Attracting Abundance: Absurd, or an Art?

Recently I was reading something that suggested the reason most people are not wealthy was really our own damn fault for having negative subconscious thoughts about money, usually from growing up. Change your thinking about money, the mantra goes, and you’ll magically remove those obstacles. Of course that’s just pure illogical bunk and New Age hooey, right? There are real world factors like education, disability, corporate capitalism, class, sex, racial and other forms of discrimination, lack of access to resources and connections and more that all work to keep most of the 99% of people down.

Attracting abundance is an idea that’s not new to popular culture and the self-help world. Remember The Secret? Even though just wishing for more loot and stuff and having it show up seems ridiculous, I decided I would give it a try. What do I have to lose, right? Well, within 30 minutes of telling a friend about it, I had a half-day paying gig watching a TV show. Just for watching three episodes of a show that I hadn’t heard of but would like to see, I was going to be paid the tidy sum of $100. It was the best job I ever had. Did I get it because I had already signed up on the mailing list with the market research study? Or because I was intentionally telling the universe I was available? Who knows? But it isn’t the only time. It keeps happening!

Here are a number of other examples of things coming to me since I started thinking about attracting abundance. I’ll start off with the random gift of some cool new public art. I had read about it but totally forgot about it and where it was. Last night, I was returning a library book (Walter Mosley’s fifth in a series of Leonid McGill detective books, And Sometimes I Wonder About You) when I found the owls. Subconsciously, I wanted to check them out, and serendipitously my mind led me there, because that library is out of my way. (Secret tip: You can turn the head with a wheel under the seat!)

WATER: I took my daily walk the other day as usual. But I had just eaten a protein bar which made me thirsty. After wishing I had brought my water bottle, and then saying “I want some water,” not 10 minutes later I found an unopened water bottle on the ground. I drank it, gratefully.

FOOD: 1) Last night I was on a bike ride and getting a bit peckish and wishing for some food. Shortly thereafter, I stumbled upon a full box of sushi sitting on the ground. It was still cold, so I had a bite. If it hadn’t had ants on it and I ate white rice, I might have brought the whole thing home. (No, I didn’t get sick from the fish.) 2) Later on the same ride I was even more ravenous and was thinking about manifesting some food when I happened to look down. In the bike lane, I saw a small wrapped Kit Kat bar, which normally I wouldn’t eat. But this was pumpkin spice, which is hard to find after Halloween, so I ate it. 3) The other day I found a whole bag of grapes on a sidewalk, which I also ate without illness. 4) On another day, I was at a meeting dealing with this issue of wealth v. poverty, and was again getting hungry. When we came out of the meeting room, there was a whole dinner potluck with leftovers.

A generous gift from a patron to keep me warm and dry.

BIKE GEAR: My biking rain gear is not in great condition, and with the fall weather I’ve really been asking the universe for new stuff. A friend at the bike shop heard me talking about my shoe covers no longer working to keep my feet warm and dry while bicycling around Austin, Texas. He was the same very generous guy who gave me his used pair last year, and this time he offered to order me some. When I went to pick them up, he not only refused to let me pay him back, he gave me a nice pair of winter cycling gloves and a light weight rain jacket to boot. The value of that stuff is, well, a lot of money. How generous of him to share his abundance with me! Thanks, dude!

A view from a bar of a high-rise in downtown Austin

TICKETS: 1) Recently I was at a nearby movie theater on discount night. The heater was not working. Despite wearing a coat, I was still uncomfortable and wished the theater were warmer several times. I wasn’t going to say anything, but I needed a bathroom break. At the exact moment I exited the theater, a manager happened to be going into a locked room. I mentioned the problem, which he knew about, and he gave me a free ticket. 2) It used to be tradition with my relatives that we’d go see a movie on holidays. I’m unable to be with them for Thanksgiving and was feeling a little bummed about that. They don’t like to go out to movies anymore and just want to stay in to watch them, anyway. But then a friend offered to take me to a movie on Thanksgiving. 3) I’ve been “in-between jobs” so I’m able to listen to classical music on the radio. I’ve won tickets numerous times before, but it’s been a while. A couple of weeks ago, I won concert tickets and took a friend to hear a violinist and pianist, who were excellent.

OTHER STUFF: 1) I was on my way to a grocery store last week at night when I saw something bright yellow lying in the parking lot. It was a North Face rain jacket with hood that is in good condition and fits me. 2) Finding those little lending library boxes isn’t abnormal, but finding a book you actually want to read is pretty rare, and I did. Ironically, it’s another self-help book called Dare to Win. 3) I met a lovely Hungarian woman for the first time at a job search club. Two days later I ran into her at another event. She gave me a nice European hug complete with the cheek touching part. While I wasn’t specifically asking the universe for that, one can’t have too many hugs, so that was nice. 4) After bemoaning the fact that I didn’t have any holiday invitations, today I got several offers for Thanksgiving dinner.

All told, these experiences are not really magic, because magic is not real. And there’s a real world experience there of knowing people, being in the right place at the right time, etc. But there seems to be something to the idea of being open to the energy of wealth — doing so at least appears to make it more possible. It’s like if you buy a new car — you’ll start noticing that type of car a lot more. Jack Canfield, co-author of The Chicken Soup for the Soul book series, and the one mentioned above, says this:

Simply put, the Law of Attraction says that you will attract into your life whatever you focus on. Whatever you give your energy and attention to will come back to you.

Source: Jack Canfield

I don’t know if it works or not. But I don’t think it’s harmful as long as you don’t spend all your energy expecting things to land in your lap. You still have to make the effort, pick up the thing on the ground, make the call to the radio station, and so on. So while it is absurd, it’s also art, and I may as well keep giving it a try. After all, Chrismahanukwanza time is nearly here, and I’ve been an exceedingly good boy. Boringly so.

The flip side of abundance might be gratitude. It’s hard to have that when you’re down on your luck, I’ve been there. And some days I might be there now. But maybe you can still find something small — that you were involved with — to feel grateful about. For me, the main thing I’m grateful for is that I’m still able to bike, even if it I am pedaling a lot slower than I used to (especially right now due to injury), and in general being an aging fathlete. Still, biking 93 miles a week on average for the last four years is pretty effing good. I also recognize that I have the privilege to bike that many others do not have, even though I won the bike in a raffle. (However, dear universe, I really need a new lighter bike with more gears like the forcibly retired Sookie!) I’d be very grateful.

What do you think? Does the Law of Attraction exist? If so, what are some examples when it worked for you?

Windows on an apartment building I bicycled by tonight.

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5 thoughts on “Attracting Abundance: Absurd, or an Art?

  1. It’s definitely true we shape our own realities by what we pay attention to. But just wishing you were rich or beautiful will make it so — it bullshit. The real key to wealth is being a completely selfish pig…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Kieran we agree that what we pay attention to is manifested more, or something, as I recently was reminded of by the examples mentioned in my post. But that’s different than wishing. So you’re right to call bullshit on that. Case in point: I wish for Halle Berry to ring me up, but hasn’t called me (yet). Guess I’m not wishing correctly or hard enough?

      I would also say the key to real wealth has nothing to do with money. It’s meaning, happiness, friends, family, etc.

      To relate it to our shared love of bicycling, I get a number if miles in mind and a rough idea of the route I need to take to make it happen. The mind and the body usually work together to make it happen. Try new things, but as they say, your mileage may vary!

      Liked by 1 person

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