It was after a car accident in 2003 that Brad Surette started seeing things that were not there.
“I had to go see 12 specialists before I could get my licence reinstated because I had passed out while I was driving. I went to many optometrists, surgeons, ophthalmologists and physically there was nothing wrong that would explain why I was seeing these shadows, floaters and bursts of light.”
After myriad of tests and scans on his brain, eyes and nervous system, Surette decided to accept the fact he was seeing “spirit.”
That decision has propelled him to his career as a registered massage therapist, reiki master, Tarot and angel card reader.
The use of angel cards in his spiritual healing methodologies started as a way to combat the negative connotations his clients had to some of the imagery on traditional Tarot cards.
“Angel cards … they are referred to as oracle decks and they’re really good at discerning answers to questions you may already have,” Surette says.
“With the angel cards, I find a lot of the times they make references to chakras, which are energy centres that you focus on in reiki treatments.”
He says the amalgamation of his various areas of expertise is vital in helping his clients with their body, mind and spirit within their everyday lives.
One of his goals is to facilitate his clients away from western medicine ideals that Surette says “often dismiss people with a prescription or recommendation for surgery after diagnosing them with something that fits a very broad spectrum.”
Angel cards are a tool he uses to help discern where the pain, injury or emotional trauma stems from. They identify obstacles facing his clients they might not know are there.
“If I am doing a reading for a client and a [angel] card came up that has a lot of blue on it, that to me represents the throat chakra.” Surette gestures towards his neck and continues.
“That would suggest to me that the person I am reading for isn’t expressing themselves properly or getting to speak their mind.”
Natalie Van Dusen, one of Surette’s regular clients, started seeing him for Angel card readings after losing her father seven years ago.
“The guidance and comfort this reading provided me through the accuracy of the comments from Brad has been immeasurable,” Van Dusen writes through email. “[It] helped shaped decisions and personal goals as I move forward.”
Skeptics, whether in person or in articles like those by Maclean’s “Quackbuster,” Dr. Joe Schwarcz, a professor at McGill University in Montreal, don’t intimidate Surette in the least.
“You know, I’ll get people coming in here and saying “I don’t know if I should be here or at a psychologist,” Surette says with a laugh.
“I’ll never offer spiritual healing if I think they won’t be open to it, because they won’t get anything from it. I do welcome skeptics to come try alternative healing therapies as long as they have an open mind as well.”
Surette intends to help as many people in his community as possible.
Over a decade-long journey has brought him to this point in his life, where he feels he is serving his highest purpose.
“I feel like that’s my purpose for being here, is to offer people a way to separate from their pain.”