TVTalkShows.com: Disappointed in Sylvia Browne "Trance Reading"
Sylvia Browne gives a "Trance Reading" as Francine, to the disappointment of a self-described "true believer."
"I was devastated. I went there with an open mind a true believer and left with anger and a heavy heart and $200.00 less in my wallet..."
- TVTalkShows.com message poster
One thing I have yet to see Browne do on the Montel Williams show is to give one of her "trance readings," in where she claims to "channel" Francine, her "spirit guide."
Although I find no mention of the practice on Browne's current web site, here is a description of it from the Products & Services Page of a copy of her web site as it appeared in January of 1998 (courtesy of archive.org, a site which maintains archival copies of various web sites):
Sylvia is not only a psychic, but also a deep trance medium. While doing a reading, Sylvia is in full essence and does not receive help from other entities. Her other psychic mode is to allow Francine, her Spirit Guide, to enter her body and communicate with people directly. We call this phenomena “deep trance” because it is a total exchange of egos and Sylvia has no awareness of anything that transpires. The word medium denotes a method of communication with the Other Side.
During trance, Francine is speaking and manipulating Sylvia’s body. There is no noticeable change in voice, nor does Francine stand up and walk around. Francine is simply a person, like us, who resides on the Other Side. She does not claim to be any better than us, she just has access to more information because of extensive training and research. Francine never purports to be a deity of any kind.
Francine brings to us great knowledge and offers answers to all of our questions. She is our link to the Other Side and can access the wisdom of many great minds. Her love, compassion, wisdom, humility, and patient concern is legendary among those few people who have spoken with her.
On a few rare occasions, Sylvia schedules a public seminar during which Francine will address the group. Please see our schedule of coming events for the next opportunity.
I do not know if Browne still does this, and if she does, why it is no longer prominently mentioned on her web site.
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While reading through the Montel Williams Show section of the TVTalkShows message forum, I found a thread titled "Sylvia Browne is a fake." It was quite a long thread, with many posts from Browne detractors and supporters.
In the midst of all of this, there was a post by a woman who claimed to have attended one of Browne's "trance readings". I have reproduced that post here by permission of the TVTalkShows.com webmaster.
Note: I have broken the post up into paragraphs to make it easier to read. I have otherwise left it as it originally appeared.
Posted By: sketchy777
Posted On: 01-11-2002, 04:53 PM
I was reading about Sylvia Brown and all your questions and answers, I have almost every book she has ever written, same with John Edward, James Van Praagh etc. etc., I "was" truly a believer of Sylvia until I went to go see her. I was so disappointed, I cant even begin to tell you, not only does she charge $700. - $750. for a reading which I could not afford, but for those of us who cant afford to pay that price you can ask her spirit guide Francine questions if you care to at $100. per question. Well I went for the questions at her trans session but before I talk about that let me tell you what I encountered at her so called "church" oh and by the way her husband left her in November and has asked for a divorce (according to Sylvia) and her son Chris is going through a very nasty custody battle right now. Funny they didn’t see this coming. Anyway.........
My friends Steven and Derrick and I live in San Jose and Campbell so 2 months ago I called her office and signed up for a trans session with Francine (Sylvia spirit guide)
We were told we should come to the service prior to the session for prayer and meditation, sounded good to me so we did, upon our arrival at the Campbell Community Center we encountered a group of people standing around smoking and swearing and laughing most of whom looked like they were drug addicts or alcoholics, some came in "tigger the tiger" slippers, some came on Harleys and smelled as if they hadn’t showered in weeks. She had about 10 ministers standing around all dressed in black, one was blazing a huge black eye and cut on her forehead, they wanted payment for the trans session up front before the reading, I was leery, her church consisted of a very dirty rented community service room with very dirty chairs and very dirty carpet, all the people that worked for her looked like carny people, used car salespeople, her preacher who was leading us in prayer and who was asking for donations inside the church ended up being her secretary but seemed more like a bodyguard, yet I tried to keep an open mind, remember I was a true believer before I got there.
