The ABC’S of Communicating With The Dead

How to Have Top Notch, Evidence-based Afterlife Experiences

BY Cyrus Kirkpatrick


ew experiences are as transformative as a beyond-the-shadow-of-a-doubt contact with a parallel dimension (otherwise known as “the other side” or the “afterlife”). Those people who appear to have gone mad and embraced ideas you’d never comprehend about life after death usually arrived at such a point after an unprecedented encounter with the beyond.

Unfortunately, these experiences are not always readily available. Yet, they can occur among just about anyone, especially those dedicated to have an experience, and they may occur in a surprising number of ways, sometimes through unexpected methods.

As moderator of a large afterlife discussion group, and author of a book about life after death, I’ve read hundreds of stories of varying degrees of “wow factor.” More stunning contacts include people receiving text messages sent by deceased loved ones, crystal-clear EVP communications, attendees of physical mediums who have allegedly brought forward materializations of deceased loved ones (leaving handwriting samples to prove their identities, for example), on through dream contacts, astral encounters, meeting deceased family during NDEs, or having apportations (materialized objects) fall on top of their heads.

The above examples I would classify as “A” encounters—where there is little or no room for personal doubt. More commonly, we may have “B” and “C” encounters that are easier to dismiss, but still meaningful for the recipient. Examples may include a penny appearing on a chair, perhaps with a significant date attached to it, a dream about a loved one that seemed a bit “more” than a dream, the feeling of a presence, or even something seemingly innocuous like a butterfly or bird paying an unusual amount of attention to you.

And sometimes, those “B” and “C” encounters evolve into a sudden “A” experience that blows you away. This may occur as the communicator in Spirit becomes more skilled at making contact, while the receiver also becomes more mentally open or attuned, to allow bigger experiences to occur.

I am actually borrowing these alphabetical classifications from ITC (instrumental transcommunication) and EVP (electronic voice phenomenon) research. The terminology originated from the directors of ATRANS, Tom and Lisa Butler, who began using C, B, and A categories to classify the validity of spirit voices captured on tape.

As most in the ghost hunting field know, the majority of anomalous sounds on tape are in the “C” category—a smidgen of white fuzz that may be interpreted as God-knows-what by the overly enthusiastic. Then there are “B” category EVPs where if you train your brain a little it seems apparent what might be getting said, and finally there’s the rare class “A.” These gold-mines range from clear to undeniable. Examples include EVPs produced by researcher Martha Copeland, who began practicing EVP after losing her daughter.

Like with EVP and ITC, there are many more types of contact that vary on a sliding scale. A hazy dream about a loved one may not be a real contact, and you’re less likely to convince your friends it was contact from beyond. On the other hand, an extremely lucid dream where a deceased loved one reveals where he buried the will is substantially more evidential.

How To Unlock Spirit Communication Experiences

The ABCs of Communicating With The Dead

And now for the golden question: How do we make contact? How can we have our own bulletproof afterlife experience?

My first piece of advice is to be dedicated and demand a higher standard of proof. The very act of having intention increases the likelihood of an experience. On the other hand doubt, uncertainty, or fear of the “other side” make contact harder to achieve. This is because a connection between the veil usually requires a mental link. And, this may even apply to very technical experiences like EVPs. Martha Copeland’s recordings of her daughter weren’t crystal clear because she’s a master ghost hunter, but because their mother-daughter bond made it possible (it may have also helped that her daughter had an interest in EVP before she passed away, too).

My second piece of advice—as cliché as it sounds—is to meditate and thus increase your mental strength. One of the most transformative types of afterlife encounters is when they come to visit us, and this sometimes occurs by entering your room, separating you from your Earth body, and appearing beside you while your eyes are temporarily able to perceive their spectrum. However, for them to initiate this type of contact, it’s necessary to enable control of your body in various states of relaxation and brain wave activity. For those who can initiate their own out-of-body experiences (OBEs) contact is easiest.

Finally, it’s necessary to have a great deal of patience. Sometimes factors are outside of our control. Aside from our own receptivity, I have concluded the talent of the spirit personality plays a big part in the quality of contact, as well.

After my mom passed away in the summer of 2016, due to her highly empathic and clairvoyant nature I had a sense she’d be very active. And I was right. At first, I began having various astral projection episodes where I encountered her in a healing facility—where a team was helping her through some of her psychological issues. It took a couple of months for my mom to heal, but as soon as she did, she was making eager contact via the assistance of what she described as workshops on her side that teach the skillset.

The first major contact occurred when she woke me up at about seven in the morning. Her voice, loud as a bell, entered my head, “Cyrus, can you hear me?” Without questioning it, I knew a contact was made and I needed to enter a relaxed, meditative state to continue. I felt a slight “disconnection” occur, which is common before an OBE. Now using my astral eyes and attuned to her spectrum, although physically paralyzed, I watched as my mom walked into my room, wearing a plaid dress, sat down next to me (100% physical) and put her arm around me.

She would do this about five times in total (and still counting). Our discussions often involve her world, simply because I write about life after death and I selfishly just want to ask her questions about her experiences. During the first contact, I asked where she was, if her world was physical and real, and what she was doing with her time (answers: She was in a kind of halfway home by the beach, yes, and she enjoyed nature, meeting friends, bonfires, and adapting to her new life).

During a later communication, she lamented that she was unable to reach my brothers. Quite simply, my brothers did not possess an openness to enable the communication. Sometimes she’d come close to making contact, only to have a brother dismiss the experience as their imagination, severing the connection before it could develop.

My father was different, and she’ll continue to appear to him in a similar fashion—sometimes in the same morning, wearing the same outfit. That’s because he too seems to possess certain talents of consciousness abilities and mental openness.

When one of my three brothers passed away almost a year later, I was hoping to hear immediately from him. This did not happen. When I finally had what I felt was confirmed contact in an OBE-slash-dream experience, I discovered he was basically wandering, and my mom said even she had barely been in touch with him! Unlike my mom who immediately established a connection, my brother was perhaps too surprised by the experience to adjust right away. He’s currently “taking it slowly” and still trying to figure everything out. Not long before he unexpectedly died, I was trying to introduce him to some of the concepts of the afterlife. Today, I regret I didn’t do more as it may have made things easier and less unexpected.

In Summary

Sadly, I hear from many people who have lost a parent, sibling, friend, or child and desperately want an experience to occur similar to the ones I’ve mentioned thus far. Because of these variables, it’s not always cut and dry. And sometimes, it’s related more to the skill level and desire of the deceased person to make contact. However, in the meantime, you can make it as easy on them as possible. Be patient, meditate, explore techniques for lucid dreaming (which can work as a gateway), focus thoughts and intention, and send demands to your “higher self” to help enable your connection to that side. You may only be receiving less-than-convincing “B”- and “C”-class experiences now, but in time and with patience, you may get your earth-shaking “A” experience that will jettison you far beyond your old paradigm.

Want to deepen your spiritual practice and learn to communicate with the dead? Looking for you soul family? Join The Cosmic Collective!

Cyrus Kirkpatrick

Cyrus Kirkpatrick

Cyrus Kirkpatrick is the author of the 2015 book, Understanding Life After Death and moderates the metaphysical discussion group Afterlife Topics on Facebook. He lives in Culver City, California, and works in marketing and publishing. An avid traveler, Cyrus periodically returns to a nomadic lifestyle of backpacking to accumulate experiences and adventures. He recently spoke at the 2017 Afterlife Symposium in Phoenix on the subject of out-of-body experiences and making contact with the other side. Learn more at

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