There is this popular culture notion about so-called “psychic powers” that a select few are given supernatural abilities that no one else can access, and that these abilities are bestowed upon such rare individuals with theatrical effects and stunningly perfect accuracy. While it's true that talents and gifts of the psychic senses do come from Spirit or the Divine (hence why we also call many forms of psychic readings “divination”), it is unhelpful to think of psychics as “supernatural” or as “having powers.” There is no one moment where our brains are literally sucked out of reality causing us to gasp deeply and scream “Oh snap!” about the scandal we just saw unfold. Thinking this will happen is what I like to call Magical Unicorn Syndrome– it's an unrealistic expectation that people get from TV and Hollywood, nothing more. Psychic senses are much more subtle than that, and it's a skill that must be honed and requires practice.
We All Have Gifts
We have gifts and talents, no different than a basketball player has a gift or talent. But just like basketball, even the most gifted players must practice hard, acquire years of experience before going professional, and even the most gifted players will sometimes miss their shot or make mistakes. This is true in any profession, but it's especially true in professions that require some degree of natural talent. The key word here, though, is natural.
Like basketball, psychic senses are something anyone can access, and it is perfectly natural. Sure, not everyone is going to be Nostradamus, but not everyone is going to be Michael Jordan either. That doesn't mean you can't do it at all. Even people with physical disabilities can play modified versions of basketball, and often can play the sport very well and at athletic levels with this modified version. Likewise, there are factors that can make it harder for most people to access the psychic senses, such as being more predominantly strong in the rational and conscious faculties of the brain and being under-developed in the intuitive and subconscious faculties of the brain. But that doesn't mean these senses are inaccessible to anyone. A helpful way to understand psychic senses is to understand why they're more subtle, and also to understand Carl Jung's concept of archetypes, symbols, and the subconscious.
We are all born in the Divine's image, not just a select few. Just like people are born with the ability to see, hear, smell, taste, and touch, all people are born with the necessary physical hardware and spiritual software to receive psychic information through some or all of their psychic senses, which often superimpose over the physical senses, like a subtle higher octave. Some of those senses are clairvoyance (clear-seeing), clairaudience (clear-hearing), clairsentience (clear-feeling), and claircognizance (clear-knowing, or intuitive sensing).
Controlling the “Volume”
I am predominantly an empath-intuitive (clairsentient) and clairaudient psychic, which to me, feels like subtle “ghostly” sensations of temperature and texture, subtle energetic vibrations in the hands and spine, sudden shifts in emotional states, and whispers and echoes in the mind. I am well trained enough that I can “shield” to turn these senses down during day to day life, and “charge” my space to amplify these senses during a reading, not unlike turning the volume dial up or down on the radio.
A way to explain why psychic senses can feel so “soft,” is to use the analogy of sound. Just like a bass drum will feel like a more strong physical vibration felt in the body compared to the vibration of the sound of a soprano flute, similarly, the psychic senses are less grounded in the physical sensations, and more tethered to the spiritual and divine “upper octaves” of our nature, and are therefore more subtle, speaking a language of symbols, colors, songs, translucent sensations and scattered phrases that must be pieced together and deciphered with skill. It's a lot more like an Egyptologist deciphering hieroglyphics, rather than a full-bodied living tongue that can be spoken and heard like you and I speaking. So, it is unrealistic to expect a psychic's translation of this divine language in a reading to give you exact information, rapid-fire and upon request.
Feel the Energy
As an empath-intuitive psychic reader, I am unlikely to be able to tell you someone's birth date, full name, and address, and other details, all in under a minute and with perfect accuracy (and some of that information would be illegal, irresponsible, and unprofessional to give anyway, as a matter of privacy and ethics). Anyone who claims they can do this with real psychic senses is probably trying to sell you snake oil that has nothing more than entertainment value. What is much more likely to happen is I will feel the energies of a person and know these energies feel like a certain zodiac sign, so I can give you a month someone may have been born in, then I can feel the maturity of the person and can guess an age range based on this, I can perhaps pick up on a first name or nickname with my clairaudient sense (sometimes, if the spirit is feeling cooperative), and then I can feel the spiritual gender and maybe sense things like hair color or a signature scent. Of course, these psychic feelings can be accurate about the energies but inaccurate about the physical-world details.
For instance, a person's spiritual gender polarity may not line up with their gender in the physical. A woman can have a very masculine personality, and so if I go on that alone I might think I'm picking up on a man, especially since clairvoyance isn't my main psychic sense, and with the tarot I will probably not be seeing visual feminine cues and symbols, but instead seeing masculine archetypes (like the kings and emperor), and empathically and intuitively feeling the masculine energies of the persona. This doesn't mean these details are inaccurate, it just means they're picking up on a deeper truth. The same goes for zodiac signs and age.
