Illusionists, such as Joseph Rinn have staged 'fake' séances in which the sitters have claimed to have observed genuine supernatural phenomena. Albert Moll studied the psychology of séance sitters. According to (Wolffram, 2012) "[Moll] argued that the hypnotic atmosphere of the darkened séance room and the suggestive effect of the experimenters' social and scientific prestige could be used to explain why seemingly rational people vouchsafed occult phenomena." The psychologists Leonard Zusne and Warren Jones in their book Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking (1989) wrote that spirits controls are the "products of the medium's own psychological dynamics."
Your spiritual reading will also be influenced by the personality of the psychic, medium or clairvoyant who is giving you a reading. Some spiritual readers are able to translate the spiritual information they receive in a language that is easy to relate to and understand. There are however, some spiritual readers who choose to impart insight and information in a more dramatic manner, so do not be surprised when they start talking about angels, spirit and your Higher Self.
The biblical basis of this practice is St. Paul's advice to his disciple Timothy whom he appointed bishop. St. Paul told him to "Attend to reading." The word "attend" an allusion to the many other concerns that a bishop has to attend to. By this, according to St. Alphonsus Liguori, Doctor of the Church on Moral theology, the Apostle Paul "wished him to apply to the reading of holy books, not in a passing way and for a short time, but regularly and for a considerable time."
Avoid consulting a psychic medium during a period of emotional turmoil. Some people get so scared by traumatic circumstances or turned off by doctors and counselors that they will grab at any lifeline of information fraudulent psychics offer. It is best to seek a psychic medium reading when things are relatively calm and you are able to practice good self-control. Otherwise, in desperation, you could leak facts that will let a scam artist con you into thinking she is really providing help.
Saint after saint has pointed out the positives of spiritual reading. Reading features rather prominently in the 6th century Rule of St. Benedict. Sundays are to be devoted to reading and meals are to be held in silence, with one of the monks reading to the community. St. Alphonsus Ligouri noted that “we cannot always have access to a spiritual Father for counsel in our actions, and particularly in our doubts; but reading will abundantly supply his place by giving us lights and directions to escape the illusions of the devil and of our own self-love, and at the same time to submit to the divine will.” Many spiritual masters urged reading the lives of the saints for encouragement and models of holiness. Padre Pio recommended spiritual reading in general, but particularly for difficult times in our lives:
Why? You may well ask. Simple: it’s because I have a life here, and I need to be able to enjoy it without feeling as if I’m constantly on duty. In my workshops, I teach that we’re spiritual beings as well as physical beings, and it’s so important that we honor all of ourselves. It takes a really strong spirit to get my attention when I’m not working, as it needs to literally break through my shield, my “off switch,” but on those rare occasions when one does, I’ve now learned that I still must act on it every time.
Saul should have known better than to consult with a medium, for God had warned in Leviticus 20:6, "I will set my face against the person who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute himself by following them. I will cut him off from his people." The end result of King Saul's quest was tragic. Shortly after his visit to the witch, the king was wounded in battle and took his own life rather than being captured by the enemy.
Let’s say you want to find a new romantic relationship. Instead of pulling a card to predict whether Prince Charming is just around the corner and either being blissfully excited or bitterly disappointed, you consult the cards to discover how you can attract love (and keep it!). You draw the Ten of Cups, and upon seeing the happy family dancing under the rainbow in the card, you are reminded that to attract love, you need to set a clear vision of what it is you want to attract.
Two, some psychic mediums can hear spirits. In this method, the spirits actually talk to the psychic medium verbally. The psychic medium may hear the communication in their mind (like hearing thoughts), or they may hear the spirit the way they would hear you or I talking to them. Unfortunately, some spirits are not the greatest communicators and what the psychic medium actually hears may sound more like a faint radio station than a clear telephone signal. This is one reason why some readings are so detailed and accurate while others are sketchy. Just try talking to someone using a cheap set of walkie-talkies and you’ll experience what it’s like chatting with a weak communicator from the spirit world.
The Bible says, "For the living know that they will die; but the dead know nothing, and they have no more reward, for the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, their hatred, and their envy have now perished; nevermore will they have a share in anything done under the sun." In other words, for sure we know it couldn't be Samuel, because when we die, we "know nothing." (For more information on what happens when we die, see our topic on Death).
While there are a few different forms of mediumship, I work as a mental medium, which means I communicate with spirits through the use of telepathy. Spirits impress my mind and body with thoughts and feelings that come in the form of "clairs." I mentally "hear" (clairaudience), "see" (clairvoyance), "know" (claircognizance) and/or "feel" (clairsentience) messages from spirits. I like to say that I act as the bridge between the spiritual and the physical world, with the intention of healing both worlds.
In 1988, the magician Bob Couttie criticized the paranormal author Brian Inglis for deliberately ignoring evidence of fraud in mediumship. Couttie wrote Inglis had not familiarized himself with magician techniques. In 1990 the researcher Gordon Stein discovered that the levitation photograph of the medium Carmine Mirabelli was fraudulent. The photograph was a trick as there were signs of chemical retouching under Mirabelli's feet. The retouching showed that Mirabelli was not levitating but was standing on a ladder which was erased from the photograph.
