News & Community

Cameo: ​Jael Freedman

We talk to a clairvoyant about her book, what she says to skeptics, and the future of Baltimore.

How do you describe yourself? Psychic? Intuitive?
As a healer. Well, I am clairvoyant. I discovered that as a child. When I was 12 years old my sister Sherry is the one who really explained to me that I had a gift. Because, obviously, as a child, you don’t know. So I’ve learned to embrace it. I know that I am here to serve people.

So do you experience visions? Feelings? How does it work?
I don’t like to really put a cap on exactly what I do because I’m an open vessel. I see things. I could feel things. Sometimes I taste things. It just depends on the individual. Sometimes I do things or see things that even astonish me. Usually, what I say to clients is that it’s just going to go like a conversation. So you’ll ask questions, I’ll ask questions. I’ll tell you what I see. My only request is that they be really open. More [often] than not, I don’t always remember what’s said. People will come back and say, ‘Remember when you said, . . .’ and I’m like, ‘Well, not really.’ Most of the time, because it’s such a stream of information coming through, I’m just spitting it out. It’s not even like I’m having a lot of conscious thoughts as it’s coming out.

How has this ability and job affected your life?
Between 12 and 45 [my ability has] been groomed and harnessed. I’ve learned to tone it down a bit. There was a time when I couldn’t even really go out because things were always shooting at me or conversations with people always ended up being a reading. It’s like, well, ‘I just want to just be.’ Although there are times when a spirit is pushing me, ‘Say this, say this,’ I will say it. Otherwise, one of the things I’ve also learned during the years is that there are people who really don’t want to know. So I don’t volunteer information unless I’m being drawn to say it, urged to say it, or they come to me for it. It’s just out of respect, you know?

What do you say to skeptics?
I’m not here to convince anybody. If whatever I’m saying to you doesn’t resonate today, one day, most likely, it will. Listen, it’s a big world we live in, a lot of thinking, a lot of opinions and stances, and to each his own.

You recently wrote a memoir, Steel Wool. Tell us about that.
The book takes you through the “steel” of my life, which was abuse —physical, sexual—and neglect, and I sold drugs in Baltimore. I am the youngest of nine children. I’m a Jewish woman. I grew up in Randallstown. We were extremely poor. There was always drug abuse in my household, and it was always a struggle. I got bullied in the eighth grade and I left school and I never went back. I talk about that in the book. I talk about I got an offer in my late teens to sell drugs. At that time, it looked like it was my only way out, so I did it. And then the “wool” is the overcoming of that. I’m in the wool of my life now.

Can you intuit anything about the future of Baltimore?
Sure. There won’t really be a real breakthrough within Baltimore until 2017, and between 2017 and 2020 is where we’re going to do most of our work. Going into 2016 feels really sluggish. It feels like there’s a lot of change, a lot of changing of the guards. Also people are going to really start to awaken within 2016 to their part and the part that they play, not just [in] their community but inside of the whole of the community of Baltimore. There’s no more living life separately. There’s no more “mine” or “you” or “I.” We have to now begin to function from a “we” standpoint.

Can you sense at all what will inspire that transition in 2017?
It feels like it’ll be a people change, which then leads into an economical change. I’m hearing that Baltimore will be very fruitful again. Right now, we’re not really bearing any fruit. Everything feels very stagnant, very dusty, very dry. So the thing is that it’s going to be a soul awakening, like a soul revival. People are going to awaken to who we are for each other. And then, from that action, is going to spark inside of the political arena. I also hear that there will be a lot of jobs being created in Baltimore, a lot of jobs.