Saturday, September 01, 2007

I am a huge fan of the Law of Attraction--and was, just so you know, before it was popular--a good few years before that book-whose-name-I-shall-not-speak ,with the fancy red cover that made it on Oprah, came out. The concept is, after all, the inspiration for my book with Rebecca Lawton, Write Free: Attracting the Creative Life. But I confess that I am troubled by the constant use of it in the context of making money. Maybe I'm just still my bohemian parents' child. Maybe, some of the life-advice gurus would say, I have a bad relationship to money.
Or maybe it's just that I think nobody really wants money for money's sake. In essence, if the law of attraction really works (and experience has proved to me it does) then there's no point in even bothering to think about money, but rather to focus one's attention on the qualities and experiences you want more of.

After all, what would you rather have? A bag full of hundreds, or a paid-for vacation? A bank replete with cash, or a lifetime supply of food? We want what money can buy. For some people that leans more toward the material--and hey, I'm an American, I like things for sure, though I found on my trip that even shopping for whatI like most (jewelry) gets quickly tedious and I have an internal limit that says "enough" even when my lustful eye is drawn to more shiny things. For others, it leans more toward the freedom from responsibilities. And hey, I'm an American, I like freedom from responsibility (extra credit for the joke getters) but i've never been able to warm up to attitudes about amassing wealth because wealth is nebulous, an idealized concept. We think it's something we want, but a week in paradise, while relaxing, makes you realize just how dull a life like that would get.

On the plane there was this catalog full of items that I never even considered existed, like a custom brand to burn your initials into your steaks, and display cases for your watch collection, and floating sound systems. I realized it was a catalog for people who already have everything one could think to need. This catalog was for people who have to think of things to buy because their basic needs are long since taken care of.

I'm damn lucky--for being born in the country I was to the parents I had in the income level they were at, even though, at times, my mother was on welfare and times were dire. I got a very good head start, and had help at crucial junctures when I was young. And the rest, my husband and I have carved out for ourselves by ourselves and while it may not be called wealth, it's more than enough. I suffer from no lack. Yes, we would like to trade in the beater of a car for a new, hybrid one, and own our own home. But do we lack? No. We really don't. We just took a Hawaiian vacation, which was paid for, came home to further relaxation, and while I have plenty of work on my plate, it's of the variety of thinking and talking to people and writing, not using my body in hot sun, or serving people behind a counter all day, or in any way having to seethe with the roiling masses of humanity.

I guess the fact is, wealth would be nice if it could make me or my honey happier, or better people, and I'll be the first person to sign up for the guinea pig job if someone wants to hand out free money, but what I'm going to spend my time desiring and visualizing, and therefore, hopefully, attracting, is joy and creativity and health and passion, not hundred dollar bills.



At 9:00 AM, Blogger Trushka said...

Good point, very good point, indeed.

At 10:36 AM, Blogger Amishlaw said...

Well put. We so often forget.

At 10:53 AM, Blogger Jordan E. Rosenfeld said...

Thanks, you two. I'm glad this made a point. I thought maybe I was just rambling and preaching, which I do too well :)

At 8:06 PM, Blogger Ms. Theologian said...

Yeah, it's a good one, Jordan. Thanks for writing that.

At 8:11 PM, Blogger Jordan E. Rosenfeld said...

Thanks for reading Steph. Can't wait to hear more about your recent travels.

At 6:19 AM, Blogger Maryanne Stahl said...

it's no "secret" ;-} that greed attracts greed! so, yeah, I completely agree!

I crave nature and animals. so, it'd be nice to have a huge piece of property. but it'd be even nicer, imo, to have a tiny piece of property next to a national forest, so I wouldn't have the responsibility of ownership.


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