A couple of days ago I began writing an article on the topic of metaphysics. As I sat down this morning feeling the need to finish that article promptly and get one posted, I just couldn’t bring myself to complete the article I started. My thoughts were elsewhere, and I felt the need to express the content of this particular blog post instead. So I listened to my intuition, and here I am now ready, willing, and able, to speak out about, and maybe even for, the voices from the other side. First and foremost I want those who read this to understand that the often unheard “voices” of those who have passed on (even residual haunting types), belonged to people, human beings who were alive, and breathing, and soulful, just like you and I are now. The voices and images that paranormal investigators sometimes capture are often crying out in pain or sorrow, giggle with delight, and/or moan or groan in despair from days past. They existed in our very own time and space, and called their human bodies home while in this, our, realm.
A scientific method is designed to remove the human factor, the emotional factor. It is a procedural collection of data designed for documentation purposes to shed light and supply answers. It is its inherent protocol, procedure, and uniformity that allow us to find pattern and reason in what may come across as random or chaos. It is a set of rules or ways in the dissection process that gives us information and data designed to produce and yield the best results. It is concerned only with logic and fact. In essence it removes all that is emotionally felt, it removes all that makes us humans, human.
I once was on an investigation at a closed down institution for the mentally ill and unstable. The nature of this type of facility while in use would be overwhelmingly filled with all things thought and felt bad. Many practices that are cruel or just plain despicable occurred there. These types of facilities were over crowded and understaffed. Patients were often physically and sexually abused, and the state of mental health care resembled something one might see in the movies these days as a horrific science fiction thriller. Lobotomies were a regular practice, electroshock therapy was executed in what would have been more like a torture than a remedy, and as if their own personal confusion, and disconnect wasn’t enough for these people to deal with, it was more often than not made worse by over medicating them and inducing a zombie minded affect.
This ordinary night’s investigation was an outing that was attended by a few different paranormal teams. As the investigation began and continued on I diligently searched using all my equipment, noting and documenting along the way as “things” that shouldn’t be happening started to occur. I carefully directed my questions and conducted myself in a scientific manner, and yet, so I thought, investigated in a manner that is respectful to our desired points of contacts which are referred to by many names like; entities, spirits, or ghosts. Most investigators are taught to investigate and relate in this “respectful” way, because well, one, it shows respect, and welllll…if you want them to interact with you and your equipment….to produce results…wellll …one must be respectful. However, what should be the bottom line intent, respect for another living being, has become convoluted. Our desires for concrete answers, for proof, via a process, far outweighs any sincere efforts of “respect”, but has become more of way to produce the best results while trying to appear like we truly care about their “feelings”. I mean, after all, if an investigator is going to stay objective, he or she needs to remove their own humanity’s emotions in order to obtain the best results.
Often in order to accomplish the disconnect, I believe we trick our minds, our thought processes, to eliminate thoughts that are causing us to discontent or conflict, thus all that makes us, us. We’ll not allow too much thought of particulars of a case or “that” which may be haunting, because it may make us sad. We use non human words like “it”, or “thing”, or “entity” (my personal favorite), or the word ghost (which we associate with the images and stories of fictional movies that we watch safely from the comfort of our easy chair). Yes indeed, we humans have a vast array of emotional defense mechanisms.
Many fields of work due to the emotional strain or stress of the job requirements can easily consume a person’s emotional being and “take you down” or make you unproductive or even unable to continue on in that field of work. Being a police officer or doctor comes to mind. Think of that doctor you hated. The one who seems to move about you as if you are an inhuman, barely listening to you speak, not even raising their eyes from the laptop screen situated in front of them as they diligently type away, recording for the records the content of your visit and words. This type of doctor is the kind who treats you like a mechanic would a car. Spark plugs, still connected, check. Tires balanced, check. Oooppss, low on oil, advised human owner…I mean patient, to change and fill promptly. See you in three months.
Now recall that doctor who treated you with compassion and the human touch. They listened intently to your thoughts and words meaning, they carefully examine you while even sincerely expressing regret if they have done something to you that may have caused you pain during an examine. It seems to me, a doctor who manages to keep this type of human emotional connection without loosing their objectivity is rare. It seems to me, that almost all people in fields of work that serve the human condition become “hardened” over time. Meaning, in order to do their jobs, they have changed their own emotional connectivity to the human condition…being, either consciously or subconsciously. I’ve always said, it’s the nature of the beast, but does it have to be?
Some investigators also use the tactic of “provoking”. Unfortunately, many do not see that everything they are doing is an attempt at provoking a response, but think that provoking means being stern, or mean, or taunting. Of course, at this point we could argue that not all whom we are trying to make contact with from the other side are worthy of being treated gently…think of a mass murdering entity we may come across in closed down prisons, but that’s a debate for another time and not what this article is about.
