The Living vs. The Dead

Screen Shot 2014-10-11 at 1.23.23 PMWe, at Paranormal Georgia Investigations, don’t consider ourselves to be “parapsychologists,” mainly because we don’t study telepathy, precognition, clairvoyance, psychokinesis, near-death experiences, or reincarnation. Since we only study and explore apparitional experiences and other supernatural or paranormal claims, we prefer to call ourselves paranormal investigators or paranormal researchers. But, at times, we do feel that we are psychologists more so than paranormal investigators. Why? Well, I’m about to tell you a secret that many in the paranormal community don’t want you to know. Are you ready? OK. Come in close and I’ll whisper it to you.

Investigating the paranormal is more about the living than it is the dead.

Yes. You heard it here first. It’s all true. What we do is more of a study, an understanding, of the reactions of the living to the dead. Yeah, sure, we attempt to communicate with the spirits of people who have passed on, we try to capture them on audio and/or video. We are always after that “Holy Grail” of evidence, a full-body apparition that appears, acknowledges the camera, and disappears. To be able to capture that, prove what it is, and share it with the world? It’s every paranormal investigator’s dream.

But, honestly, what we mostly do is help people cope with what is happening to them and most of the time what is happening to them is not as bad as they make it out to be.

Our reality is what we make of it. Barring any mental illness which requires medication, our personal world is colored by our perceptions of it. My joy for rainy days allows me to see the beauty of a cloudy sky, the wet pavement, and the heavy, moist smell of the air. For someone who hates rainy days, they would see only ugliness in such a day. The paranormal is a lot like that. Where we, as people who seek out the unseen, find excitement in communicating with someone who has died, others aren’t so excited at the prospect. Many are confused and most are down-right scared witless.

The activity at my home is all audible in nature. I’ve heard my name called out, I’ve heard a voice mimicking mine, I’ve heard someone coughing when no one is in the house but me, and I typically either tell whatever is there that I hear it and go on about my day, or I ignore it. It all depends if my kids are nearby or not. But, I don’t let it get to me and I don’t make a big deal out of it. As paranormal investigators, we find that those people who accept the paranormal activity in their homes and function normally in spite of it can better emotionally accept that said activity occurring is OK.

Yep. You read me right. It’s OK that Uncle Bob continues to walk up and down the stairs even though he died ten years ago. Let’s take a moment to look at one of my favorite statistics. The Population Reference Bureau site has a nifty article about How Many People Have Ever Lived On Earth? The number they estimate as of 2011?

107,602,707,791

Just let that sink in a little and realize that we’re constantly surprised that not every single home on this planet isn’t haunted. Over 100 billion lives have walked and talked and lived and loved and died on this planet. It’s a number that many of us cannot fathom. People die every day and not all souls remain behind, but a good number do and what we need to remember is that existing side-by-side with those who have passed on is more common than we think. Rather than think of activity in your home as extraordinary, we need to see it as more ordinary, more normal than paranormal.

I guess if we all start thinking like that, PGI would become NGI, Normal Georgia Investigations. And our calls would trickle to nothing, and we, as a group, would cease to exist.

This fear of paranormal activity in our homes and businesses stems directly, I think, from our species-wide fear of death. If NONE of us feared death and what may or may not happen afterwards, I don’t think any of us would fear the footsteps on the stairs or the touch on the shoulder. The shadows outside the door would be something to accept and the voices in the next room would be a pleasant reminder of what is to come, not a sound to fear.

We all need to remember that death is a part of life, and so as we will all someday die, so do we need to realize that sometimes our lives intersect with that veiled after-realm and that it’s OK to accept the paranormal.

Posted in experiences, investigators | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Our Halloween Gift to You… EVIDENCE!

Well, we have an amazing piece of evidence to share with all of you on this wonderful Halloween day! We’ve been saving this one until today and hope you enjoy!

This video clip was taken during an investigation last month in the suburban Atlanta area. The client has several things happening at her house, one of which is picture frames which move on this one particular filing cabinet. She will walk through the house and a picture frame will be faced one way and later, it will be moved to a different spot or turned. She couldn’t explain it and that activity, along with several other things happening, compelled her to call us.

