I’ve mentioned in my last ghost hunting article that I’m taking classes on how to do a proper investigation. I’m learning all the procedures and precautions in order to start my own group. In the previous post, I was part of an active investigation in which the little girl who haunts (I’m not sure if I like this word) a library, visited me in my dreams. She told me how she really died. I intend to return to the library and do research on the library and the girl. I’m hoping to find out the identity of the angry ghost. Right now, I’m learning how to interview people who have unwanted visitors in their homes. No not the pesky freeloading living relatives, but the other kind. What questions need to be asked? Find out after the jump.
If a family is experiencing spirit activity, they are usually frightened and asking themselves many questions like: “Why is this happening to us? Did we cause this? Will the spirit hurt us? Is it a demon? For an investigator to get a feel of what they’re walking into, they ask questions; many questions, before even attempting to investigate a home. Why? What If the ghost is Grandpa Fred and he’s hanging around to make sure his family is safe? Then the family might not be in such a hurry to get rid of the ghost, as long as Grandpa doesn’t interfere with their daily life. But, what if the spirit is nasty or worse a demon, then the investigators must protect themselves and the family. Well trained investigators do not antagonize a dangerous spirit; the protection of the living occupants of the home, our only priority.
So, what kind of questions would an investigator ask? I’ll give a few samples and then explain why we ask these questions. Examples: How many occupants at the location; occupant’s names and ages; have visitors witnessed the events? What are the occupant’s religious beliefs; how old or new is the home; if old, then how many previous owners (if known). Has the home been blessed? Has there been recent remodeling? Have the occupants noticed any odors, sounds, voices or moving of objects?
Like I said, I’m only listing a few of the fifty-one questions. Why do we need to know how many occupants in a home? Well, the family listed three people; mom, dad, and child, but the investigators have sensed two other entities in the home. Are these the deceased family members of the occupants or spirits that came with the house? It’s also important to talk to witnesses who may have seen the events while visiting the home? The cleaning lady might have seen something that the family didn’t.
The question about age is because children are natural beacons for spirits. Children are usually the first ones to notice a spirit in the home, or they may be the cause. A close friend of mine had a devastating experience with a nasty spirit when, without her knowledge, her young sons fooled around with the Ouija board that they had borrowed from one of their neighborhood friends; a psychic had to called in to cleanse the home.
The age of the home is helpful in determining if the spirits were the originally owners of the house or the land. And if there’s a big turnover for the property: people moving out after only a short time in the house; then we have a problem. A good investigator will want to know why the big turnover. What frightened the former owners of the property? We would talk to the neighbors to see if they heard anything mentioned. If were dealing with the haunting of a new house, then we ask if something recently purchased from a yard sale, antique shop, etc. We ask this because that item you bought at the yard sale might have a spirit attached to it.
Religious Beliefs need to be taken into consideration because the occupant’s belief in their personal religious icons will help them deal with cleansing the home, if needed. This next question ties in with religion. Did the occupants have a priest come in to bless the house when the events began? When and more importantly; what happened? Usually, the investigators will contact the pastor or minister involved with the house blessing to interview them; did they see or hear anything.
What about odors, sounds, objects moving, or apparition sightings. If the occupants are smelling flowers or cigar smoke, chances are this is your run of the mill ghost. But, if the occupants smell sulfur, ammonia, excrement, etc., then we have a bigger problem. Sulfur is a warning, and an investigator will only approach this spirit after the proper precautions.
If the sightings happen at the same time, same place, same way; the occupants might be experiencing a residual haunting. It’s like a recording on a loop; an event in time that just keeps repeating. Did the hauntings begin after the occupants started remodeling the home? Maybe the ghosts aren’t too happy with the color of paint you picked out. Imagine having the spirit of Martha Stewart giving critiques of your home décor. Or worse, maybe during the renovations, the occupants found an item that the ghost doesn’t want moved.
A good investigator does thorough research before they even set up their equipment. After they investigate and eliminate all natural causes for the events, they sit with the family and together they discuss the best ways to handle the problem. If the spirits are friendly, and are not causing any harm, the family might decide to keep good, old Grandpa. But, ghost hunting is not to be done haphazardly. It could be dangerous for all concerned, especially if the spirit is a demon. Is the angry ghost at the library a demon? I don’t think so, but he’s certainly not nice.