I Think I Saw a Ghost !

I Think I Saw a Ghost !

Another Internet Video Captures A Ghost!

I recently stumbled across yet another internet video claiming to have captured 'evidence' of a ghost in the area that was being investigated and like many of these videos, the ghost was even linked to a specific person. I'm not going to go into the specifics of the video on this occasion as its more about what seems to be the sensationalism of highlighting such things that are on my mind for this post.

On this particular occasions, which isn't much different from others, there were a number of gadgets going off as the group filmed and those more sensitive in the group were picking up on something too. The group moved around the area and from the video alone there appeared to be at least four in the group possibly five, including the unseen team member holding the camera. At the point that the 'ghost' was captured only two remained in shot and our ghost was clearly a shadow captured in front of the camera.

So, the question here isn't so much the obvious one, which may be proposing that our investigators had faked the whole scenario, but why is it that we often see so much attributed to paranormal activity when there is a clear explanation?

The Problem With The Moment!

In my opinion it all comes down to perception. Which as a matter of fact is a weird and wonderful thing that has our entire reality on an odd kind of understanding. Perception can be driven by many elements within our own psychology and often we are unaware that they are there in the first place. For example, our adult understanding of the world around us is built by our education, our belief and of course our own personal experiences. There's probably a load of other contributing factors, but I'm no psychologist and let's try and keep it simple for now.

The moment you're in can equally define your understanding of that which is around you, that is probably a primary instinct in reality. Now I will be the first to admit that often whilst walking around a darkened building in search of ghosts I have had to contain my own excitement. Analyse the situation in a little more detail in order to ascertain whether the experience is actually paranormal or indeed a sequence of events that have transpired to present themselves in a fashion which could be interpreted as paranormal. It's this 'in the moment' perception that can often lead us to incorrect conclusions of an event, which is later reported as paranormal.

Don't get me wrong, we all make mistakes and I am pretty sure its happened to me at some point too. However let's look at things a little better and try to help each other see these possibilities without ridicule. That way we can progress the field by searching for more significant paranormal events to document and gain an understanding of.

It's this 'in the moment' perception during an investigation that I believe has many ghost hunters today jumping to the fear factor and failing to present reasonable explanations. Let's look at the scenario mentioned earlier again.

The four people were in a probable haunted location, so already they are looking for something and as all of us do, hope to capture that 'evidence' of the actual paranormal. They like many are after the Holy Grail of the Paranormal and are trying a few approaches. However by visiting a probable haunted location and effectively searching for ghosts, they have already created a possible psychological bubble around what they are doing. I'm not saying that this is always the case, but as I have fell subject to it myself I'm sure, then its a likelihood we should all realise. In essence the expectation has been created.

In our scenario above, the group have a few different gadgets which effectively start to react in the same area. This is, in the video, interpreted as paranormal activity. There's no reasonable explanation presented and no one makes the attempt to test why these gadgets are reacting. The assumption is made that there must be something paranormal going on. Perhaps this is because the group are in a darkened room, at a possible haunted location and seeking ghosts; that they assume these devices are indeed detecting some kind of paranormal activity. Again, they are in the moment and going with it.

What happens next fascinates me. Following the reaction of the first device, the group seem to randomly move about the room and as they do so, a couple of gadgets sound off. The group react to this as if there is paranormal activity is following them or as if they are following it, but the devices go off as they move close to them. This is the usual behaviour that generates the belief that our group is likely faking the activity. However it could equally be that our group believe their gadgets are designed specifically for detecting ghosts, but in reality they react when their static field is interrupted or something close by is generating some kind of EMF. A core understanding of how the tools of the trade (so to speak) work is a common reason why many misinterpret certain scenarios as paranormal when they have a reasonable explanation.

Finally, we move onto our captured ghost on film. The group have clearly been through a sequence of events now within the location that they believe is haunted, which has meant they are already concluding that there is paranormal activity in progress. The moving about the room with the various gadgets going off has also disorientated them slightly making them less aware and more focused on the paranormal. As a shadow moves across the room they attribute it to being a ghost rather than seeking reasonable explanation such as it being the camera mans shadow or that of the third person now currently out of shot.

Once in the moment and focused on that paranormal activity, with the adrenaline running thanks to the excitement of the hunt progressing its relatively easy for many to misinterpret simple things as being paranormal. It's important to be mindful of your surroundings and always ask questions of those interesting situations. Then we can begin to gain a much better understanding of paranormal events.

