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Religion & Spirituality

Leaps of Faith Ghost Hunting and Objectivity

By J.M Black

Synopsis

Ghosts and the paranormal have been part of the human experience for centuries, and play a role in everything from Hamlet to Hollywood blockbusters. The evidence for ghosts, however, has always stayed on the periphery of science. Ghost hunting today is growing in popularity and is aided by modern equipment, but it must also be subject to modern standards of experimentation and objectivity. Strange events can sway even the most rigid skeptic, but it’s crucial that we see them for what they are, not just what we want them to be.Whether you’re a believer, a skeptic, or somewhere in between, this book will challenge your beliefs and force you to re-examine the evidence—and fakery—behind modern ghost hunting.

Preface

you may be somewhat experienced field investigators, some may have

a few investigations under your belt and are looking for information.

Some of you are fully immersed in the lore and “facts” of spirits and all

that pertains to them, and some of you may be just curious.

The fact that we cannot prove we are not just talking to an empty

building without a leap of faith should be disconcerting to an objective

investigator.

This book is primarily aimed at those of you that would actively seek

out proof of hauntings. It will also be useful to those seeking to engage

the population at large about the supernatural. It is going to question

some, much, or all of your basic beliefs. Not out of spite, but because

we need to re-evaluate what we believe every now and then, especially

if we are going to interact with both believers and non believers outside

our social groups. If you feel at any part of this book that you are getting

mad, or indignant, or are thinking “what the hell does this guy know?”,

take a deep breath and a step back. Ask yourself how much of what you

believe or disbelieve about ghosts and spirits can you objectively argue a

case for? Ask that question again at the end of this book.

iii

Peer agreement is not proof. The universe is not a democracy (sadly,

because lots of great things would be true). Personal experiences are

fine and may be proof to you, but are not proof to anyone else. This

book isn’t about attacking your beliefs, it’s about maybe finding ways

to refocus an investigator’s energy into actually trying to prove the

existence of ghosts in any measurable and objective way. It can also be

used as a guidebook for new ghost hunters on how to investigate, and

not just experience a supposedly haunted location. If you are going for

the experience, what could it hurt taking away some data in an objective

way? It’s still enjoyable.

There are some parts in this book , where I have taken the decision

that the scope of the topic is outside this books narrative. There are

mentions of experiments and theories, along with their methods and

conclusions as far as they pertain to what this book is about, and to

include all this information in detail would make this book an unwieldy

monster. I strongly recommend the reader to use the power of the

internet to probe deeper into some of these references to flesh out their

overall knowledge of the field at their leisure. However, be objective in

your research, there are many sites out there that have an agenda or an

emotional spin aimed at solving all of your spiritual questions. Try to

stick with factual representations, and avoid unsupported “opinion”

pieces.

Later in this book I’ll describe what is called the “No” camp, that is,

people who don’t believe in ghosts. It was a camp I was firmly a member

of because there was no scientific evidence of ghosts. The things ghosts

were reportedly doing made no logical sense to me. Then a good friend

of mine asked if I wanted to go on a ghost hunt at Edinburgh Manor in

Iowa, which I thought would be a fun night out as I had never done one.

I figured it would be like camping out in an abandoned building talking

iv

ghost stories. We didn’t have any equipment, we were just there.

And then it happened.

I was on the steps to the second floor with another buddy that didn’t

believe. No-one else was in the building. We heard children’s voices,

followed by giggling. I looked at him, he looked at me and we decided to

vacate the premises. I will never forget the jolt I got, or the look on my

buddy’s face, and to this day I can’t explain what I heard. So we formed

a group, got all the gear and did what you are were supposed to do in

this situation.

Go hunt ghosts.

Our group WTF Investigations does what everyone else does, we have a

web page (wtfinvestigations.com), a Youtube channel, a Facebook page,

and we post semi regularly. I am halfway to being a hypocrite because

some of the things we post I am not sure is strong evidence, but it is a

group effort and therefore a group consensus on whether or not to put

it out there. What I do try to do is ask people to make up their own mind

and hope I get some meaningful feedback on any piece of evidence..

After many investigations people say that, as a ghost hunter, I must

believe in ghosts. That’s a tricky one . Although I have experienced

many anomalies, to call any of them ghosts is a leap of faith without

hard corroborating evidence. which is what this book is all about.

The beginning of this book may come across as rather harsh to the many

groups that are out there doing investigations, especially those with

belief systems firmly in place. You may get the idea I’m a skeptic. Later

you will see I most definitely am not, just open minded to both sides of

v

an argument.

The writing of this book is an attempt to stimulate a more logical and

deeper thought process and to reconnect the investigative part of the

paranormal community to the physical world. A world where physics is

real. To describe a ghost to objective people, we have to explain it in a

way that is objective, and grounded in measurable data. Anything else

is just preaching to the choir and not really investigating at all. This

doesn’t mean we can’t form new ideas and and make conclusions on

our observations, but without objective data it’s just another leap of

faith.

How many leaps of faith can we make until we become tellers of folklore

and no longer investigators?

About the author

John was born in London and now resides in Iowa with his wife and two dogs. He is an independent IT consultant and avid paranormal investigator. view profile

Published on September 25, 2019

Published by

40000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Religion & spirituality

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