Paranormal articles

Welcome to my articles page. These articles are written my myself for the most part, although some have been submitted by visitors to my site. If you would like to write an article and see it published on this site please feel to contact me. Again I want to thank you.

Paranormal Evidence

If you've watched any of the paranormal based programming that's aired on television in recent years, like Ghost Hunters, which aired on the SyFy channel or Ghost adventures which aired on the Travel Channel. Or visited a few of the multitude of paranormal theme websites on the internet. You can find many examples of what are proclaimed to be evidence for, or even proof of the reality of ghosts and the paranormal or some other paranormal type phenomena. Many of these websites offer audio files of what are purported to be EVP or electronic voice phenomena, which of course you may listen to. There are also many instances of images that are claimed to be those of real ghosts. And there are also websites that offer video snippets of what are claimed to be evidence for, or even proof of paranormal activity such as ghosts and even UFOs.

The purpose of this article is not to try and debunk these claims or to provide evidence that they are not real. The reason I am not attempting to debunk these claims is simply because some of these videos, images or EVP snippets may in fact be very real and are exactly what they are proclaimed to be. I also do not believe that I have the right to bring into question anybody's evidence or to call anyone a liar or fake, especially when I was not there to witness the apparitions or sounds that may have been captured or recorded using film, digital or video cameras, or analog or digital voice recorders. Some of these photos, videos and audio EVP may be very real!

However the reason I did write this article is with the hopes that those of you who do view these pieces of evidence of the paranormal, will do so with a bit of a critical eye and not just buy into the reality of ghosts and the paranormal based simply on this type of evidence. There is also a good reason that much of this type of evidence would not be allowed in a court of law. The reason it would not permitted as evidence is simply because it is too easily fabricated, altered or faked using computer image and photo and audio software. I am certain that most of this type of evidence is real but I am also quite certain that some is not. But I am not an expert and personally I do not believe there are any true experts in the field of the paranormal.

My advice would be to watch and enjoy these paranormal or ghost programs, visit the paranormal and ghost websites, view and listen to the evidence that's presented and make up your own mind as to the authenticity and reality of this evidence. But do view it with a critical eye, and do maintain an open and curious mind. Some of it may be real, but I am also quite certain that some is not.

Martin Burns

picture of orb reflecting light off floor Image used with permission To see the image larger just hover.

Orbs, what are they?

Orbs, is one of the more controversial phenomena that ghost hunters and paranormal researchers deal with. And from what I have been able to gather by doing a little research into this subject is that most ghost hunters now dismiss almost all photographs and images of orbs as nothing more than dust particles, insects, pollen or moisture droplets that happen to show up, primarily on images that are created with digital photographic equipment using a flash. I think it's a shame that so many researchers dismiss photographic images of orbs simply because it is relatively easy to distinguish between a real spirit orb from a dust particle, especially when caught on film or digital video.

I have to admit, that I am somewhat of a fan of paranormal television. And two of the more popular types of this programming are "Ghost Hunters"which aired on the SyFy channel, and "Ghost Adventures" which aired on the Travel Channel. Ghost hunters, Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson have a tendency to dismiss almost all images of orbs as dust, moisture or anything but paranormal. I think they do this to help squelch some of what the critics and skeptics may say and help make themselves look more analytical and scientific in their approach. Whereas the other group with Zak Bagans and Aaron Goodwin also dismiss most orbs as dust particles or some other non-paranormal phenomena, but sometimes their so called evidence will show balls of energy or orbs going into their heads, bouncing off their backs or even attacking them. One of their earlier episodes filmed at the Goldfield Hotel in Goldfield Nevada, even shows a sphere of energy or orb that almost looked as if it was caressing Zak Bagan's arm.

I have seen a many images of orbs, and of all the images I have seen; this is perhaps one of the more compelling, compelling that it is something other than dust, pollen, insects or something of that sort. It appears to be emanating its own light because of the reflection of the object off the floor. This photo was taken with a digital camera without flash. Could this photo or image have been doctored using Photoshop? I suppose! I am not a photographer, nor am I an expert using photo shop. But even if this image is of a genuine orb or sphere of energy, that is still not proof that it is a ghost or spirit, although I would definitely consider it paranormal because it is not normal to have spheres of energy bouncing around your home.

