Dixie Yeterian

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When I was four years old, Amy (the little girl who lived down the street) lost her doll carriage. As I listened to her mother, Mrs. Dunlap, and my mother discuss the mysterious disappearance of Amy’s doll carriage, I had an image of the carriage, hidden in the brush on the vacant lot where we went to play ball and Hide-and-Seek. I rushed out of the house. A few minutes later, I triumphantly pushed the doll carriage into our living room. I expected to be praised for having found it. Instead, Amy’s mother yelled at me. “You stole it! I suspected you all along. You stole it!”

“I didn’t,” I replied tearfully. “I just thought I knew where it would be.”

“How did you know?” my mother asked.

“I don’t know,” I said. “All of a sudden, I just saw it in my mind.”

Mrs. Dunlap’s face screwed up and her eyes bugged out in an almost amusing caricature of outrage. “You’ve wanted that pram ever since I bought it for Amy,” she screamed. “I heard you tell Amy you wished you had one like it. It’s bad enough that you stole it….it’s bad enough to be a thief….but now to stand here and lie!”

I couldn’t logically explain how I’d known where the doll carriage was, and I had often expressed a desire for one like it. The more desperately I protested my innocence, the guiltier I looked. I turned and ran from the room.

Ever since I can remember, I’ve known things that other people didn’t seem to know. My perceptions often confused and frightened me. Other people were often distressed and frightened by my insights, too. It wasn’t easy to be a child with intuitive awareness.

One day, I asked my Aunt Emma if she was going to go back to Oklahoma for her mother’s funeral. (I assumed that everybody went to Oklahoma if there was a death in the family. We’d made a number of trips there when members of my mother’s family had died.) It didn’t occur to me that Aunt Emma might not know about her mother’s death yet, nor did it occur to me to wonder how I knew about it. “You little monster!” she screamed. “I’m tired of your constant lying.”

She grabbed my arm and pulled me into the kitchen where my mother was working and yelled, “Edna, do you know what this brat of yours just said to me?”

My mother made me apologize to Aunt Emma.

Later that day, when she received the call telling her that her mother had died, Emma became hysterical. “You killed my mother!” she screamed at me. “You’re the spawn of Satan! You cursed her! You killed her! I just know it!”

My mother sent me to my room, more to get me away from Aunt Emma than as punishment, but I could tell by her expression that she was nearly as upset and bewildered as Emma. Later, she came in and talked to me. “Dixie,” she said. “I don’t know how you know these things. I don’t know yet if it’s a curse or a gift you’ve got. But you’re going to have to learn to be quiet about things you know about people.”

But I didn’t yet know how to be quiet. I was a talkative child and probably more tactless than most children. As a result, my relatives, neighbors and schoolmates began to fear and even dislike me.

When I was five years old, a revivalist minister pitched his tent on a vacant lot at the edge of our small town. Everyone was excited. It was a pious, church-going community, and the citizenry loved nothing better than a good, rip-snorting sermon. The tent was filled to capacity every night for a week. On the last Sunday, we all dressed up in our finest to attend the morning service, which was to be the grand finale.

The preacher delivered a soul-tearing sermon about the evils of painted women. He literally scared the hell out of the congregation. I think half of the people in town were “born again”.

My grandfather was the local Pentecostal minister, so it was only natural that the visiting preacher be invited to our home for Sunday dinner. My mother and most of the women crowded into the kitchen to fry chicken, make the coleslaw, the biscuits, and the heaping bowls full of mash potatoes and gravy. The men gathered in the parlor, drinking ice tea and praising the preacher for his inspiring sermon. I sat in a corner, listening to the men, sinfully unaware of the importance of the occasion and trying to figure out a way to avoid having to set the table.

It occurred to me that the best way to evade work was to be unavailable. So I quietly arose and tried to sneak out of the room. As I passed the preacher, he uncrossed his legs and accidentally tripped me. I went sprawling across his legs.

He pulled me onto his lap and held me there. I squirmed frantically, trying to break free from his embrace. The preacher gazed into my eyes and exclaimed, “What a beautiful little angel face this is!”

