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The truth is out there at the Toronto Psychic Fair

Posted by Aubrey Jax / April 27, 2014

Toronto Psychic FairThe Toronto Psychic Fair at Exhibition Place was, for one gloomy April weekend, the city's nexus of weirdness. That's saying a fair bit - I see your freak lurking behind the glass of every condo window, Toronto.

Amid the crystals, jewels, and incense, it seemed like everyone at the fair but me had an alien encounter and/or tale of true spiritual enlightenment to recount. To be an enthralled yet skeptical tourist at a psychic fair is like watching the first three seasons of the X-Files at the IMAX after consuming a midsize carnival's daily output of cotton candy: inexplicably beatific.

Toronto Psychic FairA well organized psychic fair is not just a jumble of cloaked figures leaning over indistinguishable crystal balls (though those were for sale) - all manner of magic capitalists sat behind the booths: mystical diagram painters, Ufological stugy groups, electric psychics, animal reiki practitioners (though no animals were in attendance), and my favourite dude: Mark Lewis, Famous Irish Psychic, whose banner looked like one that might adorn an Irish pub.

Lewis, master of the "Irish version of Chinese numerology," was the funniest person I've ever hovered over. "Look at the comments in the book to see how good I am. I was up all night writing them so you may as well have a look," he encouraged one visitor between card tricks.

Toronto Psychic FairI was given a presenter's badge - apparently media requests are rare - which led to my eventual realization that the psychics and tablers weren't ignoring me because I didn't look like a card - they thought I was magically endowed. Plus, "media" sounds like "medium" to spirit-weathered ears, which yielded me the kind of respect I rarely receive as a lowly digital editor. It also helped ease the pressure to spend big money on communing with the great beyond.

Toronto Psychic Fair#psychiclife as a whole looks fairly sweet - most mediums, fortune tellers, tarot, aura, and palm readers, and past life regressors were charging $45 and up for a half hour and in the neighbourhood of $80-100 for an hour. The electronic aura reader's intriguing booth boasted what looked like an old analog effects pedal with hand-shaped heat sensors hooked up to a laptop. The aura reader assured me it was a very expensive machine, programmed by real psychics.

Toronto Psychic FairI found the Stephens, a couple from Michigan who hit up to 30 psychic fairs and events per year, at one of the fair's most colourful booths. Mystical art reader Beverly Stephen paints abstracts and then reviews them while still wet, like an art prof at an OCAD crit armed with a laser pointer. Mr. Stephen described meeting the same people at various fairs across Ontario and the United States each year, and told me the two had quit their jobs several years ago to take touring life seriously - and they've never been happier. It was a genuinely heartwarming story.

Toronto Psychic FairQuitting your job turns out to be a big thing in the psychic community (as is outrage over Hollywood's portrayal of their various gifts and powers). During the lectures, nearly every presenter narrated the story of the moment they quit their job, and one advised we do the same, or at least not worry if we get fired when spiritual healing changes our energy fields. Not the best advice in troubled economic times, but who am I to argue with the spirit world?

Toronto Psychic FairThe fair advertised two stages of lectures, which turned out to be its strangest (read: best) feature. An audience of 80%+ women would sit and listen to "exciting free lectures and demonstrations," which of course were just exhibitors taking opportunities to shill their booth for a half hour.

Toronto Psychic FairJoe Eigo's presentation "Energy Healing With Vogel Crystals," like many others, started off tame (changing water structures with crystals, chakra-talk, etc) before amping up into real conspiracy shit. Eigo revealed to the sparse but patient audience that the Scarborough Bluffs are a powerful vortex (Toronto's highest concentration of energy), and Toronto itself is an alien hotspot.

Later on I saw Eigo, a high energy dude himself who's taken photographs of both fairies and extra terrestrials, twist a sharpened crystal at a woman's neck to draw out toxins while her friends looked on. (If someone came at me with a dagger-like crystal the size of a puppy, I'd flush some toxins too.)