A person's spiritual energy can be remarkably mature for their age (or remarkably immature), and a person might be more strong in their moon sign than their sun sign, so I might guess a wrong birth date if I assume the energy is from the sun sign. This is why certain questions and certain “tricks” to perform are just not helpful to ask a psychic. Sure, it's entertaining when we get it right, but it's an absolute waste of time if there's a more important point to the reading. It is much more helpful to gear a reading towards picking up on deeper truths, messages, and important overarching themes to a relationship, situation, or goal. The Divine's language of symbols is meant to provide healing and guidance, which is something that Carl Jung deeply understood, and spent his life exploring.
The Language of Symbols
There is something profound that can be discovered in the language of symbols. Going back to ancient times, Moses's elder brother Aaron was said to have been commanded to “cast lots” (knuckle bone dice), to ascertain the guidance of the Divine, which is not unlike tarot reading and cartomancy that people do today. Carl Jung called this ancient process the “doorway to the unconscious,” and “accelerating the process of individuation.” In layman's terms, practicing the study of symbols and practicing paying attention to the subtle sensations of the intuitive part of the mind help a person to integrate their subconscious with their consciousness. This can be healing in that it can help a person to let go of shame about the rejected parts of themselves that have been stored in the subconscious part of the mind (archetypes, symbols, and roles that we have distanced ourselves from or have been told we can never be), but it is also helpful as a skill.
The Subconscious Mind
What is the subconscious? Well, it's a lot of things. It's our inner child and earliest repressed memories and wounds, and it's the part of ourselves our ego/consciousness protects from being exposed or criticized. But it's also the part of us that goes on autopilot when we're driving home on our usual route and listening to the radio, and we get home and we hardly remember anything about the drive because we used our muscle memory and directional memory. This is our subconscious too. But just like driving, when we don't integrate our subconscious with our consciousness (i.e. paying attention), well, accidents can happen. Literal physical accidents, but also mistakes in our relationships and self-sabotage.
For Jung, self-sabotage and accidents are simply things that happen when a person is repressing and avoiding their subconscious mind, the identities and archetypes that they secretly hold within, and the desires and feelings that we are often conditioned to be ashamed of: like anger, fear, envy, but also loving something others don't understand, being sensitive, vulnerable, or honest about our opinions. Being able to gently, non-judgmentally, and healthfully engage with these deep-seeded inner parts of ourselves, is what can help us to be more open to the subtle sensations of the psychic senses within us.
The same senses that can help us intuitively pick up on subtle energies and psychic information, can also be used to get in touch with our inner psychological wounds and help heal us, trust our gut and internal compass more, and approach moments of synchronicity with awe and gratitude instead of doubt and suspicion. Carl Jung described synchronicities as keys to the doorway to the unconscious, clues and hints, moments of “coincidence” where things just line up, like one person completing another person's sentence, or hearing a song with lyrics that talk about exactly what's on your mind as soon as you walk into the grocery store.
These moments are verification that it's not just “in your head,” and they offer you the opportunity to get more in touch with your subconscious and your psychic senses. Really pay attention to what these moments feel like to you, and what other sensations that feel similar and what information has come to mind in these moments of relaxed vulnerability to the subconscious and to the world itself. Calm your mind, take deep breaths, and allow yourself to simply and gently notice what feelings have been stuffed down, for here is where your subconscious is, and here is where your subtler senses are.
Embark on Your Own Path
If you can approach these moments and these glimpses of psychic information with curiosity and wonder, you can begin to open the door for yourself and embark on your own path, discovering methods, meditations, and exercises that can help you hone these skills. Just like eyesight can be exercised by eye exercises and weakened by looking at screens on your electronic devices for too long, a psychic sense, such as clairvoyance, can be exercised or weakened by your daily habits. Acknowledging, curiosity, and having gratitude when “random” pictures come to the mind's eye, sudden thoughts and memories that often play in the mind as an ongoing dialogue of static and background noise we hardly pay attention to, rather than suppressing and ignoring these moments, can help to access these senses even more.
Of course, it is hard to maintain a meditative state in the daily grind of life, so it is often important to designate time for exercising these senses, apart from daily duties so that these exercises don't distract you. This is why Jung would often guide his patients to access their subconscious in therapeutic sessions, because this gives people a safe space to begin. If you can designate time and space for daily explorations of your own subconscious, you can at least get yourself through the doorway to your unconscious, where all your repressed roles, desires, archetypes, and feelings and senses are hidden. Like the archetypal Fool in the tarot, here is where you begin your journey.