Perfect Chaos

The Blog of Author Steven Colborne

Debunking the Law of Attraction

If you’re interested in spirituality to any extent, it’s likely that you’ve come across people speaking about the “law of attraction”. In this post, I’ll be offering some thoughts about this phenomenon and explaining why I believe the idea makes mistaken assumptions about the nature of reality.

What is the Law of Attraction?

Back in 2006, a book entitled The Secret was released. The book was an accompaniment to a film of the same name, and brought the idea of the law of attraction to a mainstream audience. To give you some idea of the impact of the book and film, the book has been translated into thirty different languages and sold over 50 million copies.

The idea promulgated by the book and film can be concisely expressed as follows:

As your thought radiates out, it attracts the energy and frequencies of like thoughts, like objects, and even like people, and draws those things back to you.


It’s easy to see why the idea has had such a huge impact. It is a tremendously empowering concept, making the individual feel they have control over what happens in their lives, and by extension providing the liberating feeling that it’s possible to have whatever you want in life, if you can only control your thoughts in the correct manner.

Why is the Law of Attraction such a popular idea?

The idea has cemented itself deeply in the new age spiritual movement, and you only need to do a search on social media to see this for yourself. To offer one example, I recently saw someone on Instagram claiming that they manifested themself a new bicycle within a week, purely via the power of positive thinking.

When people don’t believe in God, there is necessarily a great deal of mystery to existence. This feeling of mystery leaves people vulnerable to embracing any idea that seems to make sense of reality, however strange and outlandish the idea might be. This is the reason why cults are able to prosper — and many do within the new age spiritual movement — because uncertainty about our place in the grand scheme of things leaves people vulnerable to ideological manipulation.

I believe the reason why The Secret has been so successful is that it taps into that deep sense of mystery, providing an explanation for how reality works that can be enticing and reassuring.

So What’s Wrong with the Law of Attraction?

In a word, the problem with the idea is that it is godless. Spiritual seekers get very excited when they experience synchronicity in their lives, as this would seem to be evidence that they have some mastery over the law of attraction. However, despite regularly asking ‘the universe’ for things, ‘the universe’ is not considered by these people to be a personal being in the way God is understood to be in the Abrahamic religions, for instance.

The problem with seeing the universe as an object in this way is that it doesn’t really explain anything. To really understand why synchronicitous events happen in our lives, we need to understand that an omnipresent and personal God exists, and that this God is unfolding all events in creation. When we understand this, it solves the problem which The Secret begins to tap into but doesn’t really solve in a deep and satisfying way.

Why Believe in God?

Of course, if someone has had no revelation of the reality of God, they may feel they have no good grounds to believe such a being exists. God doesn’t reveal Himself to everyone all of the time, but instead employs a kind of veil over the minds of many, which prevents them from being aware of Him. But when He does reveal Himself, He does so in very tangible ways, like speaking directly to the minds of human beings and working miracles or inspiring Scriptures.


To really understand why events in the universe unfold in the way they do, we need to focus on God. Even if someone is convinced that the law of attraction works, the bigger question of why it works remains. The answer to the problem of why any events occur within the created universe is that a living and personal God exists, and He is actively controlling everything that happens in the eternal present moment.

If you’re reading this and the idea of God’s existence seems unlikely to you, why not pray for Him to reveal Himself to you? What have you got to lose? If there is no God, then you’ve wasted only a prayer, but if there is a God (and God chooses to reveal Himself to you), then you will have at last found a solution to life’s biggest mysteries in a way that will be much more satisfying than the vague and partial solution offered by books such as The Secret.

Of course, once you know God exists, there is the further question of what kind of God He is — the Christian God, the Muslim God, a Hindu God, or some other God? Well, I might be able to help you with that predicament. Click here to see how.

20 responses to “Debunking the Law of Attraction”

  1. How do you answer Christians who bring up this concept? I believe God is working in our lives and when we step out in faith, trusting God, sometimes good things happen, but not always because that may not be God’s plan for the moment.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Hi there! I think your comment highlights the important point, which is that God is in control of everything that happens. Whatever happens, good or not, is willed by God. Most Christians disagree with this idea, arguing instead that we have free will, but that’s not what I believe.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. My Guru, Paramahansa Yogananda, says that the only thing that God hasn’t forced on us is : to love Him. He has given us free will to choose to love Him.
        One of my favourite affirmations is : I will reason, I will will, I will act; but guide Thou my reason, will and activity to the right thing that I should do. Let Thy will be done not mine.
        At one level life is all about choices, about cause and effect. But at another : He is the only doer 😊🙏

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Hi Ashok, thank you for your comment. That’s actually an argument that a lot of Christians make as well — that God has given us the gift of free will so we can choose to love him. I don’t agree with this, because I believe free will is impossible with an omnipresent God. As you say, He is the only doer. So free will is impossible.

          Peace and blessings, Steven

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Thank you Steven.
            God alone
            Peace unto all 🙏

            Liked by 2 people

  2. Life is filled with so much uncertainties however, if you believe that God exists, then it’s where you can feel the lessen of your burdens & the assurance that someone up above is there willing to help you. Always lean on God. You can only do that if you started to believe that He exists and that all the good and bad things to happen will be under His control. It begins how big is your faith in Him.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. The Law of Attraction is based on the self telling the world what they want. It is a monologue, not a dialogue. You are correct that people need to be in a two-way conversation with God.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hi Virginia! I very much agree with what you wrote. Speaking to the world, or the universe, is like speaking to an object, whereas God is living, so it’s very different. Thank you for your comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi, Steven. A relevant biblical quotation in this context is from the Book of Proverbs, Chapter 19, verse 21. Robert Alter translates the Hebrew verse as follows: “Many are the plans in the heart of a man, but it’s the LORD’s counsel that is fulfilled.”

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you very much for sharing that, Gershon!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. I had the privilege to read all the tree greatest books ever published about the law of attraction, and this post is relatable. The law of attraction is another name for the maxim “like attracts like”, just as likely energy attracts themselves. Nature/Creator/Universe and its fullness are made up of energy — including us humans — and everything is governed and connected by a law/energy. Thus, humans greatest energy of connecting with Nature/Creator/Universe is our thought/vibration, which we use via prayer/affirmation/meditation. By and large, there can’t be an effective law of attraction without acknowledging the Creator. Finally, so much about life remains a mystery, the more we see the less we know. While many of us claimed to be philosophers and scientists, and thinking we know it all, Nature/Creator/Universe is there starring at us and rubbing its immortality on all our faces.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts, A-Jay 🙂


  6. Hi Steven, I’ve nominated you for a Sunshine Blogger Award if you want to participate.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That’s very kind of you, Lesley, thank you! I don’t normally participate in these awards but I enjoyed reading your answers and am grateful that you thought of me 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s okay Steven. I’m glad you liked my answers. 😁

        Liked by 2 people

    1. So glad to hear that, Ashley. Thank you for reading (and following)!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Look forward to your posts. I think I need them in my life right now!

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Thank you. I hope some of them will be of interest 🙂 I’ll look forward to reading more from you, as well. Pleasure to meet you!

          Liked by 1 person

  7. Great understandable logic. The choice to believe is the only one you will ever need.

    Liked by 2 people

Steven Colborne

About Me

Hello, I’m Steven and I’m a philosopher and author based in London. My main purpose as a writer is to encourage discussion about God. I write about a wide variety of subjects related to philosophical theology, including divine sovereignty, the nature of God, suffering, interfaith dialogue and more. My mantra: Truth heals.

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