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Behind the scenes with... Tony. In this exclusive interview he takes editor Sue Farrow from Psychic News behind the scenes, talking about his work and home life, and going public with a very happy announcement...
How old were you when you had your first paranormal experience?
I was eight. A lot things kicked off at that age, in as much as I became aware of things that other people weren't aware of. I was a very ordinary kid, but my grandma was around a lot and I think I made a flyaway comment about the man I’d often felt in the corner of our house. She looked horrified. Of course she couldn't see him and she quizzed me a bit about what he looked like, what was he doing, and why was he there. Of course I didn't know those things, I just knew he was in the corner. It was quite a memorable twenty minutes of my life, and I remember thinking: ‘My God! Why can’t she see him? Why doesn’t she know that he’s there?’ It was just the general presence of someone, it wasn't like a huge thing where he came with a message.
Did your unusual ability cause you any problems in childhood?
Not really. Just a sense of strangeness that other people couldn't see what I saw. I wrote about a particular experience in one of my books. I was eight, and I played with other kids in a place called the ‘gunny They were old World War II gun emplacements that were dotted around the south coast of England, and we had lots of them on Canvey Island, where I grew Lip. When we played in them we would run around, and there was one particular building where you could run from one doorway through to another, and You knew it would be absolutely pitch black in the middle. So you’d just keep on running — that was the game. One day, when it was my turn to run, I ran as fast as I could, and a big bright orange glow appeared in the darkness. I kept on running towards it, not knowing what was doing. I can see it as clearly today as I did then. It was a man sitting at a desk, head down, writing with a pen in some kind of ledger. It was the strangest thing, because it was almost like he didn't know I was there. I ran through that vision and out the other end. My heart was pumping and I shouted to the others, ‘I think I've seen a ghost!’ but no one believed me. I felt a little bit aggrieved. I’m 44 now, and I can still remember that feeling clearly.
Did you have a particular teacher who mentored you?
Yes, a lady called Joan Barham, and also Marcia Ford. Sadly, both of them have now passed. They were wonderful, and I was very lucky. It all happened because I went along to the Spiritualist church out of curiosity after my Nan died. I was sixteen, and she had died a few weeks earlier. My sister’s friend, Mandy, told us that she’d been to see a medium and I thought, ‘My God!’ I’d only seen the film Blithe Spirit, with Margaret Rutherford playing the medium Madame Arcati! Mandy asked if I’d like to , come along to a Spiritualist meeting and I said I would. So six or seven of us went on a Sunday evening and that was the first day I met Joan and Marcia. I remember sitting in the audience, thinking ‘Please don’t anyone speak to me: Anyway, the medium was good and left an impression on me, but I didn't get a message.
What do you believe is the most important purpose of mediumship?
I think its quite simply to rescue people. It’s to take away the fear of death in the living. You see that all the time. You see people out of touch, giving up hope, then suddenly the light switches on and they get to live the rest of their physical life knowing that they’ll be reunited with those they've loved who have gone before them. You see goodness in other people, too, because you recognise that as difficult as someone’s behaviour might be on the outside, their soul is desperately trying to manifest. All that separates them from living a full life is the ego, the mental imbalance, the chemical imbalance. Those are the only things that stand in the way. Everyone’s soul is beautiful, and so you give people more of an opportunity to shine.
Do you recall a piece of evidence you've given to somebody that’s actually stunned you?
Can I say ‘all the time’? That sounds so egotistical doesn't it? Last night I was going through old emails from weeks back, as I’d been travelling. A lady had written to thank me for the one-to-one reading I did for her. I remembered it well, because she sat there and I told her about a lady in the spirit world who was 37. She didn't say yes or no. When I read for someone, I’m often in an altered state. My eyes are open and I’m talking, but I very rarely look at my client. I carried on for this lady, and I saw very tall windows in a space that felt like a hospital, but wasn't. I knew the spirit woman had been heavily depressed. I knew she’d hung herself from the window, but I was still getting no response from my client. But I was so convinced I needed to follow this through, so I looked at her and asked if she knew this lady. She said it was her sister-in-law. So I went through all the information again, and what the client gave me in her energy was not just ‘yes but ‘Oh my God’. And that relief lifts your mediumship higher. Then I saw the word ‘Michelle I said this, and the client was so surprised that she was quite colourful with her language, saying ‘Oh my that’s her name! And I thought to myself — ‘My God, how brilliant is that!’
