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Word Gems 

exploring self-realization, sacred personhood, and full humanity


Personal Messages 



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He interrupted somebody else's reading. I wasn't even there.

He essentially "grabbed the microphone" and forced his way into the psychic-session of another person, so desirous and insistent was he of communicating with me.


"This is a message for Wayne... I want Wayne to know this..."

Imagine somebody (in this world) contacting you and saying, "I was visiting with a psychic-medium and during my session the medium was approached by a person on the other side who wanted to talk to you. He didn't know of another way of communicating, and asked that I relay his message to you."

What a shocking event to me!

In this "afterlife" series of articles I've presented to you what I consider to be the best evidence for the reality of the next world. All of it is wonderful information and, to the objective mind, provides substantial affirmation of the "real world." But nothing will convince us as much as personal experience - private messages from departed loved ones.

I have a file of notes concerning encounters with psychic-mediums over the last 15 years. Most of the messages received are not too special; however a handful of them are so penetratingly invasive in terms of accessing my secret, personal life -- knowing things, discussing things, even teasing me about embarrassing events of 50 years ago -- that, in receipt of these, my reaction is one of alarm, not altogether different than if my house had been broken into during the night.

And yet, it is these quasi-violations of privacy which provide the best level of confidence about the reality of the Spirit world.


it's about confirmation - that's why they communicate

It's been said that 90%+ of messages coming through are given for the purpose of confirmation; of offering as much substantial evidence as possible to help loved ones still on Earth to know - to be assured and convinced - that life goes on, that departed dear ones have not forgotten them and remain in their lives.


  • Avoid "fortune telling" when you go to a psychic - that's a corrupted version of the process. There's a code-of-conduct rule about answering certain questions which ethical psychics abide by; like, "should I move to this-or-that city" or "should I study biology or psychology"? People need to make their own decisions and learn from the experience. Don't use a medium or a spirit guide as a new Dear Leader for your life. Learn to access and trust the True Self.


I'd like to tell you about my best messages, but...

Some of these communications are very personally oriented. As such it would be inappropriate to discuss content, some of which is so revealing of sensitive information, not only concerning my life but that of others. Therefore, I must offer only briefest outlines:


  • My double-cousin John (no longer a RCC priest on the other side), has both initiated contact and, at my behest, has "come through" several times. In one case, the psychic-medium specifically identified John as associated with my mother's side of the family. A great lesson I've learned is that relationships can be strengthened, and even entered into, notwithstanding two parties living in different worlds. John is now a very close brother for me and, I know, will be in my life for unending times to come.


you're turning red

  • A very gifted medium, Norma, brought through a message from my mother's first cousin, by name - a man who owned a farm near to ours. The medium, with uncanny precision, offered details of his personality, his barbed sense of humor, which, in our small town, he was famous for. Norma said that he was the sort who "liked pranks." But then, confirming this personality assessment, via Norma, he impolitely jabbed me as close friends will do, brought up an embarrassing incident relating to a long-ago summer-night barn dance. The medium, with sardonic smile, said to me, "You're turning red!" Editor’s note: In our “churchified,” sterile views of the afterlife, we might be surprised to learn that people over there have a sense of humor and might want to have fun. The fact is, essential personalities remain unchanged upon crossing over. I found this out with my friend’s “prankish” comment concerning something I did when I was a young teen. And, in this vein of teasing and humor, there was another example, too. When I visited Linda – see below with the “de facto remote viewing” – she reported, concerning sensitive information in my life, that the Guides were “snickering” at me! – this sounds like “locker-room” banter.


  • Joan is an elderly medium, part of a Spiritualist church in a large northern Midwest city. I'd been speaking with Joan about aspects of my life-situation. As she was of a religious disposition, she took it upon herself to offer a prayer. However, as she prayed, she rather impertinently decided to "ask God" for something on my behalf -- which was very contrary to my wishes. In fairness, she thought she was doing me a favor, but she didn't know me well regarding what I truly wanted. That said, what came next ranks among the best evidence of invisible forces that I've encountered. As she prayed her prayer for me, I sat respectfully, but silently put up a mental wall and blocked the unwanted petition - it didn't even rise as high as the ceiling. But then she abruptly stopped the prayer, turned to me, somewhat chastened, and even a little embarrassed, and said: "I have been a foolish and proud old woman. I have presumed to speak for you and your life, but none of what I said is what you want. You have your own purposes and plans. And I know that you have blocked every word I said! You are a powerful medium in your own right, and I feel the energy pouring off of you." Believe me, I was really shocked that she knew this! I was silently, but very consciously, blocking every word she said, as I found her prayer to be repugnant to my plans - but I never expected that she would know this.


  • From Norma: a message from my mother's sister, also identified by name. In her own way, my aunt, via Norma, referenced the last conversation we had when I visited with her just before her passing. This was a most wonderful message.