By Martin Burns

The ghost, a physical reality

Dr Duncan McDougall
Dr. Duncan MacDougall

Is the ghost or soul of a deceased person a physical object or is it purely some sort spiritual energy? As I have said elsewhere in this website I am a former skeptic, and I now believe that ghosts most likely are real. And if it is true that ghosts are real and do continue to exist in our reality after physical death, then I have often wondered whether that ghost is a physical entity made of actual matter which has mass, or is it some sort of purely spiritual energy entity that has no physical mass at all. I'm fairly certain that most scientists or at least the ones who might believe in the possibility that ghosts are real, would probably assert that it is some sort of physical entity with an energetic component, whereas most theological or religious persons would probably believe that the soul is a purely spiritual being in nature with no physical attributes at all, and probably resides in another realm of reality other than ours, ie, heaven or hell.

There was an actual experiment done in the early part of the 20th century by a doctor Duncan MacDougall of Haverhill, Massachusetts. Dr. MacDougall weighted 6 patients dying with terminal illnesses. He hypothesized that if the soul existed and had physical mass than a patient would weigh somewhat less after the soul departed the body. He used industrial scales that were supposedly accurate to the gram. The beds with the dying patients were placed upon this scale. He calculated after allowing for physiological changes, that the average body lost approximately 21 grams of weight, and he made the assertion that this was the approximate weight of the human soul, and that it did, indeed have physical mass.

I don't know if anyone since Dr. MacDougall has tried to replicate this experiment, but the scientific methodology used by the doctor has come into question and most physicians and scientists are skeptical of his claims. Does that mean that this claim has been debunked? No, and many people still adhere to the belief that a ghost does have a physical component to it. Whether it does or not, I cannot say, although I too remain skeptical of this claim, but I am open minded and have to admit that I just don't know.

By Martin Burns

Shadow men. What are they?

Shadow men, shadow people or shadow ghosts as they are also refereed to as, are a type of paranormal phenomena that defies any simple explanation. Some of the non-paranormal explanations for shadow people range from just simple misinterpretation's of light play within a supposedly haunted location, to optical illusions caused within or by the eye itself. The shadow figures are generally seen through the peripheral area of the visual field or in other words, they appear out of the corner of the eye. And by the time the observer has turned around to look directly at the shadow figure, it just seem to disappear.

Shawdow Man Ghost
Shadow man ghost

Many skeptics and opthomolgists believe that these figures are probably caused by ocular disturbances and floaters within the orb or in the vitreous fluid of the eye itself, the condition of optical floaters are not at all uncommon, especially in older adults. But they can and do appear in all age groups.

Most of the theories that describe shadow people believe that they are sinister or evil in their essence. There are also several theories that describe what the entities of shadow ghosts or shadow people may be. Some of the more common of these theories state that they may be inter-dimensional beings who may be just as startled and frightened of us as we are of them, and that is the reason many feel they disappear so abruptly. Another popular theory is that they are aliens who are attempting to observe us humans for their own sinister or nefarious reasons. And one of the more bizarre theories that I have heard is that they are the disembodied spirits of living persons, who are in a state of astral-projection, and who may be there for some evil purpose. And yet there are others who believe they may simply be the ghosts of deceased persons who, for some reason are trapped between our reality and that of the astral plane. And this may be the only way these ghosts can manifest themselves. Many religious organizations who believe in this type of entity, believe they are either demons themselves or are in some other way demonic in nature. Another theory I have heard, is that they may be the spirits of persons who are in a state of NDE or "Near Death Experience". And yet there is another theory that believes they are actually human time travelers from our own future who are here to simply observe what would be their history.

I personally have seen what I believe may have been a shadow person, but because the moon may have been out on that evening I had seen this apparition, I have to dismiss it as a possible misinterpretation on my part. I also believe that most encounters with shadow people are simply that, misinterpretation of light play or of ocular disturbances, which are not at all uncommon. I believe that most of these sightings are probably not paranormal at all, but there is always the possibility that some are.

I would like to see more research done into this phenomena, to either debunk it totally or show there is some merit to it. And if there is some merit to it and whether they represent any danger to the living.

By Martin Burns

Provoking ghosts

I am not a professional ghost hunter or paranormal researcher. I don't know a lot about ghost hunting but I do know one thing, the way it's depicted in programs like Ghost Hunters or any of the numerous other shows of that nature is not what really happens. I suppose that staying up all night with the hopes of seeing or actually capturing a photographic or video image of an apparition could be quite boring, but I also suppose that if the ghost hunter is fortunate enough to see or capture that apparition or ghost on film or with a digital camera, then it would be quite exhilarating. But I also think that there is one ethical question that should be considered when investigating the paranormal or hunting ghosts. I am not going to give up my basic beliefs and open minded skepticism about the existence of ghosts and the paranormal, but like the web address of this site indicates I am a former skeptic who believes that ghosts most likely are real, and probably do exist.