As per usual, our investigators attempted to debunk the claims of activity. In the case of the filing cabinet, we placed picture frames and several other objects on top of the cabinet and walked heavily past it, tromped through the room, jumped around, opened and closed doors forcefully, did everything we could the budge the items on the top of the cabinet using vibrations and air pressure changes. Nothing worked. So, we set up our REM pod on top of the filing cabinet and focused one of our infrared cameras on the REM pod and began our investigation.

The following statement about the activity comes from Jeremy, our Assistant Tech Manager, who discovered this clip:

This evidence was captured during one of our recent investigations. I was preparing the investigation video when I noticed something interesting. When I was in the editing program, I placed the mouse cursor over the video clip presented here, and when you do that it provides a preview of the video at an accelerated rate. Well, when this was viewed, I noticed that over a span of 20 minutes, our REM pod moves from right to left. It was not being touched, it was not being pulled. The client was not in the home and we investigators were together in a separate room. The REM pod was set on top of a filing cabinet in an area of the home where picture frames have been reported to move and to our knowledge, there was no noticeable slope of the cabinet. In addition, the other two items on the cabinet (a K2 meter and a computer hard drive) did not move during this time span. We present the video to you in it’s “sped up” state so that you can notice the movement.

At the end of the clip, you will see Jeremy move the REM pod. That’s because after it moved across the cabinet (unbeknownst to our investigators) the REM pod started going off, meaning it was making noise and lighting up, indicating that something was disturbing it’s EM field. It did this for several minutes, so Jeremy entered the room to reset it, not knowing it had just moved of its own accord across the filing cabinet.

So, I present to you our best evidence to date of paranormal activity. Enjoy and please, feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments! We have scheduled a follow-up investigation with the client and we hope to either further debunk this activity or capture it again on camera, which will just solidify her claims of paranormal activity.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in equipment, video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A Review of “Ghosts From the Ground Up, Field Notes of a Ghost Miner”

Ghosts From The Ground UpHi, everyone! Heather here! Clint Brownlee, our investigator and sensitive-extraordinaire, is back with an awesome book review! Our whole team had the honor of meeting Patrick Doyle, star of SyFy channel’s “Ghost Mine.” He’s a great guy, an awesome investigator, and now author. Enjoy!

Ghosts From the Ground Up, Field Notes of a Ghost Miner is a well-written book that is easy to read and contains about 200 pages. It was a fairly fast read and I was able to finish it in two evenings of reading. It is well-printed with a good size text to help some of us that are a little sight-challenged.

I purchased the book from Mr. Doyle at DragonCon and he was kind enough to sign it for me. He was a pleasure to talk to and we seem to share similar ideas about the paranormal. When I purchased the book I made the assumption that it was going to be full of stories about the events that happened to him and the rest of the crew on Ghost Mine. Turns out, I made an incorrect assumption. While it does contain some descriptions of some of the events that took place while filming Ghost Mine, the meat of the book is dedicated to Mr. Doyle’s take on popular and not so popular theories about the existence and cause of paranormal activity. It is full of questions, questions that we as investigators should be asking ourselves. He mentions “Stone Tape Theory” in the book and gives a brief description. I have to say that I like it. He also discusses “Time Slip Theory,” which I was not familiar with, but he breaks down the theory in an easy to understand way with an illustration. Mr. Doyle also discusses his past as a paranormal investigator and the reason he got started on this adventure.

This was a good, quick read that made me think about some of the things we do as paranormal investigators and what we should be doing. If we continue to ask questions and use new tools and theories, then maybe one day we will find the answers we are all seeking. If we are all not getting anywhere with the tools we currently have, then maybe it’s time to rock the boat and develop some new tools. If you are an investigator or on a team that is stuck in a rut, doing the same thing every time you go out, then maybe you should read this book to help you start asking questions again.

Book Review Disclaimer: I am writing this review of my own free will. Mr. Doyle didn’t pay me with money or promises of haunted mine adventures. I just felt like highlighting an awesome book for this blog. No FTC disclosures needed.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in books | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Paranormal Sensitives Don’t Always Cry

Hello, everyone! Heather here! Today’s post comes straight from our very own Charter Member, Past Director, investigator, and sensitive, Clint Brownlee. Enjoy!

Sensitive? What, you cry a lot or something?

No, I don’t cry a lot or get weepy-eyed at television commercials, but the occasional hug is OK.

So I’m “sensitive.” What does that mean to paranormal investigators? Well, it depends on who you ask and since I am writing this, let’s pretend you asked me.

