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Pop Culture Boosts Paranormal Profession

Cape Cod Times - November 12, 2006

By Aaron Gouveia, Staff Writer

BUZZARDS BAY - Ellie Pechet doesn't need to watch the "Ghost Whisperer" on television. She claims to be one.


The soft music playing in the background meshes with the soothing sound of a trickling waterfall as Pechet, who runs the Phoenix Rising Holistic Healing Center on Main Street, prepares to help an earthbound spirit move on to "the other side."


Sitting in her office with her eyes closed, she dangles a crystal on a silver chain from her hand and it swings like a pendulum. She tells her client - a local businesswoman who wished to remain anonymous - a male spirit attached itself to her three days ago.




The woman says that's when she began feeling anxious, frustrated and depressed. However, in just minutes Pechet says she has cleared the spirit and leaves her client with a sense of relief.


In addition to earning a master's degree as a licensed mental health counselor from Cambridge College in Cambridge, Pechet claims she is a psychic and medium who can communicate with earthbound spirits and detail past lives.


And business is good, Pechet said, thanks to the paranormal surging into the mainstream. "Medium" and "Ghost Whisperer" are prime-time television shows featuring psychic individuals, who communicate with the dead to solve crimes and complete the deceased's unfinished business.


An Internet search shows roughly a dozen other businesses on Cape Cod specializing in psychic readings, but Pechet claims no one else in the area combines energy work, counseling and mediumship like she does.


There are no special licenses or permits required for this type of business, according to town planning officials.


Whether she's clearing a haunted house full of ghosts or extricating a client from a dark spirit, the bottom line is her clients leave a session feeling better both physically and emotionally, Pechet said. "I realized quickly that traditional counseling is limited," she said. "Although I enjoy it, I wanted to find other ways to help people shift in a positive direction more quickly and effectively."


According to a 2005 Gallup poll, 21 percent of Americans believe living people can communicate with the dead and 37 percent believe in haunted houses.


Pechet said she realized she was a medium eight years ago, but knew she was psychic even before that. She claims her powers are growing and now she can sometimes gain insight into unsolved accidents. For instance, she recently spoke with a client who was depressed over the drowning of a family member. However, Pechet said she was able to communicate with the victim and describe what he was wearing at the time of his death, as well as provide specific details of the drowning.


Hearing what had happened during the accident and being assured the spirit was moving on to the other side was a relief for her client, she said.

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By contacting her spirit guides, Pechet said, she can communicate with the dead and both kinds of spirit attachments - karmic spirits and ghosts with unfinished business. Karmic spirits have a connection to one of a person's past lives, Pechet said, while ghosts with unfinished business need closure before they can "move on."


While sitting in Pechet's office one day last month, Jeffrey Hennessy, 43, of Wareham said he has been a client of Pechet's for a year. When he moved back to this area after a 20-year absence, Hennessy had just lost his job and his father was dying. After his dad's death, Hennessy said he was depressed and felt a constant weight on his shoulders.


During one of his first visits with Pechet, she told Hennessy she could see and hear his father who was still present in Hennessy's house. Although he had his doubts, Hennessy became a believer when Pechet told him that his father wanted him to start making omelettes again. Making omelettes with his father had been a family tradition, he said, and since his dad's death he had been buying ingredients to make omelettes but letting them rot in the refrigerator. He said there was no way Pechet could have known this since they had never met before.


"It took me by surprise but that's when I really started believing in Ellie (Pechet)," Hennessy said. "Now I never second-guess."


But Benjamin Radford, editor-in-chief of the magazine "Skeptical Inquirer," said it's important to separate common sense and television entertainment. Radford has spent the last 10 years investigating claims of paranormal activity, and specializes in examining supernatural claims from a scientific point of view. He has received countless reports of supposed psychics and mediums who claim to possess the same abilities as Pechet. While most of these people aren't being intentionally deceitful, their claims are usually inaccurate, he said.


"For the most part, the people who claim they can speak to spirits really believe they can," Radford said. "There are some hoaxsters and liars, but for the most part they're misinterpreting their experiences."


For her part, Pechet said, her client list is growing. Her folder of testimonials is getting thicker.


Interested parties for more information about Phoenix Rising Holistic Healing Center and Ellie Pechet, call 508-295-9809 or visit

Sessions include readings, counseling and energy work.