Something's Are Just Strange!

Of course this isn't always the case, not everything can be explained away by looking at logical explanations. During my time investigating the paranormal and also working with mediums I have often been left flummoxed. I've even thrown many an explanation at these odd scenarios only to conclude that they just don't fit and further understanding is required. Hence why I often deliver theories on the paranormal or even questions old more established ones.

Two such scenarios which come to mind are the time I witnessed a light ascend the staircase at Peterborough Museum, which was equally witnessed by another investigator at the time. A light which was exactly like a candle like, flickering away. The other was one based on perception itself. I am of course talking of the time I sat in the attic space of the Royal Oak in Swanage, asking for spirits to move my Grandfathers pocket watch, which was placed on the floor between me and a local Peter. The watch itself did not move, but shortly after asking the watch began to run. Although it had not been wound at all. The watch ticked away for about 20 minutes. I then spent nearly three months attempting to find an explanation, an explanation which never presented itself. Which then raises the question; did spirits wind the watch or did this occur through telekinesis as Peter and I intended the watch to move in some way?

You see when strange unexplainable things do occur without logical explanation, generally for me they present more questions to follow up on.

Perhaps the paranormal isn't evidence of the afterlife, but more what our minds are truly capable of!

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Kids Say the Strangest Things…

Kids Say the Strangest Things…

Well I Wasn't Expecting That !

I recently visited the Royal Oak in Swanage, one of my favourite little pubs to investigate, but on this occasion I decided to take my kids for a mini break for a weekend away.

I know what you're thinking and no I didn't take my kids on a paranormal investigation. However that in itself is an interesting point. For me I know my paranormal investigator side is never really off duty and whenever I walk into a location with some history or possibilities I'm always analysing what's about me. 

This is a part of me that has developed over the years where I always seem to manage to be fascinated by the stories associated with places as well as their activity. In all honesty it could equally be linked to the writer side of me too. Something that never really rests and to be fair I'm glad as you never really know when the paratheorist will pop up with an idea either.

Getting back to my visit to the Royal Oak. I hadn't been there more than twenty minutes and I was welcomed by the landlady Rachael. My youngest then asked; "Is that your friend?" Obviously I replied advising that Rachael wasn't just my friend, but also the owner of the pub we were staying in that night. Then the oddest thing occurred. My youngest looked up and exclaimed something similar to; "Is John your friend too?" At that point in time we were sat in the pool room, Rachael had left us and my youngest was pretty much looking at nothing. I looked around slightly confused by her statement.

What is important to add is that there was no one there (as far as I am aware) by the name of John and I dont have any friends that she would have met that are called John. Certainly no one there with us that evening that I could see. However what is interesting and something my youngest could not have known is that one of the prominent 'spirits' that mediums communicate with at this location is called John.

So, is my daughter a medium? Did she see the spirit of John that night?

In all fairness once she had slapped me around the face with that piece of information I was in two minds whether staying a couple of nights in the same pub maybe a wise idea.

What's Really Happening Here!

It's extremely difficult to comprehend fully if indeed my daughter is spiritually gifted or if the information was acquired from other sources. However the timing was very interesting indeed. No one walked passed, Rachael had just left so she knew who she was and nothing really occurred to prompt the statement. Once again I am left by a simple event at the Royal Oak that leaves me without a good solid explanation.

However it did remind of the research of Ian Stevenson, who pioneered some great research around children and their recollection of past lives or events. In fact Stevenson spent a large part of his life on this research looking into past lives, reincarnation, near death experiences, out of body experiences and much more. Dr. Stevenson also documented and authored papers on how in some cases birth defects or marks appeared to pass from one life to the next too. Fascinating stuff really, which I must write about in more detail at some point.

The point here is that an interesting piece of information suggests that children under the age of six are more likely to 'pick up on things' for some reason. My youngest is three years old. The very fact that she picked up on something as specific as the name 'John' could suggest that Stevenson was onto something, but why? My understanding is that before the age of six the children haven't been through enough education and social situations to allow them to formulate an understanding of the world as its commonly seen by us all. Thus perhaps their reality differs from ours. Also, if you try to think back to this period of your life and accurately recall events its very hard indeed. Try it? What you do remember maybe your current perception of the events, but may not always be the actual course of events that occurred.