It must be a wonderful thing to do that for people.
I love it, especially the private readings. There’s no pressure, it’s just you and the client. I've got a very comfortable space where I read and my studio space is beautiful. I've got candles alight, and I sit there with my shoes off and work an hour at a time. I can’t read in less than an hour. It’s so special, because I constantly have my own belief reaffirmed. I don’t know these people when they come in, and I love that feeling of being in the presence of the spirit world.
What, in your opinion, is the most important quality in a medium?
I think it’s probably selflessness. Although I’m a working medium, it’s not about us mediums, it’s about the people we’re reading for. I may talk with my peers, saying how fab it is when you get everything bang on, or how terrible it is when it goes badly and you feel awful for people, but that’s making it about ourselves, which it isn't. I think YOU just need to surrender yourself to the experience, to whatever that experience is going to be. Sometimes I’ll work with a client and feel I've got nowhere, and almost invariably they’ll come back and say it was life-changing. On the other hand, if I feel it’s gone swimmingly well I, they’ll always want more from me. You really have to take yourself out of the equation.
And finally, what do you like to do in your free time?
Well, Stuart and I have our daughter, Marnie, and we've got another child on the way — a little boy. God willing, he’s doing very well at the moment, very healthy in the womb, and he’s due at the end of November. Everything’s ready for him. We’re going to call him Finn Alexander, and we’re very excited. I also love walking and these days I do it with a buggy in front of me and the dogs at my sides, rather than on my own. A few years ago we bought a very small, modest bungalow in Gran Canaria and we go out there four or five times a year. It’s our private time with the family. We walk by the ocean — that kind of thing. There’s also a gorgeous mountain view, If people had said to me prior to our becoming parents that having a child changes you, I might not have understood. But it does change you a lot — it’s certainly changed me. I find myself getting emotional a lot of the time — I’m all over the show, You start to really understand and empathise a lot. So, if I can reconnect people with someone they thought they’d lost forever, there’s nothing better I can do.
Thank you to all that came to the Radlett Centre last night. I hope there weren’t too many comments that I really do have a face for radio. I know that the night feeds are getting to me and I looked tired however I hope you all thought that my lack of sleep hadn’t affected my mediumship. It would appear that although the spirit world are having to work harder to communicate with me the end result was a great evening. Several of you have emailed your thanks to me which I appreciate and referred to the mother and wife who came through giving evidence of watching her daughter smelling a bottle of Samara perfume which was the perfume her mother word.
Often spirit world present me with a smell (Clairscent) which I am unable to identify but in this case is wasn’t the smell that was presented to me but the actual words Samara that appeared clearly for me. My eyes weren’t as tired after all!. We have just had it confirmed we are returning to the Radlett Centre on 29th January 2015.
See you all then.
Although it’s good to go away, it’s wonderful to return home and I’m sure that is how all of us who went on the wonderful Spiritual Holiday to Malta feel this morning. Thank you so much to all of you who joined us in Gozo for making the week so enjoyable. I think this week really lived up to our marketing tag line - “Loving, Learning, Laughing” , which I think we all did in equal measures. Many thanks for such a great experience.
I really enjoyed working at St James’ Church in Piccadilly last night. St James’ is a working Anglican church who have had the forethought to open the doors to all forms of Spiritual thinking. I thought you may enjoy their ethos
St James’s Church is part of the Anglican Communion within the world wide Christian Church
We understand ourselves to be called:
- to gather as a body which welcomes and celebrates human diversity – including spirituality, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation.
- to create a space where people of any faith or none can question and discover the sacred in life through openness, struggle, laughter and prayer.
- to a common commitment to be in solidarity with poor and marginalized people and to cherish creation.
We don’t manage it all the time, so we try again.
The evening was organised by Alternatives who organise events to inspire heart, mind and body. I would thoroughly recommend their programme of speakers. Check them out at www.alternatives.org.uk
Tony will be demonstrating on Monday 21st October at Alteratives - St. James Church London W1
Despite the heavy bombings during the London Blitz, St James’, the beautiful Christopher Wren designed church, remains an iconic building in Piccadilly.
