The Law of Attraction, promulgated in The Secret, has become immensely popular in recent years.
For those who don’t know what it’s about, it basically states that you can attract whatever you want in your life — perfect relationships, money, success etc — simply by focusing on it with positive intent and positive thinking.
But this type of thinking is nothing new.
It was the basis of the very successful self-help empires of Napoleon Hill, Vincent Peale, and Dale Carnegie.
But what would Buddha say about this? Is it an effective way to find fulfillment and happiness in life?
I’ve found an epic passage from Osho that answers what Buddha would have thought of the law of attraction. Prepare to be surprised!
Osho explains what Buddha would have thought about the Law of Attraction
In this passage, spiritual guru Osho explains a story where someone asked Buddha why he doesn’t teach people to pray. The answer crystalizes what Buddha would have thought about the positive thinking movement and the law of attraction:
“Once Gautam Buddha was asked, ”Why don’t you teach your people to pray?” It was an obvious question – a religion without prayer is simply inconceivable to many people. And the answer Buddha gave is as fresh today as it was twenty-five centuries before, as new and as revolutionary. He said, “I don’t teach my people to pray because their prayers will harm them. Right now they are not conscious enough to ask for anything, and whatsoever they ask will be wrong. First, let them become conscious enough. I teach them how to become more conscious and then it is up to them.
“When they are fully conscious, if they want to pray, they are free. They are not my slaves. But I can say one thing: that anybody who is fully conscious has nothing to ask for. He has got everything that one can ever ask for.”
The law of attraction is denying our true nature
According to Osho, Buddha would have disliked the law of attraction because it’s leading us away from acceptance of ourselves. The only way we can become fully aware and conscious is by embracing all of who we are, even our dark sides:
“People try to pray, people try to smile, people try to look happy, people try to be truthful, honest – whatever qualities are praised. But their unconsciousness stands there behind every act of theirs, and their unconsciousness distorts their honesty, distorts their smiles, distorts their truth.
But no morality in the world teaches people to first be conscious and only then to find, by your own consciousness, what qualities you would like to blossom in your being…. Honesty, sincerity, truth, love, compassion?
Except for a very few rebels like Gautam Buddha, nobody has thought about your unconscious, that first it has to be dropped, changed, your inner being has to be full of light, and then whatever you do is going to be right. Out of a totally conscious mind nothing can go wrong. But who listens?”
In other words, It’s more fruitful to become aware of true reality and our whole being. This will undoubtedly involve aspects of negativity, but it’s important if we are to live a fulfilling and free life.