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Pagan Problem Children: What Can We Do About Them?

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 Author:    Posted: Sep. 8, 2002   This Page Viewed: 9,844,653  

Vox Q Stats

Times Viewed: 32,767

Reponses: 82

Lurker/Post Ratio: 399 to 1

Question of the Week: 10 - 10/9/2000

Money and the Craft

Money And The Craft is something that Pagans have wrestled with for decades. Are tarot readings and the like really a "part of the Wiccan religion"? Should we consider a "paid clergy"? What do YOU think about exchanging teaching, readings or clergy service for cash?

 Reponses:   There are 82 responses posted to this question. Reverse Sort 


If A Service Is Provided, Regardless Of The Faith, And It Is... Oct 12th. at 1:45:43 am UTC

Sonic (Flint, Michigan US) Age: 31 - Email


If a service is provided, regardless of the faith, and it is from an honest
puck..Ye who pays into the clergy or the reader is in for a bit of luck.

True of heart and strong of faith will relay a good service indeed,
for if they didn't thy fates would toy and oh what havok would they
endure with speed.

So mote it be..

*grin*


It Is My Opinion That Accepting Cash For A Tarot Reading Is... Oct 12th. at 2:40:22 am UTC

Wesley Stevens (Eddyville, Iowa US) Age: 21 - Email


It is my opinion that accepting cash for a tarot reading is fine, but who am I to say what is right. The person reading is providing a service and the public is only willing to pay for the time and use of the cards. If you think that accepting money for a reading is wrong then consider that most people pay good money for decks. The part of the religion thing, well that is partly true. Divination is a part of the religion the so be it.


Divination Is Indeed An Integral Part Of The Craft. And It Is... Oct 12th. at 3:29:39 am UTC

Rose Crowe (Savannah, Georgia US) Age: 20 - Email


Divination is indeed an integral part of The Craft. And it is also a skill that can be learned by anyone with the inclination. I was learning about tarot ages before I chose to become a witch. Had I even chosen a different spiritual path I would still be reading tarot cards. It's a part of who I am, and I believe that some small amount of my talent may have been passed to me by my deceased grandmother, who (to the best of my knowledge) was rather Southern Baptist. I have no qualms about charging strangers money for my services. In fact, it's the most enjoyable job I've ever had.

The motives behind charging money, however, are something that should come into question. I personally have no regard for television psychics that charge outrageous amounts for a simple spread, only to tell you that "you are in terrible danger and if you give me even more money I will tell you how to get out of it." Only if you are truly one of the most highly skilled at what you do (or if you use terribly complicated and in-depth spreads) should you have the right to charge more than twenty dollars. (I charge ten.) Tarot reading is a good way to make a living, because the point isn't merely to tell the future. The point is to give insight and advice from an objective viewpoint. People need to talk, they need peace of mind. Keep in mind that as a reader, you are also a non-liscenced therapist. Should a therapist charge for her/his sessions?

Entertainment value is another aspect of tarot, at least. I read cards in a restraunt, and many people see it as a curiosity. I don't have a problem with that, because I believe in what I do, and entertaining others is fun. If someone wants to pay me to try and prove me wrong, that's their dollar. Sometimes I even help out a skeptic or two. Maybe I even show them that there is more to tarot than what they see on television.

I like to help people, and using the tarot is easier than taking psych classes and a liscensure exam. Other readers I have met have similar views, some of them Pagan, some of them not. Divination may be rooted deeply in Paganism, but it is whole and unto itself, with its own histories. One need only look at the various histories, most notoriously with tarot, to see the connections with many other religions and cultures.


Yes, Diviniation Of Any Sort Is Part Of The "wiccan Religion" (i... Oct 12th. at 9:25:40 am UTC

Dorothy Webweaver (Clyde, New York US) Age: 52


Yes, diviniation of any sort is part of the "Wiccan religion" (I prefer the word spirituality). After leading the Web at Galen Rd. since 1994 and priestessing ritual since 1984 I feel very strongly that our work as clergy is a gift of service. Everyone I am familiar with who has tried to set up a situation in which they were paid as clergy has found it disappointing and insufficient. I think that stems from the energy of the office of priest or priestess in Wicca. All of us are our own priest or priestess. All of us have connection to and resposibility toward those we love/circle with. Money detracts from that energy exchange and tries to set one over another. We ought not to go "there".

As for readings for money, we are finishing a 4 part series on tarot and have advised people to consult their conscience. I do not charge for spiritual services. Entertainment sessions may be handled differently, although I donate any funds received for any of our services to the upkeep of the Web mailings, newsletters etc. As a result, I have been blessed by a fine career with a good salary in the mundane world which keeps me refreshed and connected to the larger picture. I advise every aspiring minister to first "get a job!"
My partner Merlin believes stronly that were he to charge for his healing work, he would lose his gift. I suspect he is correct. When I was seriously contemplating a second career as massage therapist, I was given a phyaical disability which prevents that. Wrong path or wrong motive? not sure.

