Hey, all! Heather here! The following post is from our Charter Investigator and current Assistant Director Jordan. Enjoy!
It should be understood that not everybody has a belief or interest in the paranormal, and that is completely fine. We here at PGI completely understand. However, it’s usually found that the people who want to criticize paranormal investigations and investigators don’t take the time to research what they are criticizing. Sure people see what’s on TV, but not all paranormal investigators operate the same way.
The word ‘paranormal’ gets tossed around very often these days. Most likely because of the growing popularity of paranormal TV shows and other forms of ‘Para-tainment’. But what is the paranormal? Paranormal refers to anything outside ‘the normal’. Paranormal DOES NOT equal ghosts! Paranormal can refer to anything from the spiritual/supernatural, to the extra terrestrial, to cryptozoological, and so on. Now, we’re not saying there is a ghost of a Sasquatch or a Yeti flying a UFO in your house screaming Get out, but ‘Paranormal’ is a blanket term for all of these and is most identified with ghosts/spirits. Also, on the same note, if a place has paranormal activity it DOES NOT make that place haunted. It just means that there could possibly be activity going on that hasn’t quite been explained as of yet.
Not everybody in the field is a believer, and that is INCREDIBLY important for the future of the paranormal field. There are a healthy amount of skeptics in the field and the field NEEDS that skepticism. It is important for investigators to use that skepticism to find normal reasons that could be misidentified as potential paranormal activity. A skeptic’s primary job is go in and attempt to disprove what is potentially going on. When you can not logically or scientifically explain what is going on, then you have something paranormal (again meaning ‘Outside-of-the-normal’). It should not be assumed that everyone who investigates the paranormal is a believer. That is not the case.
On the flip side of the argument, just because someone might be a believer does not make them wrong. There are a large number of reasons a person could be a believer whether they’ve had some undeniable personal experience or captured a piece of evidence that just cannot be explained to the most logical or scientific sense. If someone does not believe or have interest in the paranormal because they think or feel science or religious beliefs dictate otherwise, that’s fine too. But one shouldn’t sit here and tell all the others who are interested that they’re wrong or imply that they are dumb for having an interest in the paranormal. The people who investigate have obviously have some personal reasons that drew them towards the subject, or some people just have an interest in it and investigate because of said interest. And that is completely OK.
There was an argument stating that paranormal investigators do not help people. We beg to differ. We can’t speak for any other investigators or teams, but there are MANY cases of paranormal investigators giving peace of mind to a client. If a client has something going on that they can not explain and requests the aid of a team to go in to see what they can disprove (or prove) just to give the client a better understanding of what is or isn’t going on, then a client’s needs are met. A large percentage of the time, you can disprove almost every claim. Normally with whatever the outcome of the investigation, this eases whatever the clients thoughts were about the goings-on in their home or business and however the client wants to continue after investigators do or don’t find anything is entirely up to them. Again, sometimes not everything can be explained or maybe the client is looking to go a bit deeper in their search for answers, it is perfectly acceptable to refer a client to other sources, people, and teams in the paranormal community in order for them to get the answers they need.
On a lighter note, paranormal investigators are not Ghostbusters. With as much as that is a long-loved film (And who doesn’t? It’s a classic! Personally, it’s one of my favorite films. I know I’m not the only one!), that is far from the truth. Paranormal investigators do not drive around in the Ecto-1 or run around with proton packs zapping “class 5 full roaming vapors” (as cool and fun as that may sound). There is little we do in the ‘busting’ area. We investigate. Plain and simple. When a client calls a team in, equipment (video recorders, audio recorders, temperature gauges, and electromagnetic field detectors) is set up and records for however long a team is investigating. What is collected is not evidence, it is data. Once the data is collected it goes through a rigorous review and what is pulled from the data via audio, video, etc is potential evidence of something paranormal. Once all pieces of potential evidence are collected, they are then again re-reviewed to look for any logical or scientific explanations as to why it is not paranormal. If nothing can be explained, then this piece of evidence is given to the client with an explanation as to who found it, where it was found, and what it means to the client. Not every piece of evidence given to a client means it’s officially a ghost/spirit/entity. It just means what was found can’t be explained at the moment, but maybe at a later time it can possibly be explained.
To end, it is extremely important to know that no one person has all the answers about the paranormal and the paranormal field. ‘Paranormal’ refers to ‘the unknown’ for a reason. If someone had all the answers, it would be ‘known’ and terms like paranormal wouldn’t exist.