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MONTH OF  March 2008  NEWSLETTER.

PARANORMAL SOCIETY OF CENTRAL FLORIDA

THINGS THAT GO BUMP IN THE NIGHT JULY NEWSLETTER

July 2, 2007

In This Issue:

  1. DIFFERENT EXPLAINATIONS OF HAUNTINGS.
  2. TYPES OF EQUIPMENT USED
  3. OTHER EQUIPMENT USED
  4. THE OUIJA TALKING BOARD
  5. GHOST HUNTING 101

1. DIFFERENT EXPLAINATIONS OF HAUNTINGS.

Paranormal research and investigation has revealed that there are three basic types of hauntings and most paranormal activity falls into these categories:
The Traditional Haunting, or Intelligent Haunting,
Residual Haunting,
Demonic Haunting
Poltergeist activity ( German for noisy ghost)

The Traditional or also known as The Intelligent Haunting
is perhaps the most widely accepted kind of ghost activity, although it's really not as common as you might think. In this kind of case, the spirit or entity involved is an "intelligent" or "Interactive" presence in a haunted location.
In these manifestations, the entity encountered seem to possess human personalities and emotions. They may at times appear visually in human form, and are responsive to changes in external conditions such as the activities of the occupants of a household, presence of investigators, or the rearranging of furnishings in a setting, all of which suggest their formerly having existed as living cognitive beings.These spirits or ghosts tend to be attached to particular sites, vicinities or dwellings places usually though not always homes.
Signs of an Traditional or Intelligent Haunting.
Most intelligent spirits will manifest in physical ways in an attempt to interact with those at the location.
This will include: Slamming doors, windows that open and close, cold chills and strong presence. On rare occasions, the spirit will be seen and when it is, it will most likely look as it did when alive.

The Residual Haunting.
Of all of the types of hauntings discussed on this site, the residual haunting is likely the most common. Certainly, it is much more common than most people think and I would go as far as to say that a large percentage of ghostly activity falls into this category,
In such a case, a scene from the pastseems to be replayed and is witnessed by a living person or ! persons. Apparently this isan actual form of time-displacement from a former scenario which transpired at this site. The entities contained within this haunting rarely display any awareness of their present day observers. However there have been instances reported when the spectres from the past do seem to briefly notice those who perceive a glimpse of their seperate reality.
sounds.
There have been some theories that limestone deposits have some effect on residual hauntings, as they have been found near active sites and limestone can hold electromagnetic charges.
The signs of a Residual haunting consist of the following.
The ghost reported will be like a moving picture and unaware of living people around them. In other words, its like watching the same scene in a movie over and over again. Strange noises are common such as footsteps, rappings, voices. This type of ghost has no interaction with the living.