I stopped squirming. I didn’t like the preacher, but I was shocked into silence by his having called me “angel face”. He was a man of God. It occurred to me that he might be seeing something that I wasn’t aware of. Maybe that freckle-faced, stringy-haired image I saw in my mirror was someone else. It also occurred to me that my mother wouldn’t call me to do chores as long as the preacher held me on his lap. So I sat there quietly, listening to their discussion of that morning’s service.

During a pause in the conversation, the preacher smiled at me benevolently and asked, “Did you enjoy the service this morning, honey?”

I was afraid to answer him. I’d hated every minute of it. Because my grandfather was a minister, I had to attend church at least three times every week, and I’d never learned to enjoy wearing stiffly-starched dresses and sitting still on hard benches for hours at a time. But I couldn’t tell the preacher how I really felt, and I knew that lying to a man of God would be a terrible sin, so I chose not to answer his question. Instead, I asked: “Sir, does God forgive you for anything you do wrong if you really pray hard?”

“Yes, angel. God forgives even the most desperate of sinners.”

“Oh, good!” I shouted. “Then maybe he’ll forgive you for that painted lady you were with last night.”

Ever since I could remember, my mother had been pressuring me to stifle my intuitive nature. In this case, physical pressures were brought to bear, leaving red welts across my fanny.

After that, I tried harder to squelch my perceptions, but things still popped out of me without any warning. I was usually just as shocked by them as the persons I was speaking to.

There was the incident of my first-grade teacher. She’d been unusually withdrawn and quiet during one morning’s classes. I could feel that she was grieving over something. I felt sorry for her and wanted to help.

During the lunch break, I couldn’t stop worrying about her. I watched her eating lunch and quietly chatting with the principal, and suddenly I knew the reason for her mood. Feeling very shy, I approached her.

She looked up at me. “Yes, Dixie….what is it?”

“I just wanted to tell you I’m sorry you feel so bad about the fight you had with your boyfriend last night,” I said. “He’ll call you tonight and you can make up again.”

Her face went white.

Surprisingly, the principal’s reaction was even stronger than hers. His complexion was naturally dark, but now it was purple. He jumped to his feet, dropping his sandwich to the ground. “We’ll discuss this later,” he whispered angrily to her. “And you’d better have a good explanation.”

Perceptive as I was, I should have known that the principal was my teacher’s husband.

She punished me by taping my mouth shut.

My best friend wasn’t allowed to play with me because her mother was frightened of me. My grandfather’s congregation tried to pray the demons out of me many times. They were certain that I was possessed. I was accused of imagining things, inventing stories, and downright lying.

Although I tried to repress my intuition, I felt an intense need, indeed a compulsion, to understand it. I couldn’t talk about it with anyone. In our family, the word “psychic” was as forbidden as the word “sex”. My mother had a natural gift of prophecy, so I went to her for help. But her responses only added to my confusion. Mom’s acceptance of her talent was colored by her religious philosophy. She believed that she had a “special gift from God”. It was made clear to me that an ornery little brat was unlikely to be the recipient of a divinely-bestowed gift; so I had to be in league with demonic forces. Yet, though I knew I lacked piety, I also knew that I wasn’t evil. There had to be a rational explanation for my abilities. I was determined to find it.

So I turned to books. At the age of ten, it became my habit to visit the public library every day after school. I would pass the hours sitting on the floor between the enormous bookshelves, totally engrossed in works about religion and psychism. As my reading time was limited, after a while I began to sneak some of the books into my home. My parents were not well educated and had little respect for book learning. My mother resented my reading because it took me away from my chores. The reading of any subject was frowned upon, but the subjects I pursued were absolutely forbidden.

Because I shared a room with my sister, the only safe place to read was the bathroom. I would lock the door there and read for hours. When this began to be resented, I started reading in bed at night. Huddled beneath the blankets, I would squint my eyes to make out the words in the glow of my flashlight until sleep overtook me.