Toronto Psychic FairKaren McBride's "Healing Through Past Life Regression" lecture was more controversial. Again, she started tame with the observation that some birthmarks are scars from past lives and moved ever onward into past life regression will "melt the pounds away" and ADHD is caused by kids connecting to other planets. She eventually revealed (if that's the right word for it) that 2012's non-apocalyptic energy shifts caused loads of emotional chaos in the powerful changeover leading up to 2013's (wait for it)... Toronto ice storm. What does ice look like? Crystals. Dramatic pause.

Toronto Psychic FairThere were no obvious gigglers in the audience, and in general it was hard to tell who was a tourist and who was a believer, unless you were eavesdropping mid-reading/cleansing/communion. Everyone who wasn't behind a booth - and most of the psychics themselves - looked pretty normal, and the quirky sign that said "The witch is in" could easy have said "Bless this mess." Jesus was in the building at various times, or so various presenters claimed.

Toronto Psychic FairI contrasted my experiences with those of a punk I know who reviews churches (read them all, he's great). How much can a tourist really know about the true meaning of the scene they visit? I might have been in, ostensibly, a room full of swindlers - but all I saw this weekend was people bending willing patrons' realities for money and offering cliched counseling tied up with harmless entertainment. And a spirit trumpet - something I have never seen at a punk show.

Toronto Psychic FairSipping a terrible $2.75 coffee from Pickles Deli while a couple of girls at the next table incredulously dissected their readings - "I know my past, I wanted to know my future!" - I achieved the only spiritual need I have: the state of divine kitsch-bliss. In my enthusiasm for winning a free aura scan or something I may now be on a network-wide psychics' mailing list, but they already knew where I live. Even if none of these psychic scenesters are truly gifted, their aliens pals likely are.

The Spring Psychic Fair's last day is Sunday, April 27, 10am-6pm, Exhibition Place - Queen Elizabeth Building (180 Princes' Blvd). Admission is $15.

Photos by Christian Bobak. Aubrey Jax is spirit trumpeting on Twitter.

Discussion

17 Comments

ourkid17 / April 27, 2014 at 11:53 am
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how do these scammers sleep at night?
Jason replying to a comment from ourkid17 / April 27, 2014 at 01:37 pm
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They believe in themselves.
Shawn / April 27, 2014 at 01:43 pm
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I guess it' too late to attend this year's one. When is next years one? I'm sure they'll know.
Holy Thundering Jesus / April 27, 2014 at 05:58 pm
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Might as well just take all the money you have put it in a big pile and burn it.
Holy Thundering Jesus / April 27, 2014 at 05:59 pm
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And I can walk on water don't ya know.
tundering / April 27, 2014 at 07:29 pm
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3 out of 4 psychic's say Olivia Chow is in the lead!!!!
Lynn / April 27, 2014 at 10:45 pm
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I am quite disappointed by your coverage of the Psychic Fair in Toronto. I could not attend and was excited to hear how it went. Your one-sided view was very disappointing. I guess you have not explored this world before. Psychics are very protective of each other. They don't compete, they meld within a fold of like-minded people. Folks who go to Psychic Fairs are also loyal to Psychics. Amongst the Psychics there are Witches and Seers, and Spiritualists. All of them have a very strong handle on belief. They study for years. They are not crack pots. Just because they may not believe the same as the latest Athiest or Agnostic, or Orodox person, does not mean their belief in gifts from the devine are less real. Shame on you for being so negative. And also for quoting someone when they never said what you quoted. You have now painted them with a brush of your own making, not a brush of their own making. Karma is an awesome thing
Erica / April 27, 2014 at 11:35 pm
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It is unfortunate that this blogger is so biased. I attended this show and it was awesome. All I experienced was love and healing energy from everyone, including the attendees. I attended the lecture that is "quoted" that Karen McBride gave and she didn't talk about weight or kids at all, so her quotes are actually very untrue, I enjoyed the talk so much that I returned on Saturday night and listened to Karen again and it was another inspiring talk that made a lot of sense to me. Just because we have free speech does not give us the right to make untrue comments just for ratings, especially to "quote" someone. Regardless of what our own beliefs are we don't have the right to judge others for theirs, it would be best if people would think about how things could cause an affect before they voice an opinion. I love Karma, it has a way of making things right all on its own!!
Aubrey replying to a comment from Erica / April 28, 2014 at 12:46 am
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Hey, you're totally right, I was being liberal putting quotation marks around summaries from my notes and I've removed them from phrases that weren't exact quotes. You must have missed the moments where McBride described pounds melting away via past life regression therapy and kids having ADHA because millennial energy shifts make them special, though - this was definitely said.
Erica replying to a comment from Aubrey / April 28, 2014 at 07:22 am
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Funny!! I took notes too!! The reference to which the weight comment was made (I am paraphrasing here) is that when one does Time Line Therapy (not past life regression in this case) and releases negative emotions that we carry around one feels lighter, like the pounds just fall away because we unburden ourselves. The only mention of children was that the ones being born today are called Rainbow or Indigo children, there are many books on this topic, nothing was said at all about ADHD. I know exactly what was said because Karen said the same things again on Saturday evening at her second talk, which I attended also. It is unfortunate that the press can just print whatever trash they want these days whether it is true or not and what is even worse is that people who don't know better, just believe it without doing any research or finding out for themselves. I am done with this article and it's close minded blogger. I found Karen to be very heartfelt and inspiring, in MY eyes she is trying to give people freedom of the day to day stresses of life that we carry around.
ourkid17 replying to a comment from Erica / April 28, 2014 at 05:29 pm
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being rational is not the same as being closed minded and hateful.
Karen / April 28, 2014 at 05:53 pm
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Thank you Erica for your kind words and support. I saw some people taking notes and kind of wondered, glad you were now!!