Demonic Haunting
This category of haunting is the most debated, as weel as the most dreaded. It is perhaps of other-dimensional origin, and is often possessed of quite a hostile nature. Anyone who has personally encountered a demonic entity in action never wants the experience repeated. The entity often initially presents itself as a "human" type of haunting, as it may seem to anticipate the approached of the person it menaces, including any paranormal investigators who are endeavoring to rid a home of its presence. Research has shown that someone originally had to have invited in the demon, perhaps inadvertantly, either through scrying implements such as a Ouija board, conducting seances, psychic experimentation, performing magic ceremonies or by habitually conversing with unseen presences(imaginary friends?) These devices or games seem to be harmless, but the results can be likened to leaving your back door open. You may only get a lizard, squirrel or the neigbors dog in your open door, but eventually something or someone unwanted may wander ! in, and were there is one intruder there are usually more lurking somewhere closeby!
A sub-category of the inhuman type of haunting, reported since the dark ages of recorded history, which really isn't a spirit or demon in the true sense and seems to be more mischievous in nature than outright malevolent, is the manifestation of
Poltergeist activity:
( Usually involves an Adolesent Teen going thru puberty).
The current theory behind poltergeist activity is that the activity is caused by a living person in the household, known as the "human agent". The agent usually is an adolesent girl who is unwittingly generating a flow of chaotic, psychic energyes during a phase of their formative period, and some cases have been reported with a youth that is troubled emotionally. It is believed that she unconsciously manipulates physical objects in the house by psychokinesis (PK), the power to move things by energy generated in the brain. This kinetic type of energy remains unexplained, but even some mainstream scientists are starting to explore the idea that it does exist. It is unknown why this energy seems to appear in females around the age of puberty, but documentation of its existence is starting to appear as more and more case studies have become public. It can also effect boys that are of puberty age, but more likely to effect girls.
The vast majority of people have no idea that the activity is caused by them and will be surprised to find there is a possibility that strange things are happening because of them.
Poltergeist activity commences suddenly and inexplicably, the episodes are brief, often involving the floating or flinging of kitchen utensils, thunderous poundings reverberating in walls and ceilings, heavy furniture moved about or tossed by an unseen force, doors slamming, lights going on or off, and though rarely in these cases, even disembodied voices.
This phenomena can persist from several months to 3 years, recurring at unpredictable intervals, then vanish f! or good just as quickly as they began. This phenomena differs sufficiently from other classifications of hauntings that it probably deserves its own catergory.

Above are the three major types of haunting, but there are documented reports of other entity sightings that do not fit into the above catergories.

Crisis Apparitions
These are apparitions of dying or recently dead. This is the most frequently reported apparition. This type commonly involves one-time visits to someone with whom the apparition had close emotional ties to. This encounter usually seems to be a type of farewell, sometimes important or useful information is passed on to the "viewer". This is usually a visual image that appears in waking visions or dreams.

Deathbed Apparitions
Visual images of devine beings, religious figures, luminosity's and dead loved ones that are reported by the dying in the last moments of life.

Apparitions from another plane or time
There are reports of apparitions who act as frightened of us as we are of them. In some cases, they indicate that we, not they are the ghosts. In reports such as these, the observed ghosts appera to be "normal" and "alive" as we know it, (although the setting and dress may be of a different era or locale). Given our incomplete understanding of time and space and the likelihood of additional planes of existence or dimensions, perhaps reports indicate that two distinct spatial or time dimensions can somehow merge and coexist for a time.

Portal Hauntings.
Portal hauntings without a doubt will be the most controversial of the hauntings discussed here. The problem is that this type of haunting is the least understood and least traditional of the forms of actvitiy that we know of. Most Portal hauntings happen in cemeteries. "Portal's " or " Doorways" to another dimension is not a new one. It has been suggested that there existed all over the world that serve as "doorways" from our world to anot! her. The se doorways may prove access for entities to come into our world. They may be spirits of people that have lived before, or they may be something else altogether.
Signs of a Portal Haunting:
the majority of events that might fit into a "Portal Haunting" category seem to come from cemeteries, although no location can be ruled out. Some older buildings can also have a Portal haunting. The sites are nothing more than a doorway from their world to ours. A crossover point, which can be confusing to those doing research.


2. TYPES OF EQUIPMENT USED

Dowsing, in general terms, is the art of finding hidden things. Dowsing is an ancient practice whose origins are lost in long forgotten history, however it is thought to date back at least 8,000 years. wall murals, estimated to be 8,000 years old, discovered in the Tassili Caves of North Africa depict tribesmen surronding a man with a forked stick, possibly dowsing for water. Artwork from ancient China and egypt seem to show people using forked tools in what might have been dowsing activities. Dowsing may also have been mentioned in the Bible, although not by name, when Moses and Aaron used a "rod: to locate water. The first written accounts of dowsing come from the Middle Ages when dowsers in Europe used it to help find coal deposits. During the 15th and 16th centuries, dowsers were often denounced as pratitioner of evil.
In modern times, dowsing has been used to find water, mineral deposits, oil, buried treasure, missing people and as a ghost hunting tool.
No one really knows how dowsing works, not even experienced dowsers. Some theorize there is a psychic connection established between the dowser and the subject sought. All things, posses an energy force, and the dowser, by concentrating on the object, is somehow able to tune in to the energy force or vibration of the object, which in turn forces the dowsing rod to move. The dowsing tool may act as a kind of amplifier or antenna for tuning into the energy.

