A teenager when he discovered his special gift – seeing and sharing people’s messages from their guardian angels – Kyle Gray is now an expert on celestial connections and has the following (not to mention three-year waiting list) to prove it, discovers Eimear O’Hagan.
Kyle Gray was 15 when he first saw an angel. One appeared to him as he was giving an angel card reading to a fellow guest at a party in his hometown of Greenock, Inverclyde.
‘I’d only been reading the cards for a few months after receiving a set for my birthday,’ he remembers. ‘A guy at a barbecue asked me to read for him and, as I did, a being appeared in front of me. It was in human form but bathed in brilliant, pure light.
‘I began to hear in my mind very specific messages for this man – the angel told me he was a survivor and was here for a reason. I’d never met the guy before that night, but I later learned he’d tried to take his own life several times and each time had been saved.’
With his cropped haircut, tattooed arms and chest, plus a penchant for streetwear, 33-year-old Kyle doesn’t fit the clichéd image of a mystic. However, he’s an author seven times over and, with an Instagram following of more than 89,000, has become widely acknowledged as one of the UK’s foremost angel experts. And at a time when one in three Brits believes in guardian angels, there are plenty of people who are keen to hear what he has to say.
Angels were traditionally believed to be the heavenly messengers of God but times have changed and, according to Kyle, how each person visualises their guardian angel can differ. ‘Older generations often have a very typical celestial image of an angel, whereas my younger followers perceive them as universal cosmonauts.’ For Kyle, angels are personal: ‘There are no rules but what is common is the belief that they’re a force for good in our life. Each of us has a guardian angel – they’re the best friend you’ve ever had, know you like no one else and only want the best for you.
‘I see them, both in my mind’s eye while meditating and in real life, always bathed in light. They speak to me through my inner voice – something we all have – giving me messages for myself and others.’ If you don’t believe Kyle, he’s OK with that. With a three-year waiting list for a private reading, who could blame him for being nonchalant about sceptics?
‘I take an unapologetic approach to my work. If someone asks what I do, I’ll tell them I talk to angels and teach others to speak to them too. Some people want to know more, others raise their eyebrows. I’ve even been called a scammer, but I never feel embarrassed. Why would I? I’m not here to force this down anyone’s throat.’ Instead, Kyle’s mission is to help open the lines of communication between those who do believe – or even people who are just curious – and their spiritual companions.
Earlier this month he released his own deck of cards called The Angel Guide Oracle. Described on his website as a ‘bridge between heaven and earth’, Kyle says angel cards differ from tarot by not containing negative cards or purporting to have predictive qualities. ‘Angel readings are for inspiration; they help align the mind and point out what is great in you, your strengths and what you can do to overcome the challenges you’re facing.’ Each card has a keyword message and meaning, including ‘Divine Timing’ or ‘Blessings and Abundance’, and are a ‘cosmic telephone line’ through which we hear our guardian angel.
‘Whether you read for daily inspiration or because you’ve something you need help with, your angel is helping you select your cards. They are guiding you to the cards that hold the answers for you,’ says Kyle.
Kyle traces his journey into the spiritual world back to his early childhood. ‘I was four when my grandmother appeared to me in my bedroom the night she passed away in hospital. The next morning when my mum Diane broke the news to me that she’d died, I just couldn’t understand. I’d seen her at my bedside.
‘As I got older, I’d see spirits in my bedroom at night. Once, I went with my mum to a friend’s home where I sat patting their dog, which no one else could see because it had died years before. If I walked into a room and someone was sad, I could immediately sense that and would start crying.
‘My grandmother used to host seances and her mother read tea leaves so my family were open-minded. I didn’t grow up feeling any of this was particularly strange.’
Kyle, who’s gay, says it was his teenage struggle with his identity and sexuality that led him deeper into spiritual practices and, ultimately, to angels. ‘I became interested in crystals and meditation; I definitely wasn’t your typical teenage boy.
‘I was trying to figure out who I was. When I was 14, a family friend who practised reiki told me about angels. She read my cards – and that was a defining moment. I chose the Synchronicity card – that told me life would line up in a perfect sequence and unfold. I was intrigued but still didn’t know if I believed in angels. I decided to ask for help, I suppose as a way of proving or not to myself whether there was something to all of this.’
