Pray As Though…Work As Though

I was recently involved in a discussion about how things “manifest” in one’s life. As you may or may not know, I am not a fan of the modern idea of manifestation as presented by some people. [For my view of manifesting, please see this article that I wrote: How the Idea of “Manifesting” Is Ruining Your Chances of Success.]

The debate was raging when someone wrote a response that was so well-written and eloquent — and accurate — that I wanted to share it with you. I even sent the fellow a book of his choice free of charge. (He chose The Master Key Workbook, just so you know.)

Please enjoy!

The way I see this, there are two opposing camps, two polar opposite schools of thought regarding how to accomplish things.

The purists of the materialist school would say that “manifesting” as spirit is a bunch of superstitious, new-age gobbledegook; it sees the idea of trying to visualize things into existence as naive in the extreme. There is no free lunch. Whatever you accomplish you achieve through your own efforts.

The purists of the mentalist school of thought would say that the “All is Mind” and what we consider to be physical, objective reality is the mental activity of the All, of which we are a part, and of which Mind—our minds—are parts. Consequently by changing the inner we can change the outer; no specific activity is required on our part, whatever we desire to manifest will simply come to be through diligent visualization.

Notice I said above the purists of both schools think along those lines. And like most purists, I think they’re both extremely naive, simplistic, and completely wrong. In short, they’re full of it.

As with many, many, many things in life, the answer lies squarely in the middle. [Anthony: I have often found this to be true as well, especially in philosophical debates.]

To the pure materialists, I say that you can work as diligently and as relentlessly and as hard as possible for decades and you will never reach your goal without a plan and the ability to evaluate and change that plan in favor of new approaches based on your result—both of these activities have absolutely nothing to do with work and everything to do with mental activity.

To the pure mentalists, I say that unless you are some kind of magician as powerful as King Solomon, you can’t just think things into existence. If that were possible then none of you would have any of the myriad problems you’re in this program to overcome. Remember that old Chinese proberb: “A man who waits for a roast duck to fly into his mouth must wait a very, very long time.” [Anthony: This is why I am fond of saying that I’d rather hire or work with a person who is ready, willing, and able to take action rather than a “self-helper” who would sit around and “visualize” all day trying to “use” the Law of Attraction.]

My personal belief is that we should do the mental work as prescribed by Haanel: not just plan-laying, but visualization of the “emotionalized thought” variety, diligently. [Anthony: In later articles that will appear on this blog, I will be detailing what you should be getting from reading and studying The Master Key System. Here’s a hint: It’s not learning about how to use the Law of Attraction.] And then we need to get out into the real world, start pushing buttons, meeting people, inquiring, making contacts, trying new approaches, etc., all with the end in mind of reaching that goal, bearing ever in mind that it may come to us through avenues completely unanticipated, seeming to have little or nothing to do with our efforts. We need to do the mental work and then put ourselves in the places we need to be in order for it to give us what we need to bring our intention about.

I’m reminded of another old quote I heard years ago. “Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.” (St. Augustine, I believe.) [Anthony: Yes, it was St. Augustine who said that.]

So . . .

. . . form your plan . . .

. . . build your mental images . . .

. . . and then get out there and make it happen!


  1. Jim Vaughan says:

    I call the way the law of attraction works, “The Moth Factor.” A moth is attracted to the brightest light in the room in the same way your actions are influenced most by the brightest idea in your head.

    Once you (K) Know where you’re going, you (P) Plan on what you have to do to get there, (P) Properly prepare yourself to make the trip and then, you take the necessary (A) Actions the only other factor is how much (T) Time it will take you to finish following your plan.

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