Space and time are not the conditions in which we live, they are simply modes in which we think- Albert Einstein
Throughout documented history there have been people who were able to communicate with the dead. Someone that communicates with those who have died is called a medium. In the digital world, there are many psychics, intuitive readers and mediums that seem to have this gift and are sometimes able to reach loved ones that have left the physical world.
Many clients on Psychic Elements have directly experienced a reader getting “in touch” with a loved one that has passed from the physical world.
Energy is never lost. When a person dies the soul energy ( life-force, chi, spirit) simply transforms from the physical. Virtually every religion and almost every culture believes the soul survives death.
When you lose a loved one, it’s natural to want to see them again. The confirmation that they still exist and still love us can be powerful and life-changing.
The History of Mediums
Most religions and cultures throughout history have held the belief that the soul survives the body after death. Not surprisingly, there have been shamans, mediums, and visioners of all types who were purported to speak to those that have crossed over into the afterlife.
It was in the mid-to late 1800's there was an international focus on a wide range of after-life phenomena. Séances, automatic writing, tapping, table turning, and channeling were widely practiced as a means to communicate with the dead. A religion/movement called Spiritualism grew around the basic concept that spirits were able communicate the living.
Scientist Dr. Charles Richet from France, English naturalist, Alfred Russel Wallace (Charles Darwin's cited partner in the development of the theory of evolution) and John Worth Edmonds the New York Supreme Court Judge all wrote about and researched parapsychology. Many early scientists had an avid interest in the after-life.
The word séance comes from the French word “seoir” meaning “session” or “seat”. During the 1800’s, the word séance took on a different meaning. Many spiritualists and mediums tried to communicate with people that had died and other spirits in séances. This became a widespread practice in England, France, and across Europe eventually spreading to America, Australia and Canada.
During a séance, people would sit around a table (often toughing hands) and have the medium receive and send messages to and from the spirits.
Scientists and Nobel prize winning husband and wife team, Pierre and Marie Curie, Marconi (the inventor of the radio) and Alexander Graham Bell (the inventor of the telephone) were all participants in séances. Actually, there were many famous people of the time that went to séances.
Spirit boards (later adapted as Ouija boards) also became popular.
A well-documented body of scientific study was also being done from the 1880’s through the 1940’s. There was also a healthy dose of skeptic testing and de-bunking, going on as well.
Emma Hardinge Britten traveled the world as a renowned medium and an advocate for the Spiritualism movement. Emma was famous for her conversations with the ghost of a crew member of the steamer "Pacific" which sank to the bottom of the ocean with all hands. The owners of the boat threatened legal action against Emma, but her version of the tragedy, as told by the ghost could not be disputed. The owners dropped the case.
Lenore Piper was perhaps the most tested American medium. She was able to relay messages from the dead while she was in a trance-like state.
After years of exhaustive testing in America and England, all of her debunkers gave up. No one could understand how Lenore had so much information. She was able to recount names and intimate details that she said were given to her by the spirits of her client’s departed loved ones.
Sherlock Holmes’ Last Mystery
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the English author, of the Sherlock Holmes mysteries, was an early investigator of séances. He was arguably the best-selling author in the world. At the peak of his success he became convinced that Spiritualism was a fact. At that time, he began to tour the world and lecture and write about the after-life.
His worldwide lecture tour and books on Spiritualism spread the idea, that when someone departs from the physical, they remain alive in spirit. Doyle was largely responsible for bringing focus to many mediums that were doing amazing work in the United States, Great Britain and Australia.
The Age of Aquarius
Jeanne Dixon was a psychic and medium who became famous in America in the late 1950’s. She became well-known when she predicted the death, by assassination of President John F. Kennedy nearly seven years before it happened. Dixon became a celebrity who read for many famous people of the time. Her friends and clients included President Richard Nixon and Nancy Reagan. Dixon spoke to those who had passed on directly without using the séance format.
From 1927 till his death in 2002 Brazilian medium (Spiritist) Chico Xavier lived and died in the tradition of Edgar Cayce and French Spiritist, Allan Kardec . He was able to communicate with spirit entities and speak to the dead. This gift first manifested when his Mother appeared to him some time after she died. Chico heard voices and sensed the presence of spirits all his life.
Chico wrote over 130 books through automatic writing. Even though he had very little education his work was often genius. There were over 3,000,000 copies of his work in print but he never accepted payment and dedicated his gift to Brazil. He appeared on TV and radio and had a postage stamp dedicated tin his honor in 1977.
The late 1960’s were characterized by more openness and a revitalization of a belief in astrology, ESP and mediumships.
“When the moon is in the seventh house
And Jupiter aligns with Mars
Then peace will guide the planets
And love will steer the stars…”
You can turn on the TV and watch feisty Theresa Caputo (the "Long Island Medium") or see John Edward's show "Crossing Over", as they use their controversial gifts to connect with the spirits of the dead. For generations amazing mediums have been "parting the curtain," through which we can glimpse, those who have crossed over to the other side.
"Before Long Island Medium: 5 Famous Psychics In History – TLC : New Now." 'TLC : New Now' N.p., 27 May 2013.
"Ouija." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation,
"Mediumship – Biographies of Mediums, Biographical Studies, Autobiographies." Mediumship – Biographies of Mediums, Biographical Studies, Autobiographies.
Mac Dermot, Galt, James Rado, Gerome Ragni, Bertrand Castelli, and Jacques Lanzman. "Aquarius" from the Musical “Hair”.