This in itself presents some interesting concepts around memory, but then how do these children before the age of six remember prior to being born the lives of others? This is also where I believe telepathic interaction may come into play. As these children have no social or educational boundaries in place they can receive information telepathically without question. When you become an adult certain information that 'pop's into your head' is often discarded as imagination or simply irrelevant to our current busy lives. Children under six dont have this problem.

So Why Don't All Kids Talk About Past Lives or Ghost?

This is the interesting factor, why doesn't every child under the age of six talk to us about the ghosts they see or past lives? Perhaps the problem with that it actually us, how many parents have thought their child has an imaginary friend or even simply discounted a piece of information from their child thinking they have an excellent imagination. I'll admit it I'm sure I have. Except when that piece of information is directly related to the location I am sat in, then my ears prick up!

Information is an interesting thing really, it is a part of everything we do these days and makes up the majority if not all we come into contact with. Oddly though we are as accepting of some information as we are able to discount many pieces of information too. We accept what we feel is valid to us and in that often discount important information that holds great value to others. Often its this under valuation of information that holds importance to others that can cause many disagreements in my opinion. Something to bear in mind perhaps.

Other Possibilities

Of course we have to bear in mind that the name John is relatively common too and although there seems no real reason why my daughter may ask what she did when she did, there's still that possibility that it was pure coincidence. Thus the timing and location gave the information greater meaning to me than it may have actually had.

As with everything in the paranormal you really have to keep an open mind, as brilliant as things may seem try not to get overly excited and falling into that trap of believing everything as being spooky! That said should we be discounting everything too? Where can we, pardon the pun, find the happy medium?

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Bob the Orange Is A Little Quiet..

Bob the Orange Is A Little Quiet..

Digital Freedom..

The wonderful thing about the internet is that you can stumble across all kinds of interesting stuff out there and even the subject of the paranormal doesn’t escape the internets reach. Of course this digital freedom to voice exactly what we want when want does mean that there are all extremes of views out there in the digital ether. Something which many often take personally. Just remember everyone is entitled to their own opinion and some may not know quite how to articulate than opinion softly. 

One such piece of interesting information was a little video that Kev Kerr put together regarding haunted objects and how they are not all that chatty, especially when using a spirit box. However before we get into this, take a look at the video below, so we are all on the same page.

Interesting right? Granted Kev’s approach maybe seen by some as a little sarcastic in places, but I think it covers the concept of ITC in relation to haunted objects rather well. 

Bob Says…

Kev gives us a pretty standard inanimate object for this little experiment, a small orange! In order to give the orange a little character Kev added a smiley face, which I am glad of otherwise I just dont feel I would have felt the same connection as I did! 

He then fires up the Spirit Box and set’s about to communicate with our new orange friend. Remarkably there are a few responses and we soon establish that this little orange is conscious with a name of Bob. Although I have a feeling a few other name may have crept through too. 

However things are not quite as they seem and it soon becomes evident that Bob isn’t playing ball as much as we may believe. 

Kev Shows Us That Perhaps Bob Likes To Mislead Us…

During this Spirit Box session Kev manages to highlight a few things that many of us take for granted in these situation, which quickly leads to many assumptions based on poor information. 

You see information is a funny little thing really, it’s something we use regularly to understand the hauntings we investigate, but equally if we are not careful it can totally confuse our investigations too. Take the scenario of Bob the Orange for example, a scenario many of us may have encountered whilst on an investigation in the past. As you sit there in a no doubt darkened room, spirit box fuzzing away, you begin to ask questions. This is where the information could easily take over you see. Right from the outset, from question one it can often be given control. No it doesn’t I hear you scream! Think about it though. The most probable random question that you may ask when using a Spirit Box if you didn’t want to direct your questioning, may be something like; ‘Is there anyone here with us?’ 

Think about it a little and a form of that question is more likely. Now by asking this question you are creating the presumption that there is something there (I’m by no means saying there isn’t), but then as you listen you’re provided with an answer. However think about which answers are acceptable in these circumstances? There’s actually more possibilities than you realise; positive or negative responses such as ‘yes’ or even ‘no’, names would be accepted too, oddly simple descriptions work too such as ‘man’ or ‘woman’ or ‘soldier’, actually when it comes to Spirit Boxes more often groups appear to accept any response as an indication communication is in progress. Okay, let’s be fair, not all groups or investigators are quick to accept what comes through the Spirit Box as paranormal. 

Where was I? 

