A Medium is a person who claims to have the ability to communicate with non-physical entities. People often refer to these entities as the dead, spirit, or discarnates – all referring to persons no longer in the physical realm of existence. Such communication is able to take place because it is believed that when we die our consciousness survives our physical death. In other words, our real self, including our personalities and memories, move on to another type of existence. Some mediums also claim to be able to communicate with angels and spirit guides who may never have been in physical form and whose purpose is to help and guide those who are. Many mediums also claim to be able to communicate with deceased animals, as the consciousness of animals also survives physical death.
Types of Mediumship
There are several different types of mediumship. Most people are familiar with only one type, Mental Mediumship, which is the most common form of mediumship practiced today. This refers to communication with spirit through a telepathic process. The theory is, since consciousness survives physical death, telepathy is not limited to those that are embodied. Although the actual mechanism that allows the process has not been scientifically identified, mediums describe the ability to “raise their vibratory level” to facilitate communicate with those in spirit form. It is believed that those in these other realms of existence experience higher frequencies than those in the denser physical world. If this is true, it would also mean that those in spirit need to find a way to lower their frequencies to synchronize with the medium. According to mental mediums, spirit makes themselves known to them through the physical senses of seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling and knowing. Sometimes the process is subtle, with mediums simply describing a sense of presence.
Some believe that Trance Mediumship is actually a form of mental mediumship, and involves the process of spirit using the medium’s mind to convey thoughts. Trance mediums remain conscious during the process, but describe allowing their conscious mind to recede into the background as they allow spirit to “take over.” There is evidently a difference between light trance where the medium has awareness of the information coming through, and deep trance where the medium may not have any recall of the process or information. Deep trance mediums were popular during the Victorian Era. In more recent times, “channelers” have been witnessed going into deep trance in which they become occupied by spirit entities who deliver messages of deep importance and understanding.
Physical Mediumship involves manifestations of energy that result in observable physical phenomena. This can involve noises, voices, materializations, apports, levitations, movements of objects, and a substance called ectoplasm that exudes from the medium. It is not uncommon for people to witness limbs, faces and full bodies formed out ectoplasm, which eventually either returns to the body of the medium or dissipates. Although some researchers claim that the physical phenomena are purely the result of psychokinesis from the minds of the living, others are convinced that it is spirit who is in charge of the various phenomena. All agree that the combined energy of sitters attending the séance is integral to the process. Physical medium sessions often include spirit entities taking over the body of the medium as evidential messages are delivered to the session attendees. Although there are still excellent physical mediums in practice today, this type of mediumship was much more prevalent in earlier times.