In any event, it is easier to love with an open hand (detachment and trust) when money is not an issue. We do not charge for classes either, and we offer 4 levels of wiccan training, 4 tarot seminars and 2 levels of shamanic studies with overnights in our house. People bring food to share and honor the teachers with gifts of ritual consumables like incense, candles, cakes and ale. Everybody helps out with the food and clean up. Sometimes I think people then fail to make class a priority because it was "free" (how good could it be?) but I see that as a challenge to our focus on money and materialism. When a student learns to value the content and experience, not the prestige of paying a price for "name" then the student has learned a great lesson. Peace and blessings, Webwever


Just As The Justice Of The Peace Is Paid A Donation For... Oct 12th. at 12:45:55 pm UTC

christine guin (arkadelphia, Arkansas US) Age: 43 - Email


just as the justice of the peace is paid a donation for his service in performing a handfasting, i expect the same from a client. if they ask for an amount i inform them it is up to them....the usual and customary for one of my kind is...and again i repeat that i leave the actual amount to them... i have yet to feel "cheated" financially...


No. Rather Use An Immaterial Criteria To Select Those Who Should Receive... Oct 12th. at 1:05:40 pm UTC

Hirjha (Georgetown, Kentucky US) Age: 19


No. Rather use an immaterial criteria to select those who should receive teaching - for instance see if they are truly interested.


Hi Everyone, I Would Like To Thank All Of You Who Have... Oct 12th. at 2:19:58 pm UTC

Sandra (Cumming, Georgia US) Age: 38 - Email


Hi Everyone,
I would like to thank all of you who have sent me advice, and words of encuragement. A special thanks to Sine. You really helped me with my problem. I have been able to learn a few things, and where to look for help. I feel stronger now, than I ever have before. I am well on my way to a better understanding of the spiritual world , and myself. Again thank you Sine.


I Think That Tarot And The Like Are Part Of The Pagan... Oct 12th. at 2:27:58 pm UTC

Katherine netherwood (Leeds) Age: 14 - Email


I think that tarot and the like are part of the pagan thoughts and love for the mother, But exchanging them for cash is an insult to the mother and we who do our own readings and palmstry. J ust a note a very good day this month Friday 13th and its a full moon too.

Thankyou and Blessed be

Jhessail of the coven of the Nymph.


A Paid Clergy Wouldn't Be A Solution For Wicca; We're All Priests... Oct 12th. at 4:28:41 pm UTC

Nwyvre (Zwijndrecht, Netherlands) Age: 17 - Email


A paid clergy wouldn't be a solution for WICCA; we're all priests and priestesses, so we should all have to be paid... However, I do think that paying other people for their services is possible. There are, for example, people who devote their spare time to giving workshops or readings. I think it is no more than reasonable to pay those people for their services, just as we pay pagan writers for their books or pagan craftsmen for their artifacts. But it is not a good thing to pay other pagans for all they do. Healing work, for instance, or casting a spell for someone else's benefit, are activities that should not be charged. Otherwise there'll be more and more people, pretending they are powerful magicians or whatever, and wanting to be paid for what they do. A famous trick is to tell someone he/she is cursed and then wanting to be paid to remove the curse.

All in all, I think the most important thing is to remember that if people offer us services we ask, if they teach us or if they do readings, it's no more than reasonable to pay them for it (especially if it's the only thing they do for money). But if someone wants to force you to pay or makes you use his/her services, then don't pay. We don't want charlatans around, do we?


I Think That Offering People The Benefit Of Our Religious Insights For... Oct 12th. at 6:18:55 pm UTC

Anfa (Vancouver, British Columbia CA) Age: 29 - Email


I think that offering people the benefit of our religious insights for money smacks of the old Catholic practice of selling "indulgences." Yes, we don't claim to sell absolution but I can no more picture myself charging for my insights than I can selling my prayers. The goddess has gifted me with my knowledge of her and my ability to see beyond the tangible and I would not sell anything given to me out of love.

As to whether tarot cards and the like are actually "part of the Wiccan religion" I think that they are truly not but that they are such common tools used by the people of the Wiccan faiths that they have become almost inseparable from us. Think of the Fish or the Cross and Christianity. Are fish Christian or are they simply a symbol? Is a Cross on a chain really a religious relic or something so commonly associated with a particular religion that it takes on some of the power and mystery of the religion itself? Tarot and other divination tools are often viewed as Wiccan "signature" items...they are how others define us, not necessarily how we define ourselves.


I Don't Feel That Tarot Or Divination Is Neccesarily A "part Of... Oct 12th. at 11:45:14 pm UTC

Maythen Apple (Redding, California US) Age: 23 - Email


I don't feel that tarot or divination is neccesarily a "part of the Wiccan religion". It is a tool used by more than one spiritual path. While I've met many tarot readers, not all were wiccan. If you take away my cards it wont make me anyless a witch.

on the whole idea of paid clergy:
I must say it makes me reluctant whenever I hear the cry of "Pay Me Pay Me". Perhaps it comes from bad experiences with other religions. It takes a lot of time and work to be clergy, I don't want to deny that. I can understand everyone pitching in to pay for supplies, space rental, and other expenses. But beyond that makes me a trifle skittish.


If This Is Your Profession As Well As Religion Then Why Not... Oct 13th. at 3:58:20 am UTC

Osiris (New Orleans, Louisiana US) Age: 24


If this is your profession as well as religion then why not be compensated for it? Everyone needs to earn money in some form...so long as it is legal and it harms none!


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