As a self-described “non-religious, dogma free, maverick spiritualist Christian with a Zen Buddhist background and a firm believer in the Law of Attraction,” I often get asked:
1. “How does your earlier Zen training affect and/or influence your current Christian beliefs, practice and experience – if at all?”
2. “How do you feel about the New-Age spirituality – the Law of Attraction – The Secret? Is humanity on the right track, or are we abandoning the scriptures and trying to ‘figure things out’ on our own, becoming a godless race of self-aggrandizing egotists?”
My first guest post here on Carissa’s blog covered the answer to question number one. If you missed it and would like to read it, just click here.
Today I’ll answer question number two - the whole “new-age” spirituality thing, the Law of Attraction – how do I feel about it, how does it fit into Christian beliefs and practice?
It fits right in. Perfectly.
A good friend and author colleague of mine, Philip F Harris, has published a book that I highly recommend on just this subject, titled Jesus Taught it Too (The Early Roots of the Law of Attraction). In it, he quotes the sayings of Jesus in the traditionally accepted versions of the Bible and elucidates their meaning as it relates to this “new-age” understanding of the scriptures. There is no question that the Law of Attraction is a fundamental axiom of the universe as God created it. We do create heaven or hell for ourselves with our own thoughts and actions. It’s quite simple. You think you are a failure? You will be a failure. You believe yourself to be accomplished? You will be accomplished. “Ask and ye shall receive.” Just be careful what you are asking for. And remember, this is one of the tricky parts of the Law of Attraction – you are always asking for something.
We all have habitual thought patterns that are constantly sending beliefs, wishes and desires out into the universe. (Buddhists would call this Karma-inducing mental activity) Your thoughts will become your reality. Buddha said, “We are what we think. With our thoughts we make the world.” So be careful, be mindful - counterproductive thought habits can kill you. One of the fundamental premises of my latest novel, Owen Fiddler, is about just that, but written from a Christian theological perspective. What is that wise saying? Something like, “One person believes it can’t be done. Another believes it can. Both of them are right.” So, to me, in the most fundamental sense, the Law of Attraction is no “secret,” it is not new, and it does not disagree with or in any way contradict the teachings of Jesus and solid spiritual Christianity.
The only issue I have with some of the “New-Age” spiritualists is this: the element of worship is often lost. Some of them tend to be full of themselves, as if since they are “gods-in-potential,” they need no other god. No need to worship anything other than their own innate Divine Potential.
Wrong. Misdirected. A faulty understanding of how it works.
Worshiping God is an imperative, essential and healthy spiritual practice. Worship. Bow down to God. Sing praises to God. Whether in church, temple or synagogue, or walking in the woods, or holding hands with your sweetheart, or wiping your bum, or being excoriated by a superior at your job. Give God your entire being and devotion, every moment of every day. It is a means of getting beyond your own petty “little” self, your isolated, frightened and ready to fight against all odds and others “ego,” and being reborn into the awareness and fullness of your human birthright – that being One with God. One.
To conclude this post, I will wrap it up with an apropos quote from the New Testament Gospel of John, 10:34-
“Jesus answered them, ‘Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?’”