There seems to be, and apparently always has been, much confusion over the definitions between psychics, mediums and clairvoyants. It has been brought to my attention many times over recently, no less by appearing on the Kilroy show, that many people don’t know the difference between all of these ‘names’ that those of us that work with spirit and energy are blessed with.
I have been following my spiritual path solidly since 1997 and am very fortunate that I’ve been able to enhance many of my senses and gain much knowledge along the way. Technically I could call myself any of these ‘names’ mentioned above, as I’m also very fortunate to have been able to develop all these natural gifts of awareness, which warrant each of these titles.
To help give just a brief run down before my more lengthy explanations here is a quick resume of what the dictionary had to say about each of these:
- Psychic – pertaining to mental forces, telepathy, extra sensory perception
- Medium – contacting and being able to communicate with spirits of the dead
- Clairvoyance – the ability to see things beyond our normal senses
The thing is that also if you look in a thesaurus you will see each of these words in each of the other words categories i.e. psychic will be found under clairvoyant and medium. Medium will be found under psychic and clairvoyant and so on…
So it all seems to be rather confusing and not surprising that many people don’t know who or what they are letting themselves in for when visiting one of these people, or if they were to go to an evening of clairvoyance, would they get clairvoyance or would they get mediumship, or indeed both or neither?
Well, I hope that the following explanations, that have come with the help of my guides via my clairaudient ability, which has not yet been mentioned, will help you become much clearer on who and what a psychic, medium or clairvoyant is and does. This of course is my interpretation and understanding of all of these and anyone wanting to mail me with further information or opinions I would be more than happy to read them, as I am always keen to learn more!
Let’s start with explaining about a psychic. Someone that calls himself or herself a psychic may well be labelling themselves as such because it is stereotypically recognised as someone that can ‘read you’ and most likely be able to tell you about, your past, present, future and many other things that the psychic could not possibly have known about you before having your reading. This essentially is correct, but how they do this in the true sense of the word, is that as a psychic they will have like a ‘mental connection’ with you and they will also read your energy field, so they will be very sensitive and be able to pick up on your thoughts and energy most of all. People will tell you that you are psychic if you know who it is when the phone rings, for example. They may well have some or all of the other abilities that will be mentioned as follows, but not necessarily so.
We then get to what I call the ‘Clairs’. We have at least three ‘clair’ abilities (please tell me if you know of any more!) and they are clairvoyance, clairaudience and clairsentience. Interesting here though, that the dictionary only recognises sentience and not clairsentience.
Now, clairvoyance actually translates to ‘clear seeing’. It means that the person that is working with their clairvoyant ability will be able to see images of people, places or things in their minds eye, they are able to describe these to you during a reading or when giving a message. This does not mean that they are fortunetellers or seers of the future, although that doesn’t mean that you won’t get some information about the future, but clairvoyance is by definition simply clear seeing, and not seeing the future.
A good clairvoyant will, and indeed should, validate things for you that have happened in the past and things that are happening in the present. If they don’t, how will you know or believe if what they are saying about the future holds any weight?
As a footnote to the ‘fortune telling’ side of things, from my own experience, I tend not to give too much future information, as I believe it is subject to change, even though things are generally mapped out for us, we still have free will and the ability to ‘change our fate’. For example, if I were to tell someone I can see they are going to meet a man abroad in two months time, it means that I can see that happening subject to the way they are leading their life at the present time. If they then go out and plan a holiday unexpectedly to try and make that happen, the chances are they won’t meet the person I saw for them because they have ‘changed their own fate’, by arranging a holiday. It may have been that they would have met them via a business trip abroad that they now won’t be on, because they are away from work, on holiday!! I hope you get my meaning?
Now as well as clairvoyance, there is also something called clairaudience. Clairaudience is essentially ‘clear hearing’. This means that we will hear information from Spirit. This might be ones own Spirit Guides or if working as a medium giving messages it will be the Spirit of the loved one that is no longer here, giving that information. Personally I don’t hear it on a physical level, I hear it as a voice in my head as if I were talking to myself silently. Now, as with any of these abilities the non-believers would argue that we’re making it all up as we go along. It is our imagination. Well, all I can say is that I most definitely know when it’s spirit and not me (after years of practice and trusting), because the words come so fast I wouldn’t have time to think it for myself even if I tried. I usually find myself working with this ability, especially when working as a medium, when Spirit are giving me specifics, like names, dates and places etc.
There is also another ability that many of us work with and that is Clairsentience. This is where we feel things, or sense things, as the word suggests, it is ‘clear sensing’. I usually get this, again when working as a medium, when someone has passed with a certain illness or condition. For a split second I will feel a sensation that they would have felt before they passed on or perhaps the sensation of a condition they would have suffered with during their life, so that I can describe this to the person I am giving a message to. This helps to validate which particular person is coming through from Spirit for them.
It also might come into play from a psychic perspective as you may well feel something about the person you are reading directly. For example you might physically feel a quick pain in your arm if they have injured it recently. However, it might not be something physical that you feel, it can also be defined as an inner knowing, so just a feeling you get about something, like a gut feeling. You may just energetically feel or just know somehow that the person you are reading has a bad arm.
Now I have mentioned a couple of times about working as a medium and we still have this to explain. Mediums and mediumship are slightly trickier to define, or very simple, depending on whether you want the easy version or the more complex one!
The simple version is that a medium is someone that ‘talks to dead people’!
(Now the boy in the film Sixth Sense would be a clairvoyant/medium, because to quote him ” I see dead people!”)
The harder version is that a medium by another definition is the ‘channel’ by which information from spirit passes through or indeed is the channel through which any energy passes. By this definition all of us indeed are mediums (as opposed to smalls or larges…sorry, couldn’t resist getting that in somewhere!). This is because we all channel energy to some degree or another. If we draw, we are a medium (as is the pencil) through which energy flows to create the picture on the page. If we sing, we are a medium (as is the voice) through which energy flows to create a song. If we are healers (another topic entirely) we are mediums through which the energy flows to our clients and so on…
This then means by its very nature that anyone working with Spirit or energy on any level could be called a medium. A medium in this sense is then being defined as a ‘channel’.
So someone that calls themselves a clairvoyant/medium, by rights, should be able to describe your loved ones from the spirit world and also to describe visually things around your home or family for example. It has been brought to my attention that there are a few ‘clairvoyant/mediums’ out there, that aren’t in fact either of these! They may ‘read’ people, but they may be reading via their psychic or sentient ability and not actually ‘seeing’ anything at all, or indeed they may not be able to talk with your loved ones in spirit either. This doesn’t mean they aren’t good readers, it just means they might not be offering you the sort of reading you were really after. Never be afraid to ask your ‘reader’ how they work, they should always be more than happy to explain it to you. This way, you know what sort of reading you can expect.
Also it can be confusing when you see an evening of clairvoyance or an evening of mediumship advertised, to know what exactly it is you will be going to. Generally speaking at either of these you will have a medium that will be bringing messages through from loved ones in spirit, but as you can see by definition there is room for confusion, so if in doubt check with the organisers as they will be able to tell you exactly what to expect from the evening.
So, hopefully, this has helped explain a little about the differences between clairvoyants, clairsentients, clairaudients, mediums and psychics.
The likes of James Van Praagh, John Edward, Derek Acorah, Colin Fry and Tony Stockwell work with all of these abilities in some way or another and anyone that has been practising for some time will also be able to tune in to Spirit and energy on all these levels. The whole thing, in my opinion, about working with Spirit and energy is to be as clear a channel as you can possibly be and only ever be using these abilities for the highest good of all concerned and only ever with the persons permission.
Enjoy walking your spiritual path and please by all means email if you would like further information or if you have anything you would like to add to this.
Love light and Understanding
© S.L.Barnett, 2003