Updated: Jan 13
There are a lot of metaphysical books out there, and I have read many of them. Below are some resources I found helpful in developing my understanding and experience of consciousness and intuitive development and discernment. I will add to this list periodically.
Many people I work with are interested in learning more about their own intuitive capacity. And they're often in a rush to do so, but I'd suggest anyone starting this path start by getting to know themselves first. It is my experience that concurrent with starting the slow, deep work of understanding your intuition, it is important to discipline yourself to a daily practice of deep listening. Begin to discern what is habitual thought within your body/mind system versus inspired thought, and get really comfortable sitting alone with yourself and your thoughts. For me, deep listening is found in meditation. (For my tips on meditation, click here.) Explore what opens your deep listening. Self-knowledge and self-awareness are crucial to intuitive work. Perhaps get an app, like Headspace, listen to meditations available on the web, walk quietly in nature, sit staring at a candle. Learn how to best calm yourself and make space within. Journal a lot.
There are many teachers available these days, especially with online learning so prevalent. Not every teacher is right for every student. Take the decision to study with someone to your quiet space and ask yourself, does this feel right? To state the obvious, just like great athletes are often not great coaches, being an excellent psychic or medium does not mean someone is an effective teacher. Keep in mind that many excellent teachers have never written how-to books. And excellent teachers are not always online or the ones with a huge following - or the most recent book. Used bookshops often have some wonderful older books, go have a look around the metaphysical section. If there is a spiritual center near you, go check it out. Go online and listen to talks and presentations. Feel out whose voice resonates with yours.
That being said, the “how to” books on Mediumship that resonated with me are by Gordon Smith.
Books by Gordon Smith:
All of the Sanaya Roman/ Orin and DaBen books:
It would ruin the experience if I explained them. My recommendation is just read one, then read another. Don’t think about it, or what it means, just read them, do the exercises and allow shifts to happen. It will change you.
You can explore the complete Orin and DaBen library here.
Psychic Living by Andre Ridgeway
For me, many of the books on intuitive development can feel either repetitive, vague, remote, or the author has forgotten what it is like to be a beginner. This is one that stands out for me. Ridgeway’s voice has a humane freshness, he does not take himself seriously, and the exercises work - if you do them.
Other Interesting reads:
Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck
This is not a metaphysical book at all, but a mainstream popular education book about how to have a growth mindset while learning new things. If you are afraid to fail, afraid to be wrong, or are a controlling personality, it's very difficult to handle the process of becoming more intuitive becasue it is unlike any other learning or study you have ever done. You’ll find the stories and suggestions, insights here invaluable when learning something new.
Ghost Hunters: William James and the Search for Scientific Proof of Life After Death by Deborah Blum
A highly readable history, for anyone who wants a general understanding of where mediumship came from and the scrutiny it has withstood. It is not well-known that William James, who established the field of modern psychology at Harvard University, became obsessed with investigating life after death after losing his son and was part of an international team charged with rigorously -and sometimes brutally - testing mediums. Blum’s well-researched and wide-ranging account gives a rich and wonderful background about the beginnings of spiritualism, academia’s interest in disproving life after death, and the various waves of interest in mediumship.
Old Souls: Compelling Evidence from Children who Remember past Lives by Tom Schroder
A fascinating investigative journalist’s account of the work of Dr. Ian Stevenson of the University of Virginia, and his dedication to the study of past lives. Whether you believe in past lives or not is irrelevant, Dr. Stevenson is an exemplary example of applying the scientific method to the metaphysical. I am a big fan of documentation and review in metaphysical studies.
In the big-picture, “why do this” department:
Talking with Angels, Gitta Mallaz
One of the most moving reading experiences of my life was encountering Talking with Angels. And it is an encounter. It doesn't matter if you believe it happened or not, it is unlike any other book you’ll read. The words are nourishing and powerful, and the story is beautiful and heartbreaking. It is not an easy read, but a worthwhile one.
This is the true story of a group of Hungarian students hiding out during the Holocaust, waiting to be captured by the Nazis. One of them started channeling powerful messages, which comforted them, offered them perspective and made their fate more palatable. They wrote the messages down, hid them and the lone survivor, Gitta Mallaz, later published them.
Why this book isn’t better known bewilders me.