Oh yes. So, right from the first question you have a piece of information or do you? Often in these situations we are already dealing with audio pareidolia, where we are trying to find patterns linked to our questions in the random data from the Spirit Box. Also, as we are investigating a certain location which in turn may have a particular history, we ask associated questions manipulating the data as it were. 

Okay so Bob isn’t misleading us, we are actually misleading ourselves so to speak. 

Hence Bob the Orange and how Kev managed to have a conversation with him, although I kind of like Bob! Shame really as I can see Bob having his own TV series investigating haunted locations. Perhaps in the States in the OC! 

Does That Mean The Spirit Box is a Waste of Time?

It’s at this point I am sure you will be expecting me to put a touch of negative on the old Spirit Box, but if that’s the case you’re going to be disappointed. Wait what, I hear you shout! 

Firstly, don’t get me wrong I get that the Spirit Box basically spits out loads of random hits on various radio stations and I am also very understanding of the fact that we ask questions and then accept answers often fitting them to our questions. Basically there are a lot of flaws with this form of communication, which includes the method most often used. 

Hang though, I said that I wouldn’t be negative towards this form of communication! That’s right, personally I’m not a fan, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it doesn’t work for some. Let me explain. Like a Ouija Board I see this as a modern divination tool, which allows those using it to extend their personal confidence perhaps in their own ability to sense information from spirit. Obvious the science half of my persona can not attribute proof to this and its as random as the reception on a spirit box itself. Still think about it for a moment, apply it as a possibility. Does ITC present us with a modern method we are familiar with to focus our sensitivity and communicate better with spirits; or is it simply a clever trick to make us buy more gadgets? 

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Perhaps Your a Paratheorist…

Perhaps Your a Paratheorist…

What the heck is a paratheorist?

‘Paratheorist’ or even ‘Paratheory’ are terms that I’ve not encountered a great deal during my years in the paranormal field, but know that they are out there knocking about. So, I’m not about to lay claim to them as my own as I don’t think that would be particularly admirable of me. 

However they are about and I’ve heard some members of the paranormal field describe themselves as a ‘paratheorist’ or indeed read a few website posts where the term ‘paratheory’ has popped up from time to time. 

Through these particular encounters here’s what I believe a ‘paratheorist’ may be. Basically they are an individual within the paranormal field that spends a great deal of their time coming up with ideas, explanations, theories around the paranormal in order to help explain some of those strange occurrences that we all endeavour to investigate in the dead of night. 

What I really like about this evolving term is that it appears to be attributed to individuals from a wide ranging of backgrounds. A parapsychologist from an excellent university  can be paratheorists whilst someone researching and investigating the paranormal can equally be one too. It’s literally all about the ideas and building them into something that others take a look at and say ‘hang on a minute you’ve got something there’. 

So if the paranormal is your passion and you’ve got a number of ideas then you might just be a paratheorist. Don’t be afraid to share those ideas either, as that’s how we will make progress in the field. 

Why I’m a Paratheorist

Firstly, I’m not even sure why or if I used the term to describe myself at some point, but that said it’s clearly stuck somehow. To be fair I’m not against being called a paratheorist either, the term does describe me pretty much to a tee. 

More recently PARASEARCH radio presenter Kerry Greenaway used the term to describe me when I was on one of the many shows she hosts. And guys, she does a fantastic job at hosting almost a different show every night of the week. If you’ve not listened before and fancy a paranormal fix check out one of her shows on Spreaker. 

It’s really quite humbling to be recognised for my work and even seen as a theorist in the field too, it’s something I’ve constantly worked hard at and hope others get their ideas out there too. 

All that said and done I suppose it still doesn’t entirely make clear why I’m a paratheorist does it? Bouncing ideas around and challenging views is one thing, but one thing I’m not alone in as many excellent Investigators in the field do that. In fact it could be said it’s exactly what we all do one investigation to another. That said there are a few that go one step beyond and build their theories for all. 

That is exactly what happened to me a few years back, my passion for the paranormal became my focus whilst on holiday in Turkey. 

It began with me reading FWH Myers great work ‘Human Personality and It’s Survival of Bodily Death’, which is by no means an easy read. Especially when your in holiday mode. What was odd was that I also read a book on Quantum Physics straight after and that highlighted Feynman’s method of using ideograms to map out certain aspects of quantum physics. This inspired me to understand a better way to comprehend the interactions in the Seance Room environment. This lead to a lot of scribbling in a notebook whilst sat on a beach sipping ice latte, I do like a nice ice latte. 