Okay, now back to the story of the investigation at the “insane asylum”. Toward the nights end all the different groups gathered in one room that is the size of a gymnasium. The room was once the women’s ward at this institution. I had been very excited about attending this investigation as this place was known for being very “active” with the paranormal. All sorts of entities were known for being there and I couldn’t wait to “experience” and “document” the “entities” that would make themselves known to me that night. Investigators are thrilled with delight when a place is “jumping” with activity. Oh, and of course, if one was to be touched or an entity would “show” themselves ….oh what a great night it would be.
While doing a large group EVP session, one of the teams founder, a large, burly, and intimidating looking man took the lead in the questioning. Initially, he was cold and calculating at best, but even this approach took a turn for the worse, and quickly. He became impatient and agitated because he was not getting any responses and/or interactions from one particular female ghost that died there and is said to haunt the location. “Come on, show yourself” He demanded in a deep baritone voice, at first just trying to induce a response, but then he seemed to became angry(whether it was real or not I’m not sure) that he wasn’t getting what he wanted out of the nights events thus far. “What are you chicken?!” His voice bellowed, and boomed, and echoed through the room. “I didn’t come here to waste my time…show yourself, you chicken!” He barked, and he went on and on seemingly getting louder with each angry demand, or curse, or insult.
I stood there listening to this man and thought…what is he doing?! I was disheartened at what was happening. I tried to intercept his rant with gentler questioning, but he always bounded back. I thought, why would any human being treat another dead or alive this way…especially in a place like this where there was such vulnerability? Here we are standing in an all female dormitory room/ward, and now here stands this large looking male investigator making insults, and threats, and demands to try and intimidate them. Female patients at this facility were often raped and beaten and now you have the gall to stand there brazen and arrogant thinking your provoking is the correct course of action. It is at this point in the night when in my head I had an epiphany. I felt sadness for any woman who may be left trapped in this place and was hearing him. How scared they must be. If I were them I’d be backing away afraid for what might come next. Besides, breeding fear isn’t going to yield any results anyway. (Ah yes, sad to state apparently the scientific mind never strays far…my desire for results to document reared its ugly head “) I thought, haven’t these mentally ill people suffered enough already? Haven’t they already lived one life filled with angst, and pain, and mistreatment, and abuse? All too often the patients here lived in a deluded world. They were made separate from the public and put here, and most times only suffered more until their death while within the walls of this “hospital”.
I’d like to say that what happened that night, and the dawning of my new found paranormal compassion and insight has forever changed my perceptions of how I conduct myself and how I behave while investigating, but it’s likely, it hasn’t…at least for the long run. The fact is that while on an investigation we really don’t know for sure what or who is at hand. Okay, this is only partially true, because regardless of whom we are actually in contact with, we are often knowingly trying to bring up and/or out, in some shape or form, the spirit of a particular deceased person that we think may be present at the location. A spirit of a person that once was living in our world before separating from us here in this realm and moving onto another elsewhere. I rationalize, that we don’t always know if we are dealing with a deceased human, residually imprinted energy, dimensional time slips, or even inhumans or demonics, so all is fair. To be honest, although there are theories formed from experience, not one person on this planet can say with any certainty what it is, or how it is possible to experience all we do in the realm of the paranormal people we come across…not even psychics. I very much believe in the legitimacy of some pychics/mediums/sensitives, but I must rely of my faith in believing them, not fact. And let’s face it, when all is said and done, we’re all from the “show me” me state and want proof in the way of tangible fact to soothe our contemplative minds.
I made one enlightened decision that night after the investigation, welllll, at least for now while the memory of that’s night epiphany is still present in my mind’s emotional thought process. The decision I made and continue to make is to never again investigate a hospital for the mentally ill. This decision was made for a few reasons. One basic and slightly selfish reason - I want to try and preserve my humanity and keep my compassionate and empathetic nature and keep it in tact as much as possible. Other reasons? I choose not to exploit people who are weaker than I, even if dead from this realm. I choose not to exploit human frailties and conditions. I choose not exploit “the other siders” who are as much alive as we are, but just in a different form. I don’t want to be the source of discontent, or hurt, or fear for another living being in this realm, than why shouldn’t I bestow that same “respect” for another being who happens to be living in another realm different from my own. We all have to deal with enough bad feelings and situations in this life here on Earth, and I, for one, certainly want to find comfort for my savage soul after I leave this world I now call home, don’t you too?
Peace and good will towards all….everywhere during this holiday season!
Their mood, or words, or message, we must remember that