William Blake, the Poet and Painter and Prime Minister William Pitt the Elder were both baptised here.
Tony is excited to be able to demonstrate in such an historic venue. It has been a dream to live in a church or own one from which to run workshops.
“With such a rich historic past, we’re sure to have some interesting characters coming though”
To see Tony at this beautiful venue - click here for booking details
If winter is slumber and spring is birth, and summer is life, then autumn rounds out to be reflection.
It's a time of year when the leaves are down and the harvest is in and the perennials are gone.
Mother Earth just closed up the drapes on another year and it's time to reflect on what's come before. Autumn is the mellower season, and what we lose in flowers we more than gain in fruits
I never cease to be amazed at the inventive ways Spirit use to try and get their message through to me. In Brecon last week, a wonderful extrovert character came through to me dressed in the iconic Marilyn Monroe white dress and singing Happy Birthday just as Marilyn Monroe had sung it to JFK.this was exactly what my lady had done in the past as a birthday treat for a friend. In the same message, the words to an old Ink Spots song came to me, I couldn't work out the reference and had to sing the song from beginning to end to discover what Spirit were trying to tell me.the song was about a lady who had gone to see a gypsy fortune teller to discover whether her lover had always been faithfull. I felt she was drawing upon the lyrics of this song as a means of offering me clear evidence that she had indeed had an affair and had herself gone to a clairvoyant to perceive its outcome. This was all readily accepted and confirmed by the recipient. So the thing I have learned is the next time that I receive a song from the Other World, I should fully enquire what it us they are trying to give me.
I would like to thank one of the special students on a recent teaching course for drawing my attention to a quote which is particularly poignant when one considers those who have passed as children or teenagers or before their time generally, but who have packed so much into their short lives. The quote is often attributed to Abraham Lincoln but sometimes just quoted as 'Anon'.
"In the end, it is not the years in your life that count, but the life in your years".
Towards the end of last night's demonstration in Fife, I felt inspired to ask for a photograph from the audience and as so often happens, someone out of the audience shone out and I had an o era helping feeling to ask for her photo. The picture depicted an elderly couple and straight away I knew it was her Grandparents. Information tumble int my mind regarding Grandmother's passing, personality and the memories they once shared and then I became aware of her Grandfather. He enthusiastically showed me his beloved car, describing it so precisely, including his tin of travel sweets and emergency tissues. A simple memory of 'under no circumstances may anybody eat in his car' which he gave me with a smile on his face. Then as clear as could be I became aware of the metal AA badge emblazoned on the front of his car that he had kept for years and had so carefully positioned on every car he had owned through the years. The information was well received. The startling thing was the reaction of the young lady I was talking to who was very emotional and in tears. The level of details was the thing she remembered about her Grandad and was what she needed to prove survival.
Claire kindly sent us an email about her reading .... read on
I would like to offer my heart felt thanks for the reading I received from my nana and grandad through you last night at the Rothes Halls in Glenrothes, Fife, Scotland.
You asked if anyone had photos and you accepted mine to try and work with and I appreciated this very much. You mentioned loads of information of which I can relate to. Most importantly my nana ironing socks and my grandads AA car badge.
I have been hoping for a message from various loved ones for years but especially my nana and grandad. I just wanted to know that they were together again and you confirmed this for me, of which I will be eternally grateful.
I have always believed there was a spirit life after death and you have completely confirmed this for me.
Thanks again for the wonderful message it has helped me accept the passing of my nana and grandad knowing they are together again.
With all my thanks,
It's the 50th anniversary of the famous inspirational Martin Luther King " I have a Dream" speech this week. The sentiments of the speech of hope and vision echo through our lives regardless of race or religion. The path of the Civil Rights Movement hasn't run smoothly and sadly Martin Luther King's Dream hasn't completely been realised in all parts of the World but like any dream of hope, it keeps going. I think that's how we should all be with our dreams - pushing forward to our goals and never giving up regardless of set backs. Good luck with your dreams.
The people of Glenrothes should be so proud of their town; it looks absolutely wonderful. Of all the towns I have visited throughout the year it certainly takes the first prize for the flower in bloom competition. The roundabouts, verges and hanging baskets are absolutely spectacular. The colourful carpet of flowers was a joy to behold and welcoming to any visitor to Glenrothes. It put a smile on my face.
