The Law of Attraction

So my wife and I sat sipping beers and admiring our new deck. It was the perfect size and height and complemented the new patio doors opening onto it. The project, long overdue ended up exactly as I had imagined. I was proud of the achievement. With a bit of help in the early stages from family members, I had designed and built it myself

To be honest, I had not been convinced I could do it but I followed a very basic premise. I envisioned the completed project daily with excited anticipation and I worked at it whenever I could. “Never underestimate the power of 15 minutes” was my motto and “I can do this!” –my constant mantra. For some, building a deck is no major task, child’s play perhaps but for others it would be unthinkable to even attempt it. I was somewhere in between.

So what does this have to do with the Law of Attraction?

For those familiar with the Law of Attraction it is seen as a somewhat magical means to obtain something in the near future. It could be a new house, a new car, a spouse, a million dollars, a healthy new body or perhaps the attainment of some career aspiration such as NHL Hockey player, astronaut, brain Surgeon or even a Buddhist Monk. Yet, when I hear the word magical attached to The Law of Attraction, I have to wince. Most will agree intentions and desires can only be achieved by hard work, goal setting, planning, visualizing and maybe a bit of luck. The key is that at some point in time we made the decision to attain a future goal and manifested it. So where’s the magic?

We all have heard of a popular author, playwright or actor been proclaimed “an overnight success” suggesting that they went to bed one night a nobody with nothing but a dream and a prayer, and woke up the next day with a Pulitzer or Academy Award nomination. They would be the first to laugh out loud at the idea. That after of years of dreaming, planning, working, disappointments and rejection they reached their goal only to have the rest of the world call it “magic!”

In my book Will of an Eagle Heart of a Dove the main character Wilunitus envisions a goal and is able to vividly experience it in his mind’s eye, right down to the feelings he might have as if it was already happening. The images slowly become a part of him and the energy that draws him to their reality is able to help carry him through all of the fears and obstacles he runs into in his journey.

In the movie and subsequent book by the same name The Secret, The Law of Attraction is billed as being just that – an undisputed Universal Law that above all requires your belief in its existence in order to make it work. Countless Self Help Gurus such as Joe Vitale author of The Attractor Factor, or the late Dr. Wayne Dyer who wrote, You’ll See it When you Believe It, outline how to use the law of Attraction to obtain your fondest dreams.

I mention these two (there are countless others) because I feel they approach this phenomenon with both clarity and originality but most of all with honest practicality. Joe Vitale in particular is a true student of The Law of Attraction and has written many books on the subject. He himself went from being homeless to becoming a multi-millionaire simply by teaching others to do the same. Napoleon Hill one of the original supporters of the concept, wrote an entire book about it, Think and Grow Rich – in 1937 near the end of the Great Depression. It has been read and referenced by thousands.

Let’s face it, the idea of trying to manifest a million dollars in your bank account overnight conjures up ideas of Sorcery and Witchcraft your average chump might want nothing to do with, yet the prospect of building a modest deck in your backyard from scratch, or maybe getting a new job slightly better than the one you have, all would appear to be normal achievements. In reality though, I say, what is the difference? You create and manifest something out of nothing but your thoughts – your wishes and your desires. Then you use the same basic formulae to achieve them. In almost all cases the formula appears to be;

Step one: Have a specific end result (Goal) with a firm timeline such as building a deck by the end of summer. Step Two: (Visualize) or strongly feel it will happen – maybe see yourself sitting there pint in hand, wearing a Cheshire cat grin surveying your handiwork. Step Three: Make a plan and perhaps a schedule and begin (Action). Take plans to the hardware store and get a list of materials and have them delivered. Step four: As you hammer and saw away (Believe) “I can do this.” and; Step five: Enjoy your new deck. Marvel at the magic. I mean it was not there in the spring was it? I know this works because I did it. All of you reading this have done the same or better. The only difference is the value of the goal, the complexity of means to achieve it and the willingness to believe it can be done. What goal would you set out to obtain if you knew you could not fail?

In my Book Will of an Eagle Heart of a Dove, Wilunitus has doubts throughout his journey and the biggest is overcoming his fear of the unknown. Yet he persists. As he overcomes the limits placed on his expansion into the world beyond his fears, his ability to believe grows exponentially. The notion that “I can do this” waxes stronger in his mind daily and the journey to his goal becomes a reality.

This is why I call this book a motivational Fantasy. It is a marvelous, magical journey with a surprise ending that is very entertaining to both young and old, yet it embodies life lessons that go beyond mere persistence. It is about vision, fear, belief in one’s destiny and overcoming obstacles both real and imagined. It is about life itself and how to expand beyond.

So why is The Law of Attraction billed as a Secret and again where is the magic? When people do amazing things that are incomprehensible to most, there is often a feeling there is something special or maybe other worldly about that person. We idolize our heroes because they seem to be able to do things we can’t. Yet in the The Secret it is suggested these abilities belong to everyone. That we all have a special place inside of us that can motivate us to do extraordinary things. Some say this place is where the heart is and we are prompted to follow the Heart for guidance.