By the time I was twelve, I had read and re-read everything our library had to offer. Some of the books had been genuinely interesting, but I had to conclude that none had answered my most pressing questions. I still didn’t understand my intuitive abilities. Those works, which had described other people’s intuitive experiences, had rarely offered explanations of the phenomena, and these explanations failed to satisfy me. The psychics I had read about had either believed, as my mother did, that they were heavenly-ordained prophets or that their information or knowledge came from the “spirit world”. I remained in the dark.

Then my family moved to another town. A full-fledged teenager, now, I found myself excited by new friends who didn’t know about my “weirdness” and didn’t fear me. I discovered how amusing boys can be and became totally involved with the typical adolescent concentration on dating, football games, and acne. My fascination with parapsychology was stuffed in the closet with my dolls. I became a closet intuitive.

At the age of eighteen, I met and married my husband Vahan Yeterian. He is a logical, conservative Armenian, an aerospace engineer. I didn’t tell Vahan about my intuitive abilities. He probably wouldn’t have married me if I had. However, as I settled into our marriage and our emotional bonds grew stronger, my intuitive perceptions began to return, even more powerfully than before. I became attuned to Vahan’s emotions, always knowing what kind of mood he was in or when something important happened to him, regardless of how far apart we were.

It took Vahan a long time to accept my talents. He jokingly called me a “good guesser”. He usually believed that I had prior knowledge, or that someone was in collusion with me, giving me information about his activities when we were apart. Gradually, he came to accept the validity of my perceptions.

Schooled in scientific analysis, Vahan hesitates to accept anything that defies his understanding of natural law. He was mystified by me; so he decided to study my abilities, to either prove or disprove the existence of my extrasensory perceptions.

Using the Rhine techniques, he tested me exhaustively, collecting thousands of test scores. He drew up charts and drafts to record my rate of accuracy and the trends and patterns I evidenced. Then, he correlated all the factors that seemed to influence the reliability of my perceptions. For instance, we discovered that the amounts of liquids that I consumed influenced my sensitivity. When I was deprived of liquids, I tested much lower. One, or even two, 4-ounce glasses of wine increased my ability to perceive. More than that amount caused it to decline. We tested the effects of weather, rest, foods - everything Vahan could think of that might be of influence. For two years, our bedroom walls were papered with charts, graphs, and reliability data.

By now, my intuitive awareness was not only completely reawakened, it was becoming more and more a part of my everyday experience. I still didn’t totally understand it, but I’d learned to accept it. I followed the advice of a psychiatrist friend, who told me I should find some way to use my abilities so that they could benefit humanity. I returned to school and began my studies toward a degree in Psychology. I thought my intuitive awareness might be useful in a counseling career.

In college, I met other people who were interested in parapsychology. Public awareness was beginning to grow so that the subject was discussed openly in many of the classes, and regularly in the student union hall. Several of us decided to form a study group. There, I finally found some answers.

Possibly the most important thing I discovered was that my abilities were not unique. None of the other people in the group claimed to be especially perceptive. They didn’t expect to develop psychic awareness. They were just interested in studying the subject. However, within a few weeks, every member of the group was experiencing heightened intuition. Within six months, every member of the group was exhibiting a substantial degree of extrasensory perception. From this, I concluded that intuitive perception is an innate ability, a suppressed sensitivity that lies dormant within everyone.

Because of the extensive research I’d already done, the group selected me as their leader. Thus, I began teaching my first group of parapsychology students. That was forty years ago. I’m still teaching, and it’s as true now as it was then….that I must strive constantly to expand my knowledge and to improve my talents in order to remain half a step ahead of my students.

To my amazement, my classes generated an enormous amount of excitement in our small community. Soon, I was teaching three classes a week and had compiled a list of more than 600 applicants for future classes. Then, as now, I limited the size of my classes, because to be an effective teacher, I feel it’s important to establish a deep, personal connection with each of my students.

