Everyone’s seen the movies. A medium sits in a room full of people and closes his or her eyes. After a few moments, we see physical reactions. They may moan or shake or suddenly take in a deep breath. Their eyes may burst open or gently flutter, but when they speak, it is apparent that the audience is no longer in conversation with the medium. He or she has become an open channel for another spirit, allowing the spirit to use their body to converse with the living. Sometimes it’s funny like with Oda Mae Brown in the movie Ghost…
…and sometimes terrifying like we witnessed with Vanessa Ives in “Penny Dreadful”.
But it is always dramatic. And to many, it’s an intriguing thought.
But what does the medium experience? That’s a question that doesn’t get asked very often in the movies. It’s also something that intrigues many who are interested in the paranormal, even among those who doubt that such things are possible. And believe me, there are a lot of people who believe that houses can be haunted but that living people cannot communicate with the dead.
There was a time in human history when a person who spoke with the dead was considered blessed…sacred. Later, with the onset of witch trials in Europe and Colonial America, the gift was distrusted and hidden. Then came the spiritualist movement in the late 19th and early 20th century, when people would flock to public seances and it became fashionable to be a medium or to, at the very least, host a medium in one’s home. The trouble came here when so many of those mediums were exposed as charlatans.
In the year 2016, we have seen a revival in interest in the paranormal and also in the work of mediums with countless television shows documenting the daily life of those with the gift. That brings us back to the subject of spirit channeling and what happens to the medium, what they experience, during a channeling session.
Or rather what we experience.
If you’ve read other articles I’ve written on this site, you may have noticed a reference here or there to my being a medium. In this article, I’ll be addressing what I personally experience during the channeling state.
You see, every medium works differently. Every medium sees and experiences spirit differently. For instance, when I see spirits, I see them just like any other person on the street. However, when I hear them, I only hear them inside my head, meaning that I never hear them audibly. I know another medium who has never seen a spirit, but can audibly hear them speak to them. None of us are entirely sure why we experience spirit differently. Perhaps it’s because, just like being human, being a medium is a unique experience.
I have been channeling spirits for almost 20 years now. It came after years of work with my spirit guides that allowed me to develop my abilities. In the beginning, it took a great deal of preparation for a session. I’d spend two or three days getting ready for a half hour worth of work. Today, I have developed triggers that take me to the proper place to open that channel within minutes, less if I am familiar with the spirit.
Below you will find a sort of checklist of what I do and what takes place inside that outsiders cannot see.
Step 1: Grounding and Centering
It’s necessary for me to quiet my own mind when I’m preparing to channel. I take a few slow, deep breaths and visualize a line running down my spine and into the center of the earth. This creates a firm foundation for myself. I then visualize a simple desert. Nothing but sand and sky for miles around. Concentrating on this blank scene clears away any stray thoughts.
Step 2: Inviting the Spirit Into my Space
Either with my mind or aloud, I will invite the spirit into my space. When they first approach, I feel a sort of pressure around me. This is their energy interacting with my own aura. The pressure intensifies as they pass through the aura and make contact with my physical body. At this point, my own mind begins to trance and my personality begins to recede as they move inside. I have officially opened a door.
Step 3: The Spirit Takes the Wheel
During the time that I am channeling, I am almost completely unaware of what is going on. I have made space in my own physical body for another consciousness to speak and move and in order for them to be able to express themselves, I suppress my own self. Now, this is not to say that I have no say in what happens. I have set up triggers within my own consciousness that alerts me if something is happening that I would not allow. Likewise, my own spirit guides are on alert and can help me if something goes wrong.
Step 4: The Spirit Begins to Recede/Exit as a Session Ends
As a session ends, the foreign spirit will begin to move out of my body and my own consciousness begins to rise. I can feel the pressure again as the spirit moves and then a sudden release. I would imagine this is what it feels like on the inside of a bottle of champagne as the cork is removed.
Step 5: Returning to Full Consciousness
As I return to being fully awake, the first thing I do is assess myself physically. Sometimes, a spirit may remove my glasses or they may be sitting in a position that was comfortable for them that isn’t comfortable for me. I may be a little fatigued from the experience because of the amount of energy involved, or I may feel very relaxed like I’ve had a nap. A lot of this has to do with the mentality of the spirit I’ve channeled. Once I do a quick check, I focus my attention on the living people in the room who were speaking to the spirit. This is the time when we discuss what information may have been passed along and what they took from the session. If it was particularly emotional, I will spend some time talking with them and helping them process the information.
I enjoy my work as a medium. I enjoy helping people make contact with those who have passed over. I don’t always channel. In fact, I generally spend my time passing messages along verbally. It’s my preferred method. However, from time to time, the need arises and I do what has to be done.
I hope this has given you a little taste of what it’s like, for me anyway, to channel spirits and the process of channeling. Feel free to comment or ask questions below!