For lack of anything better on TV, I caught a few episodes of “Hollywood Medium with Tyler Henry” (psychic to stars). If you can believe what’s purported on the show, Tyler goes in “cold,” not knowing who he will be seeing, and gives a reading. In one episode I watched, he supposedly had never heard of the celebrity (many are reality show stars).
The viewer doesn’t know what’s been edited, what the celebrity may told him, or what prompting producers may have given, or if Tyler himself does any advance research on the individual, but the details he comes up with are interesting. It’s like a magic show. You know it’s not real, but you’re fascinated.
Watching the show got me thinking about ESP.
I’m a skeptic. I put ESP in the same category as astrology. Fun to play with, but don’t put any stock in it (or buy any stock based on it. Lol).
One factor contributing to my skepticism is the lack of names that psychics offer. It’s always, “I’m getting an H,” not “Your uncle Harry wants you to know…” Or “I’m sensing a mother figure,” rather than “Your mom, Mildred, is here.” There’s no commitment on the psychic’s part until the person confirms the information. If your dead relative can give the medium one letter, why can’t he/she spell out the rest of his/her name? Especially if it’s something like Bob.
I’m familiar with make-believe. I’m a science fiction romance writer. My job is to make stuff up! If I do my job well, I can make readers fall in love with a figment of my imagination. I know how to spin a believable lie.
But I’m also slightly skeptical of my skepticism.
I don’t believe in psychics, but a part of me still wonders if ESP might be possible. It’s like aliens. We have not yet discovered alien life. As we know it now, they don’t exist. But what if? What if in a galaxy far far away, they do? Frankly, we don’t know.
What if some people can know the unknowable?
I’ve had a few interesting encounters with psychics over the years.
Many years ago I was approached by a psychic who wanted me to ghostwrite a book. To convince me of her credibility, she gave me a reading. She said some general feel-good things—“your husband loves you a lot”— some interesting things –“You live in big white house. “ Yeah, we did. Lucky guess?—and one thing that turned out to be (in)credible.
I hadn’t asked her anything about my health, it wasn’t even on my radar screen, but she said, “You have stomach troubles.” No, no I don’t, I replied.
About a year later I underwent major stomach surgery for a blockage.
Many, many years ago while working as a newspaper lifestyle staff writer, I was writing an article about the secrets people tell their hairdressers. In interviewing one particular hairdresser, she mentioned in passing that she was psychic and knew things about people.
Of course, I had to ask, what do you know about me? She replied I would meet a man (my Mr. Right) but I would need to develop more confidence first. Well, duh. That’s a pretty safe prediction to make for a twenty-something woman who isn’t wearing a wedding ring. However, she also said meeting him would have something to do with the number 6.
Fast forward a couple of years, and I met my husband. I’d forgotten what the psychic hairdresser had said until sometime later it hit me that we had started dating after I asked him to my 10th high school reunion, which had been on….August 6.
Another more general encounter raised the what if question again. A friend and I had gone on vacation to Sedona, Arizona. For fun, we decided to take in a psychic reading. My questions were very specific: will we sell our house, will we sell our boat, will my writing career be successful (I was just starting to write romance). Catherine’s questions were more about her future in general, and I don’t even remember exactly what they were. What I do remember is the dynamic of the reading. With me, the psychic was cordial and professional. But with Catherine, I sensed the psychic felt an emotional connection. She seemed genuinely to care about Catherine. I could tell the two of them connected on a more personal level.
Two years after the reading, Catherine died suddenly of cancer at only 54 years old.
Of course, what is most likely is that Catherine and the psychic just had chemistry. Their personalities clicked. But in the back of my mind, I’ve sometimes wondered…what if the psychic had sensed Catherine’s impending death?
I myself have had a few oddly intuitive moments. Once I was driving on a Los Angeles freeway and spotted a car in my rear view mirror. It was coming up behind me, and I could only see the front. Immediately, I got a mental picture of snowfall. The thought, “they’re skiers” popped into my head.
The car passed me, and on the back were ski racks, which hadn’t been visible from the front.
I also got a feeling of desolation or sadness from the vehicle like something bad had happened, but of course, there’s no way of knowing if that part was true or not.
Is it possible to know the unknowable? What if there is sort of energy linking us that some people can tap into?
What do you think? Do you believe in psychics? Has your intuition ever kicked in an uncanny way? Ever had a reading that was dead on?