For believer or skeptic there is no definitive proof that dowsing works, but Albert Einstein, however, was convinced of the authenticity of dowsing. He said, "I know very well that many scientists consider dowsing as they do astrology, as a type of ancient superstition. According to my conviction this is, however unjustified. The dowsing rod is a simple instrument which shows the reaction fo the human nervous system to certain factors which are unknown to us at this time."

In the past several ! years, d owsing has been gaining popularity as a ghost hunting tool. The best method for the beginner is to use two L shaped rods. Both rods should be the same in length. Hold the short end of the rods loosley in your hands and relax. Avoid looking at the rods and move forward. the rods will either cross over each other or swing open wide.
Mankind has been dowsing for thousands of years. However, it has only been in the last few years that ghost investigators have added dowsing rods, which have also been called diving rods, to their arsenals of equipment.
When dowsing for objects other than water, such as in ghost hunting, this requires a great deal of practice for the novice and even professionals can have difficulty due to the powerful influence of water.
Dowsing rods are said to react to the electromagnetic energy given off by ghosts. Intests with skilled dowsers, the rods reacted favorably compared with an electromagnetic meter.(see our article on EMF meters). When the rods react it is suggested that someone snap a picture, it is a good way to pick up orbs and other interesting phenomena. Rods can also be used to contact spirits. Using yes or no questions, ask a spirit to cross the rods for a yes answer and open them wide for a no answer.

With all the expensive equipment that you can purchase to aid in the detection of spirit activity, it is not suprising that more and more investigators are turning to dowsing rods. These inexpensive rods can prove to be as accurate as all of this other equipment. Once you have mastered the technique, you will probably find yourself relying on your rods more and more.

EMF METERS

Anyone interested in the field of paranormal research has probably heard of a device called an EMF meter. These meters provide a starting point and can eliminate things that we can not see in the walls and floors. Such meters make our job easier as we attempt to document or disprove a haunting. However this meter is only a to! ol that can help us, it can not prove a ghost is there.

Since the early 1980's apranormal investigators have become increasingly interested in various types of electromagnatism, This followed from the work of a number of researchers, but most notably Professor Michael Persinger at The Laueentian University in Canada. Working with others he conducted many experiments that suggested that when parts of the brain was exposed to electromagnetic fields of varying intensity and duration subjects reported experiences that were similar to those experiences assiciated with reported paranormal activity. He concluded that the source of these EMF's were both natural in the form of the Earth's geomagnetism or interactions with soalr radiation or manmade from sources that included electrical wiring and appliances or a combination of both.
Alot of research has been undertaken that does strongly suggest that when some people are exposed to powerful EMF or a less powerful but varying EMF they may report sensations that they may believe are paranormal in origin. These effects include a sense of presence, a sense of touch, anxiety, unease, fear, nausea, headaches and even 'Out of body' sensations.
Exposure to electomagnetic fields when they are applied to the brain, or more accuratly to the temporal lobes can cause certain individuals to misinterpret the resulting physical or sensory changes that may be perceived as paranormal in origin by some people and may be the explanation in some cases of the real cause of the experiences.
Paranormal investigators might therefore wish to measure the electromagnetism that is present at an investigation site with interest. They should note the intensity of the EMF, record the variations of the EMF and they should try and locate the source of any EMF.

An electromagnetic field ocurs any time electricity passes through a wire or an appliance that is operating. An appliance that is pugged in but turned off does not emit EMF's. Electromagnetic fie! lds are measured in mil Gauss. A high mil Gauss indicates a strong electromagnetic field, and the fields weaken with distance from the source.Most buildings generally have an ambient background reading of .5 to 2 mill Gauss. The EMF meter will measure these fields but you as the investigator must determine what is an unusual field.