Aaron Gouveia can be reached at

The Ghost Whisperer


Wareham Courier - October 26, 2006

By Kristen De Olivera / CNC Newspapers

Ellie Pechet is the owner of Phoenix Rising Counseling and Energy Healing Center in Buzzards Bay.


In the healing room, a room that I am told has previously hosted the spirits of Geronimo and Jesus Christ, of loves lost, kings conquered, and parents who've passed away, the trickle of a rain chime rings constant.

The scent of lavender washes over light lilac walls hung with a purer purple tapestry.

A stone of a similar hue is set in the necklace that wraps around the neck of a Wareham woman who breathes deeply as she settles into a rocking chair at the center of the room. A rose quartz sits above her shoulders for protection.


Amethyst, she says, is a crystal that holds the capacity for healing. The color purple, she continues, also exudes that curative quality. An amethyst crystal hangs at the end of a silver chain that Phoenix Rising Healing Center proprietor Ellie Pechet often dangles from her fingers - the direction of it's swing, she says, relays recommendations from her spirit guides - guides who facilitate conversations between the spirit and the physical world. Both the course the chain takes and vigor with which the stone swings help Pechet decipher which of the services she dispenses from this space might serve her clients best.


Counseling with complimentary healing techniques is what this Wareham resident offers inside Phoenix Rising Healing Center, hidden under an Enterprise Rent-A-Car sign on Main Street just west of the Buzzard's Bay rotary.


Pechet describes herself as a medium, a medical intuitive, a metaphysical healer and a psychic. She couples her heightened spiritual sense with a master's degree in counseling from Cambridge College. Today, as a medium, she offers a mini-reading. Sinking into a chair blanketed in the image of an angel, I am reading-ready.


She asks if I have a grandmother in spirit, and I do. Pechet says she sees an elderly woman at my side. The "woman" is cranky and in her late 70s, and more than a little impatient. When the description doesn't quite match that of my deceased grandmother, Pechet asks her to step aside. Before bidding us goodbye, the woman calls Pechet a blabbermouth. The comment, although uncalled for, is somewhat typical of the outbursts of an elderly family friend who passed away some months ago.


A stylish woman with a soft demeanor and dark hair emerges. Pechet says she looks somewhat Mediterranean - maybe Italian, with a handsome face and an eye for appearances. A pudgy, blue-eyed woman - short and smiley with a sparkle in her eye and a pink complexion - is next.


Although I express uncertainty about their identities, certain pieces of their descriptions do induce thoughts of a great aunt whose photo sits atop my grandmother's piano, or a neighbor who invited me inside her home as a child.


Pechet has practiced "mediumship" for roughly 10 years. Her specialty of late, however, is work she refers to as a sort of modern-day exorcism.


Later, in the next room - the room Pechet's pendulum passed over when she decided which would be most amenable for our interview - I sit beside a bookshelf that houses titles holding the secrets to children's past lives; crystal, gem, and metal magic; and auras and how to read them. Under Asian-inspired wall hangings and figures of a belly-less Buddha, I observe Pechet as she expels a dark spirit


Lee Daymon manages the Lobster Hut seafood market next door. Six months ago Pechet relieved Daymon of a negative spirit attachment. Post-session clarity allowed her to put the pieces of her problems together, Daymon says, and she felt like a dark cloud was lifted. "I actually felt it lift through my body and come out of my body, and you feel 100 percent better right from the onset. It opened me up to appreciate and want to learn more about life's greatest battles, but also realize how important your own true spirit is."


Daymon said Ellie's reading have been right on, and she recommends her services to those who have not had success with traditional counseling.


Pechet sees her services - from readings of past lives and archangels, to reiki and electromagnetic balance therapies - not as entertainment, but as a catalyst for physical, emotional and spiritual healing.


"It's a way to get clear, accurate information quickly, and I'm result oriented and do whatever I can do to help people as quickly as possible. It's extremely gratifying," she said.


As Halloween approaches, Pechet explains, the veil between the physical and non-physical world thins. Earthbound spirits are more easily evidenced, spirit activity surges, spirit guides may be reached less arduously, more people come through with more messages - especially for their loved ones, she says. It's the perfect time for people to set intentions, to decide to leave behind the trappings of negativity, to set an internal filter for the quality of energy they choose to welcome into their lives. It's also the perfect time for Ellie Pechet to drop her reading rates.


