How Do Mediums Communicate With Spirits

How do mediums communicate with spirits?

Communicating with spirits is a unique gift bestowed on some individuals. These people have the ability to make contact with the spirit world, relaying messages to the living.

But, how exactly do mediums communicate with ghosts and spirits, and how can you learn to communicate with spirits, too?

What Is Mediumship?

Mediumship is the practice of bridging the communication gap between spirits and the dead and those in the living world.

Mediums, or psychic mediums, can channel spirits, bringing messages from beyond the veil. Some mediums communicate only with a spirit guide, while others are able to talk to those who have passed on.

Before we can discuss how mediums communicate with spirits, we need to touch on the two main types of mediumship – mental mediums and physical mediums.

Mental mediumship

This type of mediumship is all about forming a mental connection with the spirit.

  • Clairvoyant: You get mental imagery in the mind’s eye, like colours, scenes, symbols, names or the faces of people.
  • Clairsentience: You can perceive information through feelings and emotions emanating from the spirit.
  • Clairaudient: Clairaudient experiences are when you hear words or noises from spiritual sources.
  • Clairgustance: You can taste flavours while communicating with the spirit world.
  • Clairscent: You pick up smells that the spirit sends your way.
  • Clairtangency: You are able to hold or touch an object and get a sense of the object’s past and owner.

These forms of spirit communication are all limited to interactions within the medium’s mind.

Physical mediumship

Physical mediums use their actual bodies, and not the mind, to receive information from a spirit. Channelling or going into a trance are examples of this type of mediumship, where the spirit communicates through the medium’s body.

How Mediums Communicate With Spirits

The types of mediumship described above have a strong influence on how mediums communicate with spirits.

Each medium has a completely different communication method.

Most mediums report having had extraordinary childhood experiences, where deceased family members reached out to them, projecting thoughts and mental images into their minds. As a kid, this can be overwhelming and confusing, but once mediums realise they have psychic abilities, they can use them to the advantage of others.

Jessica Lanyadoo, who has been a medium for over two decades, explains her situation: “Being a medium means I can hear, see, and feel those who are no longer in their bodies.”

Let’s elaborate on the main ways in which mediums can communicate:

Hearing voices

Hearing voices, also called clairaudience, is when the medium has unusual auditory experiences which can be attributed to spirits. It is one of the most common abilities shared amongst mediums.

Psychic mediums have different abilities when it comes to hearing spirits:

  • Hearing voices of familiar spirits, like family members who have experienced a physical death.
  • Discussions with spirits while sleeping.
  • Hearing noises that are not human.

The source of the noise is mostly internal (from inside the medium’s mind); however, sometimes they hear physical noises

Seeing spirits

Clairvoyance is the ability to see spirits, as mentioned above.

This form of communication is less common than clairaudient experiences. It gives a medium the ability to see a person who is far away or no longer alive. Mediums can also see events from the past or future.

Using this gift, the medium can then share information on the events that have occurred or will occur.

They can also relay information or messages from dead loved ones (aka spirits) – so this ability does overlap with clairaudience if the deceased person communicates.

Feeling sensations

Clairsentience is another common ability of many mediums.

A clairsentient medium will pick up on the emotions or feelings of a spirit. For example, they might sense a feeling of sadness from a spirit trying to communicate with a living relative. Or, a spirit may be playful and joyous that they’re no longer trapped in a physical body.

What To Expect From A Session With A Medium

Most sessions with a medium will be interactive and conversational.

The medium will hold a safe space for your ancestors, deceased loved ones or spirit guides to present themselves. However, those you’re hoping to hear from might not always want to contact you.

The medium may ask you who you wish to speak to, or simply open themselves up to high-frequency beings with good intentions who want to reach out.

They may use several tools to connect with the spirit, including:

These tools provide guidance from the spirit world.

You’ll be able to ask questions to whichever spirit comes forward, and the medium will provide you with answers, either through these tools or verbally – depending on how they communicate.

How To Develop Your Mediumship Abilities

If you hear frequent auditory phenomena or suspect you might be able to communicate with your spirit guide, there are some methods by which you can strengthen these abilities:

  • Consider finding a mentor who can guide you.
  • Work with psychic tools like tarot cards or pendulums to develop your senses.
  • Regularly meditate to learn to quiet your mind and pick up energies around you.
  • Practice energy work like grounding, Reiki or Qi Gong.

Tips And Tricks For Contacting Spirits

If you wish to reach out to the spirit world yourself, here are some tips and techniques:

  • Create a welcoming, calm atmosphere by lighting candles and placing crystals around the room.
  • Call upon the spirit you wish to contact. Clearly state your intentions and why you want to speak.
  • If you’re using a ghost communication device, the spirit will use this conduit to show their presence.
  • Always remain respectful during the session. The spirit may not want to answer all your questions.
  • When you’ve completed the session, make sure to thank the spirit. End the session by clearly stating goodbye and informing the spirit that it may return to the spirit world.


Are all psychics mediums?

No, mediums have psychic abilities, but not all psychics are mediums.

Psychics are defined as “a person who is sensitive to psychic influences or forces“, meaning someone who can be influenced by the supernatural.

A medium, on the other hand, is “a person through whom the spirits of the dead are alleged to be able to contact the living“.

So, where a psychic may be able to sense the supernatural, mediums act as a channel of communication.

When do most people realise they have psychic or mediumship abilities?

Some kids report unusual auditory experiences; however, the average age for people to realise they have medium or psychic abilities is 21 years old. This is when they encountered spiritualism for the first time.

Early abilities in young children are possible, but not common.

What is a cold reading?

It is a psychological practice whereby the reader (aka the medium) collects information on someone else (the subject) to convince them that they’re being contacted from the spirit realm.

Cold reader tactics include asking questions, observing body language, and making general statements that would apply to anyone.

Fortune tellers, magicians and mentalists often use these tactics to fool people into believing they’re in contact with spirit guides.

Is mediumship backed by science?

Mediumship has been studied by science for decades; however, it isn’t exactly backed by science.

Scientists trying to discredit supernatural abilities state that mediums have a “proclivity for absorption“, meaning they frequently immerse themselves in imaginative activities. Most scientists deny the abilities of mediums, stating that absorption coupled with a strong belief in the paranormal convinces them of their skills – basically saying it’s all in their head.

Final Thoughts

Mediums are powerful conduits for spirits to communicate with the living. Their unique abilities allow them to hear, see, speak to, sense, taste, and smell spirits.

Anyone who has lost a loved one or needs help from their spirit guides can reach out to a reputable medium that will be able to bring them much-needed answers and clarity.

And, if you wish to communicate with spirits yourself, you can practice your abilities or make use of ghost communication devices, like a Ouija board or pendulum, to reach out to those who have passed.


Sam Ashford
Sam Ashford - Author

Hey, I'm Sam Ashford! I'm a ghost-hunting expert, writer and founder of SpiritShack. My mission is to help people like yourself learn about spirituality and how to hunt ghosts!