“Everything you want is out there waiting for you to ask. Everything you want also wants you. But you have to take action to get it.”
Jack Canfield, author of the Chicken Soup series
The previous post on the LOA had set out to prove that such a spiritual law does exist and there have been millions of people who have benefitted from it. To prove this point I had referred to the three most famous books on the LOA, two of which date back to nearly a century ago – The Science of Getting Rich, Think and Grow Rich and The Secret. We had also read the averments of many celebrities who claimed to have benefitted from the LOA. Since the LOA is all about our thoughts now is the time to take the next step and answer a few basic questions like:
- “What are thoughts and why do we think them?”
- “How can our thoughts attract other similar thoughts?”
- “Even if they attract similar thoughts, how could those manifest into tangible outcomes in life – like a house, a car, spouse and so on?”
- “Is there some scientific proof of the LOA or is it just feel-good pop-psychology stuff?”
In fact, you could add many more to this list of questions, I too had many of them. I have been reading a lot about the LOA lately including it’s spiritual and scientific explanations. This series of posts is intended to place all the evidence before you to make an informed choice and benefit from this power of the LOA, if it is real or avoid wasting your time even believing in it. Here we go.
I think it is good to begin withAlbert Einstein and his immortal equation E=MC2 which proves, beyond doubt, that all matter is indeed energy in motion. That means that at the atomic and sub-atomic level all living and non-living things are made of the same stuff. And what is this “stuff?” – a combination of Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen, Oxygen, Phosphorous and Sulpher (CHNOPS), that’s it. Thereafter it is just a matter of permutations and combinations – remember the elements of the Periodic Table we used to memorise in our school days? It appears that these basic six “stuffs – CHNOPS” use other elements of the Periodic Table e.g. Iron and Calcium etc. to create and maintain life.
So, these elements or atoms come “together” to form Molecules which are the “Building Blocks” of life. Now, these molecules come together to form more complex molecules which give rise to more complex life forms. But, Carbon remains the backbone of all the life forms – in a way we are a Carbon-based Universe. How do these sub-atomic particles, atoms and molecules come together? By the Law of Attraction of course. It becomes very clear that life originated due to the LOA and Adam and Eve are being judged unfairly.
Talking of the non-life forms on planet earth, it is bewildering to even think that there is no fundamental difference between, say, Gold and Iron. It’s all a “give and take” of a few protons here and there. This was the fundamental of the ancient art of Alchemy which professed to convert other metals like lead to gold by some chemical process. This was supposedly done with a mythical substance called “The Philosopher’s Stone” which could transmute the base metals like lead into gold.
The next question is that what is it that is different in a life-form from the insentient forms which makes it “live?” If the basic “stuff” or “Building Blocks” are the same in a living and non-living being, what is it which creates life? This power, which presides over the matter in a body, is variously referred to as the “soul” or “consciousness” or “spirit” and various other names. I am not very familiar with the scriptures of all religions but in the Bhagavadgita, this power is called “Purusha” which dynamises the inert matter of the body and blesses it with intelligence and vitality to live and act in this world. The “matter-envelopments” or the body, mind and intellect (BMI) which are being vitalised have been referred to as the “Prakriti.” Hence the Purusha or Soul or Atma is the one which vitalises the matter or Prakriti to convert it into a living being and must be located within our bodies till we are alive. Essentially, all living and non-living beings are the same except the Purusha which makes living beings “live.”
What we have established so far is that every manifested thing on the planet (living or non-living), which is made of matter, is nothing but energy in motion. Secondly, at the basic level, all the living and non-living things are the same and it is only the soul (I will use this term hereafter as it is the best known and generally accepted) which makes a being alive. Also, the soul, since it is not a physical entity, must be a form of energy, since it can make the matter-envelopments of BMI function, move and act.
The BMI – We all quite familiar with our body (B) so let us now discuss our Mind (M) and Intelligence (I) before coming to our thoughts which are a function of our mind. You would notice that I am not talking of the brain, which is a physical entity and hence construed part of the body itself. What is more important is to understand as to what the brain does i.e. to create thought impulses, be it electrical or chemical. Treat your brain with respect as it is busy 24*7 even when your body is supposedly at rest and it’s for this reason that despite being only 2% of the body mass, it consumes 20% of the energy that the entire body consumes at rest.
Let’s begin with a layman’s understanding of the functioning of the BMI instrument. The mind functions through the inputs received from our five sensory organs. These inputs reach the “Outer Mind” also referred to as the “Objective Mind” which synthesis these impulses and present them before the “Inner Mind”, also referred as the “Subjective Mind” or the Intelligence. The intelligence is a storehouse of experiences and hence able to process the received inputs against the “Experience or Memory Bank” existing within it and gives the verdict to the mind. The mind then directs the body to respond most appropriately as directed by intelligence.
