Energy Exchange in Spiritual Work

Some people say that they charge money for spiritual work because of the necessity for an energy exchange, and I understand where they are coming from. It is important that one doesn’t end up feeling used and drained. But money isn’t the only answer if we’re really talking about energy. I think people should be up front about their needs and expectations and not refer to energy exchange as an explanation (or dare I say excuse) unless they are willing to accept all forms of good energy in return for their work.

It’s perfectly okay to say you’re charging money because you feel you deserve it, or you need it, or you want it. I’m not debating whether or not people should charge money for spiritual work. I’m just saying that the explanation about an exchange of energy isn’t striking me as authentic most of the time.

Why? Well, I think that energy is exchanged in lots of ways. If you do a spiritual healing for someone and they write you a letter of thanks and gratitude that really brightens your day and makes you feel awesome, then you’ve just received some great energy in exchange for your work. It might not put food on your table, but you didn’t put food on their table either. I find that the energy I get from sincere gratitude is so uplifting that it completely and utterly makes my work worth it. In fact, one letter of sincere gratitude is enough energy to sustain me through a few days of spiritual work (albeit part-time work – I have a full-time office job and lots of hobbies demanding my time).

And when I say sincere gratitude, I don’t mean ego-stroking. I’m talking about a quality of genuine loveliness that comes through in someone’s words. This is real spiritual energy beaming back at me in a beautiful exchange. If someone took the time to write me a haiku about falling leaves I would be completely fulfilled.

Gratitude can be expressed beyond words, of course. A few times I’ve been offered Reiki healings in exchange for readings. I accept these with great thanks and appreciation and have faith that the universe will aid in maintaining an energy balance.

I do have great faith in the universe. My wife and I have stopped actively selling our soaps and moisturizers and have been basically giving them away (admittedly we don’t completely refuse donations towards the cost of ingredients, but we expect nothing). My wife sees this as good karma. We don’t feel drained or used; we trust that the energy will come around. So far we’ve always managed to get through the month and our love is stronger than ever, so I think we’re doing pretty good.

Of course I’m not off in lala land either. I know what it’s like to be broke and I know what it’s like to be energetically drained. In fact, I’ve been struggling the last couple of days after briefly dealing with an energy vampire of sorts. (I’m not talking about you! That person has been told.) But I wouldn’t be feeling any better right now if I’d been paid. In fact, I’d probably feel worse – it’s harder to break off contact with someone who is paying you. Whereas I know my energy will bounce back the next time someone shows off their loveliness with a note or a smile.

Maybe I’ve been blessed with an excess of good energy to share; this is only my experience. But I maintain that money isn’t the only form of energy to exchange for spiritual work. It’s not even the best form of energy. If you want some help paying your bills, be honest and don’t teach a doctrine that equates spiritual energy with monetary gain. I daresay that if you are meant to be a full-time spiritual worker, the universe will oversee your survival.


12 thoughts on “Energy Exchange in Spiritual Work

  1. I love this post, I love your other posts, and I love this blog!!

    I was thinking about one of your readings… I may get one later on!!

    Thanks if you read this stupid blathering comment.

  2. And here I was thinking that I must be almost the only one who thought in these terms! It was wonderful to see that someone else has arrived at this concept of energy exchange! Thank you so much for expressing it so that others may see it and give it some thought! ❤

  3. I agree with you so much. I am a Reiki Master and I don’t charge, but do ask them person to give to someone else, as a gift back to the Universe. I am disabled and on disability and so I don’t have to make a living from what I do and I do extremely understand how money or lack of money or lots of money can drive so much of someone’s life. I know that it does mine, well mostly lack of money.

    I do believe that money exchange is not the only way to do energy or healing work and I do believe that if you want to do a money exchange that is fine, but it is disingenuos to act as though it is spiritual or required to ask for money, which I have been told and have learned was a part of the history of Reiki, at times and that I have seen in other energy and healing work. I believe it is totally appropriate to do healing work and to ask for money. But I believe that people need to be honest about it. I totally agree with you on that.

    Good and healing thoughts to you.


    1. Thank you Kate! It’s always lovely to hear from a like-minded individual. I’m not sure if I mentioned it in my post, but my wife is on permanent disability and I’ve gone bankrupt — yet we’re so, so blessed and rich beyond mere money! The universe rewards us for kindness and generosity, and it’s not my responsibility to see that there is an energy balance in the universe anyway. The universe will see to that.

      Thanks for stopping by and blessings to you!

      1. I’m so sorry for the disability. I can relate to how hard that is. I am saddened to think about the losses you have gone through due to money issues. Again, I am sorry to say that I can relate.

        I wanted to say that the photos on your blog of the soaps looks so incredible.

        Good and healing thoughts to you both.


      2. Hi,

        I wanted to let you know that I am going to give Reiki distance healing sessions for you and your partner, this weekend and next weekend. Good and healing thoughts to you.


      3. Hi there Kate, I’m sorry for this late reply, its been a crazy crazy weekend lifewise and healingwise. I am so touched that you would put time and energy towards a Reiki healing for us, that’s absolutely beautiful and I thank you so much. I hope you are well yourself and look forward to being in touch with you more, soon.

  4. Hi Owl,

    No, I posted it somewhat late so I didn’t think I would get a response in advance of doing it, I should have told you further in advance. The sessions went well. Again, I will do them again, probably next weekend. I usually do them late in the evening. I will post here when I have. Feel free to email me, if you would like.

    Good and healing thoughts to you.


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