Am I a psychic? No, not at all. I do not do readings, or talk to your dead relatives, or communicate with the other side through spirit guides or guardian angels. Well, at least I don’t think I do.

What do I do? I do what everyone else does. The main difference is that I pay attention to what I feel and I vocalize it or write it down. I feel energy, at least I think I do, and I say what I feel. We all have the ability, but many people have “turned off” their sixth sense. It is that intuition, or gut feeling that you get. Lots of people follow their gut feeling and it serves them well. There is a reason we have these feelings and I think they are to protect us. How many times have you looked at a person and got that creepy feeling that something was just not right and you decided to remove yourself from the area as rapidly as possible. Think of it as an early warning system. It’s the same thing as meeting a person for the first time and within the first five seconds or so, you know if you like them or not and you can’t explain why. They may feel that same way or they may not. This is something that we all have and with practice it can be enhanced. Well, maybe not enhanced, but you can be taught to recognize, vocalize, or otherwise acknowledge what you feel.

What have I done to better realize what I feel? Nothing that I know of. It has sort of just always been that way. I think it became even stronger when I was a firefighter because going with your gut feeling tended to produce better outcomes in the field. It could be anything from “feeling” like we are about to get a bad call to “feeling” the energy of people on an emergency scene and knowing if something is about to go sideways on you. I think most police officers and firefighters have tuned into their intuition or “gut feeling” because they rely on it to survive in the field. How many crimes are solved because the detective had a “hunch” or “gut feeling” about the suspect or the victim? These feelings lead to searching for the right clues and evidence. As paranormal investigators it would be smart to pay attention to those gut feelings, you never know if they will lead you to a room where you catch the best EVP you have ever caught.

How do I use this so called “sensitivity” while investigating? Generally I will go into a location without any prior knowledge of the case. After the lead investigator and tech manager do their walk-through with the client, I will do a walk-through of the location and make written notes about what I feel and where. If another sensitive is there for the investigation, they will do the same and we will compare notes. I would say that we usually match up about 80% to 85% of the time on what we each feel. If there is only one sensitive on the team then they share their notes with the team lead and compare them with the client’s claims. Sometimes we use these feelings to help guide the investigation through questioning or through investigating an area that may normally be overlooked.

What is it that I feel? Energy, I think. That’s what I really think it is, perhaps it is the vibration of that energy, but I guess no one really knows. I do feel the energy of the living nearly as often as that of whatever else it is out there. Sometimes it is hard to separate the two and I sometimes find it difficult when the location is more modern. I have sat on a client’s bed and become physically ill with stomach pains and as soon as I got up, the pain was gone. I sat down again the same thing happened. I asked the other sensitive to try it and she too had the same experience. At the end of the investigation we asked the client if she had been sick or anything and she then told us that she had stomach cancer and had several surgeries and other treatments. It is rare that I see a spirit. I usually create an image in my mind of what they look like based on the energy that I feel. Usually I can feel the gender and an approximate age, but there is no way to really tell if I am correct or not. I feel emotional energy too: happy, sad, angry, etc. Sometimes this gets clouded with the energy of those who are living and occupying the location. Sometimes their energy is the only energy in the house and they are really just causing their own problems. They may feel suffocated and oppressed in their home because they live a cluttered and chaotic life and their home is full of clutter and is disorganized without harmony. Cleanup your environment and that would all change.

Judge or Judge not? Over the years I have used this skill to judge the character of people that I meet. It is hard not to judge others, but let’s face reality here. We all judge each other on some level. I think I feel the vibrations that a person’s energy gives off and if that vibration is not in a frequency that I am tuned in to, then I will usually keep my guard up and put distance between us. It could be physical distance or emotional. It just depends on what I feel I need in order to protect myself, my family, and my friends. At some point this can become a problem and I have just not even given some people a chance to prove themselves, but every time I do let someone have a chance to prove themselves, I usually end up being right. The overwhelming majority of people give off good vibes and the ones that cause me to keep my distance are pretty few and far between

What now? I feel like I have really just opened the first door on being able to really recognize what I am feeling and being able to be confident enough to vocalize it. That’s a lot of it right there, being confident enough to vocalize it. I know there are more doors that can be opened to learn new skills and ways of seeing, but at the moment I am fine where I am and maybe when I am ready, I may start the journey of opening up more doors.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in investigators, sensitives | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What is the Paranormal Data Collective?

