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.

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About Heather S. Dobson

I wish I was Wonder Woman, but I'm actually a wife, mother of three young ones, a writer, a paranormal investigator, and a lunatic. I'm also hoping to win a Nobel Prize in physics, but I guess that means I should get something above a BS in said subject and do more in-depth, life-changing studies besides "the sticking power of mac 'n cheese on smooth wallpaper." Alas...
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