Those scribblings gained structure before I left Turkey and then over the next few months I developed them into my Theory of Telepathic Interaction. Which can be found here…

Theory of Telepathic Interaction

That’s the odd thing or perhaps not so odd, I don’t know, I often find myself thinking through aspects of the paranormal on a regular occurrence. Usually after something I’ve read or watched on TV, but sometimes it can be as simple as a conversation with someone too. So for all those people I’ve spoken to and perhaps seemed to glaze over at some point then gone off on a completely weird tangent, my apologies. However that’s how my paratheorist mind obviously works. All you have to do is follow the white rabbit down the hole and before you know it you’re theorising too. 

What Are Your Paratheories?

Of course the best thing about theories and ideas is the responses you may get when you share them with others. I think the science community calls it peer review and it’s something we probably need in the paranormal fiend a little more in my opinion. 

I’ve had mixed reviews of my own theories and ideas in the past, but that’s where you must develop an understanding and to a degree a respect for others opinion, whether you agree with it or not. 

Still this needs to be a mutual respect really; stating ‘your theory is crap’ will not help the field progress and isn’t constructive. We need to respond with structured evidential information that helps us understand why the theory might be considered ‘crap’! All too often all that occurs are comments which help no one, but generate negative feelings. Which often become arguments. Let’s find a better way to communicate guys. 

Let’s share and discuss our ideas and theories, express our thoughts on theories which have become common place these days. A perfect example being that of the Stone Tape Theory, what are your thoughts on it? 

Personally I think it needs re-evaluation these days, as we have learnt so much since it’s conception. Perhaps there’s more to it or even experiments that could test it on various levels.

What we need is an old style coffee house discussion, where a bunch of us gather over coffee to chat about various paratheories to see if we can help them evolve a little. 

What do you think ? 

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The Forgotten Variable

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Psi Theory

Off into the Dark We Go!

Often as investigators we head out into the dark seeking the unknown, with little more than hope to keep us company. We are a funny old lot really, varying from thrill seeking ghost hunters to data collecting investigators searching to make the paranormal a little more normal. Not to mention that some of us are also seeking what is often conceived to be ‘evidence’ or at least something to support why we do what we do!

Seeking out an understanding of that unknown has long kept us busy and over the years we have utilised an abundance of gadgets and approaches, some of which may depend on our beliefs too. Whether its Harry Price sealing off a room with tape and using small bells and wire to indicate probable spirit movement; or Zak with a KII Meter in search of ghosts at various well known haunted locations around the world. Either way we are all looking for similar things and most probably the answer to exactly the same question; does human consciousness survive bodily death. A question that even FWH Myers founder of the Society for Psychical Research asked back in the early days of the SPR. 

These days we do seem to have a much better understanding of that which we are trying to investigate. There are plenty of theories around the ghosts and spirits we seek, but equally science has also given us an excellent understanding of the environment we seek them in. Granted we dont all have a top understanding of classical science or even the sciences based in further education, but our schooling gives us some simple building blocks to start with. Go a little bit further, well perhaps a lot further and we begin to understand advanced science like quantum physics. These modern day understandings mean that we are beginning to formulate theory around the paranormal rather than continuing to seek the same as we have done for the last hundred years. 

The Question Is…

These days psychology is known to many investigators, ghost hunters and para-enthusiasts; we all know that it plays a part somehow in the subject of the paranormal, especially as we are all aware of the field of parapsychology too. In fact just like psychology made its way into the sciences, the field of parapsychology is now out there too. 

Universities even offer it as an additional and specialist area for those educating themselves in psychology. Dr Ciarán O’Keeffe from the TV show Most Haunted is probably one of the most well known Parapsychologist today and a really nice guy too. 

In fact Dr O’Keeffe is also looking to push the boundaries of paranormal investigations by adding in elements which to date may be a little out of reach of us normal folk. I recently managed to speak briefly with Ciarán whilst he was a guest on Marc Richardson’s Paranormal Radio Show, when he mentioned the use of some pretty high techy tech glasses for monitoring the eye movements of individuals whilst investigating. Incidentally high techy tech glasses cost somewhere in the region of £30k which is currently way out of my investigation budget. 

Still it would be excellent to try some experiments and gather some data around aspects such as these and start to look beyond just capturing the effect. 

So, the question is, what is the forgotten variable? 