About 15 mins into the service Michael her preacher aka secretary aka bodyguard introduced Sylvia, she comes out and starts in about how her husband left her and her son Chris is going through this terrible custody battle and quoting from her books (which by the way she was selling in front on the community center to all her church goers for full price) also Michael was snapping pictures of her and filming her service for which you could get a copy for an additional $5.00. While Sylvia was talking a gentleman in the back started yelling at her that she was wrong and that she was mis-leading people, instead of Sylvia telling this man he was entitled to his opinion she asked Michael to bodily remove this man from the room, her exact words were "Chris, (calling Michael by the wrong name) get him the HELL outta here now!!!" Is that a Godly way to act? I think not! Anyway......
After the man left there were a few more prayers and we said Amen, then ahem, arem, Beth, Sackardila, amad, ahad.... I was like...what the hell is that.......... Then they told us the service was over and we could all go outside and purchase Sylvia books and tapes and while we were out there we could pick up some breads, pastries, pies, or cakes and cookies to take home with us as there way of saying thanks for coming, nice idea right? Would of been if the stuff hadn’t been so old it had mold on it, I personally took a pineapple pie home, when I got it home it had black and white mold on it. Ugh!!! So after everyone talked and got there pies and what not, the people who had registered for the trans session were asked to come back inside the rented room "church" if you will and we all sat in the first few rows, Sylvia came out and sat in this big green chair, and started taking deep breaths, then Michael walked over and put his hand on her forehead so she didn’t snap her neck and injure herself while switching places with Francine or allowing Francines entity to enter her body, so her body jerked one time aggressively and she became Francine and one by one people went up to ask there questions, I was listening to most of the questions and they consisted of, will my wife come back to me, how do my future finances look, will I ever meet the right person to share my life with, mostly yes or no questions or questions of the future for which any answer would do.
Well my questions were a little more thought out I needed to know about my sons death, I already knew how he died, I wanted to know about "the events that led up to his death" she hemmed and hawed around and tried to change my question by giving me some vague answer that he died because 2 guys were jealous of my sons relationship with a woman and that these 2 guys knew more than what they were saying, and that these 2 guys names were Joseph and Kevin. Well she was wrong all the way around, but she did tell me not to worry that he had crossed over safely and that he had made it.
Well I never had any doubt of my son making it to the other side, I’m sure he did, he was only 22 he wasn’t killed over a woman, my son was gay, and there was no one there by the name of Kevin or Joseph, my son was killed on the freeway, hit by a truck, she could not have been more wrong.
My second question was, "what lesson was I to learn from his death?” her reply was "rejection" so I said "why am I to learn rejection when I've lived it most of my life?" And "where was I headed in my life in respect to this lesson?" She said, "I was going to work with the elderly". I looked at my friend Steven who I had go up there with me when I talked to Sylvia's alter ego "Francine" and he looked at me then we both looked at Sylvia said thank you and walked away, Michael was about to ask us to step aside anyway because he felt we were taking to long, I walked straight outside and I was so angry, the whole lock stock and barrel reminded me of white trailer trash.
I was devastated. I went there with an open mind a true believer and left with anger and a heavy heart and $200.00 less in my wallet, so my friends Steven and Derrick said your not going to let her get away with that are you, she was totally wrong you need to get your money back, lets go talk to someone, so we went back to the registration lady with the black eye and I told her I was very disappointed in everything and about how wrong Sylvia was in the trans session, and the lady says "So, what are you asking for your money back or something?" so I looked at Steven and said "I don’t know are we asking for our money back Steven?" Hell yes we are......So we had her tear up our credit card slip...I’m waiting to see if they send it through anyway by hand writing the info back on to a blank slip. They definitely seemed the type. People, see for yourself or take a little advice from someone who has been there and done that, DONT WASTE YOUR MONEY !!! The next person I am going to see is John Edward, I’m not giving up on all psychics because I do believe people have this gift, Sylvia is just not one of them, but I’m a mother on a mission and I am a seeker of truth. And I will be taking Sylvia books back to Barnes and Noble. Thank you for listening to this long winded but hopefully informative email. God Bless you all and may you find the peace for which you seek.
You may reach me at with any replies you may wish to share.
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As with any other anonymous post on an internet forum, it is impossible to know just how accurate this is, but it struck me as one person's heartfelt reaction to a bitter disappointment.
I include it here primarily because it is the only independent account I could find of one of Browne's "trance readings."
In the accounts in Browne's books, such as the one which takes up much of chapter seven in her book (later reissued as ), Browne/Francine is very wise, and always correct.
Quite a different picture than the one painted by the message quoted above.
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