What triggered my question is this: I'm a fan of an online shopping site for handmade items, and sometimes I'll just type in a word like "Autumn", or "Forest" and see what comes up just for fun or to 'window shop. I typed in "Pagan" out of curiosity and found a neat assortment of goods marketed to Pagans---to include spells. When I typed in the word "Witchcraft", a disturbing number of spells for sale came up---some quite pricey and often promising things that really shouldn't be promised such as "Haunted Penis Enlargement" or spells to bring a lover back into one's life, or some similar thing. What is your take on "spells for sale"? I find them unsettling and the whole of it just irks me.
ANSWER - In the main I agree with you. Pre made spells seem more about making money than they do achieving any actual value in themselves. Part of the efficacy in casting a spell is anchoring the intent to the target to bring about the desired effect. I find it hard to understand how a witch could seal her intent into a spell and sell it to a stranger. How would she know where to direct the intent? It simply wouldn't work. I find spells that make outlandish claims to achieve x. y and z to be a waste of money particularly if they are sold to people without a basic working knowledge of magic.
Having said that there are some concepts of spells for sale that I could see working. It would make sense for a non magical person to pay a witch for her time, that way the witch would understand the target and the desired effect and could channel her energies appropriately. It might also be useful for someone who has some magical experience but who doesn't have the confidence to write their own spells to buy a spell off a more experienced witch. In this case the caster would be following a pre established format but it would be their energies used in the spell and they who would be casting the spell. I suppose this is what spell books are for, come to think of it.
I can understand a witch making a potion to sell (though I struggle to understand anybody who would buy and consume a potion from anything other than a source they know very very well) and I can understand the value of selling spell ingredients. Even base spell kits - for example an oil blend with instructions as to how it could be put to magical use - could have some value. It's more the pre packaged complete everything in a box kind of spell that I dislike the idea of. I'd question why anybody would bother as well - when I want something done I don't want to rely on anybody else, I want to make sure it is done properly. Asking others for advice, support and ideas is great but when it comes down to the intent of the person who wants the spell casting are going to be the most intense. Far more valuable for a spell than a kit form by some anonymous witch sold in a new age shop.
Some spells get people's hopes up and exploit the innocent, others are just commercialised claptrap designed to part fools and their money. Effort in magic as in anything is rewarded. If somebody wants a spell casting that much their money would be best spent on buying a good introduction book to magic work and learning the basics themselves.
As for haunted penis enlargement??! I spluttered coffee all over my laptop when I read that. Seriously?!!