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By Sam Vaknin
Author of "Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited"

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 Denial

The 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


Author Bio

Sam Vaknin ( ) 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.

Visit Sam's Web site at

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The following comments are for "Law of Attraction (LOA) and Magical Thinking"
by samvak

agree to disagree
i found your Opinion to be quite pointed towards one centered theme. that the LOA and magical thinking is a symptom of some mental disorder. I respectfully disagree in that fact. Everyone never grows out of magical thinking, we just use different term for it, but at its core is all the same thing really. Whether you Wish on a star, you pray to god or gods (depending on your religious viewpoint) or you call it the LOA. At it's core you are asking a higher power, a star or god/s or the universe to provide the change you desire in your life. And when that change happens you shrug off any coincidence that it had to do with what you wanted to start with. But we all believe in these forces that provide for us, whether there is physical evidence or not. which makes them equally as powerful for human beings by our nature are beings made up of perception, two main kinds, in flux perception and tree perception. In flux is the world around us, constantly changing along with the people around us, Tree perceptions are our own set of beliefs based on what we know and what we believe in, these perceptions can change as we grow and mature sometimes older beliefs get covered over by newer ones and sometimes not based on what we chose to believe. That is all i got to say for a comment, but feel free to contact me if you want to debat the issue more

( Posted by: johntellall [Member] On: June 11, 2008 )

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