This is what Willunitus does. He follows that special place inside of him where the ability to make dreams materialize seems to dwell. How does he do it? Take the journey with him now in Will of an Eagle Heart of a Dove and find out. Is it magic? Or –just magical!

FEAR!

From the dictionary – fear – a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.

“Distressing emotion” would suggest fear starts with a feeling. You are uncomfortable about something that may happen. The feeling immediately becomes a thought which becomes an image – a movie in your mind. It is about some impending doom, ranging from sudden death or extreme pain, incarceration, embarrassment and or a whole potential list of unsettling outcomes. If you were to suddenly stop and analyse the situation you might realize this movie can be categorized in two ways. The first, it is something that might happen somewhere in the distant future or second, it is something that could possibly happen quite soon. There is a big difference between imagining being chased by a grizzly bear on a camping trip three months from now, and actually staring into the hot, drooling mouth of a giant grizzly, about to rip your head off.

In the first scenario fear is a limiting belief. It is a block inside of you which might paralyze you into not going on camping trip that you just might enjoy. This basically robs you of new, challenging and possibly life changing experiences. The second scenario is a very real danger which obviously cannot be ignored.

…but can our mind tell the difference? It is suggested fear of things which are very minor or may never happen, still have a similar effect on our bodies as do those things which are very real and frightening. If you were to be honest, you might  agree that like most humans, you spend a great deal of your time stressing about imaginary outcomes such as when the ominous character UNIKI in my book, Will of an Eagle Heart of a Dove,  suggests to protagonist, Wilunitus“dwelling on what ifs, rather than what is.”

In the adventure Wilunitus is also spooked by a voice from deep in a dark gorge and begins to imagine it as some fierce, threatening Bog Troll, without even being able to see it.

…a huge, giant beast with burning, glowing red eyes and slobbering, crocodile like teeth. A deep fear within the boy had conjured a vivid and most foul vision that brought terror to his soul.

…and later he creates visions of Sea Monsters lurking in a lake. He truly needs to cross the lake to fulfil his destiny, yet chooses instead to toil all day in the hot sun with a group of very plain, uninspired workers known as the UGLIES, rather than pursue his vision of becoming King.

…by avoiding the fear of the lake, by giving into the fears of his mind, he had traded the chance to be King. Instead, he was a slave of the UGLIES. A slave with no visible chains, no master to guard him. A slave bound and sentenced to hard labor, with his own fears and imaginings holding the key to his future – and maybe the life of his friend.

 His friend Solomon, the bird, speaks of the time he was in a cage as being more of a prison of the mind.

“Well, you are also a prisoner aren’t you, Wil? A prisoner not only of the bars on the cage but of your own mind as well. You are imprisoned in your noodle,” explained the bird pointing his wing to his head, “and that is the hardest prison of all to escape from.”

As the journey continues, Wilunitus is able to overcome his fears and with a stronger will, expands his world as he expands his limitations.

So how do we qualify real fear from imagined? Well for me, the first step is awareness. Be aware of what you are feeling. Realize you are playing that movie in your mind about some entity out to get you, whether it is the tax man, an imaginary thief, or your crazed neighbour next door. Or perhaps you are confronting your boss, or some co-worker, or your spouse, with some concept that suggests they are not treating you with respect and yet the entire conversation – the whole production – is in your mind. No matter though, your body cannot tell the difference. Your blood pressure rushes to the danger zone  and your cortisol levels escalate and inflammation seeps into your body.

Be aware when this is happening. Catch yourself and remind yourself you are the director of this movie. Decide right then to yell “cut!” to your runaway brain. Do you really have an issue with your boss? Then set up a real meeting or just be prepared to deal with it. The tax man is not going away and is about as impersonal as the guy that picks up your garbage. Get a better accountant, learn the tax laws or find better ways to monitor your finances. Don’t just have imaginary conversations with an imaginary tax guy about issues that may or not even be issues. Your spouse is your spouse for a reason. Sit down with them and talk. Do not have this wild, take no prisoners, knock down dragged out conversation with them in your mind. It’s a waste of energy, a waste of time and – well it’s creepy. In fact most of these conversations are creepy. Who are you talking to anyway? I’m guessing it’s you. Your boss is not there, so you are really talking to yourself wearing a costume of your boss and the entire ridiculous production is being watched and directed by you. It’s like you went out of your way to go watch a movie, by yourself, directed by you, about you arguing with yourself, acting as your boss. Think about it.

This is what the first type of fear does to us. Now I am not down playing the second type of fear where you truly are in danger. If that big ass bear is breathing bad breath into your face and his eyes say you are breakfast, then the true “fight or flight” syndrome must kick in. Evasive manoeuvres of some sort are recommended. However if you are afraid of an imaginary bear in your mind then I like your chances. Your blood pressure may go up but your head should stay intact. Yet, going through this episode of you and the bear is an unhealthy waste of time and resources. What else could your brain be doing instead?

