I am not a professional ghost hunter nor am I a paranormal researcher. I don't know a lot about ghost hunting but I do know one thing, the way it's portrayed in TV 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 actually capture that apparition or ghost on film or with a digital camera, then that 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 I do lean more toward the believer then the skeptic side.
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 spirits to obtain evidence of their existence? And if I make the assumption that ghosts and spirits are real, then I must also must make the assumption that these ghosts are probably the souls of people no different than you or I. People who once walked the earth, and are now deceased.
If we are to make the assumption for a few moments that ghosts are real. And then paranormal investigators go into a private home, one that may have been occupied at one time by a person who is now deceased, 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 now 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 on 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 this 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 investigative groups seem to treat the ghosts or spirits, as if they don't deserve the same respectful treatment you would give to that same person if they were still alive. And why I don't know.
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 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, 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
Proving the paranormal! A fools quest?
Is it possible to prove the paranormal, to prove that ghosts are real? Can it be demonstrated in a scientific manner that the spirit or personality of a person transcends death and continues to exist in some form? Is it possible to prove, even to the most ardent skeptics or perhaps even to an open-minded skeptic that ghosts are real and do exist? To be perfectly honest, I don't know if it is possible to prove, prove in any sort scientific manner the reality of the supernatural or paranormal. It may be possible to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that ghosts are real. Proof that may be acceptable in a court of law, proof that may even be beyond a reasonable doubt, proof that may even convince the majority of people and perhaps even the majority of scientists that the paranormal is the normal. It may be possible to proof the existence of ghosts, but it will always be impossible to prove that they do not exist. But with all that being said, the burden of proof does, in my opinion ride upon the believers, not on the skeptics.
Paranormal researchers rely on a number of scientific instruments in their quest to document and provide evidence of the paranormal. Some of the instrumentation they rely upon and use in their investigations are common and some, not so common. The following list includes most, but I am sure not all, of the items used by most paranormal researchers. This list may be incomplete, there may be other instruments used that I am not aware of. If you are a paranormal researcher and know of other instrumentation that is used in this type of investigation, I would appreciate your contacting me, and let know about it and what it is and what it does.
- Digital cameras and film cameras
- Digital and analog voice recorders
- Digital and analog camcorder's
- Infrared Illuminators
- EMF (Electro-magnetic field meters of different types
- Probe type thermometers
- Infra Red cameras (FLIR)
- Full spectrum cameras
- Night vision goggles and scopes
- Geiger counters
Even with all this instrumentation at their disposal and with many years of researching the paranormal, not one irrefutable piece of evidence has ever been put forward, that one piece of evidence that proves conclusively the existence of ghosts or any other paranormal phenomena. Does that mean it is impossible to prove the paranormal? I don't think so! If the paranormal is real and ghosts really do exist then I believe that it is possible to prove, prove in a way that would convince even the most ardent skeptics and scientists that the paranormal is real. But I sincerely believe that the ghost hunters or investigators must make some very basic changes in their approach to their investigations of the paranormal.
By Martin Burns