I know you’re all wondering, “What the heck is The Paranormal Data Collective?” Well, we’re VERY excited to tell you all about it and hopefully have you be a part of it!

The Paranormal Data Collective is an idea that we have kicked around for several years. Since our inception in 2009, we felt there had to be a way to break down each of our investigations into raw external data points, meaning outside the EVPs, full-body apparitions, or objects moving, what is happening in the location’s environment during the investigations? What’s the weather like? How about solar flare activity? How many women were in the house during the investigation? Men? Dogs? Cats? Is the client taking any medication? We started breaking down our interviews and final reports into these data points with the ultimate goal of someday being able to track trends that may happen during our investigations.

But, we can’t do it alone. We would need decades to collect this information, performing investigations weekly, maybe even daily. And we just can’t do that. You know how it is. Sometimes, paranormal investigative/research groups are lucky to investigate once a month.

We realized that if we could get other groups to participate, to share their data with each other, that we, as a community, could collect the data faster. Not only that, but maybe through scientific cooperation, our paranormal community can be taken seriously by the greater scientific community.

What we’re asking everyone to do is share. We’re not asking you to publish the names, addresses, ages, or employment statuses of your clients. We’re asking everyone to collect the anonymous data relating to your investigations. And we’re asking you to share it with other groups if you’re asked to do so. And we’re asking you to give credit to other groups if they share with you and you publish the findings.

That’s it. That’s all there is to it.

Unlike the paranormal community, the scientific community shares all the time. “Look!” shouts the one scientist, “I’ve created energy via cold fusion!”

“Really?” queries the second scientist, “Let me see your notes and try to replicate that.”

If the second scientist can do it, then it’s free energy for everyone and a published paper and world fame for the first scientist! If the second scientist can’t replicate the experiment, then it’s back to the drawing board for the first scientist. The paranormal community doesn’t do that. We don’t investigate a client’s house and ask a second group to come in and try to capture the same evidence. And that is something we should do.

Since not every client wants multiple investigations in their home and not every area has multiple paranormal groups, this is the next best thing. By collecting raw data from groups across the country, we can maximize our results in a very short period of time, as well as foster cooperation that will put us closer on the path of true experimentation within our community.

This right here is #ParaUnity. The Paranormal Data Collective is more than a meaningless hashtag. It’s real science. And you can be part of it.

Make sure you visit The Paranormal Data Collective site to get an idea of what we’re doing. Then, go over to the Who Are the Members of the Collective to see who is participating. Once you’re ready to join, click over to How Do You Join? and fill out the form to give us your group’s contact information. Then, finally, pay a visit to Where Do I Go To Get Started? to see what sites we use to collect some of our data.

Happy investigating and happy collecting!

Posted in cases, general, research, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Paranormal Teams and Their “Demonologist”

Hey, everyone! Heather here. The following post has been written by PGI friend, Craig Gauss. A little bit about Craig from his self-written bio: “I’ve been interested in spooks and spectres pretty much all my life.  I used to be scared to death of the unknown, now I find it fascinating.  I founded SpookyDudes Paranormal Investigations after catching the investigation bug.  I absolutely love to work with others and to learn different ideas and techniques.  Thanks to my interest in the paranormal, I have met some amazing people, been to some amazing places, and it sparked my love of photography.  All in all I’m just another paranormal enthusiast, everything from ghosts, UFOs, cryptozoology, and the variety of people and places that come along with it all. I find all the facets of the paranormal world very interesting.”

Enjoy Craig’s post!

This seems to be a common theme nowadays and personally, myself and MANY others, don’t think it is a good one!

** <insert Name> our Demonlogist **

SWEET! So you have someone that has self-proclaimed themselves as an expert in Demonology and is ready to deal with Demons (Defined in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as, a) an evil spirit; b) a source or agent of evil, harm, distress, or ruin.)

First off, the words demon and demonic seem to be thrown around all the time. When did everything bad become demonic? There are a couple million people that are just plain a-holes, pissed off or negative. Isn’t it completely possible that if you are an a-hole, pissed off, or overly negative in life, you would also be that in death? Someone who throws tantrums or throws stuff around when they are upset would most likely take that behavior/energy with them.