  • This one is fairly personal in nature, and so I can’t offer full detail, but even a brief summary might be helpful to you. Early in my investigations of psychic-mediums, quite a few years ago, I visited a local Spiritualist Church. On Wednesday evenings they would conduct a “message service” which anyone could attend; each person in the audience would receive a message. I don’t recall what I was given, it may not have been noteworthy. However, it was after the service that the fun began. I met David, a very competent psychic, who also happened to be visiting the church that evening. And I do recall – quite vividly -- what David said to me. As we chatted for a minute or so, suddenly David became very animated, as he’d been given information about me: “Hey!” he blurted, “You know something about this!” – meaning, the subject of the afterlife evidence. He’d virtually never meet anyone who knew anything about this subject, and so he was taken aback. But then he said something concerning which it’s best that I do not fully discuss here. It was a compliment. He said, with a hint of praise, “You are known [over there] for” such-and-such trait and achievement. This was even more astonishing to me as, essentially, no one knows this about me, an accomplishment of my life, something I’m proud of. What a strange encounter and realization! We go through life, so often, thinking to ourselves that no one knows what we do, where we are, or even cares – and then to find out, in some unseen world and dimension, that we have a reputation, maybe with a measure of honor, for certain triumphs.


There are many other psychic messages evidential to me, but too personal to recount; however, I will offer one more - in its own way, absolutely shocking to me.


  • Linda is one of the very best psychic-mediums in the world, on a level with John Edward. She lives in my city, is a retired school teacher, and does not heavily promote her mediumistic gifts. Her ability was inherited from her mother, who'd also been a teacher and, as Linda tells the story, would come home from work many times weeping, asking God to take away her ability to know things about other people. I asked Linda if she would give me a reading, but, as my habit in these situations, I did not offer any background information nor did I ask questions. I just waited for what might come. As we began, Linda assumed I wished to make contact with a departed relative; most people do. I didn't disabuse her of this notion, but simply allowed things to proceed. Several seconds into the process, she suddenly exclaims: "Hey! - they're telling me that this isn't about someone who's crossed over! You're thinking about someone in this world!" I now realize that I'd been offered a de facto "remote viewing" incident. 

Can two people, still in this world, communicate via their higher selves? Consider the case of Eddie Rickenbacker, World War I fighter pilot, who, while lost at sea, sent a message to his lover.


READ MORE of the astonishing Rickenbacker case



trust yourself - that is, your true self

Editor's note: Many years ago, when I first began to investigate psychic-mediums, I would receive the same message via several different psychics:

"You're not trusting yourself enough!" "You need to believe in yourself a whole lot more!" "You need to go within and listen to yourself!"

This barrage of similar message began to irritate me. I've always considered myself an independent spirit, one who has "become the prairie," and so this recurring mantra to trust myself seemed unnecessary and wrong.

But I would yet learn that my Spirit advisors had an important lesson for me: qualities such as confidence, élan, and determination must issue from the better part of oneself, from the intuitive, higher-order "true self" not the "false," lest our seeming self-assurance be founded upon egoism. 

Special note: I would finally come to learn that a mandate to trust oneself, in the best sense, is not what we think it is. Trusting oneself, in common parlance, is not so unlike the area of believing or having various beliefs. See the article on “Believe” for more discussion; however, trusting oneself, properly construed, is not an expression of willpower, of grit and determination. It’s not a choice – see Jiddu Krishnamurti’s thoughts on “choice” as the best on this subject. Essentially, the issue becomes this: If we are attuned to the “true self,” to Universal Consciousness, then a sense of direction for one’s life, with concomitant mental peace, naturally rises to the surface of personhood – no effort needed. This is what I didn’t understand when the Guides kept telling me that I needed to trust myself a whole lot more. I was offended because, hey, I’m a displaced German farmboy, and I have all the confidence anybody could need. But this was just the ego talking. I really didn’t know anything about it.

See what many afterlife-entities have said, a long list, about "going within" and the need to build one's life on the hidden strength of the inner person:





the voice: a clairaudient presentiment


Michael Tymn in his book Transcending the Titanic: Beyond Death’s Door offers many examples of people receiving warnings before a disastrous event; typically, the warning will be received as an audible voice. Here is one account from Tymn’s book:

Sir William Barrett, a professor of physics at the Royal College in Dublin, Ireland, reported the case of a Captain MacGowan, who told him that, in 1877, he had promised to take his two sons to the theater in Brooklyn on a certain evening and had purchased advance tickets, but on the morning of the appointed day he heard an inner voice which repeated insistently, “Don’t go to the theater; take your sons back to school.” MacGowan attempted to distract himself, but the voice continued, repeating the same words over and over. He knew his sons would be disappointed if he were to cancel their theater plans. He explained to Barrett that the inner voice sounded “as if someone had really been speaking from the inside of the body,” and that it persisted from breakfast-time up to the moment he took his children to New York. One hour before the play was to begin, MacGowan informed his sons that they would not attend. As it turned out, the theater was entirely destroyed by fire that night and 305 perished.

In my own life I have not been in the habit of receiving messages-by-voice. This has never occurred for me – but for one incident.

In late March of 2011, as I walked a path bordering an ice-clad river in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, I thought of someone whom I’d not seen in decades. In those silent ponderings, I essentially resigned myself to an inability to make contact. However, just then, as I walked, an audible voice, precisely disagreeing with my conclusion, presented itself, interrupted me – that is, it sounded audible to me, but, I know, if there had been fellow walkers nearby, they would not have heard anything. So discernible was the voice that, as I recall, I jerked my head around to see if someone were behind me speaking. But I saw no one. 

