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The adventure of a life time began a few months ago when the Pagan students and I were invited to participate in the “Many Faiths, One Humanity” interfaith trip to London.  We were all excited, thrilled that we were finally “included”.  Then reality hit: how are we going to pay for this?  It was interesting to sit in the room and watch the faces move from total excitement to complete terror of “what if I can’t come up with that much money”?  $3600 each – that seemed overwhelming.  Well, that’s when magic happens.

I’ve been asked on a few occasions how far along we have gotten in our fund-raising activities.  The questions of “how much is left,” “what has come in so far,” “what can I do” and a myriad of other little inquiries have been tossed at me all along the journey.  I haven’t answered any of the questions for a reason. You don’t interfere with magic and manifestation while it is still working.  I believe in that fourth pillar of the pyramid – you keep silent.

But today it’s done, yes the manifestation is complete.  Not necessarily in the way that the students envisioned in the beginning.  There was no large donor handing over a huge check, we didn’t see thousands of checks for $10 each coming in the mail, but what happened is true magic.  As we began I told the students simply not to worry; the money was the least of our issues, the Universe had already provided what we needed and all we had to do was the required work.  What was that work?  Allowing ourselves to be open to opportunities that would present themselves which would result in the funding to become reality.  They looked at me like I had grown a second head.  But it was simple magic, simple money manifestation that we needed to do.  Tell the Universe what we needed, not be greedy, and then be open to the results.

I had to explain that what we expect the magic to look like and what it really looks like is usually very different.  That doesn’t matter; what matters is going with the flow and being thankful for the results.  So, let’s see how the expectation and the reality differed.  Each student understood that there was a price to be paid: $3640 each.  I had one student tell me to worry about the others first, she would be okay.  The other students (students of all faiths) were told to go back home and ask their local “churches” to help in sponsoring them.  Hmmm… that was a tough one and I had to explain to the Chapel Dean that we don’t exactly have churches and if the students could find a group chances were it would be small and have very little funding to help.  Second suggestion: have the students talk to their home colleges and see if there was any co-curricular funding that might help them out.  That was a novel idea and we had no idea what it meant, but the students decided to go for it and off they travelled to talk to some Deans.

First piece of magic: one student asked and was granted $1000 from his home college. First set of defeats, kinda: two students are told no funding was available.  But during the one of the conversations a students had a most unusual experience; she saw one of the cards she reads with on the Dean’s desk.  That’s right, one of the cards from her Russian Gypsy Fortune Telling cards.  She knew she had to be seeing things, it really wasn’t there; it was just HER imagining it.  At the same time the words of the Dean telling her no were flying past her like birds.  She heard the words but they didn’t matter.  As she left the office she understood the adage “nothing ventured, nothing gained” and realized an opportunity opening up in front of her.  She emailed the Chancellor of University and explained that even if she wasn’t able to go due to finances that the opportunity being presented was too great to fail.  She explained where she had tried to find funding and asked if the Chancellor had suggestions where else there might be funding that she could pursue.  The Chancellor responded, she granted each student in the program $1000, $12000 total. Second piece of magic falls into place. 

All this time donations were coming in; the pagan community responded and gave what they could.  I had to explain to the students that when pagans give it isn’t necessarily in the form that you are expecting.  Those that had funds to share did, but the bulk gave energy to allow the doors to open and the road to clear so that we could achieve our goals.  That was just as important, if not more so, than actually sending cash.  Gifts come in all sorts of manners.

The magic continued and the Chapel found that somehow it had funds it didn’t have before to help students, based on need, to pay for the trip.  Grants of $900 each were given to those students that applied and now we are getting closer.  The Dean that told our very brave student no, finds out that there is an academic portion to the trip and awards her a $500 grant.  The end was no in sight and my understanding that the money was there all along began to take hold in the minds of the students.  The magic solidifies.  Two events were now being organized to finish out the fundraising efforts.  Both were psychic fairs of a sort.  The first was a milestone; we held it on campus with just the students doing readings.  That’s right, a psychic fair on the campus of Syracuse University.  The cost was a donation of any amount.  The students raised $83.50.  Not bad since most of the people donated $1 for their reading.

The second fair was held about a week later at a local UU Society church.  Dryad Design sent us two very large boxes of statuary and jewelry to auction in order to raise donations and a local stain glass artist dropped off five pieces to help as well.  The event began to take on a life of its own.  I would get calls and emails from local readers wanting to know if they could participate.  People from all areas were giving items to place in the silent auction.  A wine chiller, tie dye t-shirts, wands, pottery, salon packages, are only a few of the things that people could bid on.  And so we began the evening.  Three hours later at the close of the event I began to count the money that had come in.  Magic happened; manifestation was complete.  What we needed had been raised and the three students who required help to go on this trip were completely taken care of.

As of today I can say, we are done.  That’s right, we have hit our goal.

The fourth student, the one that had said to take care of the others first, we are still working on her portion.  I say that in the context that generosity is wonderful when found in another.  Her fees are paid, yes.  But I would like to help her as well so that the burden isn’t completely on her family.  If you wanted to donate and can any funds that come in at this point will go to reimbursing her.   You can find out how on our donation page.  And the efforts of the students are continuing.  We are still waiting on one last grant that may come through this week.  If it does, we will be overly blessed. 

I want to thank everyone that helped us reach our goals through whatever means that they gave.  It all matters, it all counts, and when we pull together, well that is when magic happens.

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