Rich: not a four-letter word

I’m beginning this new year mindful of the Ploutos, god of wealth.  Child of Demeter, he was blinded by Zeus so he would not discriminate when dispensing his gifts, conferring them upon good and wicked alike.

I’ve long recognized the power of money.  Three years ago I promised to make Pagans and their money the focus of this blog.  I got sidetracked then, going into a space that made it easier to avoid thinking about money.

I’m thinking about money now.  Since I committed to Hellenismos, it makes sense to consider wealth from that perspective, too.  Wealth was initially an agrarian concept, and Ploutos was indeed son of Demeter, conceived in a thrice-plowed field.  Perhaps as the idea of riches became associated more with precious metals, he became conflated with Hades (Pluto to his Roman fans), whose underworld kingdom is understandably linked to gold and other precious things scratched from beneath the earth.

Gold is more durable than grain, and so it’s a better conduit for congealed energy (that’s what Joseph Campbell called money, and it makes a lot of sense).  Now our money is more often than not simply magnetically-charged electrons, making it more like bound energy than congealed.  Nevertheless, money is and always shall be a form of energy, and should be respected as such.

I haven’t been respecting money since the Great Recession smacked me down . . . I’ve been fearing it.

But now, finally, I am feeling the pulse of the energy within money, and starting to remember that it can be channeled and focused, as much as any other energy can be.  It’s time for me to honor Ploutos, perhaps by tithing in some form like contributing to charity or dedicating a certain amount of money to things which will make the world a better place.

Because I’m becoming more polytraditionalist with every passing year, I’m going to think on Ploutos and wealth when I attend Quaker meeting in the morning.


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