|Posted by sarahdelamerehurding on July 3, 2012 at 5:15 PM|
What is psychic ability?
There are a lot of preconceived ideas about the psychic world, and the supposed mystics who haunt its corridors. Is the mystical profession an elaborate con, or are there genuine healers in circulation who can actually make a difference?
Unfortunately a great number of people, usually men I might add, view this phenomenon with a disinterested cynicism. It is as if such ‘flaky’ ideas appeal immeasurably to their own sense of superiority. Sadly, they are by-passing a myriad of experience with such a restricted outlook. As with anything a bit of careful balance does not go amiss; just as it is possible to give too much importance to a psychic reading, so too it is easy to get stuck in an endless maze of logic. We miss out on the subtle nuances of our lives by focusing relentlessly on the rational. What are the cynics afraid of - that there might be something in it? Perhaps the concept of someone being able to rummage through your psychic drawers is too much to bear.
By definition, a black and white reaction to life’s diversity is limiting. The colour washes out of existence if we adhere too strongly to what makes ‘sense’. We all have - male and female alike - the propensity to think in a masculine or a feminine way. It is the feminine part of our psyche that connects with spiritual truth. Unless you’re a rational fundamentalist of course! There are two gender-based reactions to life’s realities. The ‘Macho’ dismissive stifles thought with its rigidity and non-compromise; whilst gentle feminine openness is liberating and frees the mind. The truth is there are alternative ways of knowing and experiencing reality, which are equally valid and at times infinitely more enlivening than predictable cynicism! This is not to recommend that we lose the run of ourselves in endless flights of fancy, but spiritual awareness does open our eyes to different dimensions of perception.
Although science may no longer accept it as literally true, the concept of a ‘left and right side’ to the brain is useful. Psychic ability accesses the creative part of the mind, usually referred to as right-sided brain function. It is this part of the mind that enables singers and authors to write, and journalists to come up with rather spooky headlines! Intuition and instinct play an important role, and it is their ability to listen to the small voice within that gives psychics the edge. We all have the capacity to recognise a gut feeling, and we all have a measure of psychic skill. This is one of the mind’s faculties that may be developed.
Intuition is closely related to inspiration, and when the creative juices are flowing, a writer taps into the disconcerting experience of ‘channelling’. Comments like “That book just wrote itself” or “That song came to me after five minutes at the piano” are typical of material that comes from ‘nowhere’. If you amplify this experience and add the skills of telepathy, and precognition you begin to unravel the mystery of psychic ability. The problem that left- brained thinkers have is no understanding of how secret and private information arrives in the lap of the psychic. Do these ‘wierdos’ have inside knowledge? Do they know the people they are talking about? They surely must! How is it possible to comment on people you have never met?
The protestations of the cynics are ethically important. For a psychic working in the media it is a delicate juggling act coming up with predictions about celebrities whilst preserving their right to privacy. I do try to monitor the phrasing of pieces, but it is a losing battle at times. Even certain things that I requested to be off record have gone into papers, so apologies to anyone who has been offended. In general I feel comfortable predicting weddings, babies, and other happy events. However, this leaves me open to pushy journalists who want gory details. Sometimes I find myself in a position where I am aware of things that will occur, and yet I don’t feel I can mention it. This is quite a pressure, but one that the cynics will love. I can hardly say I knew that something would happen after the event. Perhaps integrity is more important than always having to be right.
The other criticism that really riles me is that predictions are the result of intelligent guesswork. I would personally have no tolerance for communicating the calculations of my own mind. What use would I serve if all the insights I offer in good faith were merely contrivances of my own brain? To me there is no mystery in ‘knowing’ things –it is a normal and integrated part of my life. Of course I can only speak for myself, but I am as genuine as I know how to be, and the catalogue of clients I have helped bears testament to this. Actually one of the most healing things someone can offer you is a good heart and a listening ear. Combine this with some psychic insight and things happen!
Legitimate psychic information comes from a variety of sources: the Akashic records; the Universal Unconscious or Collective Unconscious; angels and guides; and the psychic’s own ability to interpret symbols. The Akashic records hold the details of our lives. They indicate our life’s purpose, and the reasons for which we have been incarnated. There is a sense in which we all have an underlying awareness of what will happen to us. The psychic connects with this telepathically, and is thus able to read past, present, and future events. Clairvoyance, clairaudience, and clairsentience all play a part in psychic interpretation. These faculties relate to the sensory experiences of seeing, hearing, and feeling. It is quite unusual for a psychic to have all these gifts in equal measure. Clairsentience is actually more common than clairvoyance. This would equate to a strong sense of ‘knowing’ that comes from deep inside, which may be described as a powerful feeling that you don’t have to question. Do not make the mistake of thinking that everything a psychic utters has its origin at this level. That would be dangerous indeed. Always retain a healthy scepticism – notice I did not say cynicism!