If ghosts are real and do exist then the moral and ethical question I have is this. Is it right to antagonize and provoke these entities to obtain evidence of their existence? And if I make the assumption that ghosts are real, then I must also must make the assumption that these ghosts or spirits are probably the souls of people no different than you or I. People who once walked the earth, and are now deceased.

If we make the assumption that ghosts are real, and the paranormal investigators go into a private home, one that may have been occupied at one time by a person who has now passed away, and now their ghost haunts or resides in that same home or building, as he or she once did in life. And let us also assume that this spirit or ghost does not realize they are deceased for one reason or another, or they are simply comfortable in their surroundings and feels that they are home, and these ghost hunters come in and start using the tactics of provoking and taunting. How would you feel if some beings came into your home and started taunting, and provoking you into contacting them? Wouldn't you feel that these beings were trespassing on your privacy? And perhaps even your right to exist.

I wonder if these ghost hunters believe that a person loses all rights to privacy and dignity, because they have passed away and now reside in the realm of the spirit world? Whatever happened to the idea of letting the dead rest in peace If you haven't watched the movie The Others with Nicole Kidman than I suggest you do so. The end of the movie has a pretty strange twist, but it does give an idea on what ghosts or spirits may feel or believe about themselves. I don't see anything wrong with the idea of attempting to contact the ghosts or spirits that may be haunting a particular residence or location, but I do believe that if these entities are real and do exist than I also believe they have the right to be treated with the same amount of dignity and respect that you would treat a living person in their own home. Some of these paranormal investigation groups seem to treat the ghosts or spirits, if they exist as if they don't deserve the same respectful treatment you would give to that same person if they were still alive.

I have also come to the understanding, that some of these ghost hunters think the practice of taunting an evil spirit may have a certain amount of danger attached to it. They seem to think that if they provoke an inhuman or demonic ghost then they are more likely to be attacked. Let me say this, first of all I don't believe in demonic ghosts at all. Evil spirits may exist, simply because evil people exist. And when evil people die, perhaps they become the evil spirits. But I don't think it matters whether the ghost is malevolent, benevolent or neutral, if a paranormal investigator goes into a building that a ghost may haunt and considers it their home then I think they should expect to get attacked if they use such tactics as provoking. If they came into my home and started provoking me, I know damn well I would attack with all the force I could muster, including perhaps even using a weapon if I had one at my disposal. To sum all this up, I think paranormal investigators should treat ghosts, if they exist with the same amount of dignity and respect you would show that same person if they were still alive. If these entities are real, they deserve no less.

By Martin Burns:

Ouija board! Dangerous toy?

Is there any danger to the use of the Ouija board? The Ouija board, or as it is also known as the talking board, spirit board or even witch board. Is it simply a toy, or is there is some sort of danger attached to it's use, danger from evil spirits, ghosts or demonic forces? Danger that these entities could possibly attack the user or users on a spiritual level.

Ouija Board

Ouija Board

Some religious denominations, especially mainstream Christians, believe that using the Ouija board can lead to demonic possessions and other paranormal problems. And these Christian groups also believe that when you do use the Ouija board you're actually communicating with demons or devils, not with the souls or spirits of people who may have passed on. And even some occultists believe that it's use can open portals or doors to the spiritual realm and allow ghosts, demons and evil spirits to enter our realm of existence and haunt, possess or in some other manner harm or annoy anyone who may have used the Ouija board.

In my personal opinion this is all bunk! The Ouija board is nothing more than a toy. If the oracle moved on its own, without being touched, then and only then would I believe it has any mystical powers. But because it has to be touched with the fingertips of the people involved in the seance, I think it is nothing but someone, either intentionally or subconsciously moving it. And I believe that if there is any danger attached to its use, then I believe it comes from the subconscious psychology and fears of the person or people using it. If the individual or individuals, who are using it, sincerely believes they are communicating with ghosts or spirits, than I suppose it would't take too much more to make them also believe that they may become possessed by these ghosts or spirits. Especially if they believe it is sinful or evil to be even using the device in the first place.

By Martin Burns: