by Charlie Stack
One of the most interesting topics that have stood out to me is the rise and popularity of famous psychics throughout history such as James Van Praagh and how easily it is to have people buy into believing them. To go even further, I am interested in the relationship between psychics and their clients and if they are causing harm, or if they are providing a positive experience. The first and foremost thing that people fail to understand about psychics is that no psychic has ever scientifically proven their talent. Psychics are people who claim they can predict the future by reading other people’s minds. Even if people understand this, they still tend to believe psychics have some supernatural ability. I believe it is because when people are desperate for answers they will turn to desperate measures to find something to believe in. Often when trauma is experienced or an act of terror that seems to have no moral reasoning as to why it happened, people want to know the ‘why’ so badly that they will turn to a medium to provide a false, made up, guessing explanation as to why the event occurred.
Originally, I did not see the harm in psychic mediums. To me, it was a form of therapy that helped people coped with trauma in ways that they may be unable to otherwise. After some explanation, I realized the problem lays deeper than the surface level. Being psychic mediums are unable to provide any scientific explanation, or reasoning behind what they do, people give them “super human” powers. The problem within that is if you give someone complete power there will always be people who use their power negatively, or make detrimental mistakes. There are many stories of mediums using their false powers to cause extreme harm. Some of these are, Delores Hoffert from Miami, Florida – her husband emptied his bank account because a medium claimed she had a cure to cancer. He later died and Delores was left widowed and broke. Another example is Pam and Craig Akers, whose son went missing. A psychic told them that he had died on national television, four years later, he was found alive and well. There are many more negative stories of psychics using their make-believe powers to inflict horrible pain on individuals and their lives.
To me, the amazing thing is people can still believe in these mediums and give them credibility. When do we collectively agree that they are utterly ridiculous and deserve no credit or money from anyone? Psychics may be one of the most successful forms of con artists of all time. They take advantage of the pain of others and use it to make a living. It is one of the few fields in the world that you can make a living off of no scientific backing, data, or anything real.