Prioritize Science Before The Paranormal
We all have our own reasons for getting into the paranormal field. For some people it is due to what they perceive to be paranormal experiences in their childhood or as an adult. For others it is due to the television and movie craze that focused on paranormal investigations, ghost hunting, or paranormal stories. Perhaps a friend or family member was involved with the field empirically or as a hobby interest and you got interested in it through them. Regardless of how you became interested in the field you have surely seen those who don’t worry about science, that focus on some science, and you may or may not have seen those who focus heavily on science. This blog entry discusses why it is important to prioritize science before the paranormal.
This blog post is geared towards serious paranormal investigators and not recreational ghost hunters. As I have reminded my readers and listeners many times in the previous blog posts and podcast episodes while the terms paranormal investigator and ghost hunter as well as paranormal investigation and ghost hunt are often used interchangeably they are two completely different things. A ghost hunt is strictly an event of entertainment where the only goal is to attempt to experience paranormal activity without any or very little actual scientific investigation involved. A paranormal investigation uses scientific methodology to attempt to explain perceived activity with everyday science before even beginning to consider something as paranormal.
Don’t get me wrong, I have absolutely no quarrel with ghost hunters and ghost hunting. Personally I have tried ghost hunting, but I didn’t find it completely enjoyable as being a science geek I enjoy paranormal investigations much more as I can incorporate heavy scientific principles and methodology. If I am going to believe something is paranormal I wish to have been able to exhaust my knowledge of scientific possibilities first. In doing so I can feel more confident of something being paranormal and for me I am able to enjoy the experience much more. Personally I need the thorough scientific investigation to enjoy the experience.
Many ghost hunters will interpret almost anything as paranormal because they want it to be paranormal, where a paranormal investigator typically exhausts countless subjects of science before considering something to be paranormal. A paranormal investigator takes into account such subjects as hypnogogic and hypnopompic hallucinations, quantum entanglement, infrasound, meteorology, ionospheric radio wave propagation, pareidolia, dermo-optical perception, sleep paralysis, synesthesia, tachypsychia, cryptomensia, claustrophobia, and countless other scientific principles before considering something to be paranormal. Serious paranormal investigators don’t use equipment with no scientific backing like SLS Cameras, Oviluses, and what is known as either a Frank’s/Ghost/Spirit box as those devices can’t do what they are marketed to do. If you wish to learn more about subjects that a paranormal investigator should be familiar with please listen to our podcast entitled “Subjects For Investigators To Research” or read the blog entry which can be found here https://www.mwvspirit.com/blog/2021/10/25/subjects-for-investigators-to-research/ If you wish to learn why I don’t recommend those several pieces of equipment that I mentioned just previously please listen to the podcast episode “Paranormal Investigation Equipment That We Don’t Recommend” or visit the blog entry which can be found here https://www.mwvspirit.com/blog/2021/11/18/paranormal-investigation-equipment-that-we-dont-recommend/
One of the big differences between ghost hunters and paranormal investigators is that ghost hunters focus on proving the paranormal with some people often using unscientific methods and unproven equipment to do so, scientifically invalidating their belief that something is paranormal in nature. Some ghost hunters will perceive almost any occurrence as possibly paranormal in nature and do everything they can to substantiate that claim. Paranormal investigators do everything that they can to attempt to rule out any scientific cause of paranormal activity and will only use equipment with an actual scientific purpose. Over my 13+ years in the field I have met plenty of ghost hunters and what I would refer to as a hybrid between a ghost hunter and a paranormal investigator which I will refer to as a ghost investihunter. To me that is someone who takes some scientific principals and methodology into an investigation, but doesn’t get involved with the deeper science, such as some of the examples of those subjects that I mentioned earlier on. I have met or corresponded with some serious paranormal investigators who focus deeply on science, but not remotely as many ghost hunters and ghost investihunters that I have met over the years. Becoming a serious paranormal investigator requires a massive investment in time to learn scientific principals and methodology that you will not see on television programming, as for the general paranormal enthusiast they are tuning into those shows for the spooky and not for the science, therefore show producers don’t incorporate it into the programming. Those who wish to learn heavily about the science seek out podcasts and blogs such as mine, and there are others out there. Learning from a serious paranormal investigator with a vast knowledge of various science related subjects and human behavior will benefit you greatly.
