‘TIS THE SEASON TO BE SCARED: Canadian mentalist Jaymes White loves Halloween seances

Article content

What is it about October that scares us silly? When senses are heightened, and we all seem to be jumping at things that go bump in the night?

Advertisement

Story continues below

Article content

It’s when all the really frightening movies are hauled out — Halloween , anyone? — and many want to open their minds to the unusual and test the supernatural waters.

Like attending a real-life seance.

One person whose been successfully introducing the fine art of seancing to Canada’s curious is Ottawa-based mentalist Jaymes White who, for the last few years, has been conducting his version of traditional, Victorian seances in various suspected haunted homes throughout Ontario.

A seance is when a bunch of people come together and attempt to make contact with the dead. At its core, it’s a meeting of like-minded individuals who are curious, perhaps even skeptical of the unknown, and the whole question of whether spirits, ghosts and the dearly-departed actually exist.

Advertisement

Story continues below

Article content

“A seance is a group dynamic, and who you invite to the table … sets the chemistry for the night,” White said during a recent interview in the latest location for his seances, the old Eatonville farmouse in the city’s west-end.

It’s a turn-of-the-century historical abode, beautifully detailed and crammed with Canadiana. There’s also a selection of scary dolls in one of room.

“You have to feel in sync with the rest of the group — show up with a clear mind,” White explained. “If you show up drunk, or don’t pay attention, you miss the whole meaning of what the experience is all about.”

Canadian mentalist Jaymes White
Canadian mentalist Jaymes White Photo by Rita DeMontis photograph /Toronto SUN/Division of Postmedia

What White offers is not the traditional seance per se, but rather “a more unique experience that entertains the skeptics and the believers.”

Advertisement

Story continues below

Article content

White says it’s difficult to truly describe a seance without experiencing it — but judging from all the descriptions, reviews and social media missives, many of those who have experienced it seem to have come out of it profoundly changed. Some cry, some bolt from the room, one person was known to wet themselves, and many are left with a sense of the surreal.

White is an interesting person. One would think mentalists are all showy and slightly scary, but the 34-year-old is rather mild-mannered, sweet, with an open face and clear blue eyes.

He also has a degree in criminology from Carlton University and works with various law enforcement officials to help in memory training and in the analysis of human psyche — or how to spot the psychopath in the room.

Advertisement

Story continues below

Article content

It’s fascinating work, and perhaps it’s a gift White has that allows him to cold “read” people to reveal the clues to their mental persona. Or perhaps it’s the people themselves who reveal the clues.

  1. Legends of Horror has returned to Casa Loma.

    Toronto, the haunted … be prepared to be scared this Halloween

  2. From left: Judy Greer, Jamie Lee Curtis and Andi Matichak in

    REVIEW: ‘Halloween Kills’ gives audience exactly what it wants – and that’s it

  3. Come face-to-face with spooky characters at Casa Loma, Oct. 1 - 31.

    Legends of Horror making haunting return to Casa Loma for Halloween 2021

Either way, White will tell you he’s certainly not a psychic or a medium. But it becomes abundantly clear he’s a master in human behaviour and the power of suggestion — and he admits his mind is always working, analyzing, catching the minutiae of details that reveal things about people they probably didn’t know themselves.

Advertisement

Story continues below

Article content

What he offers is more of an “intelligent fear. It makes a person question themselves if what just happened was real or an illusion.”

His clients are mostly professionals: “lawyers, a lot of nurses, executives and lots of curious individuals.”

White said reading a room is second nature to him: “Some of the readings are obvious — which wrist you place your watch tells me whether you’re left-handed or right-handed, how you buckle your belt, the same. People are walking billboards of signs.”

Yet, one has to be truly intuitive to make these minute observations.

So how did White become a mentalist?

“I was a really shy kid, a real introvert,” White recalled. “But that helped me because I started noticing from a young age patterns in people, routines that were repeated over and over again. In my high school, girls would send me pictures of their boyfriends, and I’d profile them. I was always right about the guys.”

Advertisement

Story continues below

Article content

‘It started from there, and evolved into what I do today,” he said, adding that includes working on a future TV series.

We apologize, but this video has failed to load.

How does his family feel about his work?

“My whole family is made up of engineers — both my parents, and my younger brothers,” White said. “I probably would be too, but I chose a different career path.”

What does he do to turn off?

“My mind is constantly going, so fitness helps my brain. I play the  guitar, I listen to music, and I’m an animal lover,” he said.

White is quick to point out what he does “is all about  analyzing human behaviour. We’re a  wealth of information — we just don’t realize we’re broadcasting it.”

That said, every seance he conducts is different.

“Things happen that truly have no explanation,” White said. “I love this time of year — I love Halloween — and the seances take place well into the night.

“And something always happens,” he added.

rdemontis@postmedia.com

    Advertisement

    Story continues below

    Comments

    Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

    Share:

    Share on facebook
    Facebook
    Share on twitter
    Twitter
    Share on pinterest
    Pinterest
    Share on linkedin
    LinkedIn
    On Key

    Related Posts

    On AIR

    Russtrat world

    USA on the eve of white revenge

    MOSCOW, 30 Nov 2021, RUSSTRAT Institute. During the presidency of Donald Trump, so many rules and even taboos have been broken in the American establishment