Paranormal Equipment - Our Topic of the Month!
Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:23 AM
I just got back from the haunted Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. This place is beautiful and legendary—seated in the majestic, snow-capped mountains just a few miles from Rocky Mountain National Park. It’s no surprise that during a visit, Stephen King was inspired to pen The Shining, imagining what it would be like to be the caretaker stranded in a huge, but lonely hotel for the winter. When you’re alone in a haunted building, it’s easy to wonder if there’s really a ghost, or if your sanity is slipping away. That’s why we see so many gadgets and gear on paranormal investigations. We’re looking for validation for what we’re experiencing.
Ghost investigation equipment is by no means a new phenomenon. Almost a century ago, the original ghost hunter, Harry Price, was using electroscopes and galvanometers to measure static charges in the air in haunted places. He used thermometers to measure temperature fluctuations. He too wanted independent validation of these human experiences. Were these devices designed to look for ghosts? Of course not. He adapted them to try and rule out the supernatural, or at least have some data that could be questioned in regards to poltergeists and other things that go bump in the night.
Today we’re mostly using the same ideas and equipment. Electroscopes have been replaced by EMF meters, our thermometers now have lasers on them, and daguerreotype cameras have been upgraded into night-vision, thermal, and infrared cameras. But the concept is the same: can we validate what the human is experiencing? Does the environment change when there’s paranormal activity happening?
Over the years I’ve continually downplayed my use of the gear because my most profound encounters have always occurred with my eyes, ears, and body. There are many natural phenomena that will cause an EMF meter to fluctuate and spike, but far fewer variables that will make an apparition appear before me.
This month we’re going to pull out our 9-volt batteries and watch them drain as we discuss the use (and misuse) of paranormal equipment. We’ll ask the tough questions like: Why haven’t any battery manufacturers ever bought advertising on Ghostvillage.com considering the millions of dollars our community spends with those folks? Ha! I’m only serious.
Mayor of Ghostvillage.com
Posted 20 November 2012 - 02:09 PM
I understand the need for cameras and recorders to capture images and voices, but in every experience I have ever had, no electronic devices were ever in use at the moment of materialization. If there are those who are trying to obtain the complete scientific involvement of the environment, of course that is necessary. I would just prefer to go in with a camera, recorder, and my senses. Heck, maybe not even the camera and recorder and just try to experience whatever is there; equipment would be a distraction, where my attention span is concerned. I would just fumble with buttons and such.
Posted 21 November 2012 - 09:59 AM
Equipment is objective though, it only does what it does, nothing more. Plus, in the case of equipment it can be tested a nd confirmed working / non-working. As such many results can be debunked.
This of course assumes the user knows how to use the device properly and that the results are not altered in some way to render them void. Having "feelings" is good, but I would want some verification to validate those feelings in a real investigation scenario. That is the value of equipment.
The other issue with equipment is the "junk" out there. There are devices which are claimed to have "special" application in paranormal research. Oviluses, ghost boxes, KII meters, among others all fall into that category.. Science explains how these devices work and what they do, or don't do. Yet some still insist they are tools of the trade. That is where a full understanding of the basics is required. Once you get that you can see why these devices are not valid for scientific research. There is a point when some equipment is actually worse than no equipment at all; that being when the results are clearly flawed.
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Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:34 AM
Like Jeff, 80% of any of the phenomena I have ever experienced was only captured by my senses, and not by any gear. These were amazing and powerful encounters, but still leave me doubting them as tricks of imagination.
But, the times where I experienced phenomena (hair standing up, cold spots, shadows), that were also captured by my gear, and happened repeatedly, lead me to truly believe that the paranormal exists, and is measurable.
I’m very cautious using the word “scientific” because lets be honest folks, the majority of the time we are asking for a response on our “tools” which is nothing more than divination- whether you are using a KII, or $500 tri-field data logging EMF meter.
Lastly, I’ll say we are spending WAY too much time paying attention and relying on equipment, when we really should just be sitting back and paying attention. Although we need to use the gear document what we experience, I’ve come far enough to know for “me” that I don’t need it for validation of the paranormal.
Edited by boatlesspirate, 21 November 2012 - 11:35 AM.
Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:28 AM
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