The Law of Karma and the Law of Attraction


There have been many teachings over the last 100 years on "The Law of Attraction." Meaning, what we think about, reinforcing it with emotion, will materialize in our lives. This has been taught in Unity & Religious Science Churches in the United States.

My question is, is the "Law of Attraction" the same thing as Karma? They seem very similar to me. Also, Karma seems to talk about your actions, but behind every action, isn't there a thought?

Thank you so much :)

—Michael Hamlin, United States



Yes, what you say is true. Thought IS indeed a form of action. It the initial form desire or inspiration usually takes before it clothes its intention with action.

However there are other related aspects: the foremost is the concept of “magnetism.” When people speak of the “law of attraction” they are referring, at least implicitly, to the invisible way that people and circumstances are drawn to us by what seems, at times, to be based on nothing greater than our thoughts.

One either has a very powerful mind (therefore eliminating most people), or, one has the karma and the magnetism that comes with that karma (based on repetition, skill, desire, and concentration) to attract (again, seemingly without obvious effort) the success one focuses upon.

The popularity of the concept breaks down because the average person is hoping for a genie in a bottle, a wishing tree, to fulfill their worldly desires. It’s not that simple. Desire alone is not sufficient. It does have to be focused but it acquires the magnetic power of attraction by our efforts and attunement. These, in turn, are generally not available to us unless we take concerted, repeated, concentrated and skillful efforts.

The reason a person is both into wealth, fame, beauty, talent or position is due to past actions of a prior life (or lives). The reason a person seems to have a lucky life is the magnetism of success brought forward from a prior life.

It’s not that the popularly taught concept of the law of attraction is defective, it’s that most people’s understanding of it is incomplete.

So, yes, karma (or past action, including thought and feeling) provides the invisible thread around which the magnetic energy coil rotates to draw success or fulfillment of one’s desires.

But as the folk tales always warn: Watch out what you wish for! The law of karma states that all desires must be fulfilled (one way or another). But mere wishes and random thoughts not activated by further energy or commitment are too weak to attract fulfillment except perhaps over long aeons of incarnations when outward circumstances just happen to be perfect suited for their fulfillment.

Nayaswami Hriman