What's On The Other Side
Visiting a medium doesn't have to be a series of spooky events. Members of the Spiritualist Church are turning heads - and no, not in the style of Linda Blair in the Exorcist - with their healing abilities.
As opposed to spiritual healing - where the Healing comes from the practitioner's faith - in spiritualist healing, a medium alters their state of consciousness to a semi-trance. They then get in touch with a spirit guide who directs the medium to pass on information, philosophy, or healing.
Spiritualism is a religion based on the belief that spirits survive natural death. It dates back to 1848, when 2 American sisters, Margaretta and Catherine Fox were said to have established contact with a spirit. The first British Spiritualist Church was founded in Keighley in 1853.
Graham Dare of the Battersea Spiritualist Church (020 783 19 387) says: 'The term medium is not coincidental. Mediumship is like channelling electricity through a cable. A medium does not use his/her own power; it is the guides who help, and many of us have several contacts in the spirit world.'
And if you are worried about hearing information you don't want to, Graham is quick to reassure: 'We contact the spirit necessary for the desired aim; some help to heal, others give clairvoyance. But we don't give out negative messages. If we did find something disturbing, we'd encrypt it, like the Oracle at Delphi. People can take what they want from a session.'