After suffering from an auto-immune condition as a toddler, Kyle had been left with a permanent headache for which painkillers had little effect. ‘I said to myself, “If angels are real, heal my headache.” The next morning, I woke up and my head didn’t feel as heavy. As the day went on, I felt the pain fade away completely.
‘I still look back and wonder, was it my guardian angel or a placebo effect? All I know is something happened after I made that request. That really started me on the journey to where I am today.’
Kyle began reading for his mother’s friends and teachers at school, and word quickly spread that he was the ‘guy who talks to angels’. ‘I found a community quite quickly, mainly older women, who also believed. But I got a hard time too. People would mock me in the street. I increased in confidence though. I’d been quite an unsettled teen but as my interest in angels grew, I felt calmer. I’d found my purpose.’
Aged 17, Kyle was dubbed Britain’s youngest medium, landing him an appearance on the ITV show Soapstar Superstar in 2006 as an ‘angel whisperer’ where he’d give predictions as to who would win. However, it was a private angel reading in 2010 which really propelled his career.
‘I was reading for a woman and the angels told her, through me, that she had a sister in Coney Island, New York. The woman was very confused but went away and did some research, discovering her mother had delivered a stillborn baby, but in those days the baby’s body was taken away and never seen. It transpired the baby had actually been illegally adopted, sold to a family from Coney Island. The woman traced her lost sister and the story made the papers.’
The following year Kyle left his career in events to focus on his angel work, which today includes everything from penning bestselling books to a dedicated YouTube channel where he shares his spiritual tips.
For Kyle, angels are part of daily life. ‘I read the cards every day. Angels are my first port of call whether things are going right or wrong in my life. I’ve asked them to delay flights for me when I’ve been late – and they have – and when my mum was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago, I asked them for guidance as to the treatment she should have. They give me signs they’re around. For example, I often walk into rooms and the light will flicker on and off or the bulb will blow, or I’ll find a feather – often thought to be a sign an angel is near – in a place where there just shouldn’t be one. If I see the time 11.11 on a clock, it’s widely believed in spiritual circles that means an angel is in the room.’
Kyle is regularly contacted by people from around the world who also firmly believe they’ve encountered an angel.
‘One woman wrote to me to tell me about walking home alone on a dark night, terrified because a man was following her. She whispered to her guardian angel for protection and suddenly a figure appeared, walking beside her until the man was gone. As she turned to thank him, he’d vanished.
‘Another was driving behind a truck and kept hearing a voice telling her to pull over. She ignored it but it became more insistent until she pulled over, seconds before the truck’s heavy load spilled loose into the lane she’d just been in.’
Kyle’s popularity has grown in line with our ever-increasing fascination with all things otherworldly, from astrology and witchcraft to angels. ‘People are looking for a depth that’s often missing from modern life,’ he says. ‘They want the longevity of a belief in something beyond material possessions. My typical followers used to be women who were 40-plus – now my audience is both women and men and ranges from students to pensioners, yoga practitioners to professionals.
‘Everyone has a guardian angel. They don’t discriminate based on age, wealth, race. No matter your lifestyle, everyone can connect with theirs.’
How to talk to your angel…
Ask for a sign
‘I call it the angel test,’ says Kyle. Try saying, ‘Thank you, angels, for reminding me of your presence’ then wait. You might find a feather, have a strong sense you’re not alone in a room, or hear someone say the word angel.
Make time for your angel
Set time aside every day to meditate and speak to your angel out loud or in internal dialogue. Read your cards daily to hear your angel through the messages they contain.
Learn the lingo
When saying an angel prayer never say ‘please’, instead say ‘thank you’. For example, ‘Thank you for helping me with this difficult situation at work, angels.’ When you request something, you’re pointing out that it’s not there. If you say thank you, you can step into the belief that it’s possible.
The Angel Guide Oracle by Kyle Gray is published by Hay House, price £15.99. Order a copy for £10.99 until 11 October at whsmith.co.uk by entering the code YOUANGEL at the checkout. Book number: 9781788173612*.