It's a depressing time to be young, to be sure. Spiraling house prices ensure only the most fortunate get to be mortgage prisoners. The rest of us ship our possessions from one miserable house-share to the next, only communicating with our roommates through passive-aggressive notes on a smelly shared fridge or the occasional psychotic text message.
And let's not even talk about flat wage growth, the gig economy steamrollering through long-fought-for worker rights like an app-controlled locomotive full of douchebag tech bros, and rampant corporate avarice unraveling the regulations put in place to safeguard us from another financial crisis.
Whatever. I, for one, am looking forward to seeing out my days in a subterranean housing facility making iPhones for our corporate overlords in lieu of actually being able to retire and masturbate to feminist porn in a nursing home. At least everyone else will be as miserable and deranged as me!
Amid all the gloom and cry-wanking, it occurred to me that no-one has considered alternate approaches to getting ourselves out of the dire financial situation we're all in. Sure, you can bankrupt yourself on a college education, but who cares about that stuff anyway now? School doesn't mean shit when you can do magic! Clearly, becoming a witch is the answer to all my financial woes. But can anyone make money with magic?
"If a person is a bum and lazy, then nothing in his life will help him, even magic," explains Spellcaster Maxim, a witch of 18 years experience who offers professional magic services, including money spells. Also, don't be greedy. "Magic cannot help people who, not having anything, want to get everything at once."
Okay, so you can't use magic to gold plate your Trump Tower penthouse elevator straight away. But what can you realistically aim for?
"It's possible to get a pay rise, for sure," confirms Jason Miller, a professional sorcerer who specializes in what his site describes as "the intersection of metaphysical influence and financial matters."
"Getting rich is trickier," he says, "but magic can help increase your chances of success and take care of some obstacles in the way."
Reassuringly, you don't need to be an old hand at smudging sticks to do magic—just like sex, anyone can get better with enough time and practice. "There is a gift for magic and some people are better than others," Miller explains, "but for the most part anyone can do money magic."
However, professional witches and sorcerers alike are weirdly reticent to give the specific details of how to make money using magic. "To all the magic work, it should be kept secret," comments Spellcaster Maxim obscurely. "In nature, there is no formula for success for all, but there is a formula for success for each."
Miller initially isn't much use, either. "Make a plan that will work without magic, then use magic to ensure it will happen," he advises.
Intrepid investigative journalist that I am, I dig deeper. "Magic manifests in strange coincidences or in plans working extremely well," Miller concedes. "Think of magic as something that tips the scales of probability rather than something that manifests money out of thin air."
If your bank balance is causing you anxiety, Miller advises taking a green candle, rubbing it with oil, and invoking a goddess like Juno to aid you. "Or, if you're of a Catholic bent, you might call upon Our Mother of Good Remedy while the candle burns down," Miller says, adding that you should also create a fun talisman with symbols associated with Jupiter and Venus, and take it with you to job interviews. Pleasingly, there's no limit to how much cash you can make by doing the magic stuff. "None," he confirms.
But if anyone can make money using magic, why aren't all witches rich? "Most of the witches I've known have terrible relationships with money," says Morgana Rae, the author of Financial Alchemy: Twelve Months of Magic and Manifestation. This, she explains, is commonly because people aren't aligned correctly on the inside. (Incidentally, Rae's website features her lying on a bed of rose-strewn one-dollar bills in a red velvet dress—this witch knows what's up!) "Incantations are worthless if they are not accompanied by inner alignment and forward action," she adds.
Miller offers a more prosaic reason for why witches and sorcerers might be broke. "They apply magic to the wrong things," he says, "and there's also a strong anti-materialism left over from 1960s counter-culture."
But don't worry—you can get filthy rich without compromising your witch-y integrity! "I don't see a divide between a spiritual life and a prosperous one," Miller adds. "I think if you want to practice a non-materialist spirituality, that's great and you should be serious about it. There are plenty of monks, nuns, and wandering yogis who do just that. They're truly amazing people, but there are other ways."
And if you're still disheartened, why not take heed from the example of JK Rowling? After all, she used magic to make a ton of money. How hard can it be?