This week, Haanel talks more about causes and effects: more specifically, that each of the effects we see around us, from natural to man-made, have a particular cause. Once we find the cause, we can create the effect for ourselves whenever we want.
For example: people have observed birds flying, leaves floating, and so on, since the beginning of humanity, and for thousands of years people spent their lives trying to create the effect without understanding the cause. As far as I can tell, even the Wright brothers more or less stumbled upon the effect, and so we have airplanes. But once we learned the cause (aerodynamics) we could create the effect of flying whenever we wanted to!
I think it’s the same way with the other effects in our lives. We see how our lives are, and we spend our lives trying to create situations which we think are good, without really understanding the cause of either why we are here now or why someone who has what we want got that.
(many times, we don’t really even know what we want in the first place, but that’s another matter)
We may stumble upon it, and many often do. When we understand the cause, though, we’ll be able to create that effect whenever we like.
During the first part of the class (and some people are still struggling with the question) we asked: what do you want? That is the effect.
But what is the cause? That is what we need to figure out.
(This reminds me a bit of our battleship exercise.)
Haanel talks about belief, about the Universal Mind, about how our thoughts become the cause which creates literal effects in our existence. Not supernatural. Not mystical. Real effects from a real cause: your thoughts.
(If the thoughts you create inside your own head are not real, then what is?)
Anyone who’s tried to guide their thoughts (aka the 7 day mental diet) has learned how difficult it is at first. Just like anyone else who’s trying to create an effect, it takes some doing. Things (whether a positive mental attitude or a skyscraper) do not just jump into existence because you wish they would.
So now the task is to examine the effects we want then go back to see what the cause might be for this. Haanel gives us a clue:
The athlete may read books and lessons on physical training all his life, but unless he begins to give out strength by actual work he will never receive any strength; he will eventually get exactly what he gives; but he will have to give it first. It is exactly the same with us; we will get exactly what we give, but we shall have to give it first. It will then return to us many fold, and the giving is simply a mental process, because thoughts are causes and conditions are effects; therefore in giving thoughts of courage, inspiration, health or help of any kind we are setting causes in motion which will bring about their effect.
Or as Mark J likes to say: give more, get more.
This is more like a clue-bat: an athlete who just sat around reading books about training but never did any would be ridiculed!
But we say we want wealth yet are fearful, greedy, and stingy; say we want happiness but are mean to others, or think of unhappy things all day; say we want health but do and think things we know are unhealthy. And so we get what we think about.
You see, the law of attraction is no different from any other law. It works 100% of the time. You can’t get away from it any more than you can get away from the law of gravity. You reap what you sow.
Right now is a good time of year to think about these things, because while you may be sure of the effect you want, if you don’t understand the cause then you probably won’t get that effect.