What Does It Feel Like To Channel Spirit? by John Cali

People often ask me, particularly when we do private readings, what it feels like to channel Spirit.

Good question.

I had never given the question much thought till recently when, for whatever reason, more folks have been asking it.

People have told me, over the years, when I’m channelling Spirit’s energy is very different from my energy. They’ve also said my voice changes. It must be only a slight change, for I’ve never been able to hear any difference.

But I do feel the dramatic shift in the energy when I channel. Often, even it it’s a cold day, I’ll get very hot. I’m generally in a light trance, as are most of the channels I know personally. So I’m somewhat aware of what’s going on, but I usually forget most of it shortly after the session ends.

Many years ago I started out with the intention of channelling. But I know people who started spontaneously—their spirit guides initiated the contact.

Regardless of how anyone gets started it’s always a great feeling to bask in the energy of Spirit. That’s been my experience. I could channel for hours and never get tired. It’s just the opposite—I get energized.

But the biggest benefit for me personally is I get to see everyone and everything from Spirit’s perspective. That’s made huge positive difference in my life. Over the years I’ve found myself growing more patient, loving, and compassionate with others (and myself). I was not that way when I was younger.

I’ve also come to realize all is well, as my guides are fond of saying. No matter how our lives look to our human eyes and minds, Spirit (or God) is always there—guiding us, uplifting us, supporting us, loving us.

One other benefit of channelling for me has been I am able to communicate with family and friends who have died. That’s a great feeling.

P.S. People have also asked me who my spirit guides are. We’ll talk about that another time.


This video is an excerpt from the movie, Tuning In, by filmmaker David Thomas. The movie features six channels—Darryl Anka, Lee Carroll, Geoff Hoppe, Wendy Kennedy, Shawn Randall, and me.


Related links:
The Scent of Roses
Beyond the Veil: Life’s Other Side
Angels at Play: Another View of Life’s Other Side
On the Wings of Spirit


Have you had any channelling experiences? How have the experiences affected your life? Have they affected your relationships? Please share your thoughts and comments with us below.

What other subjects would you like us to talk about in these posts? Please email me at:

16 Responses

  1. Rosallie

    I was sitting in my recliner, feet up, knees bent, working on a project that I can only do from that position(I am handicap). I noticed I was hearing music…not unusual for me but this was different. The music had singing like a mens choir, I could hear the instruments and singing but at a distance that I could not hear the words clearly. Next thing I knew, my foot rest was down on my recliner and I was sitting at the edge, feet on the floor, project still in hand as if I were still working on it…I have no idea if I was or not but I know I can’t normally work on it from that position.

    After the music caught my attention, I seem to have just went ‘out of it’, don’t even know how to explain it. I had been almost like jarred back to consciousness as I heard myself in a loud female voice that was NOT my own and I could not even begin to replicate and the personality was NOT mine in the least…very loudly I heard myself say, OH, I’M COMING THERE BABY, I’M COMING!

    About a month ago, Spirit came to me and said, “prepare, it’s almost time”, I wasn’t sure what this meant at the time. Now this happened and I wonder if that is what it meant…I was going to begin the next phase of growth…rather shocking to me.

    I don’t really know what channeling is ‘yet’ but could this be it?

    • John Cali

      Thank you, Rosallie, for sharing your experience.

      Channeling is, in my view, tuning in to our higher selves, our spirit. Spirit is that part of ourselves that is united with God — or whatever we choose to call that divine power we are all part of.

      So, yes, I would say Spirit’s message to you was “channeling.” Just trust whatever comes to you. It is exactly what you need to hear at that moment.

  2. Linda Kay DePew

    I’m quite new to channeling though for many years i have followed a wiccan path. The channeling began spontaneously with The Morrigan, and there have been others since then. For me when spirit is here i begin to have chills which culminates in messages. However afterwards generally i feel tired and not energized. Am i missing something here? Any advice would be appreciated.

    • John Cali

      Different people react differently to the energies of Spirit. If you continue with your channeling, you should eventually acclimate to the experience and energies.

      When I first started channeling years ago, I had the same experience you describe — tired afterwards, and certainly not energized. But that changed dramatically with regular practice. Now I feel totally energized after finishing a session. Also, there’s a deep sense of joy and peace.

      The energies of Spirit, once you get used to their high level, will uplift you. It’s simply a matter of being patient with yourself, and trusting the process.

      I hope that helps.

  3. Dan

    Just wanted to thank you, John, for relaying your personal experience – it is one of the things I like most about your articles – you share your own journey as well as the messages and reminders you receive from Spirit.

    The being energized part is most interesting and I suppose shouldn’t be surprising. Whenever I am in what I believe to be a similar state – playing (or writing) music, doing art, even playing tennis – where my mind is out of the way – and I am in that timeless state – I am energized from the experience. I can sit for hours enjoying playing guitar – improvising I don’t remember what I did (unless reminded by a recording) but I always am left feeling good and (in some way) the experience stays with me – but I often don’t even remember what songs I played except the really good ones or ones which could have been substantially better… just like life.

