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Beware the Psychic Scam

Why human desire to know the future is costing vulnerable folks big bucks.

Photo Credit: Doerr


Ever ask the question, “why me?” or perhaps wonder why you attract “bad luck” and cannot have the things you desire? Perhaps you are tired of dating and want to know if your soul mate is out there? Maybe you have been working in the same job for years and secretly fantasize about whether you will ever get a raise? If these thoughts have crossed your mind, you’re not alone.

The desire to know what lies ahead is a fundamental human need as we seek certainty, stability and a harmonious existence in life  – we want to know that for all our efforts, we will someday be rewarded. Particularly, when we suffer hardship or bouts of misfortune for no apparent reason, we consider if it’s something we are personally doing wrong or whether we have taken the wrong path.  It is this human desire that leads us to look externally for answers and for some upon the doorstep of a trusty psychic on the quest for spiritual enlightenment.   

So what exactly does it mean when we say a person possesses ‘psychic abilities’? There are a number of abilities we consider “psychic” but the two most commonly encountered in a street reading are psychometry, where a person reads the past history of an object by sensing its vibrational energy and precognition, where a person acquires knowledge of an event in advance by means of extra-sensory perception (ESP), premonition or vision.

While many of us consider fortune telling and such abilities as mere entertainment and a bit of mindless fun, for others there is a genuine risk of getting caught up in a dangerous psychic scam whereby certain frauds claim to possess these psychic abilities with a view to exploiting vulnerable people.  Think it couldn’t happen to you? Don’t be so sure…

While I consider myself to be an educated, intelligent woman in control of my own fate for the most part, I have visited psychics on the occasion.  Whenever I am faced with periods of stagnation, I attempt to obtain answers from the meta-physical world.  However, much to my dismay, I am confronted with the same façade – a phony spiritual medium intent on defrauding me for his/her own pecuniary gain.

Sadly, my story isn’t unique.  According to a Gallup Report in 2005, a study found that 73% of Americans believe in at least some form of psychic or paranormal phenomena.   Further, it seems hundreds if not thousands of people across the US have not only experienced the same deceptive psychic con as myself, but have also lost tens of thousands of dollars along the way. 

So why would an intelligent person continue to seek out spiritual guidance through psychics after being met with the same hoax time and time again?  The secret of the ‘psychic allure’ lies in their intrinsic power to bestow insightful ‘magical’ information upon a vulnerable person in a scenario that typically begins as follows:

First, the hook - you see a sign that reads, “Psychic reading - $10.”  You think, “that’s cheap, I’ll go in for a bit of fun”.  The psychic glances at your hands and suddenly bedazzles you with extraordinary details about your life, family, profession, and relationships.  Alternatively, a “stranger” may approach you on the street claiming to have a ‘spiritual gift’ and begins to freely divulge intimate details about your history.

Now, I’m not talking about those facts that constitute a ‘ cold reading’, whereby a psychic sees an antique ring on your finger and deduces that the ring is very old.  No, I’m talking about emotional, heart-wrenching private information that only you could possible know – when she tells you that your ex-boyfriend who you still hold a flame for with the initial K and N wants to reconcile with you OR that while your work in sales is rewarding, your heart truly desires a career in finance.