The full moon tonight is a 'blue moon' which happens when there is a second full moon in a calendar month, or the third one of four full moons in a season. In this case the latter. I think it only happens every few years.
It made me think of the words to 'Blue Moon'...........
Blue Moon, you saw me standing alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own
Blue Moon, you knew just what I was there for
You heard me saying a prayer for
Someone I really could care for
And then suddenly there appeared before me
The only one my arms will ever hold
I heard somebody whisper 'Please adore me'
And when I looked the moon had turned to gold
Blue Moon, now I'm no longer alone
Without a dream in my heart
Without a love of my own
Just finsihed a special teaching week at the Arthur Findlay College in Stansted. It always comes as a surprise to me just how many marvellous and wonderful experiences you can have at a place that I have been to so many times before. This is simply because of the incredible people who attend from all over the World who make up this expereince. This week we have had delegates from America, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Norway, Germany, Sweden, Denmark and of course those who attend from the British Isles. During the week we have witnessed some amazing demonstrations from both the Tutors and Delegates alike together with experimental trance sessions, walks in the garden, sitting under the famous tulip tree, all finsihed off with a few drinks in the bar. We all quite simply had a ball.......not a crystal ball! Looking forward to the next residential course in Eastbourne.
Ever noticed that you feel happy around happy people and sad around sad or depressed people, or even agitated around anxious people? Why is it that when someone walks into the room, it is possible for us to 'sense' their mood? Or have you ever noticed that whenever Aunty Mavis comes round for tea, the entire house feels a bit depressed afterwards?! I’ve just found this amazing study on the internet explaining the neuroscience behind how emotions can spread from one individual to another. It is these brilliant discoveries that not only prove there is science behind our 'gut instinct' or things that we have sensed for years, but it empowers each and every one of us to affect our own worlds if we so choose.
The research shows that if you spend enough time with people, their emotions will actually rub off on you. This is known as "emotional contagion" and is facilitated by an interconnected network of cells in the brain that make up the Mirror Neuron
Emotional Contagion has been with the human species for a very long time. It is present in us from birth. One crying infant will set off a wave of crying in a hospital ward. Studies also show that infants and children mirror the facial expressions of the primary caregiver, suggesting that they feel the same emotions too, or at least their nervous system is reacting to the emotions of the caregiver.
The MNS is a bit like a high-definition camera that observes and records every detail of people's facial expressions, body language, pupil movements and even vocal tones. So if you're hanging out with someone who is happy, and their happiness is written all over their face, so to speak, your MNS will record their displays of happiness but it will also signal the same displays in you. So if you want to be happier, you wouldn't go far wrong by hanging out with happy people.
Depression is just as contagious as happiness. Should we then avoid people who are depressed? I personally don't think so. We should help people who are depressed. Anyone who has ever been depressed wants to feel loved and cared for, not avoided like they have the plague.
My personal experience is that there is little risk of "catching" depression if you are compassionate to their feelings and are aware of emotional contagion. The compassion allows you to sense how the person feels, to empathize and appreciate their pain so that they feel listened to. Then, after a while, you can try to "infect" them with your positive mood. So the answer to the question, "Are your emotions contagious?" is almost certainly yes. Spend time with happy people if you want to feel happier, and help to raise the spirits of people who feel sad. And if you do feel happy, spread some good cheer around you.
When typing natural sunscreen to the search engine in my quest to find a suitable product for my young daughter, I accidentally came across the words to that Baz Luhrman song we all listened to in the 90’s. As a young man listening to it, it didn’t really have the same significance as it does now. It’s amazing what age does to your perspective of life. I thought you may enjoying reading it again.
If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience…
I will dispense this advice now.
Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth; oh never mind; you will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they have faded.
But trust me, in 20 years you’ll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked….You’re not as fat as you imagine.
Don’t worry about the future; or worry, but know that worrying is as
effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind; the kind that blindside you at 4pm on some idle Tuesday.
Do one thing everyday that scares you
Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts, don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours. Floss
Don’t waste your time on jealousy; sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind…the race is long, and in the end, it’s only with yourself.
Remember the compliments you receive, forget the insults; if you succeed in doing this, tell me how.
Keep your old love letters, throw away your old bank statements.
Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what you want to do with your life…the most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives, some of the most interesting 40 year olds I know still don’t.