BUT WAIT! Something growled at me. Something talked to me in a negative tone. Something scratched me. Something threw something at me. So how does any of this prove there is something evil in the air? We have ZERO knowledge of what we are indeed dealing with. Could it be a whole truckload of demons looking up from Hell? Sure…. but don’t you think if that were the case that there are hundreds of thousands of people they could easily possess? There is already so much evil in the world. Could it be someone in death that just wants to mess with the living? Could it be aliens and that is the only way they can communicate? Could it be some self-inflicted issue that is conjured by your own mind? Could it be the war cry of Bigfoot riding the Loch Ness Monster?

So how does one become an expert in this? Did you read a bunch of books? Did you watch a bunch of movies? Did you “train” with someone? Did you watch one of the TV shows and thought it would be neat to get into this?

I know in the Roman Catholic Church, one can be ordained as an Exorcist, but beyond that maybe I am unaware, there is no other way for someone to become truly recognized as someone ready to deal with evil.

The very first paranormal conference that I attended, I listened to a presentation done by someone who has dealt with the Church and evil. Much of the presentation scared the ever living sh!t out of all attendees. Was this just for the shock factor? No, it was information that needed to be passed on so people knew what in the heck they might be getting into.

At another event I was lucky enough to see a video of a real exorcism. Sure it was interesting to see some things that looked like modern day special effects but there was no way they could have been done in the time of the video and it is nothing that was pleasant to see.

After both of those presentations here are some key questions:

  • Do you really have any idea what you may be messing with?
  • Do you really want to take on the risk of the things that might come with messing with this stuff?
  • Are you ready to deal with this stuff for life?

Obviously it takes a special person for the Church to ordain someone as an Exorcist and from what I hear they don’t openly talk about the whole thing nor do they hand out the “title” like candy. This isn’t something you can start dabbling in and then just walk away.

So why do teams think they need to have a “demonologist” on staff? There are people out there who have made the decision in life to deal with this sort of stuff. If you talk to them they will tell you, with conviction, they know what they are sacrificing. I don’t think a lot of the people who have given themselves this title have really looked at everything besides the “cool” title. Speaking to someone that has been ordained as an Exorcist, this is also something they have never been called in for. The cases…. that evil… luckily are few and far between.

There are people that have been dealing with this for YEARS, people who have fully accepted the responsibilities and results of dealing with the demonic, people who should be contacted regarding these sorts of cases.  If legions of demons are trying to claw their way out of hell and get into this world, do we really need to lend a hand by having a bunch of uninformed and uneducated people dabbling in this stuff? I don’t think so.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in inhuman | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Paranormal Problem: Why Skepticism Is Important to Paranormal Research

Hey, everyone! Heather here. Ryan is one of our newest investigators-in-training and has hit the ground running with this wonderful blog post. He is one of our team skeptics who is always looking for evidence of the paranormal and debunking anything that isn’t. He keeps the rest of us honest. Enjoy his first post!

Imagine, if you will, that you are walking down a dark hallway in an abandoned building. You are alone and yet you feel the overwhelming presence of another person in the room. Moments later, an unseen force rushes into your body and knocks you flat on the floor. Anyone who knows a thing or two about ghosts will be quick to tell you that you just hit the motherload when it comes to experiencing a haunting. And THAT, dear reader, is the problem with paranormal research.

You see, given the facts from the above scenario, it would be hard for anyone to disagree that you had a paranormal experience. However, to attribute the experience to a ghost is a logical fallacy, and it would hold just as much merit to say that you were knocked down by an invisible beam from outer space. The reality of the situation is that you now have proof that something unexplained happened and it is now your duty as a researcher to uncover the true nature of the phenomena.

Unfortunately, researchers too often lose sight of that objectivity. Personal experiences may be enough to convince them of the existence of ghosts (or whatever paranormal phenomena float your particular boat), but the lack of repeatable experiences makes it impossible to present them as scientific evidence. Thus, we often find ourselves in the business of “proving.” We have faith in our experiences and attempt to collect enough data to make a case for objectively proving to the world that we are right. Sadly, this often narrows our field of vision when it comes to viewing paranormal phenomena.

Any decent researcher will tell you that a majority of paranormal claims can be explained by natural means. A pipe rattles in a wall and causes strange noises in a house; a trick of the light causes a shadowy figure to move across a darkened room. Every now and again, though, there is an occurrence that is more difficult to explain (say, an object flying off of a table and landing across the room). It is easy for a ghost hunter to attribute that to a spirit, or a parapsychologist to say it was caused by psychokinesis (the ability of the conscious, or subconscious, mind to move objects); but rarely will one group give credence the possibility of the other. Even more rarely will they search for further explanation for the phenomena once they find a way to skew it to support their subscribed theory. And thus, the facts of the experience are skewed to fit the theory of the investigator and the research is no longer scientific.

