Illustration by Klaas Verplancke of a tree growing out of a line in a hand and person standing on a limb of the tree looking outward.
illustration: Klaas Verplancke
Business & Entrepreneurship

The Intuitive Side
For Jessie Goldfarb ’81, giving psychic readings was a side interest—until now

By Abigail Cain '15 / January–March 2023
January 18th, 2023

Have a question? There’s a good chance Jessie Goldfarb ’81 has an answer.

As one of California Psychics’ newest psychic readers, she counsels people across the country on all sorts of topics: questions of love, money, career. It’s a competitive field—fewer than 10 percent of applicants make it through the screening process, according to the company. Joining their ranks requires access to a private application link (Goldfarb was referred by another psychic already working there) and two evaluation calls, where she was asked to do a psychic reading and then judged on her accuracy.

It’s a profession she came to after decades of lawyering—first as a senior enforcement attorney for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, then running a private practice focused on divorce and family law. “I like to think that I have two equally developed sides: the rational logical lawyer side and the highly intuitive, mystical, psychic side,” she says.

Her introduction to the psychic world came as a teen, when she picked up Seth Speaks by psychic Jane Roberts, who became famous in the 1960s and ’70s for channeling a spirit from another dimension. But it was another two decades before Goldfarb attempted it herself, encouraged by the book Opening to Channel by Sanaya Roman and Duane Packer—essentially, a how-to guide to connecting with another plane of existence. “I was a little skeptical,” she recalls, “but I really wanted to learn how to channel and so I did the exercises, followed all the instructions, and had a really powerful first experience at the conclusion of reading the book.”

She’s been doing psychic readings for people ever since—although, up until now, it was as a side hustle. She would set up shop at one of Boulder, Colorado’s oxygen bars or coffee shops; after the pandemic started, she shifted entirely to Zoom or phone calls.

For most of her life, she says, she’s experienced clairaudience—“if somebody would present a specific question to me on really any subject, but especially about situations that they needed clarification about, I could hear the answer. Sometimes it required some translation, but for the most part, I was able just to say what I was hearing.” More recently, she’s become clairvoyant: “I’m now being presented with symbols and images that have a specific meaning that I then interpret.”

Goldfarb is entering the field at a high point—last year, the New York Times reported a spike in interest in psychic services as people felt the world spiraling out of control during the COVID-19 pandemic. Not that interest was ever small: According to a 2017 survey, one in five Americans have consulted a psychic or medium at least once.

“People are falling off their chairs when I give them these answers,” Goldfarb says. “They’re like, ‘How did you know that? How could you possibly know that? Thank you so much. I’ve been looking for this answer for so long.’

“So there’s a great deal of pleasure—and joy, really—that I get from not only giving them accurate information, but receiving the feedback that what I’m sharing resonates with them and could possibly catalyze transformation in their own lives. And I’m at a point in my life where my soul wants to be immersed in joy. Like, enough with the slogging through. Let’s have some joy now.”

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Related Issue
January–March 2023