Jeffosophy: a collection of possibly useful things I have learned over the years.



Painting: The Day the Aliens Came by Jeffrey Baumgartner 
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Making Your Desires Come True - Your Spiritual Options

By Jeffrey Baumgartner

I believe that if you desire something in particular out of life, whether a smallish thing like getting a raise at work to a big thing like finding love or getting rich, you have a choice of three different approaches.

  1. You could take a spiritual approach and pray to your god
  2. You could call upon the law of attraction.
  3. You could rely on your self and maybe a little help from your network. 

Let's look at each option in a bit more detail


If you are religious, you could pray to your god for help in achieving your desire. A lot of people do this.

Christians, Jews and Muslims pretty much believe in the same god. It's in the details and the prophets that they vary in belief. Nevertheless, all three religions are in general agreement that God created the heavens and Earth in six days and on the seventh She rested. Then She got on with being God.

That's impressive. It took my sons and me six days just to paint our living room (to be fair, it's a big living room and there were three layers of wallpaper that needed to be scraped away first). So, God created the whole universe, heaven, the underworld, earth animals and everything else in the time it took us to paint my living room. Clearly, God is a strategic thinker who makes big things happen. She does not seem to be much of a details oriented God. For example, She's not done anything recently to help impoverished Christians, Jews and Muslims around the world. Presumably, She's focused on far bigger things. Things so big, we mere humans do not understand those things.

Neither is She a micro-manager. She's given us humans free will, intelligence and creativity presumably because She wants us to work things out for ourselves while She worries about the big stuff. So, even if your god were to answer your prayers for help in achieving your desire, She would probably and rightly tell you not to nag Her and to pursue your desires yourself.

Pray to your god for comfort, love and support. But don't realistically expect her to make your desires come true for you! God has got more important things to do.

The Law of Attraction

The law of attraction was devised by Rhonda Byrne in a film and later a book called The Secret. It basically states that if you want something, you must visualise having achieved that something. You must passionately want it and you must emit positive energy with respect to your desire. If you do this, the universe will be attracted to your positive energy and your belief and it will make your desire happen for you. Lisa Nichols explains it like this: "Every time you look inside your mail expecting to see a bill, guess what? -- It'll be there. Each day you go out dreading the bill. You're never expecting anything great. You're thinking about debt, you're expecting debt. So debt must show showed up, because the law of attraction is always being obedient to your thoughts. Do yourself a favor − expect a check."

The only problem with this hypothesis is that it is ridiculous. The universe is not a servant eager to please you. To the best of our knowledge, it is not sentient in any way and, even if it was, it is so incomprehensibly vast that you or I are less than insignificant to it. No one is entirely sure how big the Universe is. But based on available, observational knowledge, scientists estimate that there are vastly more stars in the known universe than the combined quantity of cells in every human who has every lived on Earth. So, for the universe to care about you is comparable to you caring about a single blood cell in a shoemaker in rural Laos. 

The Universe is way, way, way too vast to care about you or your desires. Don't expect it to help and don't blame it if you fail to achieve your desire.

Or, as my friend Steve likes to say, "If the Law of Attraction worked, every IT guy I know would be married to a porn star."

Your Inner Spirit

The third option is to look to your own inner spirit in order to achieve your desires. Evolution (or your god) gave you free will, intelligence, creativity and phenomenal capability. You have the ability not only to visualise your desire (as the law of attraction would have you do), but also the ability to see the desire as a goal and break that goal down into manageable steps that will take you from where you are now to the accomplishment of your goal.

You have the creativity to analyse the problems you will most likely encounter as you strive to get to your goal. You have the capability to get things done. And your inner spirit can support you along the way, reminding you of your capability, creativity and intelligence. Your inner voice can cheer you on and remind you that you can indeed do it.


One of the problems I have with the Law of Attraction or praying to God to achieve goals is that you are relying on a greater power to do your work for you − which is silly. Would you ask your president, prime minister or other ruler to take out your rubbish or hoover the living room? Probably not. Usually, it is the other way around: the greater power asks subordinates to do things for her.

More importantly, when you rely on some supernatural, greater power to do things for you, then you fail to take full responsibility for achieving your own desires. And, when you don't take full responsibility, you are much less likely to succeed. Moreover, on those rare cases when you do succeed, you are more likely to misplace your appreciation.

For example, when you thank God for your success, you fail to acknowledge your own and others' efforts that enabled you to succeed. A doctor tells about how she and her team worked all night to save the life of a child who had been in a terrible car accident. It was touch and go, but they saved the boy. When the exhausted doctor went to tell the parents, they  cried with joy, "God has saved our son!"

The doctor, a Christian herself, felt hurt by this. She reckoned she and her team also deserved a little credit for saving the boy. I reckon they deserved nearly all of it.

The other problem with expecting the Universe or God to make your desire come true for you is that doing so demotivates you from taking real action. Wishing, with positive energy, or praying to God to establish a successful restaurant is never going to work as well as actually researching what needs to be done to set up and promote a restaurant; making a plan; and methodically taking the steps you need to launch your restaurant.


Likewise, if you expect the Universe's energy to make your restaurant happen, or if you expect God to bring customers to your restaurant, and the restaurant fails, it is all too easy to blame the wrong things for your lack of success. Wrong things include:

  • Believing that you did not pray hard enough.
  • Believing that God works in mysterious ways and She decided now was not the right time for you to have a successful restaurant.
  • Believing that you did not emit enough positive energy for the law of attraction to work.

Believing that supernatural events like these caused your desire not happen prevents you from working out what really caused you not to achieve your desire. Perhaps you did not have enough investment to get your business started. Perhaps the location was a bad choice. Perhaps the bad mayonnaise, that gave food poisoning to most of your first customers, discouraged those customers from returning.

Determining the functional reasons, as opposed to the supernatural reasons, why you did not succeed in achieving your desire enables you to learn from your mistakes and apply that knowledge to future endeavours.

Followers and Leaders

Have you ever noticed how people who write about and promote the Law of Attraction seem to have far more success with it than the people who read their books and sign up for their workshops? This is because the leaders in the movement are highly motivated individuals who put a huge amount of effort into their success. Whether or not they really believe in the law of attraction, I do not know. But  they have worked out that selling the law of attraction to followers is a lucrative business. And they work hard at it.

It is my sense that these new age leaders are driven, hard working, goal oriented people who get things done through their own efforts. And they are opportunists who recognise that they can sell a method to lazier people who would rather just send positive energy into the universe than to really work to achieve their goals.

Family, Friends and Connections

While God and the universe are too big to stop what they are doing to help you achieve your goal, family, sweethearts and friends can provide advice, help and - at the very least - emotional support to help you on your path to making your desires happen. You can also look to business and social connections who may be able to help you. If you see an interesting job being advertised and know people in the company offering the job, contact those people, tell them you are interested in the job and ask them if they have any tips or suggestions. My partner, Ira, recently did this and within a couple of weeks was offered the job.

Look to Your Inner Spirit

If you want to succeed like successful new-age enthusiasts, follow their methods rather than their preaching. Determine your goal, plan it and pursue it. Don't waste your energy trying to emit positive energy to the universe. Instead, use that positive energy to undertake each step that you need to take to get to your goal.

As you do so, look to your inner spirit for strength and resolve. Look to your intelligence and creativity to work out how to achieve your goals and look to your free will to make the decision to make your life successful. Look to family and friends for emotional support. Look to contacts who can help you on your path to success.

And, if you do this, very likely your desires will come true.






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