What Is Channelling?

What is channelling? Your ultimate guide

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What is channelling and does it have any meaning or relevance in the 21st Century? For those who already heed the messages of channellers this is a stupid question. “Of course it has!” will be their emphatic reply, but those unfamiliar with it or who perhaps have touched upon it and found it wanting will look on with a degree of scepticism and perhaps criticism. 

Thrity or so years ago I read a book called The Only Planet of Choice by Phyllis Schlemmer (see below).  I had met the editor, Palden Jenkins, at the Glastonbury Earth Mysteries Camps which were held in May, 1984 & 1985  in a field near Butleigh in the Vale of Avalon, Somerset, England.  The camp consisted of several days of workshops during which instructors and facilitators would lead a small group of people through the basic steps of various practices that included; dowsing, building and operating a sweat lodge, creating mazes (labyrinths) etc.  

Glastonbury Earth Mysteries Camp, May 1985

I don’t recall any channelling going on but there was a lot of magic in the air and the sweat lodge in particular was very intense, but that story will have to wait for another time.  On with the channelling…

A note about the spelling. I’ve opted for the American version channelling as opposed to the British version channeling as the former has a wider audience.

What is channelling?

Channelling has been known by various names over the centuries; spiritism, (trance) mediumship, and automatic writing to name a few.

Channelling is the process during which a human (the channeller) temporarily suppresses their mental activity and personality.  This is done willingly in order to allow another intelligence to use the channellr’s mind and body for the purpose of transmitting information and messages.  

It is the fact that the channeller does so willingly and in partnership with the other entity that distinguishes it from mere possession.  During possession the entity takes over the person’s mind and body without their permission and sometimes for malevolent reasons.  

The channelled information varies greatly. It can be about humanity’s current condition on Earth and what it has to do in order to lessen human suffering and evolve spiritually.  The channelled message may seem especially powerful and urgent, but they can also be surprisingly mundane or simply personal messages that are relevant to an individual.

Some channellers are very experienced and skilled, and consequently more convincing in their delivery. Others are less so and it is this difference in quality that is often seized upon by sceptics.

The channelled messages may come through verbatim or not in words the channellers would use normally, but perhaps transmitted as concepts that the channeller’s mind picks up on and translates into words of their own.

Limitations of a channeller’s mind

It has been suggested that the channeller’s mind may be the bottleneck that prevents information from flowing more freely or it may limit the nuance and meaning of the message due to the person’s vocabulary but one assumes that if an intelligent discarnate entity had an important message for mankind then they would choose someone who could broadcast it correctly.  

Some channelling sessions are conducted in private during which the information is written down or drawn by the channeller or another person present.  Others are conducted in front of an audience.  One wonders how much the collective energy of the audience contributes to the duration and depth of the session.  

It’s easy to scoff at such an idea but you only have to listen to actors and actresses describing how they can sense the mood of an audience during live theatre to realise that our innate sixth sense can pick up on these subtle energies.  Giving a speech or being a stand-up comedian in front of a hostile crowd can quickly undermine confidence while a supportive and keen audience has the opposite effect.   

The intelligences that send messages through human channels may be the spirits of the deceased, non-human spirit beings, or extraterrestrial intelligences.  Such a wide spectrum provides plenty of scope and that in turns provides material for all sorts of people seeking answers.

Channelled material has been produced in every medium available to us and when the internet arrived channelling soon found a home in the various forums that, for over three decades now, continue to discuss the latest output from a particular channel. Hundreds of volumes of channelled material have been published and now line the shelves of Mind, Body, and Spirit sections of bookshops.


If you’re a total sceptic then you’re unlike to believe anything that comes out of a channeller’s mouth. Similarly, if you trust in blind faith or you’re an ardent fan of the channeller then you may be the sort of person who places unreasonable and irrational trust in everything they say.

There has to be some discernment and some middle ground. Whatever is communicated needs to be considered, mulled over, and given some scrutiny while maintaing an open mind. If all you’re hearing or reading are vague ideas with no practical application then what is the real value of them?

  • What value does the message bring to the world?
  • Is there any practical application for the message?
  • How does what I’m being told make me feel? Inspired? Fearful?

What are trance mediums?

Trance mediums are also people who claim to be able to allow spirits of the dead or other non-physical entities to speak through them. Like channellrs their abilities vary greatly and are generally thought to be caused by a trance state during which they allow the entity to come through.  

What Is Channelling

Although many trance mediums maintain that their trance abilities are a gift from God, not all trance mediums have this belief but it’s generally accepted that what distinguishes trance mediums from channellers is that they are from a spiritualist background as opposed to a New Age or other source of inspiration.

Naturally, many trance mediums have been accused of being frauds. Through the years trance mediumship has been criticized for being pseudoscience and quackery because skeptics say that there is no way to prove the existence of spirits. They also criticize trance mediumship for being driven by the desire for personal recognition, financial gain, and notoriety.

There is some disagreement as to whether trance mediumship falls more under the umbrella of mental mediumship or spiritualism. Some say that trance mediums like Edgar Cayce were more like mental mediums while Eileen Garrett was more like a spiritualist since she claimed that her trance abilities were of divine origin.

Trance mediumship has been studied by the Society for Psychical Research (SPR). The SPR was founded in London in 1882 to study trance phenomena, particularly after the rise in popularity of spiritualism at the end of the 19th Century.

The most famous trance mediums have also been written about by psychical researchers to investigate and expose fraud. For example, Eusapia Palladino was caught on many occasions using trickery to move objects, such as producing “spirit hands” out of nowhere.