The term ‘skeptic’ has become a dirty word amongst paranormal circles, but I think it’s because people don’t understand what it means to be a skeptic. Being skeptical is not about disproving the existence of paranormal phenomena, but about seeking to find the truth about their cause through questioning the experience and examining the possible natural causes. When on an investigation, it is easy to make the leap in logic from “something happened I don’t understand” to “a ghost did it”, but such leaps of logic do nothing to help you as a researcher and they are a disservice to your client. It is crucial to pull out all the stops in trying to find the cause of a phenomenon and it is crucial to call on a third party to investigate other possibilities that may be beyond your level of understanding.

Unless you have a full-bodied, plain-as-day ghost walking down the hall that more than one person sees, then you owe it to yourself and the world to question everything. Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know what caused that,” because that is the first step on the path towards finding the truth. It could be just another pipe banging in the wall, or maybe (just maybe) it’s a real live ghost. If you don’t take the time to find out for sure, you’re just fumbling around in the dark.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in general, investigators, research, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Scientist’s View on the Paranormal

Hey, everyone! Heather here! I’d like to introduce you to Christina, our resident scientist. She just defended her Master’s thesis and received her degree in Ecology. She’s an awesome investigator and this is her first blog post. Enjoy!

In light of Jeremy’s last blog post, I wanted to give a scientist’s view on paranormal research and my opinion on why the paranormal is considered a pseudoscience. As a scientist myself, I have worked with a number of individuals in the biologic community. I can tell you from my experiences that the majority of scientists do not believe in the paranormal what-so-ever. In more than one circumstance, I felt I needed to conceal myself from being a paranormal believer and researcher to prevent any scrutiny from my fellow colleagues.

So, why do most scientists not believe in the paranormal? One reason is that the paranormal has a religious perspective to it. The basis for most religions involves the afterlife. Religions also talk about angels, demons, exorcisms, and the list goes on. These things we currently cannot prove the existence of through the use of science. Additionally, it turns out that about 80 to 90 percent of scientists are not religious or have no belief in the afterlife. I am not saying you need to be religious to believe in the paranormal, I am only inferring the causality of why scientists have a hard time accepting the paranormal.

Another reason is scientists’ view of paranormal research and how that research is carried out. Most paranormal research involves a group of people running around in the dark, maybe with some recorders or cameras. In most cases, research is not carried out properly if at all. So, no science is actually being conducted. This, to me, is the main reason why scientists view it as a pseudoscience.

To properly carry out paranormal research, researchers need to properly follow scientific protocols. First and foremost researchers need to do extensive research on the question that is being studied. This involves primarily looking at primary sources from journals. The researcher will then become an expert on that topic. For example if I were going to do a study on the effects of the Moon on paranormal activity, I would do as much research as possible on what effects the Moon has on the Earth. Researchers also primarily need to create well-structured experiments that have a minimum of two different groups, their test group and control group. There should be a number of samples taken from each group. Also, a number of different parameters should be recorded such as temperature, electromagnetic field, etc. to be statistically analyzed later. This data that is collected is to be used to determine whether the data support or rejects the hypothesis or hypotheses that are being studied. At the very least if paranormal researchers do not want to analyze their data, they can always allow other researchers to do that for them, just as long as the data is adequately collected and recorded. This whole process can be very difficult for paranormal researchers especially since most are non-scientists.

In addition to the very well made points Jeremy brought up, what I have just mentioned are a few reasons why the paranormal field has been stagnant in past decades. If the paranormal community can work together and change how research is being conducted now, we can help move the paranormal field forward. By making these necessary changes, I believe we can change the paranormal field from a pseudoscience to a science. In turn this would change scientists from nonbelievers to believers and paranormal researchers would gain the acceptance of the scientific community.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in general, research, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Why Is The Paranormal So Unbelievable?

Hello everyone, Heather here. I’d like to introduce you to Jeremy, one of our investigators who also serves as our Technical Assistant. Jeremy just completed his Bachelor of Science in Education from Kennesaw State University and we are so very proud! He also found time to write the following blog post that asks a compelling question many of us paranormal investigators struggle against. Hope you enjoy it and make sure you comment below and keep the conversation going!

