Six of Pentacles – Philanthropy

Philanthropy is a form of altruism that consists of “private initiatives, for the public good, focusing on quality of life”

the desire to promote the welfare of others, expressed especially by the generous donation of money to good causes.

Six of Pentacles from Modern Spellcasters Tarot and Mary El Tarot

Elliot writes that “The Six of Pentacles represents compassion, generosity, and cultivating good karma. This card reminds you that your true quality as a person is not measured by how much you impress the powerful and influential people of society. Instead, it is measured by how you treat the outcasts, the penniless, and the “least of these.” When you show kindness to those who you would probably gain “nothing” from, you may find that you walk away with a gift far greater”.

He goes on to say “Giving strangers a warm welcome, offering food, and showing respect was one of the sacred customs from Ancient Greece. It was respected by absolutely everybody. It was a custom decreed by their king of the Gods, Zeus. The Greeks believed that Gods and Goddesses appeared before men as lowly beggars all the time, testing their humanity. If they were treated well they could change one’s fortunes. Some Christian stories also describe angels doing the exact same thing”.

In 1873, Janet Snodgrass married wealthy pastoralist William Clarke, who was made Australia’s first baronet in 1882.

A paper entitled ‘A Leader of Good Work’ by Annette Lewis provides rich insight into the philanthropic contribution of Janet Marion Clarke. Janet Clarke was born on 4 June 1851 at Doogallook Station on the Goulburn River, Victoria, the eldest of nine children of the affluent landowner Peter Snodgrass and his wife Charlotte. She was educated, apparently at home, in literature and the classics,

In 1869 Janet became governess to the four children of the Hon. William Clarke the landowner and stud breeder. William’s wife Mary died in 1871 and Janet and William were married in 1873, when Janet was 21 and her new husband 41. William and Janet went on to have four sons and four daughters together with one son and one daughter dying young.

Schooled in her responsibilities by Lady Bowen, wife of the Victorian Governor, she used the family property at Rupertswood and their East Melbourne mansion, Cliveden, to establish herself as a society hostess. By the beginning of the twentieth century, the now widowed Janet, Lady Clarke was at the head of many philanthropic enterprises in Melbourne.

Janet believed that her wealth brought her obligation to those in need and she became an enthusiastic philanthropic supporter of educational, cultural and political movements. She was very actively involved in a large number of hospital committees and charitable societies. In the depressed 1890s she opened up the kitchens of Cliveden to feed hungry Richmond and Collingwood families at her own expense and cases of personal hardship were helped with generosity and kindness.

East Melbourne Historic Society
Lady Clarke died in 1909, and upon her death a memorial fund was established. Herbert Black’s design for a Grecian-style, white marble rotunda won the public competition. It can accommodate 100 musicians and offers a quiet place to contemplate the view across Queen Victoria Gardens. In part, the inscription on the rotunda reads: ‘A tribute to the memory of a high example / of beneficence and public spirit’.

Cliveden was often a starting point in the careers of young singers and musicians. She was at various times vice-president of the Austral Salon and president of the Dante Society. In 1898-99 she was a member of the Women’s Hospital Committee and in 1900 president of the Alliance Française, of the Hospital for Sick Children, and in 1905-07 of the City Newsboys’ Society; in 1887 she had joined the committee of the Charity Organization Society

Janet made huge contributions to education. She helped in the establishment of the College of Domestic Economy (which became the Emily McPherson College) and the Melbourne Church of England Girls’ Grammar School. The Janet Clarke Hall for women university students at Trinity College was built in 1889 with her generous donation. In 1904 she was president of the University Funds Appeal, raising £12,000.

Janet Clarke Hall was founded in 1886 as Trinity College Hostel, and later renamed Janet Clarke Hall in honour of its major benefactor Janet, Lady Clarke.

The College pioneered collegiate education for women in Australia. It is the oldest residential college for women in Australia and among the oldest in the world. Today as a College ‘of and within’ the University of Melbourne, Janet Clarke Hall stands for equality of access and opportunity, for women and men, in a full and rewarding university education.

The State Library of Victoria have this quirky, informative video providing some interesting other connections related to Janet Clarke, which highlight just how significant this woman was in Victorian Society.

Simple Ways to apply Six of Wands Energy

Sometimes it is actually the smallest gestures that can make the biggest impact — the everyday little things that touch other’s lives. When we adopt this mentality, two great things happen.

21 Simple Practices That Will Make You Want To Be More Generous
  1. We realize we don’t need a certain amount of time or money in order to give and therefore we stop delaying it.
  2. We break down the mental barriers that are preventing us from giving and we start building generosity into our everyday lives.

Read about the work of Caroline Chisholm, take action and learn how to help address homelessness.