Editor’s note: The question will be asked, could this “voice” have been my imagination? I don’t think so, and here’s why: (1) The “voice” was clear and somewhat loud, that’s why I looked around. We don’t normally look around in receipt of a thought in the head; (2) The “voice” interrupted me, that is, my desired train of thought, and in a very abrupt manner; (3) Not only did the “voice” interrupt me, but it contradicted me! It put forward an idea which I very much did not want to do.

I have learned that the Guides place little weight on one's short-term comfort; they take a longer view which sometimes results in a disruption of one's well-ordered life, knowing that we'll thank them later. What we might see as "disruption," they view as making space and clearing a path for our highest and best interests, what the eternal soul, in its hidden pledges, has sought for all along.

As I study this subject of the clairaudient presentiment, both in reference to Tymn’s many accounts but also to a larger body of afterlife evidence, I am led to the conclusion that our Spirit Guides, on rare occasion, at critical juncture in our lives, may resort to direct, audible contact with us.

Above, I used the term "course correction." It seems that certain events are so dispositive, so necessary, to future well-being, to sacred destiny and the unfolding of one's life-plan, so as to require an immediate, emergency course correction, such that the invisible Guides will break silence and inject themselves forcibly into one’s personal consciousness and day-to-day 3-D world.



my encouragement to you

If you are new to all this, seek out a competent medium and secure your own personal confirmation of the "real world." My experiences cannot offer that high level of certitude for which you search; another person's confidence via personal revelation is non-transferable; you must seek your own:


there is no such thing as a second-hand revelation; it's just for you and non-transferable

"But admitting, for the sake of a case, that something has been revealed to a certain person, and not revealed to any other person, it is revelation to that person only. When he tells it to a second person, a second to a third, a third to a fourth, and so on, it ceases to be a revelation to all those persons. It is a revelation to the first person only, and hearsay to every other, and consequently they are not obliged to believe it."

Thomas Paine, The Age Of Reason [a book the Founding Father began to write as he awaited death by guillotine during the French Revolution]



Granted, it's not so easy to find a competent medium; as in any profession, the vast majority are not that good at what they purport to do, and only 20%, or maybe 10%, are truly gifted. It's going to take a little research on your part, many sessions with mediums will be disappointing, but every once in a while the rewards can be very beneficial and will knock your socks off.

If you live in a big city, try a local chapter of a Spiritualist Church. It's a place to start. They usually have mediums on-staff as clergy. Also, ask people of the church if they could recommend any unknown-but-good mediums.

I wouldn't spend a lot of money on this. Some of the very best mediums refuse compensation. If you do want to spend some money, see a website listed on my "othersites" page that provides a list of vetted mediums.

All the best to you. I think that if you ask your Spirit Guides to help in this search, they will eventually direct you to a good source.



later you will find that you don't need mediums; just do it yourself

On the "leadership" page I stated that "grownups don't need leaders; or shouldn't."

Recently, in conversation with James Webster, we agreed that we'd come to a point in our lives, such that, it was no longer profitable to consult with psychic-mediums.

And, eventually, you'll feel the same and will forego these meetings. You won't need them anymore. Anything they might tell you, via the Guides "whispering in the ear," you'll have already discerned, courtesy of the "true self," your inner-person link to God.

You are free. You are able. You are as potentially "psychic" as any person in this world or the next, if you learn to trust your true self. So, cast off the training-wheels. You don't need any external source to give you direction for your own life.

The Spirit Guides hope to wean us away from reliance on phenomenal evidence of the afterlife, with more emphasis on the “inner life” of the soul

William Stainton Moses was one of the great psychic-mediums of the 1800s. He channeled some excellent information from the Guides, offered in his “Spirit Teachings.” Here’s an important excerpt. Notice how the Guides want to minimize all external aids to truth, even the scientific evidence for the afterlife, while leading us to trust the “inner guidance.”

"Beware of encouraging the promiscuous evolution of violent physical power [when you seek for a psychic-medium]. Such comes generally from the lower and more undeveloped; and its development is frequently attended by spirits for whose absence you should pray. In the encouragement, especially in newly-formed [psychic-medium] circles, of undue care for physical marvels is a great risk.

"Such are necessary to the work, and we do not in any degree undervalue their importance to certain minds. We desire to bring home evidence to all; but we do not desire that any should rest in that material form of belief, in an external something which is of little service to any soul. We labour for something higher… Nor do we rest content even with showing man that beings external to himself can interfere in the order of his world. If that were all, he might be so much the worse for knowing it.

Editor's note: These Guides are so adamant for us to experience the inner life, the true riches of the soul, that they fear we might be made “worse,” even by knowing of their existence; bedazzled and distracted by a messenger from heaven, diverting our attention from the real action within.

"We have before us one sole aim … to demonstrate to man that he is immortal, by virtue of the possession of that soul which is a spark struck off from Deity itself. We wish … to show him the life that leads to progress, to point him to the future of development and growth…

How can we know that we are beings with a divine heritage?

Editor’s note: Feel the flow of the Guides' argument. They say they have one “aim.” It is to inform us that we are “immortal,” that is, made in the image of God. By what demonstration? “by virtue” of the fact that we possess a divine “soul,” which is like a “spark," a particle of the divine essence, "struck off” from God. And how shall we assure ourselves of this divine possession? We will know that our essential life is divine and from God because it will reveal itself as a “life that leads to progress,” to a “future of development and growth.” In other words, we can know that we are immortal, fit to “live with the gods,” by our awesome potential to enlarge and by a commensurate innate desire to improve, to become, to achieve, to soar. Granted, the “false self” has dampened this success-mindedness with its fear, guilt, despair, and anger – but these merely cloak and overlay and do not represent our natural state. We are to “go within” and discover who we really are, the "made in the image" heritage from which we derive. Special note: compare this desire to achieve and improve with Jesus' teaching, "Embrace this god-life, really embrace it!"

"If we use such [phenomenal] power at all it is because we find it necessary, not because we think it desirable, save always as a means to an endRegard [the phenomenal] only as means of conviction, as so many proofs to your minds of actual intervention from the world of spirit with the world of matter. Look upon them as such only, and use them as the material foundation on which the spiritual temple may be built. Rest assured that they of themselves can teach you no more than that ... you must go on to further steps."

READ MORE on the "true self" page




discern the spirits

In the New Testament book of Corinthians the apostle Paul asserts that we are to “discern,” or tell the difference among, competing spirits or attitudes or messages. The apostle John says the same in his first letter, near the end of the Bible, that we are to “test” the spirits.

Stated in practical terms, there is no such thing as a holy book, or a holy infallible guru, or perfect church, or inerrant body of beliefs. Everything must be subjected to a winnowing process, a sifting of truth from error, measured against the touchstone of “what’s real,” which is your own sanctified mind linked to God. There is no other way, in this world or the one to come, even a million years from now.

I say this because, in the marketplace, within certain religious sectors, you will find much opposition to psychic science and afterlife research. Those who have much to lose by your freedom from fear-and-guilt will try to tell you that all things psychic are of the Devil, and your participation in such will send you straight to hell without passing “go.” But, you will yet discover, they have absolutely no power or authority over you, unless you grant it to them.

In other articles I share my decades of research concerning the non-special nature of the Bible, the myth of Satan and Hell, and related matters. You’ll want to review that information. But allow me to address a few issues concerning the Bible and psychic science.

There is much wisdom in the Bible, but also much rubbish. And you’ll need to “discern” and “test,” as the great apostles instructed, to sort it out. In “The Wedding Song” I quote extensively from the first chapters of Genesis. There are a lot of bad and worthless things in the Pentateuch, but whoever wrote the opening sections of Genesis was channeling important information from the other side.

Saul, Samuel, and the Witch at Endor

Religious dogmatists love to demonize psychic abilities and, invariably, will do so by referring to I Samuel 28. Therein we find Saul meeting with the “witch” of Endor in order to receive a message from the departed prophet Samuel.

Let me immediately interject that the very term “witch” is a blatant editorial prejudicial attack. The NIV translation renders the term “medium.” The Hebrew was translated with the pejorative “witch” rather than the objective and neutral “medium” by those who wanted to “poison the well” for all things psychic.

Now notice what happens when the medium contacts Samuel – and this will tell us that the whole story here is make-believe and could never have happened. Samuel is miffed. He acts like his morning schedule has been interrupted, and he resents having been called to the bar. He comes on with a very unfriendly, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?”

There are many things I could say about this fairy-tale, such as, what do you mean “up,” there is no “up,” and wherever you were you weren’t “down” relative to the Earth; unless, of course, this was written by some religious dogmatist who believes in souls at the center of the Earth or resting below the ground, or some other fable.

But here’s the big problem. Samuel more or less tells us that he was brought to the party against his will. He doesn’t want to be there. He was “dragged” to the proceedings. He didn’t want to go. And this sentiment of reluctance to participate is the clearest indication that this whole little drama is a product of some inventive but dishonest mind. Here’s why.

We don’t know everything about how things work in the next life, but one thing we know for sure: nobody orders anyone else around. Nobody does anything, for better or worse, unless he or she decides to do it. Everybody has free will, the power to choose, even if it’s the wrong choice. And no one can command one atom of one’s personal essence to be somewhere against that individual’s will. I will tell you this: the story of Samuel was written by somebody who believed in top-down authority, the kind we see in cult religions all over the world and through-out history. But the afterlife society puts an end to all that tin-star fake authority.

Brother John of Glastonbury: no one can call us back to the Earth 

The 500 Leslie Flint "direct voice" tape-recordings include a testimony by Brother John of Glastonbury (1393-1464 CE), a former monk during his Earth-life.

The following is from the Jan. 12, 1966 recording:

John affirms what I stated above concerning persons on the other side free to come and go as they please, without duty to reenter the Earth's cares and troubles. He says that "no one can call us back" as per the mythical summoning of Samuel. If spirit-persons return to the Earth at all, he says, "we come of our own accord" to share our joy. Other than that, fahgetaboutit.


your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions

The Old Testament itself – my apologies to my Jewish friends who do not like that term as they will tell you the book belongs to their group – posits that a time will come when ordinary people, that is, not a denominated class of religious elite, like prophets and priests, will receive messages, signs and wonders, from God. In other words, psychic phenomena was meant to be common for us. We all have these gifts, if we allow them to manifest; fear and doubt strangles them, however.

