My Interview with James Van Praagh


James Van Praagh

I didn’t have room for all the stories that spiritual medium James Van Praagh told me when I interviewed him for my book, Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything. Here are the moving stories that I had to leave out. They’re too good not to share!

In my mid-twenties, I visited a very famous medium in England named Leslie Flint. He was referred to as a physical medium because, during his sessions, actual voices would appear in the air through an artificial voice box. In my session, a guide came through and told me I’d be doing this work. He said, “You’re going to be writing a book. You’re going to be helping many people. We have big plans for you. This day you’ll not understand what we say, but years from now you will understand what we are talking about.” I was just beginning to develop my psychic abilities so I can’t say I was too surprised, although the last thing I wanted to do was write a book. Being a very skeptical person, however, I still wasn’t convinced that the session was on the level. So I asked Mr. Flint if my mother was also there. And she did come through. She used my nickname and it was her voice. So I knew it was real.

the-gift-of-hands-that-heal-bill-moller-book-coverA couple other stories also stick out in my mind. About six years ago, I did a reading for a couple. Their eighteen-year-old son, Christopher, who had died in a car accident, came through right away. Not surprisingly, they were very emotional. The son said, “Dad, I had to come over at this time because I had to fulfill our destiny together.” None of us knew what he was talking about. I told the father, “Your son is now telling me he’s going to help you. You’re going to work with your hands.” The father didn’t understand what that meant, but said he was open to it. A few months later, this man, whose name is Bill Moller, called me up and said, “James, ever since that night, you’ll never believe what’s been happening. When I go by certain people, my hands begin to burn and I feel drawn to put my hands on someone or toward someone.” Well, Bill is now an incredible healer who’s opened a healing center and written a book called The Gift of Hands That Heal. His son Chris passed over in order to help him become a healer. It’s clear to me that people sometimes leave this life in order to fulfill a destiny that they had agreed upon prior to incarnating. I think that’s pretty cool.

More recently, I was featured at an event in Lilydale in New York in August 2003. This center for spiritualism is the largest in the world and I was doing a demonstration for a thousand people. In the middle of relaying messages, a man came to me and said he had died in a roller coaster, that he had been pulled up on the track by his hair. But when I passed his information along, no one in the audience claimed it. I’ve learned that sometimes people don’t want to stand up or be acknowledged in a crowd, so I just left it and moved on. That night, on the plane home, I was reading the newspaper and there it was, a story about a man who had died in a roller coaster when his hair got caught on the track. Isn’t that wild? That had never happened before, someone coming to me like that who had just passed out of body.

Although I love doing this work, I have to admit that when my psychic abilities first began manifesting, I was a little leery. Although I wasn’t resistant to working with spirits, it was a big responsibility and I didn’t know how much responsibility I wanted to have with people’s lives. But with time, I knew without a doubt that this was my calling—I saw the effect my work had on people, the healing that took place, and how profoundly their lives changed. When you alleviate fear of death, people are finally able to fully live life.

Watch my video interview with James Van Praagh about his new book, Unfinished Business: What The Dead Can Teach Us About Life.


Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, is a road map for living a more peaceful, beautiful life. It’s the one book that explains how dozens of spiritual principles interact, how to weave them together into a cohesive worldview, and how to practically apply this spiritual wisdom to daily life.

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Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to start one.
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to.
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier.

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Like to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 44-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
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• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders

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Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents.

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SiSe_fullcover_final.inddPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent authors and thought leaders he interviewed. The roster of storytellers includes Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsch, Caroline Myss, Larry Dossey, Rachel Naomi Remen, Bernie Siegel, Dean Ornish, and Christiane Northrup. Sixty Seconds has been translated into four languages: Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories.

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Here is a three-minute video introduction to Sixty Seconds.

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2 Responses to “My Interview with James Van Praagh”

  1. Kim Wencl Says:

    Those are great stories – you’ll have to include them in SSOMCE – #2!
    The story about the son passing and the father becoming a healer really resonates with me – I firmly believe that Liz left this world so that I could speak and write about our journey together. Everything does happen for a reason … it’s still painful, and we can’t always see the bigger picture until years later … and even then we always have the option to say no.

  2. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Yes, all we can do is trust that a greater intelligence is at work, Kim. That can be very comforting indeed.

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