’t just think about it and tell your friends you will do it, make a game plan with the steps you need to reach your goal, and then go out and make it happen!
The law of attraction can work in psychology if people apply positive thoughts to succeed in life. Will their wishes and dreams be handed to them like manna falling from the skies? Hardly, but a positive outlook on life will bring them much greater rewards that a negative one.