As paranormal investigators we constantly have to deal with the ridicule that studying in this field often comes with. Many scientists believe that studying the paranormal is a complete waste of time and that every paranormal experience has a scientific explanation. However, why does the paranormal have to be relegated to science fiction by much of the scientific community? Why can we not simply treat it as natural phenomena that we do not, at this time, yet fully understand? These questions seem so glaringly obvious to myself, but outside of a few members of the group I have never heard them posed in an open forum. Well, in my opinion there are many different reasons for this. I want to open the discussion in order to not only push the paranormal field forward, but to also push the whole scientific community forward in their opinion of the paranormal.

First of all, it seems that there is an aura of arrogance in the world. We have come so far in the past 100 years that we tend to think that we know everything about the planet and the universe. However, there are still many mysteries that are yet to be solved and we need to remain open minded that paranormal occurrences don’t have “rational” or “scientific” explanations. It was not that long ago that we thought the earth was flat. It was not long ago that we thought the Earth was the center of the universe. It was not long ago that we were unaware that microscopic organisms made us ill. This all finally changed with breakthroughs in science, mathematics, and technology. How do we know that we simply do not have the correct tools in order to accurately measure paranormal activity? Sure we have our Mel Meters, voice recorders, K2s, and cameras, but these are tools that present evidence that is very subjective. All it may take to push the field forward and be taken seriously by the scientific community is a technological breakthrough. History is full of these discoveries and, in my opinion, many different types of paranormal phenomena are actually a naturally occurring phenomena that we do not yet fully understand. I think as human beings we need to remain humble, because the fact is that we are only one small piece of the universe. I think many fear the unknown and find comfort in thinking they know everything. However, I find the unknown exciting and I think it drives scientific exploration forward.

Now, you may say to me, “Jeremy, the real problem is that science shows no supporting evidence for hauntings and many people think that all paranormal experiences can be explained through psychology,” and yes many scientists do believe that. However, anyone that has actually spent some time investigating the paranormal will tell you that there is plenty of evidence, but the problem is the subjective evidence. It is true that almost 99% of cases can be explained very logically and rationally, but that 1% is what excites me as an investigator. That 1% is incredibly hard to write-off as psychological, especially when multiple people see that same apparition at the same time and do not tell each other what they see until later. My point is that many people around the world have these experiences, and to simply write them off and say that they are all just suffering from mass delusion serves no purpose except to ignore that something we don’t fully understand may be happening. My very first investigation with PGI was an old hospital and there were multiple shared experiences that night. We experienced phantom footsteps, voices, and I experienced physical contact for the first time. So, did we imagine all of this activity we experienced? Some could say that maybe we were feeding off of each other and in some circumstances I would agree that it could be a possibility. However, this night we were experiencing the same thing at the same time and corroborating each others stories, so I do not agree with that statement. We always try to be as objective as possible and that means that we never assume that location is haunted. We always carry the attitude that we can explain most hauntings logically, and it is only when the evidence points towards a haunting that we can truly deem it as such. However, our aim should always be to turn the subjective into objective evidence.

In short, the reason so many find the paranormal so unbelievable is the unwillingness for science to accept the paranormal due to subjective evidence. Now, I completely understand why people would be skeptical, but this is a shame considering the amount of accounts there are on a daily basis. Obviously something compelling is happening. Can all of these people be imagining things? Or, is there a natural phenomenon that we have not figured out how to tap into yet. I adhere to the hypothesis that what we deem as paranormal is in fact natural, and eventually we will see paranormal as normal. This will require extensive study, and for now since there is a lack of support in the mainstream scientific community it is up to groups such as ours to perform the study, collect the data, and help answer the questions. We need to push on, and gather as much evidence as we can. Then maybe one day we can drop the “para” from paranormal.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in experiences, general, investigators, research, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lunar Lunacy – Fact or Fiction?

This full Moon image was captured and made by William Chin, based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Copied from www.astronomycameras.com.

This full Moon image was captured and made by William Chin, based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Copied from http://www.astronomycameras.com.

As promised, I have delivered. Back in March, I wrote a post about why the popular limestone hypothesis circulating in the paranormal community is, unfortunately, not a valid hypothesis. Limestone will never be a cause of paranormal activity because you need quartz or quartz-like rocks (like granite) to possibly cause a piezoelectric effect to contribute to paranormal occurrences.