There are several factors to consider when using an EMF meter inside a building;
1, Walls are not barriers to EMF. Something on the other side of the wall may be causing your reading.
2. Electric wiring with current running through it gives off slight EMF.
3. Electric junction boxes or fuse boxes will register stronger than wiring. Be aware of their locations.
4. Fluorescent lights give off an EMF that could register, and incandescent lights give off a minimal, usually undetectable EMF.
5. Appliances of all types give off an EMF when operating. These include but are not limited to, televisions, computers, microwaves, refrigerators and electric ovens.You can determine the strenght of an appliances EMF by taking readings from different directions and distances.

Likewise there are specific factors to consider when using an EMF meter outside. Technically there should be no EMF readings outside and if you encounter one you should conside these factors;
1. Are there any buildings close by that could be giving off the readings.
2. Consider powerlines. These will cause an increase in the EMF reading. You should be aware of overhead and buried power lines in the area.
3. A high iron content in the ground could also give you a higher than expected EMF reading. This is the same reason that a compass will not work properly in an area that is rich in iron ore.

Now that you know somethings that could give false positive readings, what do you look for? If you do find a higher reading than expected, and one not explained by normal electrical sources, then you may have found something paranormal! . Remem ber that you have to account for all the factors above before you can hope to reach any true conclusions.
Look for EMF's that appear and disappear. The area you are investigating must remain constant to pick up appearing and disappearing fields. If you have the lights on when a high reading appeared than they must still be on when the lower reading is recorded. If you find a field that appears and disappears when the background remains constant, then you may have activity.
EMF's that seem to move are a significant indicator of activity. Again the background needs to stay constant in order to locate such fields.
I hope you now have a better understanding of electromagnetic fields and what can cause them. Happy Hunting!


3. OTHER EQUIPMENT USED

Many different types of equipment are used to conduct an investigation. Below is a list and discription of the different equipment we may use.



Notepad- This seems like a very simple piece of equipment, but it plays a key role in every investigation. It is important to record the events of a vigil, along with the times an investigation starts and ends along with any unsual events or feelings experienced throughout the investigation.

Camera- Digital cameras have become a wonderful tool for investigators, when taking pictures use the highest mega pixel setting available. When you go back to analyse any orbs or anomolies this allows you to be able to zoom in on anything caught on camera. Flies, spiders and other bugs can often be mistaken as anomolies and it is only when you zoom in that you can actually see legs or wings. We also like to back up our digital cameras with a 35mm.

Camcorder- A night vision video recorder is essential to recording in the dark, and are perfect for long term survalliance of an area.

Digital Thermometer- A thermometer is used to detect temperature fluctuations quickly. A significant change in temperature could be an indication that there is spirit activity.

EMF Meters- There is heavy research that suggests that there is a connection between paranormal activity and changes in electrical magnetic fields.

Tape recorders- These are used for recording possible EVP's along with an audio record of your investigation.


4. THE OUIJA TALKING BOARD

Ouija or talking boards have roots that predate the modern spiritualism movement that began in the United States in the mid nineteenth century. Methods of divination at that time used various ways to spell out messages, including swinging a pendulum over a plate that had letters around the edge or using an entire table to indicate letters drawn on the floor. Often used was a small wooden tablet supported on casters. This tablet, called a planchette, was affixed with a pencil that would write out messages in a fashion similar to automatic writing.
During the late 1800's, planchettes were widely sold as a novelty. In 1890, businessman Elijah Bond and Charles Kennard had the idea to patent a planchette sold with a board on which the alphabet was printed. An employee of Kennard, William Fuld took over the talking board production and in 1901 he started production of his own boards under the name Ouija. In 1966, Fuld's estate sold the entire business to Parker Brothers, who continues to hold the trademarks and patents.

A Ouija board is operated by one or more users. They place the planchette on the board and then rest their fingers on the plancette. The users start moving the planchette around the board and speaking to the entity they wish to summon.They then begin to ask question of the entty, Eventually the planchette will come to test on one letter after another, spelling out a message. often an additional person records the messages on paper. These messages are often vague and open to interpretation, or complete gibberish.
Many users feel that the spirit with whom they are communicating is controlling their motions to guide their hands, spelling out messages. They see the board as a tool through which they communicate with the spirit realm.
Proponents of Ouija boards do not believe there is any harm in communicating with spiritual entities, provided basic guidelines are followed. These rules often vary fr! om user to user, but usually include things like never playing alone, beginning and ending properly. Numerous superstitions surrond Ouija board use.

The skeptical view
Many people find it difficult to beleive that a piece of cardboard sold as a game can conjure spirits, evil or benevolent. The accepted theory among psychologists and skeptics is that the particiapnts are subconsciously making small, involuntary movements or worse case is it is being manipulated by one or both of the players. Many skeptics believe that blind folded players are unable to produce intelligent messages and these failures indicate that people are simply willing to fool themselves.

Email and let us know how you feel!


5. GHOST HUNTING 101

SOME BRIEF GUIDELINES TO GHOST HUNTING

ABOVE ALL ELSE LISTEN TO YOUR COMMON SENCE!!!!!!

NEVER GO GHOST HUNTING BY YOURSELF, ALWAYS GO WITH AT LEAST ONE OTHER PERSON.

VERIFY THE LOCATION AND SAFETY OF THE PLACE, USUALLY GO BEFORE DARK SO THAT YOU CAN SEE ANYTHING THAT MIGHT CAUSE YOU HARM.

WEAR SUITABLE CLOTHES AND SHOES. NO SANDLES.

DO NOT DRINK OR DO DRUGS BEFORE A INVESTIGATION.

NEVER TRESPASS ON PRIVATE PROPERTY,

IF YOU BECOME UNREASONABLY FRIGHTENED, LEAVE, ALWAYS FOLLOW YOUR GUT INSTINCT IF YOUR PROMPTED TO LEAVE.

ITS NOT THE DEAD THAT YOU SHOULD BE AFRAID OF, BUT THE LIVING. MOST HAUNTED SITES ARE IN ISOLATED AREAS. THESE AREAS ARE PRONE TO HAVE ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES GOING ON.

NEVER EVER SPEAK ILL OF THE DEAD, THEY HAVE BEEN KNOWN TO GET EVEN.

GHOST DO NOT FOLLOW YOU HOME.

NEVER RELY ON CELL PHONES IN A HAUNTED LOCATION OFTEN THEY WONT WORK.

GHOSTS OR SPIRITS DO NOT POSSESS PEOPLE WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT. If someone or something seems to be taking control, tell it to stop. think rude thoughts at it. HOPE THESE GUIDE LINES HELP YOU IN YOUR GHOST HUNTS.

VOCABULARY:

Agent- A living person at the site of a haunting. Some human agents act only as witnesses to paranormal events while others are believed to be the method by which the hauntings occur. some agents may cause phenomena to increase, while others may be the entire source of the activity.

Anomaly- An occurance or condition removed from ordinarily understood experience.

Appartition- The projection or manifestation of a quasi-physical entity, sometimes referred to as a ghost.

Apport- A physical object that can materialize at will and can include coins, watches, jewelry and even food. They are often connected to spirits who interact with the living as the spirits ! cause it ems to appear and diappear in an effort to make themselves known.

Automatic Writing- A method used by spirit mediums to obtain information from the next world. It is believed that spirits take control of the medium and cause them to write unconscious information on paper.

Banishing- Formal procedure preformed to cast an invisible presence or influence out of an area. This can refer to either a spiritual cleansing, or the closing of a magical rite, when the invoked powers are dismissed.