One of the problems with psychic interpretation is the timing of events. When you take into account that a ‘divine day’ is supposed to be equivalent to a thousand of our years, you appreciate that ‘the powers that be’ are not bothered if that job promotion is tomorrow or next year! Thankfully, I tend to get the age of a person at the time of significant events, which by passes the difficulty to an extent. However, it doesn’t shift the reality that sometimes we have to accept that things will unfold in their own sweet time and not before. Knowing that something will happen is not the same thing as being able to influence it or bring it forward.
There is a huge responsibility that accompanies working professionally as a psychic and healer. It is one I do not take lightly. For a start it is quite daunting to ‘go public’, not least because of the assumptions people make. I have experienced many forms of expectation directed at the work I do, and it is part of my pledge to work with honesty, integrity, and to the best of my ability. Someone said I was brave to stick my neck out by working with the media, and in a way that is true. I am a private person. However I do enjoy the communication that publishing affords and I believe that an important part of what I do is to re educate the perception that psychics have all the answers. Some of the people I help are vulnerable, and it is important to tread carefully with predictions in particular, because of the hope people invest in outcomes. I have come across some difficult scenarios where skills in counselling are crucial to giving someone the best chance. It is dangerous to get yourself into a situation where you are perceived as some sort of definitive oracle. This is in fact why I prefer to give my readings a spiritual angle, and place an emphasis on healing, rather than get some one hooked on the idea that their lives will be OK when such and such happens.
Psychic insights appeal to our innate sense of curiosity, but spiritually there are more important issues at stake than knowing when our lotto numbers are coming up! Having been brought up in a Christian environment, I was tapped into living with a spiritual awareness from an early age. My father, as well as being a trained medical doctor, is also well known in evangelical circles as a counsellor and lecturer. With this background, working as a psychic healer was actually the last thing I had on my mind! In an unexpected way this ministry, if you dare call it that, has found me. I went up to the Scottish universities, Stirling and Edinburgh, from my home in Bristol. Immediately I felt rather abandoned. What had I done to deserve this exile? However, several years down the line the philosophy, religious studies and publishing degrees suddenly make sense, with the rather bizarre twist of healing thrown in for good measure.
Working as a healer was not contrived or planned, rather it unfolded as I followed my instincts. I had always noticed that people who would not typically give me much attention tended to queue up when something was wrong! Boyfriends have commented on my healing touch –but we won’t pursue that! I remember when my father lost his sight completely for a stretch of time the different reactions of his kids were telling. My brother’s response was to run to the woodshed in a bid to become MR DIY at the age of 13; my sister aged 10 read endless stories; but I was stumped. This 15 year-old could only reach out with the reassurance of touch, and keep quiet when the understandable questions of “why God why?” rang around the room. Sometimes there are no appropriate words. Things happen which seem unfair, even downright outrageous! I noticed a profound empathy for such situations, but I had not expected to become a healer. Although I was aware of the “laying on of hands” in church, I had not particularly related this gift to myself. I identify strongly with Eileen Drewery’s sentiment “Why Me?” and I would recommend this book by Glen Hoddle’s ‘side kick’ to anyone who is interested in understanding the dynamics of healing. It is crucial for a healer not to get hooked-up on some sense of personal power. It is God who heals through the willing channel of the healer, and fairly frequently through your local GP I might add!
So how did it happen? It was only when my own life disintegrated from every angle possible that I had a profound experience of integration: all the events of my life, traumas, difficulties etc…suddenly made sense! At the time I was doing some healing on my longhaired daschund Freddie, with another healer called Ger. The dog had been knocked over in a bizarre accident, which psychically felt like a set up. Without boring you with all the details, this proved to be a watershed in my life. The presence of Christ was strong, and I felt the somewhat contradictory strands of my life come together. I certainly went through the most brutal apprenticeship a healer could hope for!
So, is there such a thing as a tarot card reading Christian? Apparently there is – although I would prefer to call myself a Christian Hermeticist! Before the clergy start praying for me, although I would be grateful if they did, I have done a huge amount of soul searching on this subject. I don’t want to turn people on to Tarot cards – quite the opposite – but in the Vatican there are huge stained glass windows of the main trump cards. These are powerful symbols that connect with our unconscious. They are universally accessible, but since the church quite rightly frowns upon idolatry they have a mixed reputation. At the time of the inquisition people like me were slaughtered by the church. The prospect of spiritual power outside the remits of the male hierarchy generally scares people. Some of this is justified as structures are important but most of it derives from ignorance. Just as a psychic can be operating without an ounce of compassion, leaving a trail of disaster, so can a priest be self-serving and corrupt. Just as a priest can be genuine and concerned, so can a psychic of integrity provide a service that brings peace and reassurance – God moves in mysterious ways!