Similarly, full moons do not affect the psychology of the living. And based on the data we’ve collected thus far, full moons do not affect paranormal activity.

I know, I know. You’re on the other side of this screen, shouting, “But my dad is a cop and he says the 911 calls go up on full moon nights!” Or, you’re shaking your head saying, “I’m a nurse and I know our ER is crazy-busy on full moon nights!” Or, maybe you’re quietly disagreeing and muttering, “My ghost is more active on full-moon nights. She’s wrong.”

So, let’s talk about this and maybe change your mind. Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson has pointed out that the only way for our brains to be affected by a full moon would be if our heads were planetary-size. “But our bodies are 80% water! OF COURSE the moon has a gravitational tidal affect on our bodies!” The main difference, though, between our bodies and the ocean is that the ocean is an open body of water and the water in our bodies is closed. The moon has no gravitational tidal effect on water in water towers and yet we’ve never sat around and debated this. In fact, as the late astronomer George Abell once noted, a mosquito landing on your arm has more of a gravitational effect on your body than our own moon. Last time I checked, no one blames their actions on errant mosquito landings.

In addition, new moons – the period during moon phase cycles when the moon is at its darkest, or not visible – have as much gravitational pull as full moons and yet no one equates behavior or paranormal activity to new moons. This could most likely be due to something called illusory correlation. This basically means that we will sometimes associate two things together that in reality have nothing to do with one another. Let’s take into account the following graph:

Screen Shot 2014-06-02 at 7.27.12 PM

We’ve all heard of the many ideas put forth of what may or may not cause autism. Organic foods is not one of those things purported to cause autism. But, if we look at the above graph, it clearly shows a rise in sales of organic foods over the course of a decade along with the rise in autism diagnoses. Looking at this, you could say that one is the cause of the other.

But, you would be wrong.

Illusory correlations exist because our minds have a propensity for recalling certain events over other non-events. In other words, you’re going to remember an odd event that occurred during a full moon and not, say, during a waning crescent. We will remember that 20 drunks were arrested during last month’s huge full moon because we noticed that giant orb and we told others about it and this helped to reinforce the memory.

I know some of you really want the full moon to be the cause of something besides beautiful night skies. Well, here you go. Researchers at the University of Basel in Switzerland, led by Christian Cajochen, have found that full moons CAN affect your sleep patterns. Even when placing the study participants in rooms with no windows and no access to lunar phase records, researchers found that brain activity related to deep sleep was reduced by 30%, that study participants took five minutes longer to fall asleep, and overall they slept 20 minutes less.

Could THIS validate “full moon lunacy?” Not really. Probably only if you are already suffering from a psychological disorder, for example schizophrenia, then less sleep could cause a psychotic break. But, from the paranormal investigative side, it makes sense that you as the client may experience more paranormal activity during a full moon because you’re suffering from less sleep and therefore awake for a few more minutes, and aware of your surroundings. Has the activity increased? No, but your perception of activity has.

So, where might the idea of “full moon lunacy” come from? Psychiatrist Charles L. Raison of Emory University thinks that before early man made structures in which to live, when our ancestors lived and slept outside, they were much more affected by the light of the full moon than we are today. Even though our sleep cycles may notice a 25-minute loss three nights a month, our ancestors could have lost several nights in total each month. And those latent psychological disorders most definitely would have come to the forefront and given rise to early “werewolves” and “vampires” and “lunatics” and many other monsters of the night.

Paranormal Georgia Investigations will continue to collect moon phase data with each investigation we perform and, I’m sure, we will note increased sleeplessness in our clients, not more ghosts in their homes because of it.

Disclaimer: This is a public blog/forum. If you comment here, anyone who comes to this site will be able to see your comment. Comments are not deleted unless they are spam/offensive. If you have private information you don’t wish the public to see, do not put it in your comment. Comments on this website are the sole responsibility of their writers and the writer will take full responsibility, liability, and blame from something written in or as a direct result of something written in a comment. The accuracy, completeness, veracity, honesty, exactitude, factuality and politeness of comments are not guaranteed. In other words, don’t comment with your email address, physical address, or phone number. If you do so, we cannot be responsible for any spam/crank calls you may receive. Think before you comment. Please.

Posted in general, research, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment