Paranormal Investigators: Science Explores The Unknown2
By Jason L. Cooper
“Ghost: The outward and visible sign of an inward fear.” ~ Mark Twain
Every society has its legends of spooks and specters: banshees, Yūrei, chupacabra, el cucuy. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a town in the world without at least one haunted house, road, person, or object. Perhaps it’s because of the all-too-human hope that there is something more to existence than the present world. Perhaps it’s our morbid fascination with all things unusual. Whatever it is, a lot of people believe in ghosts. In the US, 48% of the population believes in ghosts. In the UK, it’s 68%.
Some people are so fascinated with the paranormal, that they spend most of their time trying to prove their existence. Folks have been attempting to communicate with the dead and capture concrete evidence of ghosts long before the classic film Ghostbusters entered the cinematic zeitgeist. And recently, it’s become a pop culture phenomenon.
Because of this, ghost hunting, although an age-old pastime, has become entertainment fodder. Take the series L.A. Paranormal for example. Taking place, as the name would suggest, in the City of Angels, L.A. Paranormal is a fictional (and comedic) take on the world of a group of Paranormal Investigators. Not only do they have to deal with the supernatural but with vapid actors and the trappings of celebrity.
L.A. Paranormal – Extreme Tales of Paranormal Adventure
Conversely, for who are true believers and feel the paranormal adds depth and wisdom to our world, there is the true ghost hunt. Ghost hunting has seen a surge in popularity recently, thanks in no small part to Reality TV. Programs like Ghost Hunters and Paranormal State portray the chase as a spine-tingling good time supported by modern technology, scientists, and investigators. Plus, the intrepid hunters often have the chance to do some good by releasing scared patrons of a ghostly presence. Shows like these, and countless others, make it look like anyone can be a ghost hunter. And if you truly believe, you can. Still, ghost hunting is a discipline. You have to prepare and get educated.
Ghost hunting is, at its most basic level, good old-fashioned detective work. According to ghosthunting101.com, a website I’d highly recommend if you’re considering an adventure like this, a Ghost Hunt involves going to a location where there has been no paranormal activity and trying to catch some using audio or visual equipment. A Ghost Investigation is going to a location where there has been documented super natural activity and investigating further. When a location is believed to be haunted, an investigator, or a team of investigators, will collect evidence of the paranormal. This evidence might consist of audio recording, photographs, or temperature readings. Much like reporters, the investigators will also conduct interviews with those affected by the alleged haunting and attempt to explain the events.
Gathering quality evidence requires the right equipment and training. There are several different tools. Two of the most important are the EMF reader, designed to detect electromagnetic fluctuations in the air, and infrared thermometers, meant to record the changes in temperature presumably caused when a spirit materializes or dematerializes. A more comprehensive list of ghostly accoutrements can be found on sites like TheGhostHunterStore.com or GhostStop.com.
Once you record a paranormal event, then you must qualify it. Though there’s always an exception to the rule, a seasoned ghost hunter will tell you a paranormal event will likely fall into one of two categories. The first is residual haunting. This is basically a replay of an event that happened in the past – an echo or psychic imprint playing over and over on an endless loop. You can witness these but generally cannot interact with them. The other type of haunting is by a ghost, who was once human, trapped here on our earthly plane. This could be because the person does not know that they are dead or because they are trapped, bound by feelings of unfinished business or guilt. These ghosts can be good or bad or indifferent, and you never quite know how it will go when attempting to connect with them.
Ghost hunting is not a science. Though scientific methods are often utilized, most skeptics will contend that these methods are not properly implemented. And since science cannot confirm the existence of ghosts, ghost hunting can be considered only, at best, a pseudoscience – an upstart, ragtag field of study that is confusing, fun, creepy, and ultimately without definitive answers. Still, that doesn’t stop the thousands of burgeoning hunters from honing their skills and searching for the truth.
L.A. Paranormal – Extreme Tales of Paranormal Adventure, Part 2
L.A. Paranormal – Exorcising Your Demons
Jason L. Cooper is a writer who ain’t afraid a’ no ghosts. Additionally, bustin’ makes him feel good.