We find this in the book of Joel 2:28:

"It will come about after this that I will pour out my spirit on all mankind; and your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.

On the day of Pentecost, after the “miracle” of the tongues of fire, the apostle Peter quoted this verse (see Acts 2:16) from Joel as explanation for what had happened to his friends earlier that morning concerning the display of fire.

The Pentecost "tongues" of fire sounds very much like the kaliedescopic light-display, orchestrated by Spirit Beings on the other side, and witnessed time-and-again by the participants of the Scole Experiments, concerning which my friend, James Webster, was in attendance many times.



And do you think that “speaking in tongues,” that is, foreign languages, is something new and solely a “Christian” symbol? It is not. I met a little girl in north Minneapolis named Norijah who, as reported by her mother, suddenly and inexplicably began speaking in Arabic to the 7-11 storekeeper. (Editor's note: "speaking in tongues" is not speaking gibberish as some would have it. Check the context of Acts 2. There were many visitors from foreign lands, with all sorts of foreign languages, in Jerusalem for the Pentecost feast day, and these itinerants suddenly heard a message in their own home-language.) 

These abilities are all around us, if we want to find them. We have been brainwashed and propagandized by Big Religion concerning the reality of the “gifts of the spirit,” that is, common and every-day manifestations of higher consciousness and psychic phenomena. Big Religion struts its fake-authority because they want you to believe that God works only through ecclesiastical top-dog higher-ups, and that you, poor pleb that you are, must learn to be content with whatever crumbs the elites grant to you. This is more patent rubbish and warmed-over cultism.

Few understand, or would be willing to admit, that all of the “miracles” performed by Jesus have been duplicated by those with well-honed psychic talents in our world. Jesus was a highly developed man with extraordinary psychic powers -- and the message of his life is that, eventually, we can do and become all that he did and was and is today. After all, he was the one who said, "greater works than these will you do when I am gone." But you won't hear this emphasized in the churches, will you.

If you ask a religious official about this statement of Jesus, they will say, "It was meant for the apostles only;" or, "it was meant only for the religious hierarchy in times to come." Your response should be, "Ok then, where are your great 'miracles' today? Show me where you're doing what Jesus did."

And if they then fall back to the cue-card, "It was only for the apostles," then ask them, why did Jesus say that a sign of the true church would be performing miracles, including raising the dead? One would think we would not need a "sign" of the true church when the apostles were at the helm, but it would be very helpful to us now.

This argument, "Jesus was only speaking to the apostles" is very disturbing. Are we to understand that his teachings represent some kind of narrow closed-shop church-leadership training seminar, with all of us drones just along for the ride? -- to pick up hymn books and collect bingo cards? If that's the case, why would anyone in "the laity" ever read the Bible or take seriously what Jesus had to say if it's all out of date? But this is just hogwash.

Editor's note: We must bring to mind Elizabeth Fry, from the afterlife, warning us of the wolves within the church who crave power and the chief-seat, and that Jesus had no intention of creating one of the world's authority-institutions.

Because, as they conveniently have it, if the power of the spirit and the purported power of the Bible was just for the days of the apostles, then, what good is the Bible -- it becomes just a "period piece," of historical interest only -- or what good is Jesus' teaching or its message for us today? -- if it was intended only for a long-ago select few? But no one believes that, except for church officials who are asked to demonstrate the gifts of the spirit.

They are slippery and want to have it both ways -- they sing about the "great power of the Bible" but, by the way, none of it applies to us any more, so just "pay, pray, and believe, send your tithes to this address, and don't ask any more questions."



there are many technical difficulties to overcome, on our side and the spirit side, in order to receive messages

The following was written by Michael Tymn:




Posted on 30 April 2012

Before the Society for Psychical Research (SPR) was organized in 1882, some very distinguished scholars and scientists investigated the phenomena of what came to be called Spiritualism – communication with the spirit world.

Many of them were told by spirits about the difficulties they encountered in attempting to communicate with the physical world, but the researchers who formed the SPR apparently wanted to start from scratch and for the most part gave little recognition to the findings of the real pioneers.

My latest book, The Afterlife Explorers, published by White Crow Books, discusses the research of the real pioneers – Emanuel Swedenborg, Judge John Edmonds, Governor Nathaniel Tallmadge, Professor Robert Hare, Victor Hugo, Allen Kardec, Alfred Russel Wallace, and Sir William Crookes, as well as the mediumship of several of the best mediums of the era – Andrew Jackson Davis, Dr. George T. Dexter, Daniel Dunglas Home, and the Rev. William Stainton Moses.

In my last blog entry, I discussed some of the obstacles to spirit communication as set forth by the SPR researchers in their investigations of mediums.  But the pioneers had already been told of various difficulties that must be overcome. “I know of no mode of spiritual intercourse that is exempt from a moral taint – no kind of mediumship where the communication may not be affected by the mind of the instrument,” Edmonds offered in an 1853 book. the “instrument” being the medium.  .