“I don’t usually get spirit messages. I just don’t. But one day I was sitting with a friend, and all of a sudden, clear as day, I knew I had to tell her that her grandmother wanted her to go home. I told her, and she said that all her grandparents were dead. She called home anyway, to make sure everything was okay, and found out that her sister had been hurt at work and was on her way to an emergency room. I have no idea why my friend’s grandmother chose me to pass this message along, and it’s never happened since.”
As the thirst for all things mystical, spiritual, occult and witchy expands into the mainstream, tarot cards are experiencing a huge, almost cultish following. Tarot cards are a form of divination, which literally means working with the divine, or your higher self, which is the ultimate purpose of tarot cards, just like yoga. We’ve broken down everything you need to know about them, from types of decks to what each card represents.
Spiritual Guidance can confirm information that an individual may be receiving from their own Higher Self, but because they may not be totally connected or emotionally involved, they are unable to really allow that information to be perceived or understood as a clear truth. A spiritual guide that points toward the same information can then delve deeper into the situations that may be surrounding the issues of why a person may not be able to totally trust the guidance received. Even those who would consider themselves advanced on the spiritual path, still from time to time, need a little outside confirmation from another connected being to see if their information is coming through clearly. This added confirmation from an outside source can sometimes be just the encouragement someone needs in taking that next step. Spiritual readings are more interactive and encourages the person being read to participate in the learning process. It is not a process where you should try to test your reader by giving incorrect information or trying to be vague. It should be considered counseling or therapy which involves a two-way interaction. The other difference that may be experienced between these two types of guidance is that spiritual guidance can, at times, be harsh and more direct. The goal is to help the person evolve to a higher level and sometimes the person needs to take responsibility for the situations that are currently being experienced. It can awaken dormant emotions, which can be very painful or can also release waves of anger. These emotions, if processed appropriately, can be used to initiate a healing process in an area that was once considered a block. If one is sincerely following a spiritual path, then they must take responsibility for the good and the bad that is occurring in their life. Not to mention some of the negative scenarios that they may have committed in a past lifetime.
No, there is no set time limit. I’ve had spirit people come through many years after they’ve passed away — sometimes 30, 40, or even 50 years — or it could be as soon as one day. A friend of mine, Michael, passed away sadly due to complications from AIDS some years ago, and I remember being in his and his partner’s home for the memorial service. His partner had spent some time setting up a room upstairs beautifully, with a handsome picture of Michael with some of the amazing artworks that he had drawn during his lifetime. While I was saying my goodbyes, I heard his voice speak softly in my ear: “John, please tell Amanda that I will do what I can from here to help her with money.”
It’s not something that can be picked up and put down on a whim. If you find out that you do have the ability and want to eventually practice as a working medium, it will take dedication, patience, and time, as it can be a physically demanding job. Mediumship has to develop and grow; you’ll find that most mediums spend their entire lives developing their abilities. One final point: you must also be ready to live a life of service.
A series of mediumistic séances known as the Scole Experiment took place between 1993 and 1998 in the presence of the researchers David Fontana, Arthur Ellison and Montague Keen. This has produced photographs, audio recordings and physical objects which appeared in the dark séance room (known as apports). A criticism of the experiment was that it was flawed because it did not rule out the possibility of fraud. The skeptical investigator Brian Dunning wrote the Scole experiments fail in many ways. The séances were held in the basement of two of the mediums, only total darkness was allowed with no night vision apparatus as it might "frighten the spirits away". The box containing the film was not examined and could easily have been accessible to fraud. And finally, even though many years have passed, there has been no follow-up, no further research by any credible agency or published accounts.
The first thing you should know before going to a medium demonstration or private reading is that psychic mediums are basically a human telephone to the spirit world—they communicate with spirits. Unfortunately, they are a telephone without a dial. A psychic medium can’t just call up anyone from the spirit world with whom you want to talk. Instead, you get whoever is on the other end when the psychic medium “links” with the spirit world.
The magician Julien Proskauer revealed that the levitating trumpet of Jack Webber was a trick. Close examination of photographs reveal Webber to be holding a telescopic reaching rod attached to the trumpet, and sitters in his séances only believed it to have levitated because the room was so dark they could not see the rod. Webber would cover the rod with crepe paper to disguise its real construction.
The spirit photographer William Hope tricked William Crookes with a fake spirit photograph of his wife in 1906. Oliver Lodge revealed there had been obvious signs of double exposure, the picture of Lady Crookes had been copied from a wedding anniversary photograph, however, Crookes was a convinced spiritualist and claimed it was genuine evidence for spirit photography.
In the typical deep trance, the medium may not have clear recall of all the messages conveyed while in an altered state; such people generally work with an assistant. That person selectively wrote down or otherwise recorded the medium's words. Rarely did the assistant record the responding words of the sitter and other attendants. An example of this kind of relationship can be found in the early 20th century collaboration between the trance medium Mrs. Cecil M. Cook of the William T. Stead Memorial Center in Chicago (a religious body incorporated under the statutes of the State of Illinois) and the journalist Lloyd Kenyon Jones. The latter was a non-medium Spiritualist who transcribed Cook's messages in shorthand. He edited them for publication in book and pamphlet form.