Overcoming imaginary fears is a main obstacle for Wilunitus and an important theme in the book. There are real challenges on any journey, whether it be battling traffic on the way to shopping, or crossing lakes with the imagined threat of Sea Monsters.

In her book “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway” by Susan Jeffers, Ph.D., the Author suggests just that. Some fears are real and many imagined, or at least the potential impact of the fear may be imagined. But fear stops us from becoming. It places limits or boundaries on our very existence. Fear keeps us on the couch watching TV instead of writing that great novel, it keeps us from signing up for those courses, sending out those resumes, asking that person out, or taking that camping trip into the forest.

Fear of danger, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of embarrassment, fear of commitment…add your own or take your pick. You cannot fear the past as it is history. You can fear the present but are probably too busy dealing with it. Most fears are about the future which may or may not come to pass. In short they are an illusion. A figment of your imagination – what ifs, rather than what is.

Franklin D. Roosevelt 32nd President of the USA stated in his famous 1932 inaugural address: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

Giving into fear, real or imagined, robs us of our future. Knowing that and accepting that, is the first step forward on any journey.

As Solomon says to Wilunitus in my book, Will of an Eagle Heart of a Dove“The only power it (fear) has over you is the fear you are letting run loose in your own mind.”

 

What does it mean to follow the Heart?

If the heart could talk what would it say to you? Listen to your heart was always strange advice to me when I was younger. I imagined a cartoon heart cheering me on from my chest if I asked it for help.

Everyone accepts the heart as a very important organ in the human body. It controls the flow of blood and feeds cells. If it stops, death is not far away. If it is not healthy your quality of life suffers greatly but how does it tell you what to do? How can it guide you? Is this even possible?

In my book about Wilunitus, following the heart is a main theme. He encounters the eccentric entity known as UNIKI when stranded at night by himself out in the middle of a lake. He is terrified by his sudden presence, yet UNIKI goes on to teach a lesson that will help sustain the boy through many challenges ahead.

“Listen with the heart,” asked Wil again. “How do you do it?”
“How do you listen with the heart?” repeated UNIKI. “You already know how but you have forgotten, or at least you forget most of the time. Sometimes, under certain circumstances your instincts just take over. You go on auto pilot. Such as when you are in grave danger. The heart just more or less says – move over brain, I am in charge now!”
“I think I understand that,” continued Wil “but what about when I want to force myself to listen with my heart?”
“Then stop talking and start listening!” replied UNIKI.
“Hmm!” the boy seemed confused. There was a silence between them and then UNIKI spoke again.
“Do you talk to yourself boy?” he asked.
“I well… I…”
“Of course you do. All humans do. Do you not work out your problems inside your head with continuous chatter? On and on you go, to and fro in your mind, trying to work out the details of some problem, dwelling on what ifs rather than what is. Thinking the worst most of the time rather than working out a simple solution.”
“I guess I do…sort of,” Wil admitted.
“…and sometimes it works,” the voice continued. “More often than not though, you will find an answer by simply asking the question and then being quiet. When this happens, you have not asked your brain. You have asked your heart. The heart will always provide the best answer provided the brain does not interfere.”

In many religions and spiritual teachings the heart is thought of as a special place. It is a deep area of feeling and emotion. It is an inner starting point for future intentions. A hardened heart is thought of as being blocked and unfeeling leading to hatred, an open heart is one of no resistance and open to love. A strong feeling heart is brave and able to overcome fear. A weak feeling heart lacks courage and faith.

In his book The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond YourselfMichael A. Singer talks about the heart as being a special place that can be opened after being blocked by life circumstances. It is not the physical heart he refers to but a mysterious spiritual heart. A place where energy can flow or be stifled.

In his best seller book The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment, Eckhart Tolle talks about getting in touch with your inner body.

I think the meaning of asking your heart for advice is to ask an inner part of ourselves that is connected to a larger consciousness that can give hints as to the direction one may take. It can be a subtle knowing inside of us or simply an instinct that speaks to us in a silent voice. Always let your conscience be your guide, taught Jiminy Cricket to Pinocchio. Where does the true conscious reside – in our brain, or somewhere deep inside of us that we cannot clearly define? Many say it is there in your heart.

In Eastern Religions it is said the body is divided into seven main channels of energy and that the heart area is the fourth and most central. They are called Chakras and are said to control the flow of Divine Energy and bridge the body between heaven and earth.

In my story about Wilunitus, I wanted to embrace this theme of following the heart to mean a bridge between him and the unseen forces of the Universe. A special power he could call on for strength and guidance. A means to harness his inner strength and extend it into his outside world.

In the world of fantasy it does not matter whether this power is real or imagined. In our own real world, faith in an inner part of ourselves that helps to motivate us to greatness, is something we all experience at some point in our lives.

Follow your heart means follow your inner voice, your instincts, your inner guide.

“Your visions will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”

Carl. G. Jung