At the same time, in order to pay for my education, I was giving speeches to women’s clubs. At that time, there was a shortage of qualified workers in clerical positions, so I would speak to women about a program that offered to pay for their education and promised them a job with State or Federal government if they completed a series of studies in Office Administration with a grade of “B” or better. After one of these presentations at UCSB, I went for dinner with the people who worked in the Lecture Coordination department. During our meal (and after several glasses of wine), the conversation somehow turned to my interest in parapsychology. They asked me if I would be willing to return for another lecture on that subject.

I need to interject that at this time, the subject of parapsychology was brand new. To most, the word “psychic” was synonymous with fortune-teller, Satanist, fraud, or even worse. The organizers thought my presentation might be of interest to a very small, select group of “free thinkers”. They never expected what happened.

Oh, my GOD!!!!

They expected fifty to one hundred people to attend, so they set up a small room. I arrived, ready to speak, and was told the presentation had been moved. They moved the audience three times before I could speak. More and more people kept arriving. We ended up nearly filling a hall that would hold twelve hundred. People in the audience were looking around, recognizing their neighbors, their co-workers, and in some cases, their best friends; and saying, “I never would have imagined you were interested in this.” They were terrified that someone might think they were weird…..or worse!

My presentations, at that time, were very basic, saying: “We are all intuitive beings. The experiences and knowings you’ve been having are a natural part of human existence. There are new, scientific studies that are beginning to validate the fact that man has awareness beyond the limitations of the previously recognized five senses. In fact, it appears that the intuitive sense is the only sense that doesn’t have an organ through which to function, so it uses your dominant sense to present information.”

(Click here for additional information: Teachings: Understanding the Intuitive Sense)

As a result of this presentation, I began to be solicited by other universities. I appeared upon radio and television shows to promote these lectures. As a result of the popularity of these promotional appearances, I was offered a daily radio show and later, a weekly television series. Although I was offered national radio and television shows, I turned them down. My first priority was still my family. I had four children and was striving to be the perfect wife, perfect mother, perfect teacher, perfect student, and the perfect public presenter.

So….I accepted a job with KLOM AM-FM (Lompoc, California) for a daily radio show, aired from 9 to 10 a.m. Monday through Friday; then a weekly TV show aired from Santa Maria, California….and I continued trying to be perfect wife, mother, radio-show personality, local TV-personality, lecturer, author (oh, I forgot to tell you that in my spare time, I wrote my first book: Exploring Psychic Reality)…..and now, part-time student. It took me eleven more years to complete my M.A. in Psychology, which (by the way, has been significant only because it makes it possible for me to teach and lecture at the university level.

I’m best known for my work with law enforcement (view documentary for further information about this subject). If you think it would be “cool” to be a psychic detective: first, I ask you to imagine having to feel all of the suffering of the victims. Then, I will tell you that you are going to do it for free. Law enforcement work (if you’re lucky) pays your expenses and little or nothing more. Even when I was solicited by the families of the victims, I could never bring myself to command more than my expenses in recompense. I believed deeply that my gift must be offered to humanity, and my participation in law enforcement work was the predominant way in which I expressed this belief. However, if you watched the documentary, you understand why I no longer make myself available to this work. You know that because of this work, I was shot, pistol-whipped, stabbed, and left for dead by a paid hit man hired by someone who was threatened by my work.

However, believe it or not….I consider the aforementioned event in my life to have been an incredible blessing (click on “Teachings: What I Know Now”). During the long recuperation from my injuries, I came to realize that my teachings had previously been intended to affirm the value of our intuitive beings. Now, I realized that I must teach about our need to come into alignment with our spiritual beings. I came out of my coma with a powerful realization that my life was continuing, not so that I could teach people to accept their intuitive selves, but to reunite with their spiritual selves.

As a result of this “terrible experience”, I have a closer relationship with guidance and a true Knowing of the realities of Spirit that goes far beyond the beliefs and suppositions I previously held. I also have an absolute requirement to share the Knowledge that flows through me. I have been through the portals. I now deeply know so much….and I am compelled by my soul to share this Knowing with you.

Dixie Yeterian
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