Get plenty of calcium. Be kind to your knees, you’ll miss them when they’re gone.
Maybe you’ll marry, maybe you won’t, maybe you’ll have children, maybe you won’t, maybe you’ll divorce at 40, maybe you’ll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary…what ever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much or berate yourself either – your choices are half chance, so are everybody else’s.
Enjoy your body, use it every way you can…don’t be afraid of it, or what other people
think of it, it’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own..
Dance…even if you have nowhere to do it but in your own living room.
Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.
Do NOT read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents, you never know when they’ll be gone for good.
Be nice to your siblings; they are the best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future. Understand that friends come and go, but for the precious few you should hold on.
Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle because the older you get, the more you need the people you knew when you were young.
Live in New York City once, but leave before it makes you hard; live in Northern California once, but leave before it makes you soft.
Accept certain inalienable truths, prices will rise, politicians will philander, you too will get old, and when you do you’ll fantasize that when you were young prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders. Respect your elders.
Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund, maybe you have a wealthy spouse; but you never know when either one might run out.
Don’t mess too much with your hair, or by the time you're 40, it will look 85.
Be careful whose advice you buy, but, be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia, dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen…
Practical exercises for the development of mediumship led by international medium Tony Stockwell. This CD is aimed at both the novice worker and those with years of experience who need to enhance their advancement. The exercises allow you to gain a greater focus and a stronger connection with those in the other world who are eagerly awaiting your participation.
Featuring New World Music by Laura JW, Kevin Hartnett & Anthony Miles.
Continuing the subject of happiness, working with James van Praagh always brings a smile to my face. He very kindly sent us a few words to share with you.
"My Spirited Time in Europe" “Back home now finally after 11 planes, 5 countries, three classes, nine dems and lots of perspiration left behind! Great to be back with the family and slowly getting into the rhythm before I have to leave again this coming weekend for Oregon. I spent my July teaching and performing demonstrations with the UK's own jewel, Tony Stockwell. I had met up with Tony after spending a week teaching other mediums in Ireland. We worked together performing two demos in The Rock, Gibraltar. I find it very interesting working outside of the US, because you never know what to expect. I work a lot with educating the audiences to the atmosphere required for the communion with Spirit and may throw in a meditation and some Q & A’s to educate them to the process of the work. To me, the messages mean little if there is no place to put them and integrate them into their lives. So, as a medium, the education has always been a vital part of my mediumship. I always love working with Tony for many reasons. First, there is an ease of being with him and sharing our time together. I had just recently worked with a few mediums in the week prior in Ireland and was completely amazed by the amount of ego and a sense of competition which existed. It throws me because I feel if you are doing Spirit's work, then there truly is no room for ego...truly it all becomes about the medium and not about Spirit. With Tony, he truly knows who he is quite well so there is no competition. Our ways of communicating with Spirit are somewhat different, but the nuances of the messages are exactly the same. Out of all the mediums I have worked with in thirty years, I have enjoyed the "double linking" with Tony the most. It truly is an ideal connection and a dance we do. There is mutual respect for each other as well as assisting each other for the greatest good of the work. The contacts end up being brilliant and fun as well. Unfortunately it seems that UK audiences have seen so much mediocre mediumship, that they have become a little jaded with the process. One should never stop being amazed at the miraculous droplets of God which come into our minds. Many of my UK audiences expected me the medium to do all the work, until I informed them that they are part of the equation. They must be open and enthusiastic in order for the Spirit to come close. Once they do this, the level of communication is brought up to another level. We are all the same....we love, we live, we move on, we love and we live.
I’d like to use this opportunity to thank James Van Praagh for coming to the UK to work with me. In the last 5 weeks he has demonstrated in 5 different countries and seen the inside of over 10 different airports.For all of you who watched him demonstrate, I’m sure you will agree that he is very special. As an audience member said last night, his spirituality comes from the heart and not just his public persona. He may be a bit crazy (aren’t we all?), the dancing on stage and the mass meditation may not be what us reserved Brits are used to seeing in a theatre but it’s kinda refreshing, isn’t it? It’s been a privilege to work with ‘the best from over the pond’ and we sincerely hope that James will be able to fit in a return to the UK in his busy schedule. Safe journey back to La La Land, James