    I suppose this is an aside but a good observation – even though we have this perception of linear time – we retain very little memory of all that we have experienced. Life is lived in the present.

    Thanks for having this forum where we can share.

    • John Cali

      You’re most welcome, Dan.

      Since you’re an artist and a very creative guy, I know you know that feeling of the energy flowing. As you said, your mind is out of the way, and time doesn’t exist. When the experience is over you feel just plain good, even great.

      Thanks very much for sharing your experiences, my dear friend.

      For those of you who don’t know Dan, I’d highly recommend a visit to his delightful website, here:

  4. Marlene

    There was a period of time in my life when I felt very in tune with Spirit. During that year or two I would not have really said that I was channeling, but looking back now I think that perhaps I was. At the time I called it “knowings” and assumed it was a form of very accurate intuition. I “knew” things that I should have had no way of knowing. I acted on these intuitive feelings with confidence and they were never once wrong.

    Occasionally during that time period of greater closeness with Spirit I would have a deep and meaningful conversation with a person I had just met, or hardly knew. I would be able to tell them things with such confidence and “knowing”, and with such insight, that 2 of them, at different times, had actually asked me if I was an angel! With one of them I felt prompted to tell him that I was a “human angel”. He was deeply moved by everything I told him that evening and acted upon some of my suggestions and reported later that it had improved his relationship with his wife.

    I miss that closeness with Spirit but only rarely ever feel as in tune as I did then.

    • John Cali

      Thank you very much, Marlene, for sharing your experiences. I believe we all channel, whether or not we describe ourselves as channels. Intuition is one of many ways spirit communicates with us. When we’re following our intuition we are channelling.

  5. Mikala St. Germain

    What does it feel like? Love. As for the physical feel in this body, it feels like bathing in a warm stream. The unbelievable love just flows through me and comes out in words.
    My person, the me, is off to the side, totally relaxed in that warm stream, floating. I can hear what is going on, but it doesn’t truly register. Sometimes, I can feel Spirit ‘s essence moving around in my brain looking for the correct English word for some concept.

    Sometimes, there are funny moments that I remember. Example, once when I was channeling, a fire engine with full siren screaming drove by my home and Spirit said, “Oh, my, what a painful and horrible noise is that?” Both the “client” and I laughed.

    How have these experiences affected my life? Imagine having your own adviser(s), someone(s) you can go to for any question you can’t figure out yourself, someone(s) who will laugh with you, love you absolutely and unconditionally no matter what, someone(s) who is so honest they always tell you the truth, and occasionally, out of nowhere, say something like, “stop that!”

    It hasn’t affected my relationships in any way. It is just who I am. And for those of you who know me, Daisy, my personal cherub, says “Don’t worry about it, just listen, we are talking to you constantly.”


    • John Cali

      Thanks very much, Mikala, for sharing your channelling experiences. I have the some of the same experiences with my guides, although I didn’t mention them all in the blog post. There certainly are those funny moments — spirits have a great sense of humor. Your delightful little Daisy is a great example — she’s one of the funniest spirits I know.

  6. Robin Becker

    Thanks for sharing John. You answered a lot of questions I have wondered. I seem to get communication from them but mostly as I start to fall into sleep. My body tends to go in a fear mode (heart racing, etc) even though I feel open to it. I was told it is from fear from trauma in a past life. To keep telling myself I am safe, I am protected and I am loved. So I am working on that now.

    One day I was walking my dogs out when it was a beautiful day. I was literally on a rampage of appreciation as I basked in the warm sun, beautiful colors in flowers, the birds. All the sudden it was all magnified..the beauty of everything, the smell of grapes off in a distance. Sounds seemed to be like on a microphone such as birds, crickets. It was a breathtaking moment. I think it was Source peeking through my eyes, hearing through my ears. I felt energized and so full of appreciation and love. I still wonder if that is how it would always be if we lacked any resistance and were fully connected to Source. I love that memory and look forward to it happening again.

    I saw Tuning In and it was such a good movie. Not only explaining channeling but how one who allows channeling to happen and how each does their process. Each with beautiful loving messages from the non-physical. We are all so blessed to have access to these messages. I greatly appreciate being able to hear messages and appreciate people like you that give us access to them. It has all been life changing for me as I am sure for so many others.

    I cannot wait to hear more about your guides.

    Love and light,


    • John Cali

      You’re most welcome, Robin. And thank you for sharing your experiences. I believe we are all channels for Spirit. It’s just that not everyone knows that. 🙂

  7. Tiat

    It is difficult for me to answer, as I am an open channel and find a big difference in the energy of astral bound entities, such as ghosts, and that energy of an ascended master or light being. The energy of the astral is much more dense and therefore more noticeable when they come through than entities whose energy is much more closely aligned with my own. I do feel a bit more wobbly after channeling for a period of time, and I try to remember that the white line on the highway goes on the left.

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