None of what has happened to William Knight over the last few weeks can possibly be a coincidence. Which, of course, he’s known all along. As Knight would say, “There is no such thing as a coincidence.” This is, in fact, his mantra, the very incantation that propelled him to viral status in the first place back in late June — thanks to a TikTok that featured a female jogger startled at the sight of him recording in the woods. It was the scream that made him an influencer heard ‘round the world.
Following Knight’s viral glow-up, strangers now regularly meme about him, and he has become a spiritual guru of sorts. The core tenet of his beliefs: That you’re in control of your reality, and that your thoughts determine what you think, feel, believe and experience. Like an anti-Copernican, he insists that you’re the center of your universe. It’s a message that’s certainly good enough for Cardi B (and maybe Kanye), who used Knight’s face as her own to show that she’s energetically aligned with him:
You see, Cardi B doesn’t believe in coincidences either. Thus, it should be no surprise that the only person Knight follows (at least, as I type this) is… Cardi B.
Admittedly, his words of wisdom aren’t all that new. It was Confucius who first said, “Your life is what your thoughts make it.” And Carl Jung (someone Knight often likes to cite) wrote at length about synchronicities and the power of the Collective Unconscious. More recently, The Secret — and its underlying philosophy, the Law of Attraction — inspired older Millennials and younger Gen Xers to reconsider how their thoughts create their reality. Knight, though, has taken it from there, spreading his version of the Confucius/Jung/Secret gospel to Zoomers.
“Your beliefs really dictate how your life will turn out,” Knight told The H3 Podcast. “So if you believe in coincidences, the universe will give you a life that’s full of coincidences. But if you believe there’s no such thing as a coincidence, that everything is in your control, and there’s no such thing as chance, then the universe will prove that to be correct. I would prefer to believe that I have control.”
Now, whenever someone comes at you on social media with a well-polished persona and promises to share their spiritual wisdom with you — or their workout plan, or their get-rich-on-crypto scheme or their chant to cure depression — the first impulse is always to consider it a grift. Especially when that person is peddling an app — Knight’s is called Grand Rising, and it’s currently a mix of daily affirmations and curated life lessons. After all, if something is too good to be true… Not to mention, there are no panaceas for spiritual health, no shortcuts to earthly knowledge, no great understanding that can be reduced to a tweet.
What, then, are we to make of William Knight? Is he a huckster who offers familiar folk wisdom and a comforting schtick, or is he an earnest seeker who wants to share what he finds on his own journey to enlightenment, love and acceptance?
Over email, I asked Knight about his newfound fame, whether or not he’s a real live witch, his belief in mermaids and Bigfoot, and most of all, what it is he’s here to do — i.e., his mission in life. Throughout, he insisted that he’s 100 percent legit. No coincidence there either.
What pushed you to share your insights with the world?
Most people can probably relate to this, but TikTok kept coming up in conversations and advertisements. I spent six to nine months avoiding the app, telling myself I would never download it. But one day I caved in and downloaded the app. I’ve been hooked ever since. As soon as my algorithm got to the spiritual side of TikTok, I knew TikTok would be the perfect place for me to express myself without being judged, share my knowledge and promote Grand Rising.
What would you say is your spiritual belief system?
I do not claim just one religion or one spiritual belief, I have many. I do not have a title for it.
Who are your teachers? Or better put, who do you draw from for your spiritual/mental/emotional insights?
What makes your message different from all the other people online who offer spiritual insights, emotional wellness checks and affirmations to grow personal power and attract abundance?
There are a lot of us sharing the same ideas that have been around for thousands of years. Same message, different messenger. I’m just a unique being, and I deliver a unique style of teaching.
Other teachers and advocates of The Law of Attraction, such as Wayne Dyer, referred to themselves as self-help gurus and as spiritual masters. You don’t. You prefer a far more Wiccan-inspired style and presentation. You typically dress in all black, favor wide hats and maintain a mysterious energy. So do you consider yourself to be more of a witch, a warlock, a wizard or a spellcaster?
We are all co-creators. We are collectively creating things in our reality. The witch has been turned into a fictional character; before that, the label witch was real but evil. The truth is, we’re all capable of creating things just as easy as a witch or warlock. Those are just old-fashioned labels for people who manifest in ways that science cannot always explain. We do magic everyday but we call them coincidences or miracles.
Speaking of manifesting, Cardi B used an image of you as her Twitter avatar. That must’ve been a trip. Has it been weird becoming famous? Or were you ready for all this?
It’s been very strange, like an episode of The Twilight Zone or Black Mirror. I can even compare it to having The Truman Show delusion. My higher self was ready, but my ego self is still adjusting.
On Grand Rising, you offer a space for your followers to connect with you and to align with you and your message, as well as offer daily affirmations. Beyond the app, what else do you plan to offer?
Grand Rising currently notifies your phone with daily affirmations. It will soon offer more fun activities within the app that help you manifest. For example, I’m adding a “Manifesting Journal” where everyday the user will receive a question or prompt that they will have to answer. Each prompt is Law of Attraction related.
You typically use the same two thoughts to start all your vids: “There is no such thing as a coincidence. The fact that you are watching this video means that you are energetically aligned with me and this message.” It’s become a hugely popular meme, which you seem to enjoy. But what do those words mean for you — that you and I are energetically-aligned?
A lot of people believe that when they stumble upon my video there is a logical explanation. For example, they say it’s because they follow me, or it’s because of the algorithm, or a friend sent it to them. In reality, everything is energy. There’s a billion things they could be doing or watching, but they were quite literally energetically aligned with my video. That’s the same for everything else they watch and do. Anything you watch, consume or do, you’re energetically aligned to it.
Everything is energy. Not everyone will understand, but I’m grateful the message is spreading. “There is no such thing as a coincidence” has a deep meaning, and it’s planting seeds in everyone who sees it. Even for the people who don’t believe in it and are just laughing at the memes, they now have that idea in the back of their mind.
You also advocate for things mysterious that have scant evidence. For instance, you openly espouse a belief in mermaids, Bigfoot, the alien Skinny Bob and underwater cities. Do you think that’s another awakening that’s currently happening, as we’ve seen with UFO videos?
Even if just one mythical creature is confirmed as real, that would open a can of worms on reality. People would question history, science, religion, technology and our own human abilities, and it would lead them down the rabbit hole of truth.
Ultimately, what do you hope your followers can learn from you? For instance, when you say “there is no such thing as a coincidence,” how can someone think themselves out of their pain, their trauma, their abuse, etc.?
I want to trigger a spiritual and intellectual curiosity. I will quote a line from The Truman Show: “We accept the reality of the world with which we’re presented.” I’m waking people up to the fact that they don’t have to accept their current reality. You don’t have to accept your depression, your job that you hate, your disease, your financial situation or anything else. Truly anything is possible, and you can live in any type of reality just by setting the intention and claiming it.