Cleansing- A ritual where a dwelling or site is purified and malevolent influences are banished through prayers spoken as the petitioner moves through the area.

Demon- Hostile and resentful entity, suppodedly of non-human origin.

Doppleganger- German for Double-goer. Apersons deuplicatre or identical counterpart, seen as a result of bi-locational or astral travel.

Earthbound- Refers to a ghost or spirit that is unable to cross over at the time of death. Many spirits make the decision to remain behind by choice while others are too confused or frightened because of a sudden death or suicide to make the crossing.

Ectoplasm- A filmy, semi-solid substance which issues from the bodies of mediums during s trance state. Whether or not it has ever been genuine, virtually no ectoplasm has been reported in the past fifty years.

Elementals- Spirits which govern the four corners of the earth and are associated with, or reside within, the four basic elements. They are called Sylphs, (the east, air) Salamanders (the south, fire) Undines (the west, water) and Gnomes (the north, earth).

Empath- An individual who is particularly sensative to the psychic emanations of his or her surrondings, even to a degree of telepathically receiving and experiencing the emotions of others in their proximity.

Entity- A disembodied "consciousness" commonly referred to as a ghost, spook or demon.

EVP, Electronic voice Phenomena- Disembodied voices and sounds imprinted on audio recording devices. (For more information on this subject, refer to "For you Information" Link)

Ghost- The image of a person seen after his or her death, reflecting the appearance of the living, physical body but less suibstantial. these forms often seem to exist in a dream like state of semi awareness, though not always aware of their human observers.

Globule- An anomaly where floating circular forms appear on photographs or video.

Golden-rod- A rare anamoly seen in videotape recorded at the site of a haunting, appearing as bright, white or yellowish lines rapidly moving across a room.

Haunting- The manifestation of a ghostly presence attached to a specific location.

Incubus- From medival lore, a demonic entity capable of sexually arousing and sometime assaulting females. Cases of incubus attacks continue to be documented.

Influence- An invisible entity of undetermined nature, effecting the inhabitants of a dwelling. This may intially manifest as a feeling of eneasiness, then followed by more definitive signs which reveal a haunting.

Lepke- A very unique type of spiritual manifestation, which has the appearance of a solid, living person, which may even converse with someone, then suddenly vanish. these apparitions are most often reported to have been encounteredwithin or outside of cemeteries.

Materialization- A ghost appearing visually, suddenly or gradually, sometime indistinct, sometime looking quite solid.

Orb- Spherical image, usually translucent white, though sometimesof a reddish or blue hue, which inexplicably registers on photographs and videotape.

Paranormal- A word meaning unknown or beyond the normal that has come to refer to events that are unexplainable.

Parapsychology- The avenue of paranormal studies and research relating chiefly to psy! chic abi lities (ESP, telepathy) and spiritual phenomena.

Poltergiest- German for noisy ghost. This is an extremely rare occurance where random objects are moved and sounds produced for the sole purpose of which seems to be to draw attention to itself. the phenomena always involves a specific individual, fregently a child or adolescent.

Precognition- The psychic perception of future events or conditions.

Residual (Haunting)- Psychic imprint of a scene which is repeatedly play out, where the witness of this phenomena is essentionally peering into the past. These ghosts often seem unaware of the living observers.

Shade- an entity resembling a once living being.

Silky- A female ghost which is attired in a rustling silk garment, and performs domestic chores for a household after the occupants have retired for the night.

Spirit- Existence apart from, or transending, the physical, also the life force of an organism.

Succubus- Female counterpart of the incubus, a demonic entity said to inspire lust in men. Followinga nocturnal visit from a succubus, the human victim will always feel ill, depleted of vitality and un-clean.

Vortex- An anomaly which sometimes shows up in still photographs taken at the site of a suspected haunting, appearing as a translucent white tube or funnel shaped amss. Some researchers believe this amy be a porthole to the spirit realm.


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