When a person hears of a haunted location he or she tends to perk up to hear a good ghost story. Perhaps it's just for entertainment or to be retold later around a campfire. Everyone does it. Who wouldn't want to hear about a lady returning to protect her house or to warn of upcoming danger? Ghost stories like this have been told for many years. Yet, we tend to have a different opinion when we hear someone is actually looking to explore locations that are allegedly haunted.
Why? There are many reasons. Some may say it's evil, not normal or even blasphemy. But my favorite is "It's just not right." There are even skeptics who do not believe in any aspects of the paranormal. No matter what people believe, there are still some out there exploring the unknown. These people have been called different things, including paranormal investigators, ghost hunters and psychics. These individuals have been around for many years. And with the rise in ghost tours across the country and television shows, they will continue to be around for many more.
I remember several years ago going on my first ghost tour. It was very educational with not only ghost stories but with lots of historical facts. I can see how easily TV shows and tours can encourage people to explore the unknown. But it's also very interesting to hear what people have to say about things happening in their own lives. After a friend of mine sent me a picture of possible proof of a ghost, I began looking more into this field. With lots of research and consideration, I co-founded a local group.
Photo by Tom Moore
Sightings are often reports of a lady in white on staircases in allegedly haunted locations.
Even though people have been doing research for many years, this field of science still remains a mystery and should not be taken lightly. Over the past few years, I have been in a variety of situations. Most were pleasant, but some were uncomfortable. There are many beliefs about what people are encountering. Some believe they are spirits of those who have passed on, while others claim they are either demonic or angelical beings. No matter what our belief, the question remains. Should we shun those who explore what we cannot explain?
When Thomas Edison invented the light bulb or when Alexander Graham Bell first communicated over a wire they were labeled great inventors. But think for just a moment. In 1920, Edison announced he was working on a device he called a "Spirit Phone," which would allow people to communicate with the dead. If this Spirit Phone had worked, would he still be considered a great inventor or would his works be considered evil?
Today, many scientists and researchers are working for the same goal: to have scientific proof there is life after death by communicating with the dead. I can only imagine how strong people's faith will become and how many will start attending church if researchers succeed in this ongoing quest. Imagine knowing you could have that last chance to communicate with a loved one, one more time.
Yes, maybe this is just wishful thinking. But, again, who knows? I'm sure in 1973, Martin Cooper was told his cell phone idea would not work. I'm so glad he didn't listen to skeptics.
Scientists have always researched the unknown, that is the nature of investigation. Skeptics have doubted everything from the effectiveness of vaccines to the ability to land on the moon. To some degree investigations into what are considered paranormal could be just as successful. I hope my search will open up more information about this field, but I am not a scientist. In the end, if all I discover is the truth, for myself, I will be satisfied.
Tom Moore is a founding member of Mid-Ohio Valley Ghost Hunters and has been conducting research for 14 years. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.