Exactly ten years ago I published on this blog an interview with dr. Srini Pillay (Harvard psychiatrist, author, brain imaging researcher) on his book “The Science behind the Law of Attraction”. In ten years the research on this topic has taken other steps, but the words of dr. Pillay always remain very topical and continue to offer reasons for reflection and thoughts. This is why I am happy to re-publish it.
INTERVIEW BY ROBERTO ALBORGHETTI
In his recent workbook “The Science behind the Law of Attraction” Dr. Srini Pillay draws on his experience as a Harvard psychiatrist and brain-imaging researcher. He describes seven scientific laws that explain how “The Law of Attraction” works. Whether the goal is weight loss, a romantic relationship, financial success or happiness, Dr. Pillay explains how we can draw on brain science to make sense of “The Law of Attraction.”
Drawing on extensive experience as a clinician and an executive coach, the author walks us through the scientific basis of each of the seven scientific laws of attraction rooted in brain science. In addition, he then provides the solutions and invites the reader to complete exercises targeted to specific brain-processes that bring us closer to realizing our dreams.
I had the honor to interview Dr. Pillay. I contacted him via Internet. I sent him the questions. I never doubted about his reply (it often happens that the interviewers are afraid about that…) And I had the answers, in perfect syntony of the same “Law of attraction”… and my desire too. Telling about his book, Dr. Srini Pillay says : “I saw this as an opportunity to add to the message that you can attract things into your life: with the provisor that you use your brain effectively and efficiently.”
– Dr.Srini Pillay, “The Science behind the Law of Attraction” is one of your recent books. Have you moved by a particular aim or reason to writin’it?
Throughout my life, my work has been about helping people deal with their suffering. So much of suffering came from unfulfilled desires, and when the law of attraction was expressed through books such as “The Secret”, I found that many people believed it, but were unable to manifest it. I recognized that the message that was out there may not have described how to use one’s brain to make the law of attraction work for people, and given my background, I saw this as an opportunity to add to the message that you can attract things into your life: with the provisor that you use your brain effectively and efficiently.
– Which is today the obstacle, or the problem, that prevents people to follow the “Law of Attraction”?
I think that there are several obstacles: firstly, people often feel like they just have to think about what they want and they will get it. But this does not happen. They have to think in a specific way and in ways that the brain can compute. For example, if you say: “I must remember not to spend too much money when I go out shopping”, under stress, the brain actually does not hear the “not” and will do the opposite of what you want. Tapping into the law of attraction takes a certain effort to “tune” your brain into the correct frequencies – it is a little like tuning your brain to the radio station of your desire so that it will come to you. Avoiding effort is a problem.
– Do you think that – in the “Law of Attraction” dynamics – the more we desire the more we get (the goals)?
I don’t think it is just about desire but more about how we interact with our desire. In fact constantly desiring often separates you from what you want and you never get it. For example, if you say: “I want money” or ‘I want a lover”, you are essentially telling the world (and your brain) that you are separate from what you want. However, if you say “I am rich”, you think like a rich person and become rich and if you say “I am a lover’ you behave like a lover so that a lover will join you. The clarity of our visualization does matter though, so in this sense, your desire needs to be well worked out so that your brain can map a path toward it.
– Which is the role of emotions in the “Law of Attraction”?
Emotions are critical in “the law of attraction.” They are essentially information that tells your brain how much you want or do not want something. Without them, your brain lacks the motivation to map out a path toward your goals.
– Have you a concrete suggestion/invite to try out, in a …few seconds, that this Law really works for everyone?
No. The difference between this book and what people often think is that the law of attraction only works with practice. Only for a few people who are already well practiced will it work in seconds. However, the book describes exercises that you can start to start making the law work for you. E.g. Talk to your brain in positives. Instead of saying what you will not do or want, say what you will do or want.
– Dr. Pillay, tell me one of the most important reasons why people should have to read this book.
I think that this book will provide the science behind the law of attraction. While it honors spirituality, it allows people to lean on the science for understanding. The main reason would be even one law that might inspire people to change their lives for the better.
– I love, in my artworks, to play and work with colors. For you, is there a color to identify “the Law of Attraction”? I mean: is there a favorite color to let this Law flows?
I think that we not know this answer scientifically. We do know things such as the fact that soccer teams who wear red jerseys are more likely to win their games, but in general, I think it is more about the match between the color and the person, as well as the task. Thus, I would say that the law flows most when the colors that you imagine or use authentically represent what is happening.
ABOUT SRINI PILLAY
Srini Pillay, M.D. is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. After graduating as the top medical student, he was the top award winner at Harvard during his residency and one of the top three award winners during his psychiatry residency in the US. He then directed the Outpatient Anxiety Disorders Program at McLean Hospital-Harvard’s largest psychiatric hospital and also completed 17 years of nationally funded brain imaging research. His first book, “Life Unlocked: 7 Revolutionary Lessons to Overcome Fear” (Rodale, August 2010) was voted one of five finalists in “Books for a Better Life” in the motivational category. In addition, his next book: “Your Brain and Business: The Neuroscience of Great Leaders” was peer-reviewed by Wharton Business School and is scheduled to be released in March of 2011. (FT Press, Kindle, November 2010).
Dr. Pillay is widely regarded as a motivational speaker who is able to explain the science behind seemingly non-rational phenomena. Among his many media appearances, he has been featured in The Boston Globe, Oprah radio (Dr. Laura Berman), Martha Stewart Whole Living, Cosmopolitan, Fox News and CNN. He has been invited to speak on “The Science Behind “The Law of Attraction” on Fox News, and will also be teaching a 6 week course on putting the science to work for you to achieve your lifelong dreams at the “University of Attraction.” He is able to apply this methodology to the business environment as well, and has been invited to speak on related topics in New York, California, Washington DC, Toronto, Switzerland, Greece and Singapore.
Business clients have included The World Bank, The MITRE Corporation, Novartis, Genzyme and McKinsey. Across the board, Dr. Pillay is known for bringing brain science to life in the simplest terms that he then translates into recommended action steps that you can take. Working with people in everyday life for most of his career, the unique contributions of Dr. Pillay that continue to spark interest all over the world are vividly demonstrated in “The Science Behind the Law of Attraction.”
SRINI PILLAY’S BOOKS
Life Unlocked: 7 Revolutionary Lessons to Overcome Fear (Rodale, 2010)
Your Brain and Business: The Neuroscience of Great Leaders (FT Press, 2010/11)
The Science Behind The Law of Attraction (NBG, 2011)