Ghost Research – a variety of methods, but no experts

By Bob Gallienne (


In this time of social disorder and economic uncertainty I find some I find some sort of odd calmness in the paranormal. Every time we pick up a paper or watch television some expert is talking about gas prices or a recession. There is no shortage of other problems either, but whatever the case some professional with a degree is bound to be the harbinger of bad news. It has reached a point where I sometimes leave the radio or TV off , instead choosing to be in my own world so to speak. I’m not saying that ignoring these troubled times is the answer, but let yourself free of it whenever possible.

Ghost research is largely trial and error. Anyone who calls themselves hands down experts in this field is usually just the opposite. One thing that I really enjoy about paranormal research is the fact that no two investigations are the same. The fact that it is so uncertain is what I’m talking about.  A good researcher accepts this fact, and is willing to be a student at all times. For some odd reason this fact gives me comfort, because it puts all of us on the same level whether the experts like it or not.

No two people are the same and this carries over to the other side. We all react differently to changes so it’s important to approach ghosts in the same manner. Last week I mentioned the ghost hunting 101 on other sites and they worry me because so many new researchers see something on a web site and it becomes gospel. They throw expensive equipment into the equation too and the truth of the matter is no equipment works every single time. We can’t assume all spirits are the same, so every investigation needs a different approach. Time after time I watch people set up cameras and audio equipment for hours before it gets dark, every single time they go out. And guess what, your being watched the whole time.

I like the detective part of paranormal research the best, and most groups don’t even think about it. If you set up the same every time all you will get is data and what use is that. I have people call me all the time after some big deal group has turned their house upside down. Then they are handed EMF readings or inaudible EVP and told “your house is haunted” then the group leaves. I ask you, what good is that? People with ghosts need help, they already know there is a ghost afoot and they want information. This is the detective part of ghost research that I’m talking about.

A good investigator asks the haunted many questions, some that may even seem irrelevant to the client. But information will be what solves the case, and in turn help both the haunted and the ghost. I have referred to this as ghost social work in the past and still do. No ghost will leave because you wave a Bible at it or bring a Preacher into the picture. More often than not religion actually makes matters worse.  The client always assumes this will do the trick and it lulls them into a false sense of security. In most cases I am able to educate the client so they can live in harmony with the ghost. I have never flat out told a ghost to leave and I never will. The truth of the matter is that the ghost as probably there before the client, and I respect that. When pressured by a client to do an exorcism I politely decline and leave. It’s ok to tell a ghost that it is possible to move on, but that’s where I draw the line.

Besides questioning the client it is important to dig for facts in other places. Take some time to check real estate records or county archives if the haunting is really unsettling for the haunted. There may be some history behind the haunting that can help in your investigation. Nasty ghosts like it when people pay attention to them as that is what the really want. But knowing what caused that ghost to be there will help immensely. By doing this the ghost knows your really there to stay until everyone is getting along. When humans are feeling bad it is always helpful when a friend holds their hand and says “I understand”. Ghosts are no different, you just cant see a hand to hold.

For lack of a better term try forensics on a haunting. Gadgets and cold data wont help anyone. What you really need is information and evidence. By getting the whole story from as many sources as possible you will become a better investigator, and as a better investigator the rest will follow. Like I said, there are no experts in ghost research, just good students.

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