February 20, 2010
The field of paranormal research has changed drastically in the past five years. Since the rise of the TV shows, the SPIRITS has had to alter the way it does investigations. This is due, in part, to those who are inexperienced in the field who utilize what is learned on television in researching the area. As 2010 draws to a close, we would like to point out reason why individuals should not do investigations without the aid of experienced and trustworthy teams.
This year alone, the SPIRITS has encountered a rise in cases where home owners have investigated their own property. In some, residents have brought in friends who have an interest, but no experience, to do a "ghost hunt". Others have tried to research the ghost themselves, even buying equipment as seen on TV programs. In some cases, this causes an undue rise in fear. On at least one case this year, we were called in by a home owner bordering on hysteria that a demon was in her house. In another case, where cooler heads prevailed, the home owner had come up with an entire saga of the ghost's earthly demise, and expected the SPIRITS to come up with the same information. In another case, the home owner claimed that the entity got more violent after her friends, who were not on a paranormal team, investigated the home.
In these cases, the team often finds the home owner ready and willing to share information on the haunting at inappropriate times. We request through our form, through the phone interview, and when we arrive on the property that the home owner NOT share information with the team. One person is designated to deal with the information and, provided the case is not one that threatens the safety of the team, none of that information is shared. To keep home owners focused, the contact person sits with them while the rest of the team continues to investigate the house in an objective manner. However, even this does not always work as eager residents continue to talk about the case even after multiple explanations of the SPIRITS' protocol.
How is information distorted? Some who are new to the field may misread the instruments, or do not understand how the instruments work. As an example, EMF meters register energy emissions. These include garage doors, a/c units, computers, fish tanks, and radios, which often put out a lot of electromagnetic energy. However, powerlines and shifting EM fields, particularly found at night when electricity is more in demand with the family at home, can also produce interference with EMF meters. Some forms of the very equipment used in paranormal investigation also, in fact, puts off EM. Those who are not experienced can misread the data provided.
Suggestion is also a factor. The human mind is driven by belief, and belief can be altered by suggestion. Religion, culture, and heritage can affect how an individual feels about paranormal phenomena. Television, again, distorts the truth by focusing on specific types of cases, often those which are classifed as hostile haunts. If the home owner is familiar with the television shows and has attempted to self-diagnose, then they tend to view their information via the lens of the show watched. If this is in the mind of the home owner, then anything done by the potential ghost is suspect.
With these factors combined, we have found that home owners can misdiagnose what is going on in their own home. We have had several panicked requests for help with a demonic entity. What we have found is that the entity is not "demonic" nor even hostile, as reported by the home owner. It can be angry or somewhat negative, but in many cases it is not nearly to the level described. Other cases show that the ghost is not hostile at all, but merely seeks attention and affirmation.
How can these cases be prevented? If someone suspects activity on a premises, the best advice is to contact an experienced paranormal team. The role of these teams is to be objective and honest with the home owner. Some teams may work to rid a property of a ghost if they are requested to do so. Yet, it is the outside perspective, one that is calm, that can best aid in these incidents. Experienced investigators have been in the field; they often have a better understanding of what is happening and what to do in the case of an actual haunting.
7:39 Heard a howling or whistling noise in the living room. Attempted recording. (failed recording)
Discussion for review:
Garage/spare room: Light bulb blew as we went in; home owner reports that this is rare.
Second walk through:
MA bedroom: totally different than what was here before. It has gone up into an attic….
Something about the garage; something moved or disturbed.
5 feet 8 inches
Something being lifted from the cabinet and removed from the area. He did not like it. Big and heavy.
White arms; object was metallic or heavy…closed fist lift.
Home owner’s discussion:
House has been in the family for 3 generations. Belonged to his grandfather, father, and current home owner. Grandfather was in WWII; not very communicative; didn’t like company.
They had a small dog here. It was really nice to them; anyone else it was vicious. It was a light brown and white color. It did belong to the home owner’s grandfather.
Grandfather was about 5 foot 8.
Shadow manifested in the bedroom for the home owners; in the hall, corner of the MA bedroom. Also, one time, male home owner was sleeping on the couch and watching TV. In the reflection of the cabinet they saw a shadow that flew behind them and to the door, then disappeared.
One night, the dog was sitting and very focused on the corner of the bedroom wall.
When the daughter visits, she sees the shadow as well. She insists on sleeping with the light on.
Grandmother passed in the house, in the MA bedroom, died of heart attack. Died Jan. 16, 1996; 76 years old.
Grandfather passed in the MA bedroom, had cancer but died in his sleep. Noted that the man had a lot of projects.
Original mattress of the grandparents where they died.
Two back doors open on their own; have heard footsteps, strange wind sound is heard.