The answer is actually relatively simple, we are the forgotten variable! As investigators we often head into a location that has been reported as haunted searching for its ghostly spirit residents basing much of our investigation on the loose information we have managed to research. This isn’t a bad thing, it’s what we do and enjoy. However for some (not all) this approach means that they’re approach may be a little blinkered. Any activity is often related to the supposed local ghosts and defined as intelligent communication. The problem with this is that we are not really taking into consideration everything we are truly presented with. This of course brings to light the very consideration of those Investigators present and the fact that without even realising it we can too influence the situation ourselves. In some cases this maybe referred to as the observer effect or simply be that we may make assumptions based on our own beliefs or opinions. 

Although That’s Not Likely To Change…

Although many people investigating today do take a lot into consideration and do indeed have open minds, trying to gather good information on the paranormal, changing how things are done isn’t likely to happen any time soon. You see the problem is for many of us, myself included we love a good old ghost hunt and visit more for an experience than gathering important data that may one day change the field as we know it. 

However it would be good to gather data and share it amongst the community to help us understand more about the paranormal. As someone pointed out to me recently; we do what we do in our own time and our approach to the research should not be hindered by specific governing bodies, otherwise it could stop us from thinking beyond the norm in order to understand the paranormal. Which I agree with to a degree, but hope that this wouldn’t stop us all from sharing. 

Right I’m Out of Here…

Well I’ve plonked enough random thoughts onto this electronic page for one night! if I’m totally honest this has been a slightly ‘what heck was all that about then’ kind of a post, but heck I’m sure it meant something to someone out there. 

Fundamentally what I think I was getting at was, whilst investigating don’t forget to include yourself in the paranormal equation. There’s always going to be a lot to take into consideration whilst investigating in a darkened haunted location, but don’t forget to question yourself too. 

After all that spooky demonic growl you just heard could actually be a rumble of the belly thanks to a spicy dinner. 

Remember be safe, be knowing, have fun and let’s be careful out there!! Don’t forget to like, comment and share below… 

Social Media Spirits 

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Psi Theory

Do You Remember the Philip Experiment?

You may remember that a while back I posted in the Metetherial Encyclopaedia section of my website about the Philip Experiment. This was a well known experiment that took place in the 1970’s by the Toronto Society for Psychical Research where as the group attempted to create a ghost or spirit of their. This was to be achieved by deciding on the details of the ghosts character, looks, background, etc. 

Using the classical Seance approach the group attempt to communicate with their made up character ‘Philip’, which oddly eventually worked. Perhaps showing that the belief of the group and intention to communicate actuated the ghost of Philip into reality or at least into a form which the group could communicate. 

This particular experiment should in my mind be one that is always on the mind of investigators, simply because it places into question the very source of the information that paranormal investigators often associate with spirits. It’s something that has equally been highlighted recently by the psychic projection experiment, again if we can focus our mental ability to transfer information onto a digital recorder, then could we be responsible for EVP’s ourselves? 

So, here’s a thought and one I would be interested to try once I get five minutes. If we recreated the Philip Experiment today then I think we have a number of resources available to us that could enable us to create something a little different. If the concept is to create a character of a person with so much detail that would almost make that person seem like they really existed, then surely if that information was known by more people then our new age Philip would become even more real. 

If you really want to get a character out there, then these days they will need some social media connections..

Philip Gets Twitter and Facebook

Facebook is an excellent place to start because it literally lays out in a standard format all the features of our modern day Philips personality. All we would have to do is simply come up with reasonable answers to the character questions. We could even pull a picture from somewhere to give our modern day Philip a visual representation. Although applying a random picture from the internet could be unwise and it maybe better to mix up a few elements of a few pictures. A little like a police photo-fit. 

Okay for those of you that may have stumbled on a particular program on MTV you probably thinking this is a little like that Catfish show where certain individuals create fake profiles and then use them to start online relationships with people. Just to be clear our modern day Philip wouldn’t be engaging in such acts, heck he wont even be communicating with others. We would literally just create his profile and place it online to be viewed. Granted we may add a few events in Phil’s timeline to give him a little extra background, but that’s it. 

Similarly we could create a Twitter account with the same idea. Tweeting a few life moments for old Phil or young Phil as he appears to be rather techy savvy now! Unlike he’s 17th century counterpart. 