Examples of channellers and their spirit guides

  • Alice Bailey – Theosophist who channelled an entity know as Djwhal Kuhl.
  • Dr. George King (1919-1997) – channelled an entity known as Aetherius.
  • Ramtha – A spirit guide that channelled through J.Z. Knight who founded Ramtha’s School of Enlightenment which has branches worldwide and is infamous for charging attendees a “donation” to learn the secrets given by their channelled entity, Ramtha. Knight claims Ramtha lived in Atlantis and Lemuria over 35,000 years ago.
  • John Edward – Psychic Medium
  • The Pleiadians – channelled by Barbara Marciniak.
  • Patricia Diane Cota-Robles – Era of Peace.
  • Sylvia Browne Group Inc. – world renowned spiritual teacher, psychic, author, lecturer and researcher in the field of parapsychology.
  • Guy Ballard – In his book “Unveiled Mysteries” first published in 1934, he claimed that the spirit of an ascended master called “Saint Germain” told him to start The I AM Foundation where there are now centres worldwide and a membership of over 100,000.
  • Edgar Cayce – He was known as “The Sleeping Prophet” and he had the ability to enter into a trance where spirit guides would speak through him. The information he received was documented in more than 14,000 readings that are still available today.
  • Sally Morgan – Australia’s most well-known medium who is said to give messages from spirit guides on tv shows like “Sensing Murder” and “Celebrity Ghost Stories”.
  • Eileen Garrett – She was also known as the greatest trance medium in the world during her time.
  • Jerry Hicks – A spirit medium who along with his wife Esther was channelled by an energy called Abraham which dictated a series of books to them including “The Law of Attraction”.
  • Matthew Manning – A psychic, medium, and trance channellr who was also known for having psychokinetic abilities which he used to bend spoons through thought alone. He is the author of many books on spirit communication including his book with Simon Marsden called “The Link: The Extraordinary Gifts Of A Teenage Psychic”.
  • Jasmuheen (Ellen Greve) – She claims to be the first female in the Western world who is able to live without food and she channelled Quan Yin who taught her breatharianism.
  • Erik Medhus – He began channeling his spirit guide, Steve after he committed suicide which then began dictating books to him.
  • Mafu – A channellers of archangel Micheal who claims to have incarnated into many forms including an American Indian, a Tibetan monk, and in Atlantis.
  • Nicki Scully – creator of a seven CD audio program, “Becoming An Oracle, Connecting with the Divine Source for Information and Healing“.
  • James Van Praagh – Well-known American psychic medium who, after each reading, he goes into a trance with spirit guides to deliver their messages.
  • Linda Howe – This new age author founded “Chakra Clearing” where she helps others unblock their chakras using spirit guides.
  • Seth – One of the first well-known entities of the modern era, Jane Roberts channelled  “Seth” for over 20 years before her death in 1984.
  • Kreskin/Sture Johannesson– He is a mentalist who began channeling an entity called “The Wizard” in the 1960s during his performances.

The Council of Nine – The Only Planet of Choice

The entities known as the Council of Nine channelled messages that were documented in the book “The Only Planet of Choice” written by Phyllis V. Schlemmer and Palden Jenkins. The names attributed to Nine are reported to be Sananda, Ramaku, Hatton, Nadlai, Harabec, Ashtar, Hatonn, Soltec and Nemo. In this channeling the Council of Nine claims to be from a Galactic Federation whose purpose is to guide all galactic civilizations towards a new level of spiritual awareness.

The information was originally channelled by Phyllis V. Schlemmer on February 13th through February 15th, 1975. The information channelled in this book is composed of 14 messages in total, each one is about 7 pages long. There are similarities in the messages to other channels work by entities such as Ashtar and Hatonn, who also claim to originate from the Galactic Federation.

Bashar channelled by Darryl Anka

Darryl Anka channels a spirit guide who comes through as a friendly, wise and humorous entity called Bashar.

Bashar is known for his sense of humour and practicality. He addresses real world problems and challenges with clear-sighted insight and honest love. He creates an open space where we can feel safe to explore any area of our lives from career and relationships to our spiritual quest. Bashar helps us understand the truth about who we are and why we are here so that we can relax into a deeper sense of peace and joy in day-to-day living while simultaneously creating a more positive future.

Ivo channelled by Sharon Stewart

Ivo is a spirit who wants to spread love and compassion to the world. He claims that through meditation, people can feel his energy.

Ivo shares messages of hope to mankind in his channelled messages. In one of his most important messages to humanity, Ivo emphasised how much every living loving all the others including their fellow human beings, nature and all living creatures. The reason why humanity doesn’t realise that is because of the veil created by fear, sorrow, and other negative emotions which obstruct our perception of love.

This spirit guide says that people have a huge potential inside but it’s not used yet. At this moment everyone on Earth has many limiting patterns in their mind, which prevent them from using that power. To make the best out of life, people have to realise their full potential by letting go of those limiting patterns. He says it’s possible to do because he will guide us through this process once we are willing to work on ourselves.

Peggy Black

Peggy Black is a New York-based channeller of spirit guides, who describes herself as a Multi-Dimensional Channel, Transducer, Witness, and Scribe. That is not all she does, however. She also offers support to people via her website Peggy Black Spiritual Services and her voice has been heard on radio stations worldwide.

The messages that Peggy Black channelled for her clients are available to read on the website. The site also contains information about Peggy Black’s other services including Spiritual Counseling Sessions, Sacred Sound Salutathons, and Holistic Coaching Programs.

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