While sitting in the house, doors opened on their own.
While sitting in the house, the TV came on in the bedroom -- full blast. No one in there when it happened.
Home owner form:
1. Have you experienced any of the following? Please check all that apply.
Unusual dreams: Dreams have long been considered a "liminal," or thresh hold, state. Since ancient times, humans have reported dreams with deceased family, friends, and even strangers. At times, messages are conveyed to the sleeping person, often verified as correct when the dreamer awakens. This may or may not relate to the subconscious mind.
Lucid dreams: Dreams where you realize you are dreaming and/or take control of the dream
Premonitions (future events), clairvoyance (sensing or knowing things that are going on in the present at an entirely different location), or retro cognition (seeing events that took place in the past)
2. *If animals are in the vicinity, have they been observed (check all that apply):
Acting strangely (in manners not typical of normal behavior)
Follow unseen movement with its eyes
growling when no one is in the room while focusing on one area.
3. Do you experience any of the following?
Seeing a shadow/shadowy figure(s).
Peripheral vision manifestations. (Individuals see movements out of the corner of the eye, turn to look and find there is nothing there).
Full manifestation of an entity.
Cold drafts or cold spots found only in a certain location(Barring drafts created by the a/c or heating units, fans, and windows).
Moving cold or hot spots in the house.
Unusual drafts or air movement that cannot be explained by the a/c or typical air patterns within the building.
The abnormal behavior of lights or doors.
Do you hear any unusual sounds in the house
Do you hear popping, swishing, rustling or sizzling sounds
Discomfort or an uncomfortable feeling in a particular room or at a particular time for an unknown reason?
The sensation of being watched when no one is present?
A sensation of peace/love/comfort directed to you from an unknown source?
Other (please specify)
smelling of perfume
4. Do you experience any anomalous health conditions? If so, what are they?
5. To your knowledge, did any of the following events happen on the property?
Natural death(s) on the property
6. When was your house built? Have you recently remodeled or refurbished the house? If so, when?
1940's? we just finished repainting before christmas (2009) & a new roof in the summer(2009).
7. Is there any other phenomena that you have experienced that we did not ask you about? If so, please list and describe.
shadows, events happening outside home, flickering of lights, mist in random places, smelling of perfume, cold spots/chills.
8. A time line of paranormal activity is immensely helpful. Please note as much information as possible, including dates, times, events, who was present, and what happened.
ive had experiences since i was a child. probably 5-ish. but these events have occurred within about the last month, my fiance and i both have experienced them.
2. What equipment did you use on this investigation?
Audio recording devices
3. What phenomena did you experience on this investigation? (Please check all that apply)
Electrical phenomena (lights, equipment acting up)
4. In review of the footage, recording, or photographs taken at the location, which of the following did you find? (Please check all that apply)
Nothing that cannot be explained naturally
My film has not yet been developed.
5. What technical observations did you note during the investigation? For purposes of categorizing data, please post your first name, followed by your response.
The Paranormal Puck did not pick up anything unusual. EVPs were relatively clean. There is an unusual sound at the start of the third EVP, but I believe that it is someone speaking in the background.
6. What sensitive observations did you note during the investigation? For purposes of categorizing data, please post your first name, followed by your response.
None, really, on a personal level. I did observe that the sensitives on the team managed to nail this investigation, esp. as equipment produced only small to no responses. Very impressed with that.
7. What researched/historical information did you learn about this location? For purposes of categorizing data, please post your first name, followed by your response.
The home belonged to the current home owner's grandfather. Grandfather and grandmother passed away in the home. Grandfather was a tinkerer, a quiet man who did not like company. Home owners have seen a shadow figure in the hall, in the MA bedroom, and the daughter has also seen the figure looking in at her, but not entering the room. Based on all that the sensitives picked up -- prior home owner, white, concerned with the property and what was going on with the changes (home owners did confirm that they have made quite a few changes), 5 foot 8 in height, not wanting to communicate with us (a quiet individual who didn't like company) and confirmation on the areas of energy/once areas occupied in life seem to peg this investigation exactly. The grandfather is watching over the home and his grandson.
8. Rate the level of perceived haunted activity of this location. 1 represents no activity, 5 moderate activity and 10 represents extreme activity.
9. What issues does the review team need to address with the occupant (homeowner, business owner, resident)? What aspects of the investigation need to be re-addressed, retested, or clarified?
We did hear a howling sound in the living room. Homeowners did note that the sound is heard all over the house sometimes, but no one can pinpoint what it is or where it comes from. We could not identify the source or what the sound was. The best description is like the sound of wind blowing over a glass jug, but there was no wind that night.
10. Is there any other information that you would like to add about this investigation? For purposes of categorizing data, please post your first name, followed by your response.