With social media full of juicy information describing not only our modern day Philip, but also detailing a few life events for him, our character is almost complete. Many of us are aware of fake profiles or profiles created to con us, so we would have to ensure that our Phil didn’t carry any elements which could make people think this. Question is how; the simplest form is to use the idea of a ‘movement’. A ‘movement’ can be something that’s described as starting with a single person, but then gathers momentum as others join in and express their investment in said ‘movement’. In the case of our Phil, this could be simply achieved by adding a few friends to Phil’s friends list on social media, then by expressing some kind of thanks and link to a personal situation that Phil shared with the individual. 

This could then encourage others to add Phil as a friend too. This then elevates Phil to appear like an actual person and others would then continue to connect with him following the ‘movement’ as it gathers pace. 

Does Social Media Presence Make Phil Conscious

If all this creation of our modern day Phil pays off then if we were to follow the approach of the Philip Experiment then by using say the classical seance room approach a group maybe able to connect with the spirit of Phil; or at least his created consciousness. There again if we think it through is that really quite right? If we create Phil and generated the information that makes Phil ourselves then surely we are not connecting with a consciousness, we are just connecting to the information that has grown through the social media connections. 

Obviously those attempting to communicate with our Phil would need to be kept out of the loop regarding he’s back story and only given enough information to connect with him. That way they could be considered blind to the experiment more so. 

In the original Philip Experiment something that was mentioned quite a bit was that the group managed to have a table move quite violently. Was this movement down to the connection made to Philip or through the intention and belief of connection was the movement due to psychokinesis? 

Getting back to our modern Phil, it would be interesting to see if creating the character on a social media platform would generate a ghost that was more accessible by sensitives or mediums? Has the information out there in the cloud been enough to create something real or perhaps as the information is so accessible we are knowledgeable of our Phil without really knowing it. Its a fascinating concept that places the source of information received during spiritual communication in probable question. In order to prove survival after death we must seek the source rather than continuing to look at the effect. 

Is it the information of our lives that defines our consciousness or our consciousness that defines the information of our lives?

Either way this could be an interesting experiment worth a go I think, so if you have time please give it a go. I would be interested in your results. 

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Ghosts in the Machine – Technology and the Paranormal 

Haunted Object Scanning Caught My Attention

As I sat today, sipping coffee and thumbing through my Facebook feed I stumbled on a small post from the Society for Psychical Research. Actually it was more of a re-post in that it was referring to a post from Week in Weird where the Travelling Museum of the Paranormal & Occult were attempting what they claim to be the worlds first haunted object 3D scanning project. However their attempts began with some odd problems, in that the object in question ‘Billy’ didn’t appear to ‘want’ to be scanned. That was their response to the software having a little trouble to begin scanning and displaying a probable object (unseen by us) in front of the haunted object. This prevented the team from scanning the object in order to print a 3D copy. 

The Idol of Nightmares also known as ‘Billy’ was said to be against the scanning and 3D printing process, so the team conducted a little EVP with some dramatic responses before conducting negotiations to explain to the idol that all would be well. 

Www.ashleyknibb.com
‘Billy’ AKA The Idol of Nightmares

Of course following a long negotiation apartently they managed to successfully scan the idol and print off a smaller 3D version of the idol. 

This little story sparked a touch of interest for me, it didn’t just mention haunted objects, but also a probable issue that related to technology affected by the paranormal. Both of these elements of the paranormal always get me thinking, trying to really figure out if objects could become almost imprinted by spiritual energy or even consciousness; or if they had the ability to cause technology to malfunction. 

Object Storage or Object Trigger

The interesting thing about haunted objects is that they are supposedly objects that appear to contain some kind of spiritual energy from a previous encounter in their history. This concept is no doubt based on the Stone Tape Theory although most definitely pre-dates it as there are many stories of strange mystical objects related to spirits throughout time. 

However I think we need to at least contemplate other options on topics such as these, after all we often forget to factor in the weird and wonderful capabilities of our own minds. This is often forgotten as we prefer to side with classical sciences link to the physical, the measurable. So, we make the assumption that the ‘energy’ from a probable spiritual event or traumatic event some how becomes imprinted on the object holding information there forgotten ever. Information which is then released under the right circumstances. All of which is great until we realise the inconsistencies in this approach especially when the true energy required to imprint information on an object maybe much more than we realise, thus causing issue around this particular approach. 

However all that said and done, people still experience things and often those experiences can match others too. So, there must be some kind of information transfer occurring somehow in order for this all to take place. Question is how? 