For more information about Phoenix Rising Holistic Healing Center, call 508-295-9809 or visit

Different Ways of Healing


Wareham Courier - April 13, 2004

By Don Cuddy / Standard-Times coorespondent

As modern life becomes increasingly hectic, stress exacts its revenge upon a generation that is working too hard, sleeping too little and driving too far and too fast.


In Japan, the stress of overwork started taking such a toll on workers in the 1970s that many suddenly just dropped dead from it. This phenomenon has a name. It is called "karoshi."


As the toll continues to mount in all of the industrialized countries, people are beginning to explore different ways to cope with the unceasing assault on their time, their attention and their sense of well-being.


To meet this need, a new group of practitioners has emerged to offer some alternatives. New forms of therapy and healing are available to those left unfulfilled by more conventional remedies.


Ellie Pechet is one area professional who represents this new movement. She operates the Phoenix Rising Counseling and Energy Healing Center on Main Street in Wareham, a location that testifies, in itself, to an increased willingness on the part of many to embrace change.


Although a licensed mental health practitioner with a master's degree in counseling from Cambridge College, Ms. Pechet prefers to emphasize her role as a guide and a healer, helping her clients to reduce stress by achieving a better understanding of who they are and the kinds of imbalances that lead to physical and emotional difficulties.


"I do practice traditional counseling and would probably adopt that approach when I see a client for the first time," Ms. Pechet says. "Traditional counseling helps to clarify issues and change unhealthy patterns of behavior. It's really a starting place for the people I work with."


But, she stresses, it is only a starting point. "Holistic counseling is more of a mind, body, spirit approach," she explains. Lifestyle, nutrition and diet, type and frequency of exercise, the use of prayer or meditation all factor in evaluating the needs of the people who come to see her.


"One woman came to me because even though she felt tired all the time she could not sleep," she relates.


In what has become a common scenario the pressure of juggling a career, family life and social responsibilities were simply proving too difficult for the woman.


"When she tried to sleep, her mind was racing and she was not getting enough rest," Ms. Pechet says. "So we looked at how we might change that. I made several suggestions. She began to take a 30-minute break when she came home from work to transition from her ob back into the household. She also installed a water fountain in the bedroom to soothe her and began to write her thoughts in a journal at bedtime. This served to empty her mind before turning out the light. And it did work. I have a testimonial."


A session with a holistic counselor can also include hands-on therapies such as Reiki, a form of energy healing with origins in Japan. This is a technique that aims to restore spiritual harmony and balance. Ms. Pechet is a Reiki master. The word itself comes from the Japanese term for "Universal Life Force."


"Many of the people I see have had some acquaintance with Reiki but usually not in conjunction with counseling," she says. Clients at Phoenix Rising have the opportunity to avail themselves of different modalities, she says.


Next to her comfortably furnished office is the Healing Room, an inviting place of soft music, subdued lighting and oriental rugs. The sound of water can be heard rippling discreetly from a corner fountain and the warm air carries an exotic fragrance.


"Reiki is experiential," she says. "It's not an intellectual process. You can feel it in the body and in the energy field. You don't have to understand it. A big part of my work is helping people get out of their heads and into their bodies. Into their hearts."


Ms. Pechet believes that many common ailments such as neck pain, back pain and chronic headaches are physical manifestations of emotional distress. "I'm probably more of a healer than a psychotherapist," she says. "When people leave here they are more relaxed. They have a plan; they feel nurtured. The Reiki helps pull it all together and it adds a nice balance to the talk therapy."


Ms. Pechet traces her involvement with Reiki back to an encounter with a cat. "When I lived on the Cape, I saw this cat get hit by a car. It was after hours and I called a vet. While waiting, I was trying to comfort it and I remember wishing that I had the power to ease its pain. I had heard about Reiki so I began to study it."


That was back in the mid-'80s, and as she went on to pursue a career in counseling it became apparent that she could combine both disciplines to deal more effectively with the problems common to so many of the people she saw.


While the holistic movement in general has gathered many adherents, particularly in the last decade, there will be people who remain skeptical about the efficacy of any New Age practices. What would Ms. Pechet say to the unconvinced?


"I think that people should just keep an open mind. Once a person gives Reiki a chance to work, particularly as a means to relieve pain, they will be able to feel the benefits immediately. They just have to have that willingness to try something different."


Ellie Pechet can be contacted at (508) 295-9809 or on the Web at

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