Thus in any stimulus-response cycle, the Body (receiving the sensory inputs from the sense organs and thereafter acting based on the instructions of the intelligence and the mind), the Mind (receiving the sensory inputs, relaying them to the intelligence and conveying the decision of the intelligence to the body) and the Intelligence (using its stored experience or memory bank to give an intelligent decision) are equal partners. This is the reason to consider the BMI instrument as a single entity for our deliberations. Of course, there are situations when this deliberate cycle could be turned on its head, for example in an emergency, when a different stimulus-response cycle comes to play. This is our primordial “Fight or Flight Response” and we will discuss that sometime later.
Let’s take a real-life example. You are walking on the footpath beside a busy road and suddenly spot a toddler trying to cross the road oblivious to the dangers of the rush-hour traffic. Obviously, the mother has been lax and is busy shopping elsewhere, but we will get back to the situation. Your sense organs relay this input to your mind and the mind synthesises the inputs received like the speeding cars (visual), blaring horns (auditory), the toddler dangerously in the middle of the road etc. The mind passes on these synthesised inputs to the intellect which has a “memory bank”, which allows it to perceive the situation as being life-threatening to the toddler. The intellect urges the mind to take actions to save the child which in turn activates your senses, the body- you either shout or run to save the child or do any other action deemed fit at that moment. Why did the child not understand the dangers inherent in crossing a busy road? Because his intelligence doesn’t have this information stored in the “memory bank” as yet and hence for him, the situation presents no danger. This is the reason that children have no hesitation trying to catch burning coals or insert their fingers in the electric sockets.
Now suppose you have been living all your life in a cave on the top of the Himalayas. You have never seen a road or a car or anything which belongs to the modern world. You are magically transported on the same road where the same toddler is still trying to cross the road. You glance at the baby, give a loving smile and walk on, why? Because your “memory bank” has no information to suggest that this is a life-threatening situation for the baby. You have never experienced the power and speed of a car and how badly they can injure a small baby. We see in this example the power of our thoughts and how they can influence our decisions.
Now getting to the scientific explanation of thoughts. Please bear with me for the next couple of minutes as this basic biological understanding is essential to understand the LOA. The impulses received through our sense organs travel through the brain cells called neurons and we have a staggering 86 billion of them. These neurons transmit the information (our thoughts) to other nerve cells, muscle, or gland cells. Neurons have a cell body, an axon, and dendrites. The axons extend from the cell body and may have further divisions before terminating at the nerve terminals. The dendrites extend from the neuron cell body and receive messages from other neurons. The neurons are interconnected through synapses which help in relaying messages between neurons and to other parts through the spinal cord. This activity of transmission of messages between neurons is also called the firing of the neurons which is a sort of electric impulse and is conveyed through the charged molecules called ions. Once this electrical impulse, in the form of ions, reaches the end of one neuron it is converted into a chemical signal, a function of the chemicals collectively called the neurotransmitters. It is these chemicals which allow the cells to converse with each other by jumping the gap between the synapses.
Thus, the nerve impulses are both electro-magnetic and biochemical and their movement through the neurons via the synaptic gap to another brain cell are our thoughts. If we keep thinking a particular type of thought, it follows a particular neural pathway which results in our memory traces. The more persistent this thought, the deeper is the neural pathway or the memory trace. After some time, the mind doesn’t have to make any effort for this kind of thought and this thought and your reaction to it becomes automatic. It is axiomatic that any thought will trigger a particular emotion in our mind and hence persistently held thoughts give rise to pre-ordained emotional reactions. So, every time you look at your neighbour and think that he is a bum after some time you will stop associating any positive thing with him. This automatic behaviour also allows us to live our lives in a manageable way. You don’t have to think while brushing your teeth or shaving or having your meals, all these activities become automatic and hence we can focus our attention to other more important things.
If you recollect when you started to learn driving how difficult it was to remember the coordination of clutch, brake, accelerator while concentrating to keep the vehicle to the left side of the road and following the traffic signals. As you kept driving, the neural pathways related to driving activity got deepened and it became a part of your memory bank. Today, you don’t even find it an effort to drive for hundreds of kilometres through thick traffic. But, if our conscious mind is not supervising this activity then who is? It is the other part of our mind, the subconscious mind which oversees this activity and many other life-sustaining ones like breathing, digestion, pumping blood through our body or maintaining the body temperature, and other bodily activities. We will have a discussion about the subconscious minds in later posts as that is the key to manifest the LOA.
I will stop here in this post for you to absorb this information, which is a mix of spiritual and scientific realms (ain’t they both the same?). Having understood the origin and propagation of thoughts, we will progress to answer the rest of the questions especially, “Can thoughts travel out of our brains and attract similar thoughts?”
Read more from Anand here: