Spiritual People Don’t Charge for Their Work

Have you heard anyone proclaim that truly spiritual people don’t charge for their work? Apparently if you create something and charge money for it, the nonzero price alters the nature of the work, rendering it non-spiritual.

Is that actually true?

Of course it’s true. This rule is written into the Laws of Spirituality, not to be confused with the Laws of Acquisition. 😉

Okay, from one perspective it makes some sense, but only if you regard money as non-spiritual. Is money actually non-spiritual though? Which way you lean depends on how you define spirituality and how you perceive the role of money. We’re talking about perspectives and definitions here, not actual truths. So this is an argument about preferences, not about reality itself.

I don’t have the warmest relationship with the term spirituality because it feels too close to religion, a term with which I’ve picked up many creepy associations. But when I do think of spirituality in the most positive ways, I regard it as a set of frames for considering my overall relationship with reality, not just after I die but at all times and even outside of time.

Since money is a part of my reality, I regard money as having a spiritual role to play. But it’s not the money itself that matters from a spiritual perspective. What matters is the role that money plays in shaping my relationship with reality.

I personally find money interesting. It’s been a big part of my personal growth journey. I do indeed often see my evolving relationship with money as a spiritually interesting one.

Personally I think the demonization of money is a bit absurd, at least from my own perspective and given how often it comes up in my life. Money is clearly a part of this reality, and from the perspective of living in a simulation of sorts, I think that money exists in my life for a very positive reason. It’s been an incredible teacher for me, full of interesting surprises.

I like and respect money as a spiritual mentor. I find it fascinating. Sometimes it’s frustrating, but these days I mostly just enjoy it and find it fun to play with. I don’t feel as attached to money as I used to, but I enjoy seeing it flowing through my life in various ways. I keep revisiting my relationship with money to see where it wants to go next. This relationship is always evolving, never static and locked down.

Shifting from a scarcity-based relationship to an abundance-based relationship with money was hard. In some ways it’s still a work in progress, but I’m super pleased with the progress I’ve made in the past 20 years. I have a much happier and healthier relationship with money today than I used to. I also know a lot of people who’ve benefitted from my writing on this topic over the years, (as well as the Deep Abundance Integration course), including many who now earn 10x or 100x per year what I do. Some of these people have challenged me to make even more upgrades in my relationship with money. I think that’s beautiful. It helps me think of personal growth as a team project, not just a solo effort.

One of the most interesting spiritual lessons that relates to money is figuring out how to earn and spend money in ways that feel aligned with my values. I pay close attention to what feels aligned regarding money and what doesn’t, and I’ve made a real effort to raise the level of alignment.

Every transaction has spiritual significance to me. I like being paid in ways that feel aligned, and I like spending in ways that feel aligned.

Money has been a terrific alignment teacher for me. I intend to continue learning from it, and I do consider this a significant part of my spiritual path. I’ve dealt with a lot of struggle and misalignments in my financial life over the years, and as I improve in this area, I feel more spiritually aligned as well.

If other people find money to be non-spiritual and want to shun it, great… let them explore that path. I’m happy with the path I’ve chosen. It’s been challenging sometimes, but I like where it’s been leading me.

While I have more money flowing through my life these days than I used to, the money itself doesn’t feel like much of a reward. What feels much more rewarding is the alignment created around the earning and spending of money. I get a lot of juice from the meaning and purpose of transactions, not the financial value of the transactions. For instance, whenever someone enrolls in a personal growth course, it means that someone is about to experience a significant life transformation. Because they’ve paid for it, they’re going to feel more invested, and they’ll work harder to extract the value from the course. It’s a very win-win relationship. Many people will also continue to create positive ripples for others, so it’s also a win even for people who don’t take the courses directly, elevating it to win-win-win.

While earning and spending money may not feel very spiritual sometimes, the principle of win-win-win does feel very spiritual, and money was a great way to learn, explore, and practice this principle.

I’ve deeply explored giving people value for free, and I enjoy that as well. All of the posts on my blog are uncopyrighted and donated to the public domain. I gift them to the world. Other people can even turn them into products and make money from them if they wish, not having to pay me for doing so. If you search on my name on Amazon.com, you’ll see that many people have done so. There are a lot of books crediting me as the author or co-author, and I don’t earn any income from them. I like having this as part of my life too.

I don’t think I must limit myself to one path or the other. I like giving freely. I also like creating interesting products and services and selling them for money. Sometimes I speak for free. Sometimes I’m paid to speak. I enjoy the full spectrum of possibilities.

It’s hard to say whether I’ve grown more spiritually from working with money or from working without it. The lessons are just so different on each side. I’m glad I did both and that I didn’t only favor one side or the other. I still find value in exploring both sides today.

I would challenge people who think that they must either embrace or shun money to explore spirituality with money and also without. You needn’t limit yourself to one mode only.

An an analogy, consider that you have an offline life and an online life. You probably find value in both. The lessons and growth experiences offline are different from those you may experience online. Do you feel that it would be wise to only commit to one or the other? Do you need to demonize one to fully embrace the other? Your gains will likely be greatest if you learn to explore both and keep them in balance. I think it’s much the same with money. Money can be a great teacher, but it’s also wise to learn from other teachers.

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Read Spiritual People Don’t Charge for Their Work by Steve Pavlina

Steve Pavlina

Steve Pavlina is an American self-help author, motivational speaker and entrepreneur. He is the author of the web site stevepavlina.com and the book Personal Development for Smart People.

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