One concept that I have always thought could make sense is that these objects are actually information triggers in that they enable our minds to locate information regarding the object including the probable spiritual activity related to it. This could occur in number of ways; we already knew the information, but didn’t remember it until seeing the object and it triggered it; or seeing the object allows us to connect to a collective unconscious where we can obtain the information from. A bit like googling a picture so to speak. Mind Googling if you will. 

Of course the concept of our unconscious minds searching the minds of others for information is a little radical, but there is quite a bit of data to support the possibility of telepathic interaction. Throw in a little of Einstein’s ‘Spooky Action at a Distance’ or Quantum Entanglement and it all becomes a little more possible. It would certainly give us more explanation around this phenomena and how mediums can tap into that information too. 

Although it does then stabilise the most likely fact that we seem to be able to achieve much of our access to this information without the existence of spirits, but its mostly possible through the aspects of intention, belief and faith. Without which those that can would not believe in their own abilities to achieve access to the information. This for me is equally as exciting as proving the survival of consciousness as it begins to place our own abilities and the links between us all on a whole new level.

The Technology Bit

Let’s jump back to the original story that I read today, the team were trying to scan a haunted object, the Idol of Nightmares, in order to create a 3D print of it. I know they said it didn’t appear to want to be scanned, but that was them drawing conclusions from limited data. Let’s bear in mind that this was a home scanning kit with most likely reasonable costing hardware and software. These kind of technologies may do a good job, but just because it fails to scan or in this case locates an oddity directly in front of the camera, doesn’t mean its paranormal. Obviously I dont have all the data here regarding what occurred and what was attempted by the team and couldn’t make a possible assessment on that basis. However as the article states these objects threw up a number of issues with the technology they were using. I would be interested in how some of these issues were addressed initially in order to ascertain them as being paranormal in origin. 

Www.ashleyknibb.com
The 3D Print Out of ‘Billy’

Is it possible that given the objects they were trying to scan and by knowing their back stories they could have made associated assumptions to the source of the issues, linking them to something a little more spooky?

An obvious test would be to send a number of objects to a neutral person and ask them to scan them without an understanding of the objects back story. Would the same issues occur? If they did,  would they be able to come to the same conclusions indicating that the Idol didn’t want to be scanned due to the fact it didn’t understand the process? I think perhaps not, but then I’ve not met ‘Billy’ have I! 

This particular story has raised some very interesting points regarding the use of technology within the paranormal field for me. One particular comment made during the video related to this story was something along the lines of; ‘what have we let loose on the internet’. Although this appears particularly drama orientated, there is an interesting spin to it too. If this is all based on information then by scanning the Idol and placing the data on the internet, perhaps they have unleashed something onto the cloud we could all tap into! 

Of course in regards to ‘Billy’ the next step I’m guessing would be to see if the 3D printout of the Idol presents paranormal activity too. That at least would suggest that recreating the haunted object in this manner would also recreate the linked energy somehow wouldn’t it? In theory perhaps, but equally as the smaller recreation generates the same probable visual triggers as the original then it could be suggested that this could be the reason paranormal activity is found in the associated object. 

Oddly this little project by the team from the Travelling Museum reminds a little of the Philip Experiment, but perhaps a modern day approach using technology. The members of the Philip Experiment imagined a character to communicate with, whilst in this instance the group are creating a replica of a known haunted object. Perhaps the Travelling Museum were not seeking communication from the replica, but I like the idea that this could work in that way. 

Future Possibilities

These kind of ideas to utilise new technology in different ways presents some excellent possibilities for the future of paranormal investigation and understanding in my opinion. I am a huge fan of the old school approaches, but equally believe we need to try many new ways too. 

It was only this week that Dr Ciaran O’Keeffe was on Marc Richardson’s Paranormal Radio Show and we briefly discussed the use of some very expensive glasses that he can use to track the movement of the eyes to understand what they are doing during a paranormal investigation. These could help identify probable triggers for telepathic interaction moving forwards. There are also so many more options coming into play that can allow us to gather import detailed information on the elements present during an investigaiton. These even include some cheaper versions of devices that can monitor basic brain waves, heart monitors, temperature, light and so much more. As the prices of such devices continue to come down we should be investing and gathering the data for continued analysis. 

In my opinion we should continue to use the old methods, but begin to capture better data related to them and then incorporate more modern methods in too. 

The future is all about the data and drawing an understanding from it. With the abundance of teams out there and technology available to us all, which also keeps us all in contact through things such as social media, we have the ability to work towards our common goal. 

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