Also thank you to Aubrey for inspiring me to start up my blog again. I wish you all the best with yours!!
Lynn replying to a comment from Aubrey / April 28, 2014 at 10:54 pm
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Well just to let you know the net knows your original copy was there first and there is a hard copy of it. I guarantee that. Perhaps next time you will not take such liberties which could effect a person's reputation.
Life is a long road....you will understand with time.
Joe Eigo / April 29, 2014 at 07:40 am
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Chemtrails and geoengineering are toxins and weather manipulation technologies used by the global elites to depopulate this world. The term conspiracy theory has been used to shut people down who have been programmed by the matrix mind control system. There are evil forces in this world that we must learn to protect ourselves from. Spiritual warfare is real.
Anonymous / April 29, 2014 at 08:16 am
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This boy doesn't deserve the energy that he is trying to extract out of us to parlay into his own 15 minutes of fame. He takes everything out of context, his facts are inaccurate. His ego is beyond himself. I wish him well in the future and I hope his karma doesn't catch up to him too much.
Mark Lewis / May 1, 2014 at 12:26 pm
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I thank Aubrey for the favourite dude remark! I do try to entertain people at the fair and make them laugh since I am a professional magician as well as a psychic consultant. I also think it important to lighten the load of people who sometimes carry a hard burden of worry when they come to a fair and laughter does have a healing touch.

For those of you who couldn't get a reading with me because I was so busy I have good news for you. I do readings every weekend at the Fantastic Flea Market in Mississauga at almost half the price it was at the fair. That is of course because my overheads are much lower. It is best to phone me first because some weekends I am not there because of other commitments. My phone number is (416) 927 7446

I also do one hour sessions by appointment only at the Toronto Healing Arts Centre outside the Christie Subway station. Readings at the psychic fair and the flea market were only 20 minutes. Again phone for details. I also do house parties.

OK. Commercial over. Here is the flea market website:
http://www.fantasticfleamarket.com/fantasticfleamarket.com/Welcome.html
Mark Lewis / September 30, 2014 at 08:55 am
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I see that the flea market link above didn't come out right. Here we are again.
http://www.fantasticfleamarket.com/fantasticfleamarket/Welcome.html

And while we are at it, here is my Yelp posting.
http://www.yelp.ca/biz/mark-lewis-mississauga

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