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The Law of Attraction (LOA) and Magical Thinking

The Law of Attraction encourages "magical thinking".   Magical thinking is one of the hallmarks not only of pathological narcissism, but of a panoply of mental health disorders, including a few per...

The Law of Attraction encourages "magical thinking".   Magical thinking is one of the hallmarks not only of pathological narcissism, but of a panoply of mental health disorders, including a few personality disorders, most notably the SCHIZOTYPAL personality disorder.

Two examples of narcissistic magical thinking:

  Ideas of Reference (Narcissism and Paranoia)

Narcissistic Immunity

  Magical thinking postulates that one is able to exert influence over other people, inanimate objects, and events, merely by projecting one's thoughts. Infants get over this worldview at age 3. Narcissists and other mentally disordered people don't:

Projection and Projective Identification - Abuser in DenialThe LOA teaches us that we are responsible for our actions and cognitions and should bear their consequences (which is a good, mature principle of action). But, it also claims that our thoughts translate into real-life events. We are, therefore, to blame for everything that is happening around us, to us and to others, merely by mutely thinking about it! This is an onerous and terrifying burden to bear. It is the exact opposite of empowerment!

  The LOA is also a fallacious organizing principle: We cannot always tell good from bad, because we cannot see into the future. Some events are blessings in disguise; the fortuitous or serendipitous character and the utility of some occurrences and people becomes known only much later in life; too much of anything (wealth, fame, even happiness) is frequently counter-productive. 

The dichotomous, black and white view of the world, propagated by the LOA ("good" vs. "evil" or "bad") is considered a pathology in its own right: it is a defense mechanism known as "splitting" which characterizes early childhood (ages 6 months to 1 year) and vanishes in healthy adults.

Read more about psychological defense mechanisms (most of them, when they appear in adults, are considered entrenched pathologies):

Defense Mechanisms

  Finally, classic theories of narcissism postulate exactly the opposite of the LOA: that LIKE REPELS (not attracts!) LIKE.   The Narcissism of Differences Big and Small   The Narcissistic Couple

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Sam Vaknin ( http://samvak.tripod.com/ ) is the author of Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited and After the Rain - How the West Lost the East.He served as a columnist for Central Europe Review, Global Politician, PopMatters, eBookWeb , and Bellaonline, and as a United Press International (UPI) Senior Business Correspondent. He was the editor of mental health and Central East Europe categories in The Open Directory and Suite101.



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