Edmonds, who served as Chief Justice of the New York State Supreme Court, is believed to have been the first true psychical researcher.  Beginning in 1851, he spent 23 months investigating mediums, witnessing several hundred manifestations in various forms and keeping detailed records of them. “There are false communications which are not intentionally so,” Edmonds explained, “some arising from a mistake of the spirit who is communicating, and some from the error of the medium who has not yet so studied himself as to be able to distinguish the innate action of his own mind from the impress of spirit influence.”  Edmonds went on to say that “sometimes timidity and diffidence will color and sometimes vanity and fanaticism distort the teachings of the spirits.”

The spirits who communicated, Edmonds pointed out, were not on equal footing. They varied significantly in advancement.  “Some are more, and some less, ignorant than others; some more prudent and careful; some more zealous and inconsiderate; some impulsive and rapid, and some calm and deliberate; in fine, with every conceivable variety of attribute and faculty.  Of necessity, the communication from each of these must be affected, as all human intercourse is, by the peculiar characteristics of each individual.”  In effect, Edmonds stressed, those receiving the messages must discern the messages.

Hare, a renowned inventor and professor of chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania, set out to debunk mediums during the early 1850s, but soon became a believer. In fact, he developed mediumship abilities of his own. He came to understand that the spirits themselves did not understand the communication process and concluded that for the most part the communication was beyond human comprehension. “As there are no words in the human language in which spiritual ideas may be embodied so as to convey their literal and exact signification, we are obliged oftimes to have recourse to the use of analogisms and metaphorical modes of expression,” Hare was told by his discarnate father.  “In our communication with you we have to comply with the peculiar structure and rules of your language; but the genius of our language is such that we can impart more ideas to each other in a single word than you can possibly convey in a hundred.”

Initially, Kardec, a French educator, was bothered by the conflicting answers he received from spirits, but, like Edmonds, he concluded that this was because spirits differ in knowledge as much as humans. “Spirits differing very widely from one another as regards their knowledge and morality, it is evident that the same question may receive from them very different answers, according to the rank at which they have arrived, exactly as would be the case if it were propounded alternately to a man of science, an ignoramus, and a mischievous wag.”

Kardec was further informed that spirits speak only by thought and have no articulate language. “The foreign spirit doubtless understands all languages, as languages are the expression of thought, and as the spirit understands by thought; but to render this thought he needs an instrument; this instrument is the medium,” Kardec recorded. “The soul of the medium who receives the foreign communication can transmit it only by the organs of his body; and these organs cannot have the same flexibility for an unknown language which they have for the one familiar to them.  A medium who knows only French might, incidentally, give an answer in English, for instance, should it please the spirit to do so; but spirits, who already find the human language too slow, considering the rapidity of thought, though they abridge as much as they can, are impatient of the mechanical resistance they experience; this is why they don’t always do it.  This is also the reason a novice medium, who writes laboriously and slowly, even in his own language, usually obtains but very brief and undeveloped answers; so the spirits recommend that only simple questions be asked through him. For those of higher bearing it needs a formed medium, who offers no mechanical difficulty to the spirit.”

Wallace, co-originator with Charles Darwin of the natural selection theory of evolution, concluded that harmony was a major factor in successful spirit communication.  Other researchers have come to the same conclusion, understanding that antagonism or negativity on the part of the researcher often defeats any phenomenon, thus leading them to believe that it is all bunk.

Communicating through the trance mediumship of D. D. Home, (below) considered by some the greatest medium of the 19th Century, a spirit communicated:  “You do not know the difficulties that have to be overcome in communicating with you.  Supposing now we want to make manifestations, four spirits would perhaps take possession of the four corners of the room, and would begin, as it were, to throw across to each other, and weave together their harmonizing influence, so as to get everything equalized and prepared for the adoption of whatever they want to do.  One spirit will remain in the midst who will manage and direct all that is to be said – of course, if one of the other spirits wishes to communicate he would let him do so, they are not selfish, but one must have the direction of the manifestations to ensure unity of purpose.  That is why it is so bad to wish for the presence of any particular spirit; that spirit might come, and the others not being selfish would admit him into the circle, and he not being in harmony with the others, would destroy the whole thing.”

At a sitting at the home of Sir William Crookes, one of the world’s leading scientists of the era, Home went into a trance state and a voice began speaking through him. One of Crookes’ guests asked who was speaking.  “It is not spirit in particular,” came the reply through Home.  “It is a general influence.  It requires two or three spirits to get complete control over Dan. The conditions are not very good tonight.”  This “general influence” then went on to explain there are comparatively few spirits who are able to communicate at all.  The likened getting a message through the medium to trying to get a wayward child to do what one wishes and said that there was much experimentation taking place on their side of the veil.

We can only dimly symbolize truths which one day your unclouded eye will see in their full splendor,” an apparently high spirit or “group soul”  (a number of spirits or general spirit influence) called “Imperator” communicated through Stainton Moses.  “We cannot speak with clearness when the spirit of our medium is troubled, when his body is racked with pain, or his mental state vitiated by disease.  Nay, even a lowering atmosphere or electric disturbance, or the neighborhood of unsympathetic and unfavourable human influence, may colour a communication, or prevent it from being clear and complete.”

Posted on 16 April 2012

No doubt one of the reasons why research into mediumship has not been more widely accepted has to do with the lack of clarity in most of the communication purportedly coming from spirits.  Even with the best of mediums, there is much vagueness and ambiguity, even gibberish, in the communication.  Skeptics see all this as evidence that the so-called mediums are charlatans, as they assume that if spirits really exist they should be able to communicate in a much more intelligent and effective manner.

But it is not all that easy to communicate, the spirits tell us.  A month after pioneering psychical researcher Frederic W. H. Myers died in 1901, Professor Oliver Lodge heard from him though Rosalie Thompson, a trance medium.  Lodge recorded that Myers struggled in his initial attempts to communicate.  “Lodge, it is not as easy as I thought in my impatience,” Myers explained his difficulty after some delay. “Gurney says I am getting on first rate.  But I am short of breath.”  Gurney, who died in 1888, was a co-founder of the Society for Psychical Research (SPR) with Myers. The “shortness of breath” apparently is a metaphorical shortness of breath.  One spirit likened spirit communication to trying to hold one’s breath under water and communicate by hand signals with another underwater swimmer.

Myers was just beginning to better appreciate the obstacles that spirits face in their attempts to communicate. “Tell them I am more stupid than some of those I deal with,” he continued as he struggled to remember the last time he had seen Lodge. He mentioned that he could not remember many things, not even his mother’s name. He went on to say that he felt like he was looking at a misty picture and that he could hear himself using Thompson’s voice but that he didn’t feel as if he were actually speaking. “It is funny to hear myself talking when it is not myself talking,” he went on.  “It is not my whole self talking.  When I am awake I know where I am.”

After Dr. Richard Hodgson, another researcher, died in 1905, he began communicating through the mediumship of Leonora Piper, the Boston medium he had studied for 18 years.  “I find now difficulties such as a blind man would experience in trying to find his hat,” the surviving consciousness of Hodgson told Professor William Newbold in a July 23, 1906 sitting. “And I am not wholly conscious of my own utterances because they come out automatically, impressed upon the machine (Piper’s body)…I impress my thoughts on the machine which registers them at random, and which are at times doubtless difficult to understand.  I understand so much better the modus operandi than I did when I was in your world.”

Still another pioneering researcher who communicated after his death, in 1925, Sir William Barrett, a physicist, explained the difficulties of communication to his wife, Dr. Florence Barrett, through the mediumship of Gladys Osborne Leonard. “When I come into the conditions of a sitting I then know that I can carry with me – contain in me – a small portion of my consciousness,” he told Lady Barrett, going on to say that it was easier to communicate ideas than words. He explained that simply saying “I am Will,” was more difficult than expressing an idea of scientific interest.

Communicating through Geraldine Cummins, a renowned automatic writing medium, Frederic Myers stated: “We communicate an impression through the inner mind of the medium.  It receives the impression in a curious way. It has to contribute to the body of the message; we furnish the spirit of it. .  In other words, we send the thoughts and the words usually in which they must be framed, but the actual letters or spelling of the words is drawn from the medium’s memory. Sometimes we only send the thoughts and the medium’s unconscious mind clothes them in words.”

Recently, White Crow Books, the publisher of my last two books, re-published an 1889 book titled Heaven Revised by Eliza B. Duffey. This very intriguing book goes into some of the difficulties of spirit communication. Like Geraldine Cummins, Duffey was an automatic writing medium. “During the entire period in which I was engaged in this writing – some three or four months – I lived and moved in sort of a dream,” she explained in the Introduction of the book. “Nothing seemed real to me. Personal troubles did not seem to pain me. I felt as though I had taken a mental anaesthetic.”
Duffey went on to say that the writing seemed to come through “unseen assistance,” though she realized that those who have not experienced it might have a hard time understanding it. The communicator is never named in the book, but simply referred to as a “traveler” in the spirit world. For those looking for evidential information, the book will not satisfy, but for those accepting Duffey’s explanation as to how it was received, there is much food for thought.

In the final chapter, the “traveler” – given the name Hester here for easy identification purposes – tells of observing four different mediums from her side of the veil.  She was accompanied by a guide called Margaret.


Editor's note: I often quote Spirit Guide Margaret. She has some of the best teaching on authentic romantic love.


Each of the sitters, Hester explained, attracted around him or her spirits whose moods and motives corresponded with his/her own. “There were idle, mischievous spirits, bent on having a good time; there were earnest spirit investigators, ready to second the efforts of the mortals; there were those who recently departed from the earth and were most eager to send back a word of comfort; there were high and pure spirits who sought an opportunity for impressing mortals with the grand truths…for those who truly desire them.”

With the first medium, the communications were for the most part brief and unsatisfactory, though several names were correctly given.  As Hester perceived it, this was because the brain of the medium was dull and untrained.

“One of the higher band of spirits found opportunity to attempt to communicate through her, but what a look of dismay and discouragement came over him when he heard his brilliant thoughts dulled, the truths he would utter obscured, his meaning perverted, and his very language murdered, in passing through the channel of this woman’s intellect,” Hester offered.

After this more advanced spirit ceased his efforts, a degraded spirit stepped in and falsely identified himself as a famous American statesman, much to the delight of the sitters, while the mischievous spirits all around were even more delighted in the impostor’s success.

The second medium was no better. Hester could see good impulses in his heart but also impurity and a lack of high principle. “This instrument, like the other, gave forth only weak and discordant notes, even when played upon by master spirits, because it was imperfect and out of tune,” Hester explained. The third medium was “a woman of weakly good impulses, superstitious in her nature, and with a zeal for her faith which was only excelled by her ignorance.” Hester could see that she mistook her own impulses for genuine impressions from the spirit world, and what she offered was a medley or truth and falsehood, reality and delusion, yet she did not intentionally deceive.

“She was a victim of her own zeal and her own mental delusions, while other victims, enshrouded in the same mental and spiritual darkness as herself, listened intently and even reverently to what she said, and accepted her words without question.”

The fourth medium, Hester was able to judge, was a woman of quick perceptions, keen discernment, true to the heart’s core, and appreciative of her gift. She was surrounded only by bright spirits. As lower spirits tried to influence her, they were restrained by an invisible barrier. However, Hester became confused when words of wisdom were spoken through the medium by “a name illustrious in the annals of literature, whose possessor had passed to spirit life more than a generation ago.” What confused Hester was that the spirit thus named could not be seen. Margaret then told her to look upward. What Hester saw was “a succession of links extending from sphere to sphere, and from spirit to spirit, and on this chain of links the thought has been conveyed, originating far heavenward, and descending from spirit to spirit, until it had finally found utterance on earth.”

From observing these four mediums, Hester came to understand the difficulties involved in spirit communication with the Earth. “Mortals themselves are very ignorant of the necessary conditions,” she concluded.  “Then their imperfect natures draw around them more or less degraded spirits, who naturally interfere with, if they do not utterly thwart, the efforts of the higher and purer ones.”

Margaret likened it to looking through a dark glass in an attempt to behold the light, a glass too often obscured by ignorance, folly, and evil. Proper discernment and patience, Margaret told Hester, are the keys to effective spirit communication.




Editor's last word:

The materialistic institutions of this world, along with their self-serving definitions of morality and propriety, can appear, to the uninitiated, as very solid and formidable, even unassailable; to reference an analogy once offered to a friend, these collective-ego organizations can seem as imposing and enduring as the Roman Empire which lasted a thousand years (and another thousand in the East); and yet these dark-spirited groups, which dominate and intimidate the hapless of our world, are essentially fragile, structurally unsound, and will collapse under their own weight of malfeasance, to be swept away in a destined moment -- none of which will survive transition to the "real world," Summerland.


"Wait! Wait! Stop! - they want me to give you a message!"

In 2008, for a time, as part of my effort to investigate psychic-mediums, I attended a weekly discussion group sponsored by a Spiritualist Church. Some of the attendees possessed mediumistic abilities.

After the session, I left the building and made my way across the parking lot to my car. However, behind me I heard a voice calling out, "Wait! Stop!" I glanced back to see a black girl who'd been a member of that evening's group. This was her first time attending, I'd never seen her before, and hadn't spoken to her. My first mental reaction was, "Why are you shouting at me? I don't even know you."

The girl approached me and apologized for the intrusion with, "I'm sorry for shouting, but they" - the Spirit Guides - "insist that I give you a message!"

I stood silently, not knowing what to make of this impromptu communique. Continuing, however, she informed me, "They want you to know that they are pleased with the way you are living your life. You have a 'spirit of a good priest,' and you've been fighting for the truth all of your life, since you were a boy, which brought you into conflict with almost everyone around you; but your Guides want you to know that you are greatly honored for your wisdom."

Well, what do you say after this? - wow, "the spirit of a good priest." Now I know why John and I are close brothers. It was John, noted above, who "grabbed the microphone," insisting that a message be delivered to me. And what did he want me to know? "Tell Wayne that I will be helping him in his writings. I am learning so many new things over here, and there's much that I need to find out, but as I gain new knowledge I will try to communicate it to him."

I did not know John well in this world. He was older and our paths didn't cross that much back then. But I am discovering that some of our future closest and dearest might be those presently somewhat unknown to us. John and I, in fact, share a hidden nexus. While we are doubly blood-related via two separate family lines, I have come to perceive that our closest loved ones for eternity will not be deemed such just because of "blood"; in fact, blood-ties alone, without something more, will suffer final diminishment and drift apart in Summerland; nevertheless, blood-ties can matter a great deal when subsumed by an underlying soul-bond.

The truth appears to be this: we came to the Earth -- soul-groups of us, coming here together -- to share "blood" because we were already close, already eternally endeared to each other, in another world. I like to imagine the spirit of pre-trip talk among soul-group members unfolding as, "I'm not going unless you come, too!"

As Spirit Guide Margaret asserted, without these closest loved ones, our dearest heart-unions, there would never be any real Heaven for us; no reason, no desire, to live forever; intuitively, in our deepest persons, we already know this and don't require a psychic to inform us.