It is imperative to remember that in most cases a paranormal investigation is being completed for a client. Put yourselves in their shoes. Would you want someone to come in with limited scientific knowledge to perform a less than thorough investigation and give you information that most likely isn’t close to being accurate, or would you rather have someone come in who is well studied in a wide variety of scientific subjects and human behavior that is relevant to a paranormal investigation and has a network of scientists with advanced college degrees to consult with? Would you rather have someone come in who is professional and searches for the science and knows what they are talking about, or would you rather have someone who searches for the spooky and seems to find it everywhere?
Throughout the years I have worked along side “paranormal investigators” who are really ghost hunters that seem to be able to “find” paranormal activity everywhere by using devices that have no scientific backing to them such as the ones that I mentioned earlier on like the SLS Camera, Ovilus and the Frank’s/Ghost/Spirit Box. If it is a ghost hunt for entertainment I don’t see anything wrong with that. I am a fan of professional wrestling which is quite scripted, but is presented as if it were 100% unscripted. However, if you are working for a client it is imperative to not use them as just another location to have a ghost hunt for your entertainment. It is imperative to exhaust as much science as possible as clients often make huge life altering decisions based upon our investigations.
I whole heartedly respect that people choose to follow religious beliefs, but it is important to note that demons are an invention of ancient greek christians, and is not something with any scientific backing to it. If you use religious beliefs in your investigations I suggest that you are very open and honest with your clients about it early on in the investigation. Personally I feel that religion should not be used in a paranormal investigation as it is supposed to be science based, and if the client wants a separate religious investigation to be conducted, it should be done so along side clergy from that particular religion. My group does not use religion or religious concepts in any way, shape, or form as we focus on the science and not the spooky.
Some people choose to believe that increasing the level of science and being able to explain more perceived paranormal activity as not being paranormal takes away from the enjoyment. I couldn’t disagree more. I have just as much fun explaining perceived paranormal activity using a vast variety of science, and if I or my network of scientists with PhDs cant explain something with science I am able to have a greater enjoyment of being able to say something may be paranormal as there isn’t a little voice in the back of my head wondering if I had misunderstood something as being paranormal if it isn’t. Think about how much more fun it is to be able to suggest that something is paranormal if you know that you have exhausted science first. Yes, it takes more work to do so, but to me the benefits far outweigh the extra time involved. Focusing on deep scientific principles I am able to be confident that I am giving my clients the most accurate information possible. As a paranormal investigator our job is to do everything that we can to find the truth for our clients, and if we aren’t first exhausting a wide variety of science related subjects then we aren’t doing our job. Our job isn’t to find the spooky, our job is to exhaust the science before leaning towards the spooky.
So many people have a negative opinion of the paranormal investigation field and that is because of what is put on television, in movies, and on YouTube. Virtually everything that you see on those mediums is not an actual science based paranormal investigation. It is a ghost hunt or a ghost hunt with some science based investigation involved. If there wasn’t some sort of perceived paranormal activity in almost every episode people wouldn’t tune in to watch the show. In the majority of situations that I have seen presented as paranormal on television, in movies, or on YouTube I could have explained what occurred using science in a good majority of them. I am not remotely saying that the paranormal doesn’t exist. I have seen my fair share of it. I just don’t jump to paranormal conclusions and choose to exhaust science first. If you call yourself a paranormal investigator, but don’t have a deep knowledge of scientific subjects such as those I mentioned in the other podcast episodes earlier on I would very strongly suggest that you start dedicating more time to expanding your skill set and to link up with people with PhDs who you can bounce evidence off of to ensure that you aren’t presenting false positives to clients.
Science before the spooky doesn’t take away from enjoyment of investigations. I find it increases the enjoyment and it also allows for more accurate information presented to the client. If you want to use minimal science or go on a ghost hunt by all means do so and have a great time doing it. But, ghost hunting and very limited science doesn’t belong in the paranormal investigation. Do what is best for your clients. Follow the science and not the spooky. Science comes before the spooky. Your client will thank you and most likely you will enjoy your activities in the paranormal field more so. Prioritize the science before the paranormal.