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James Van Praagh: The Inside Story Behind TV’s “Ghost Whisperer,” “Talking To Heaven” And “Beyond With James Van Praagh”

JAMES VAN PRAAGH: “In this conversation, medium James Van Praagh candidly shares stories with Bob Olson about his books and TV shows (Ghost Whisperer, Beyond With James Van Praagh, Talking To Heaven, The Dead Will Tell), which have helped him teach the world about spirit communication and the afterlife. Listen to James Van Praagh as he recalls memories with celebrities Ted Danson, Mary Steenburgen, Eva Longoria, Jennifer Love Hewitt and more. James also appeared on Oprah, Larry King Live, 20/20, 48 Hours, Biography, Entertainment Tonight & The Insider and talks about some of those experiences.” ~ Bob Olson, Afterlife TV


James Van Praagh Talks About His Books & TV Shows 

James Van Praagh has been working as a medium and teaching people about life after death for over 30 years. His first book, Talking To Heaven, reached #1 on the The New York Times Bestseller list. Then he went on to write Reaching To Heaven, Healing Grief, Heaven And Earth, Ghosts Among Us, Unfinished Business, Looking Beyond (for teens) and his latest book, Growing Up In Heaven. He has also written a book on meditation.

James Van Praagh had a daytime television talk show, Beyond With James Van Praagh, he produced a successful TV mini-series about his life on CBS entitled Living With The Dead starring Ted Danson (playing the role of James Van Praagh) and Mary Steenburgen, produced The Dead Will Tell on that network starring Anne Heche and Eva Longoria, and was Co-Executive Producer of the CBS primetime series Ghost Whisperer starring Jennifer Love Hewitt.

You can visit James Van Praagh’s website at where you can sign up for his online courses, purchase autographed books, view his calendar of events, and participate in his online chat rooms.

* The second part of this interview is about James Van Praagh’s process for communicating with spirits–how he does it. If you sign up for our newsletter over in the right-hand column, you’ll get notified by email when that video is available here on Afterlife TV.

Afterlife TV is presented by Afterlife Investigator & Psychic Medium Researcher Bob Olson, who is the author of Answers about the Afterlife: A Private Investigator’s 15-Year Research Unlocks the Mysteries of Life after Death.

Check out Bob Olson’s other sites: (a directory of hundreds of psychics & mediums by location with reviews & Instant Readings) & (his personal recommended list of tested psychics and mediums) or visit Bob’s Facebook Page. Bob also has a popular workshop for psychics and mediums at

Don’t miss another Afterlife TV episode. Join our email list to get new video announcements (and to download a free excerpt of Bob’s book): CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP FOR NEWSLETTER.

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  1. peg marcantonio says:

    Thank you Bob Olson for this interview with James Van Praagh, he changed my life after the death of my father….”.I read Talking to Heaven” and life has never been the same…..
    God Bless you both!

    • Bob Olson says:

      You’re welcome, Peg. I love that book. Talking To Heaven is still one of the first books I recommend to people who are grieving or just curious about life after death. God bless you, too.

  2. Chris Marquis says:

    The Van Praagh experience has changed my life and opened my consciousness and understanding of the spirit world ever since my sister passed in ’00. His books and interviews are always uplifting. His daily inspirational messages on the website are part of my spiritual path.

  3. Fernmeadow says:

    James is honest, good, true, and has been given a gift from Spirit that he shares. We need more positive and honest people who are genuininely themselves to and with others. Those who show this much love. Thank-you for this Bob…blessing fo you.

  4. Sharon says:

    What a great interview…I love James! He is so real and true to his spirit. I have read his books, and love them! Thanks for this. Such a wonderful personality…he feels like a friend. I got my sister and daughter interested and reading on this subject too. It’s such a comfort to us, more so than religion ever was. We are learning and growing. Thank you!

  5. James your the best and all ways will be

    With Gods protective love and light your fellow healer and friend


  6. MarVeena says:

    Thanks for sharing this fun video with James. He is one of my heroes! I admire his gentle approach and knowledge of life after death.

  7. Gayle Kirk says:

    Very nice video interview with James Van Praagh, Bob.

    Looking forward to Part 2!

    So glad he will be sharing his process with us.

    Keep the interviews coming!