In my research into the world of psychic guidance, and here the clergy can breathe a sigh of relief, I have come to the conclusion that absolutely nothing replaces the value of a moment to moment trust in the ‘Almighty’. Whatever our perception of God might be, we are as well to surrender our lives to faith, trusting that there is a reason for everything. We might contrive many elaborate designs for our lives, but if they do not fit with the will of God we might as well throw in the towel before we even get started. John Drane, one of my lecturers at Stirling university, has written an important book: “What is the New Age still saying to the Church”. Although it is a comprehensive look at aspects of the New Age movement in my view it does not go far enough. I justified my own research into this revival of ancient spirituality as a means of getting to the bottom of things. I decided to play ‘devil’s advocate’, and got directly involved with aspects of the New Age that grabbed my curiosity. I knew the investigation I was undertaking was walking a spiritual tightrope, but I decided to see where it would lead. My intention was to publish this experience, but main result of going ‘undercover’ is that I can now work with authority from the inside out. This might seem rather perverse, but at least this tactic challenges people to review their spirituality, and think. There have been so many upheavals within the church that an understanding of the competition is needed. There is a melting pot of pseudo spirituality for sale, and I would be the last person to advise someone to rush out and buy a pack of Tarot cards: I have seen the damage that they can do in the wrong hands. Foster an interest in the angelic realm by all means, but it is dangerous to rely on a pack of cards if there is misguided psychic behind them!
In the Bible there are plenty of warnings against false prophecy. Jeremiah tells us to watch out for people who “speak visions from their own minds”, and John commands us to “test the spirits to see whether they are from God”. There is no doubt that some people are gifted with profound imagination, and the ability to receive messages from what Carl Jung called the Collective Unconscious. But, how can we be sure what they are tapping into? It is important to take a message on board, but also to reserve judgement. Something claiming to be prophetic may be a lie designed to mislead you. Don’t forget there are mischievous spirits that try to have fun at our expense! In Corinthians, Paul names prophecy as one of the most desirable gifts of the spirit. Whole-heartedly I agree! In the right context prophecy can be healing, encouraging, and positive. With wisdom and discernment there is a place for giving people hope.
However, it is important to be aware that there can be a huge gap between psychic ability and true spirituality. They do not necessarily travel hand in hand. Psychics are trained to think symbolically. They understand the impact that society’s universally accepted images have upon our psyche. Jung called these the Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious. He believed that the process of psychic integration involved the identification and release of these ancient symbols. Jung was controversial in his time. He acknowledged the power of the mind, and accepted the existence of psychic ability. His principle of synchronicity demonstrated the phenomenon of simultaneous events and the possibility of what he called “meaningful coincidence”. Jung is the reason that academics will entertain the notion of ‘intuition’, but extend the argument further to include “psychic occurrences” and you wander into subversive territory. This is the challenge of the PhD I am researching at UCD, and is another reason for my foray into the psychic world. I believe it is possible to present this material academically, and Carl Jung is my inspiration. I think any attempt to discredit such research stems from ignorance, and reflects the limited thinking I discussed at the beginning of this piece. Further into the future our minds will be more evolved, and we will be much more receptive to perceiving the different realms of existence. Yes, that is a prediction!
The Jewish tradition of the Kabbalah equates true wisdom with the ability to foretell the future. This is a flattering prospect for a psychic, but as I have learned there is no possibility for complacency in this profession. The challenges keep coming. Every consultation is different just as every healing session has a life of its own. This is work where guidance and intuition are strongly in play. It is not possible to pre-plan or contrive the outcome of a consultation – cynics take note! What happens is meant to happen, and I have a strong belief that the right people ask for help. Sometimes there are situations that seem to be ‘set up’ by the pranksters of the spirit world. This hazard of the trade is the reason I pray like a mad woman when I’m healing! I don’t mean to be alarmist but prayer is important because the need for protection is high. I strongly believe there is a reason for everything, challenges et al. It is important to keep perspective, and to look after your self as a healer. There are days when I delay appointments for the sake of the client because my own energies are not right. I refuse to work when I’m overtired or off-colour as this is not fair on the client, and it is not fair on me! There are days when someone could offer me £1000 for a reading and I would decline. This would probably be the most bizarre aspect of my work from the ‘cynics’ point of view, but I know many healers who would support what I am saying. Healing must be performed in the right conditions, and so must psychic readings. It is actually draining to have people pulling at you for attention, especially when you are sensitive at the best of times. So it is in everyone’s interest that I pace myself and don’t get burned out. This is by way of apology to those still waiting…
A final thought for those still nervous about how working as a psychic connects with faith in God. As I have tried to show it is possible to look into the energies that are shaping our future, but it is not always wise to do so. True spirituality reveres simplicity, and it is good to develop contentment with the present moment of our everyday lives. Grace is certainly the most powerful energy we can ally ourselves to.