Some people believe it's wrong to make money doing spiritual work. Those who feel this way think that psychic mediums shouldn't charge much for their readings.
So many people have emailed me about this question of "whether it's wrong to charge money for spiritual work" that I decided to post one of my email responses to this website so I can simply link to this page instead of answering the same question over and over. Here is one such email and my response to it...
Dear Mr. Olson,
Thanks for all the work you do to help people dealing with grief, tough decisions and everyday life challenges. I just want to know why psychic medium readings are so expensive considering psychic mediums claim to genuinely want to help people. Isn't it wrong to charge so much when doing spiritual work?
That’s a great question, and one that I get a lot. Let me begin by pointing out that it isn’t fair to lump all psychic mediums together in your question. There are psychic mediums who don't charge any fee for a reading, psychic mediums who charge $25, psychic mediums who charge $125, psychic mediums who charge $350, and psychic mediums who charge $800. And, for the most part, most actually do genuinely want to help people; they don't merely "claim" to want to help them.
With that said, I believe I can answer your question to better help you understand why some psychic mediums charge more than others. While I am not a psychic medium, I have investigated this field since 1999. So here is my perspective on this matter from the inside looking out.
Psychic mediums who charge very little and are not supported by a breadwinner or trust fund must work a full-time job to pay their bills. There are not a lot of full-time jobs for psychic mediums, so most have to work at jobs that have nothing to do with helping people using their gifted ability. Therefore, they are not able to help many people with their gift because they are so busy working their full-time job in addition to taking care of their families.
On the other side, the psychic mediums who do offer their gift to the world on a full-time basis must earn enough giving readings to pay all their bills. They too need to pay for rent or a mortgage, health insurance, automobile expenses and insurance, food, clothing, utilities, and so on, just like the rest of us. If they rent office space so that they can have privacy in their home from their work (which they certainly deserve), they have those rent and utility expenses, as well.
Full-time psychic mediums help a lot more people in the course of a week, a month and a year than those who only give readings part-time. Unfortunately for them, even if their reading fee is $200 for a one-hour reading, it's not like they earn $200 per hour for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. Most psychic mediums only give two or three readings a day on average, and often not five days per week. While some psychic mediums are able to give more readings, this is the average. And here is why…
For one, it takes a lot of energy to give a reading, so psychic mediums have to balance and protect their energy (their life force). If they expend all their energy serving the public, they both risk getting ill and having no energy left for their children, spouses, parents and friends, which affects their entire life including the quality of their work.
Two, psychic mediums have to market themselves so that people know about the wonderful service they offer, and this takes both time and money. If nobody knows who they are and what they do, then they can’t help anyone. And if they aren’t helping anyone because they haven’t spent the time and money required to market their services, then they have no clients to help, which forces them to take a full-time job doing something else.
Three, psychic mediums have to answer a lot of emails and phone calls—often playing telephone tag with people—in order to make reading appointments. This email and telephone work can take so much time (hours per day) that some mediums hire an assistant to help them get through it all, which then costs them more money—money they must earn back through their readings.
Unless a psychic medium is on television and/or selling out events to thousands of people, no psychic or medium I have ever met (and I know hundreds) is getting rich off their gift. In fact, most psychic mediums could work a lot less at a "normal" job and earn more money, especially considering all their expenses as a self-employed business owner.
So it's easy to judge or question a psychic medium's intentions to help people because his or her fee is on the high side, but only because people don't know the whole story. It would be just as easy for someone to judge a psychic medium for working full-time as an office clerk or attorney and, thereby, NOT using their gift to help "more" people.
Who is doing the greater disservice? Is it the psychic medium who must charge a higher reading fee in order to help 40 to 60 people a month giving readings full-time OR the psychic medium who gives readings for free but can only help 2 or 3 people a month giving readings part-time? The answer is subjective, so there is no right or wrong answer. But an argument could be made either way.
Within the context of this topic, it's important to add that there is nothing immoral or unethical about making money doing spiritual work. Musicians and singers like Josh Groban, Enya or Steven Halpern are doing spiritual work and making lots of money. Have you seen what it costs for a concert ticket these days? Yet nobody seems to question their motives. They are using their God-given gifts—just as psychic mediums do—providing amazing benefits to our world as a result, and profiting (as they should) from their talents, time and energy.
There are also financially successful artists who are celebrated for their spiritual work. Ansel Adams, Norman Rockwell and Steven Spielberg come to mind. Yet no one takes issue with how much they earned from their photographs, paintings or movies. All the same, few people can afford many artists’ paintings, photographs or sculptures that cost hundreds (and even hundreds of thousands) of dollars. Are these artists less spiritual people for the abundance they attracted due to their talents? Few people would dare to think so. On the contrary, the prosperity allows such people the freedom to do more and even better work.
Even personalities like Oprah and Wayne Dyer, who touch a lot of people with their work, are both wealthy and doing spiritual work with their given talents. Many such authors and television personalities give all-day workshops that cost hundreds of dollars to attend. But are their motives or morals under question? Of course they aren’t. Most people appreciate that authors and TV show hosts are flourishing financially from the wonderful work they are doing in the world. So why should psychic mediums be treated differently?
Abundance is empowering whether you are a psychic medium, a musician, an artist or a world leader. There is nothing spiritual or empowering about poverty and financial struggle. Scarcity and struggle causes people to restrict and contract. Abundance allows people to expand and focus more of their time, resources and energy on helping others. And that is exactly what psychic mediums are doing when they receive the energy exchange we call money for their services.
There's a common misconception about psychic mediums, which is that because one psychic medium charges $350 for a reading that it means people who cannot afford that sum are excluded from getting a reading. This is simply not true. No one is excluded from a reading with a psychic or medium regardless of their financial situation. There are numerous psychic mediums offering free or low-cost readings to people who cannot afford to pay a lot for a reading. For example, Spiritualist Churches (typically operated by psychic mediums) frequently hold a “Mediums Day” event a few times a year where people can get a reading for a small donation (or even free).
As a final point, it’s important to recognize that if it were not for some of the most financially successful psychic mediums such as John Edward, James Van Praagh and Allison Dubois, less people would either know about psychic mediums or be open to the idea of intuitive ability and spirit communication. This is because many of those who charge what some might consider a high reading fee (i.e. those who have learned how to attract abundance due to their gift) are paving the way for a skeptical public to be more open to psychic and mediumistic abilities.
The success and fame of these psychic mediums who spread their message via television and live demonstrations have made psychic mediumship more popular and better understood by the masses, while in turn giving thousands of psychic mediums in this country the courage to come out of the closet and be proud to tell people about what they do. For too long, thousands of psychic mediums were afraid to tell anyone about their gift due to the stigma and skepticism surrounding these abilities. Today they can simply tell people, “Do you know John Edward or James Van Praagh? I do what they do.”
In these ways and more, the higher-priced psychic mediums help the psychic mediums who work for free or a low fee on so many levels. And this is just one of the many ways that there is perfect harmony when it comes to spiritual work and money.
I hope this helps to answer your question.