    All the best,

    Gayle Kirk 🙂

  8. Beth Hilton says:

    Thanks for a very good piece, Bob. I had a very intense exchange with James about a decade ago, when I accompanied a friend to a conference and she asked me to pop in to his session with her and 300 others. I didn’t know who he was at the time. He did the usual tidbits with various people, and then honed in on me, I guess because I’ve had a lot of trauma in my family in the early years. I felt energetically frozen in place as he channeled instructions and details from 6 different family members; some of it was very difficult work to do. It left me feeling shaken and confused; sometimes confirmation of the spirit world turns your life upside down! When James signed my book afterward, he actually said “Boy, have you got your work cut out for you,” which I wasn’t sure how to take. I pursued carrrying out the spiritual requests that came through that day, and some of them took years to complete. I guess that since he says he’s a teacher first, I wish that there had been a way to follow up with him after such an intense reading for some guidance. While that day opened my consciousness further, I also came to realize that spiritualists are simply human, too.

    • Bob Olson says:

      Hi Beth. Thanks for your comment. This is actually a universal issue with spiritual experiences facilitated by practitioners across the board. What you’ve described is the need for practitioners (mediums, psychics, past-life regressionists, life-between-lives regressionists, etc.) to offer what I call “processing sessions” to help educate and process the information, trauma and release that comes from these experiences.

      However, most practitioners either don’t have time or don’t know how to offer processing sessions (even if they recognized the need). And with famous practitioners this is impractical, if not impossible. Furthermore, most clients wouldn’t pay for it even if they did (perhaps you being one exception). But I do think that it would be a great service for someone to offer (I recommended it to 120 psychics and mediums in a workshop I gave last year, but few implemented the suggestion). I know a spiritual counselor named Dr. Trish Whynot who is great for processing work, so if you feel you still need some assistance, Google her name.

      That said, Beth, I also believe that we learn from these types of experiences even if we feel we’re unequipped to process them ourselves. There is a reason you were led to that event that night, and whatever it was that led you there knew this would be a challenging-yet-growth experience for you. I believe life gives us the experiences our souls need to grow spiritually during our time here on the physical plane. And, in this case, you certainly learned a lot about yourself and about spiritual experiences that some people might never learn. For that I congratulate you. And I love your conclusion, as well. When researching psychics and mediums in the first few years, I wrote an article titled, “Mediums Are People, Too.” I wish more people recognized that truth.

      • Beth Hilton says:

        Thank you, Bob, I agree and I believe that next stage of “processing” guidance would be both quite helpful and a smart business! In reality, I think that a well-rounded and open-minede “life coach” could actually help to offer the sort of support that I needed to address my skeptical family and work through these “assignments.’ Thanks for advocating that!

  9. Bee Herz says:

    Fabulous interview! Bob and James made the subject matter fun and enlightning at once! I love this process of learning through interviews. Thank you Bob and James for sharing your personal stories with psychic /meidiums and the world!

  10. Korrine says:

    Bob, love ur show, I just found it today, I have been on a spiritual path lately and u inspire me to keep on it! God bless you

  11. Diane says:

    Just wanted to say I have James books and after I red it I started to have dreams that came true and I had way more insite

  12. Bud Lemire says:

    What a great interview! Love Bob’s way of interviewing, and love Jame’s sense of humor and liveliness throughout it all. Overall, I enjoyed it very much.

  13. Susan Snell says:

    Hi, Bob. I recently discovered “Afterlife TV,” and really appreciate the comprehensive research that you have done in making all of these experts on afterlife topics accessible. I just listened to your report on earthbound spirits, and it reminded me of your interview with James Van Praagh about “Ghost Whisperer.” I am sure that you are aware that one of the main goals of the Jennifer Love Hewitt character was to bring spirits into the light. I happen to think that there is some logic to your report on earthbound spirits, so I am wondering how you resolve your position with your apparent acceptance of of the content of “Ghost Whisperer”? Thank you, Susan.

    • Bob Olson says:

      Hi Susan,

      I should begin, and I’m sure you’ll agree, that just because something is on television doesn’t make it true. That said, regardless of who I might have on as a guest, my intention is to present various beliefs–not just my own–so that each Afterlife TV viewer can make up his or her mind on their own. I don’t see my position as pushing my conclusions onto others. That’s just not my style or desire. I prefer to show people the possibilities so that you and the other audience members can decide for yourselves. Finally, I have no “apparent acceptance” of Ghost Whisperer beyond what I just stated–it’s another theory to consider (even though the stories presented on that show are fiction). Certainly I considered what was being suggested in that show long before drawing my own conclusions stated in this video. I hope that helps to clear things up for you. Great question.

      I should add that my guests are going to do all sorts of things outside of Afterlife TV, but their appearance on my show does not imply my acceptance or endorsement of those books, workshops, lectures, or shows of any kind.


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