Roberts (1929-1984) was an American
author, poet and psychic. She is best
known as a trance medium who
"channelled" an "entity" named Seth.
The publication of the Seth texts
established her as one of the
preeminent figures in the world of
paranormal phenomena. She was also an
author of short stories, novels,
children's literature, and metaphysical
texts unrelated to Seth, including The
Afterdeath Journal of an American
Philosopher, The Education of Oversoul
Seven and Adventures in Consciousness.
In late 1963, Jane Roberts and her
husband, Robert Butts, experimented
with a Ouija board as part of Roberts'
research for a book on ESP.
to Roberts and Butts, on December 2,
1963 they began to receive coherent
messages from a personality who
eventually identified himself as Seth.
Within weeks, Roberts began to hear the
messages in her head and to dictate
them, and the use of the Ouija board
was eventually abandoned. For 21 years
until Roberts' death in 1984 (with a
one-year hiatus due to her final
illness) Roberts held regular sessions
in which she went into a trance and
channelled messages from Seth. Butts
served as stenographer, taking the
messages down in homemade shorthand,
although some sessions were recorded.
These messages from Seth, consisting
mostly of monologues on a wide variety
of topics, are collectively known as
the "Seth Material". The Material
through 1969 was published in summary
form in The Seth Material, which was
written by Jane Roberts with
substantial excerpts from
with the 511th session in January,
1970, Seth began to dictate his own
books through Roberts. This series of
"Seth books" eventually totalled nine
volumes, although the last two books
appear to be incomplete due to Roberts'
illness. The list of titles includes
Seth Speaks; The Nature of Personal
Reality; The Nature of the Psyche, Its
Human Expression; The Individual and
the Nature of Mass Events; The Unknown
Reality; and Dreams, Evolution and
Value Fulfillment. Robert Butts
contributed notes and comments to all
the Seth books, and thus he was a
co-author on all of