The Mechanics of Mediumship
There are 2 types of Medium; Those who use their gift to help others, known as consulting Mediums, and those who use their ability for the sake of investigation and exploration. Consulting Mediums sometimes see clients on a one to one basis, but both types often hold séances - a gathering for the purpose of contacting spirits.
Some mediums go into a trance to help them contact the spirit world and summon spirits, but some don't need to bother with this. A medium in a trance might sound sleepy, confused and distant, and might even start talking in a strange voice if possessed.
The ability to discover information from the spirits, such as the location of lost objects, details of events in the past or news about the future, is called Mental Mediumship.
Some mediums seem to be able to cause physical phenomena, either by encouraging the spirits, or through their own powers – this is called ‘physical mediumship’. Examples include causing musical instruments to appear and play by themselves, making objects, known as ‘apports’ arise out of nowhere; making furniture shake, move or even lift off the ground levitating (which used to be called table turning); and producing a substance called ‘ectoplasm’ from their mouths. In the Victorian era, mediums commonly produced bizarre, white, semi fluid matter, which they claimed came from the spirit realm.
Ectoplasm would be produced from their mouths, noses and other openings!
On rare occasions when investigators managed to get hold of some, it turned out to be muslin that the medium had apparently swallowed and then regurgitated. Today’s medium though would never even attempt such fakery; they have no need to.