LAW The Law of Attraction and the Beggar’s Bowl


When a beggar sets up a spot on the sidewalk, you’ll always find a bowl, a hat or some other container in front of them. That’s so people can put in their donations, impersonally, without having to do it hand-to-hand. This bowl creates an emotional distance between the person giving and the one receiving.

Beggars tend to be passive, sitting by the side of the street, waiting for you to notice them, waiting for your impromptu sympathy, waiting for you to give whatever you decide is appropriate. Waiting for life to happen to them.

Panhandlers, on the other hand, are a different breed because they’re more proactive and show more initiative. They specialize in getting up close and personal. Direct action, no waiting. They look you straight in the eye as they tell you their sad tale, awaken your sympathy, and ask for your money. And they accept your help directly from your hand right into theirs… no beggar’s bowl nor tin cup for them. Panhandlers, if they’re any good at all, will take in far more money than beggars, even though technically they’re both beggars.

Back in the eighties or so, I remember reading about a man, Omar, who taught seminars for panhandlers. His star student was a young lady in her early twenties. She was tiny, looked about 14, and hung around airports. Her specialty was approaching older couples and convincing them that she’d run away from home and just needed $50 or $100 to get back home to her parents. Most people are kind hearted, and the girl was bringing in six figures a year, just panhandling.

So what’s my point here?

Just this — begging is exactly like any other method of getting through life. There are those who prefer to passively wait, and there are those who go out and directly ask for what they want. The difference in effectiveness between these two approaches is huge.

If you’re more conventional minded, you’ve probably chosen something other than begging (or panhandling). You probably work a job or run a business, but the same differences apply. Those who wait around for “something to happen” get the leftovers, while the “go out and ask for it” people always end up with the lion’s share of the goodies.

And that brings us to the Law of Attraction.

A friend once criticized: “That Attraction stuff is nothing but dressed-up begging. Instead of sitting with a bowl on the sidewalk, you’re sitting yourself down in front of the Universe and hoping you’ll get something handed to you for free, something you didn’t work for, didn’t earn, and don’t deserve.”

Well, my friend totally misunderstood what Attraction work is about. It’s not begging — and it’s not panhandling, either — but she’s right about one thing. An attitude of begging is absolutely the wrong approach.

I remember listening to prayers offered up by adults when I was young, and I learned very early that petitioning a higher power for help should always take the form of begging.

  • Please give me _____
  • Please stop _____
  • Please help me stop _____
  • Please don’t let _____ do _____

Sometimes we’d offer some kind of trade. “If you’ll _______, then I’ll never again (or always) _______.”

All of this begging and bartering reveals a total misunderstanding of what Attraction work (or praying) is about.

The misunderstanding is that the power to change events and conditions is “out there” somewhere. It’s not. That power is intrinsic within ourselves. It’s ours to command.

Not ours to beg, but to command.

Haven’t we heard again and again that what we want is already in existence (in the quantum realm of potential)? Or that our prayers are answered before we even ask? Well, either we accept that or we don’t. And if we do, then we already know that all it takes to bring what we desire into existence in our life is to concentrate on it vividly and persistently, without doubt or worry. And begging is the absolute worst way of doing that.

The truth is, we’re the owner of all that we imagine. We’re the owner of everything we desire, right now, before it even comes into existence. When you were a kid, and you got hungry, did you go to the refrigerator and stand looking at it wistfully, hoping someone would see your distress and hand you something? Or did you just walk over, open the door and take out what you wanted to eat?

That food was yours, and you had every right to help yourself.

Naturally, you were expected to use good judgment in the types and amounts of food you ate, but it was yours.

Likewise, all the plenty of the quantum realm is yours too. It’s yours to name and take.

In fact, one good way to lose that “begging” mentality is to always think of your Attraction work as “accepting” what already exists in potential form — accepting what’s already yours.

So the next time you do Law of Attraction work, clearly, vividly describe what you desire, then know that it already exists, it already has your name on it, and it’s ready for you simply to accept it (which is what brings it from the quantum realm into the “physical” realm.

That attitude of accepting what already exists gives you much more power and control than setting out a beggar’s bowl.