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Ghost and Hauntings, Looking for solid real answers?


Merriam-Webster defines

haunt Pronunciation: 'ho nt, 'hänt Function: verb Etymology: Middle English, from Old French hanter, probably from Old Norse heimta to lead home, pull, claim, from heimr home transitive senses
1 a : to visit often : FREQUENT b : to continually seek the company of
2 a : to have a disquieting or harmful effect on : TROUBLE <problems we ignore now will come back to haunt us> b : to recur constantly and spontaneously to <the tune haunted her> c : to reappear continually in <a sense of tension that haunts his writing>
3 : to visit or inhabit as a ghost
intransitive senses
1 : to stay around or persist : LINGER

2 : to appear habitually as a ghost
- haunt·er noun
- haunt·ing·ly /'ho n-ti[ng]-le, 'hän-/ adverb

haunt Pronunciation: 'ho nt, 'hänt, 2 is usually 'hant Function: noun1 : a place habitually frequented
2 chiefly dialect : GHOST

The term 'haunt,' comes from the same root as 'home.' Typically, a haunted location is the former home of the deceased, or the spot where the deceased died.

There is not necessarily a constant pattern to a actual real ghost haunting (A disembodied soul; especially : the soul of a dead person believed to be an inhabitant of the unseen world or to appear to the living in bodily likeness.). Some phenomena manifest themselves periodically or continually over durations that may be short - a matter of days - or long, going on for centuries. Some hauntings occur only on particular or certain specific times "anniversary" dates: A residual haunting is a playback of a past good or bad event. The apparitions involved are not spirits, they are what somme refer to as " astral historic mental recordings" of the event.

Not everyone who visits or lives in a reputedly real haunted house will often experience the same phenomena of real spirits ghost or evil demons.

Actual hauntings sometimes can be brought to an abrupt end through an actual ritual exorcism conducted either by clergy or by a medium or psychic who reportedly can communicate with the ghost or spirit believed to be responsible for the haunting. Some hauntings end of their own accord for reasons to often unknown.

Those haunted places that seem to be 'psychic readings,' or impressions that certain people can receive, do not respond to exorcisms. Such hauntings seem to be endless re-enactments of events. What causes the playback of a haunting or mysterious ghost event, is often ones on conjecture. Is it the right weather conditions, the witness's energy or sensitivity or some type of energy release? That is the question that we as haunted ghost researchers are always trying to answer.

It is popularly assumed that most hauntings involve visual apparitions, or ghosts, of the dead. In fact, apparitions are associated with a minority of reported cases. Most hauntings involve noises, such as mysterious footsteps, rustlings, whisperings, animal sounds and howlings, thumps, tapings and rapping's; smells, especially of flowers, perfume, burned wood or rotting flesh or matter; tactile sensations such as a cold prickling of the skin, cold breezes and feelings of being touched by an invisible hand. Some hauntings feature poltergeist activities such as rearranged furniture, stopped clocks, smashed glassware and mirrors, and the paranormal movement of objects.

Psychics often experience negative emotions at a haunted site, including anger, fear or hatred. They also may sense a presence of evil. Other hauntings seem to involve friendly or benign ghosts. Some mediums say they can contact trapped spirits of the dead who are haunting sites, and are able to send them on their way to the other side.

Some ghost hauntings also feature phantom animals, such as deceased pet dogs, cats, snakes, birds, horses, pigs, hamsters and of course wild animals reflected as wolf, bear or even eagle, jaguar and lion spirit totems of the American and Aboriginal tribes and South American Indians, which are often more so seen, felt or heard in familiar spots. In India and Pakistan several areas or said to be haunted by the many ghost and spirits of monkeys, elephants and tigers. One ghostly frightening encounter of apparitions are of cobras or giant snakes, often many ghost stories surfaces in many areas of these phantom snakes. The tomb of Marie Laveau New Orleans voodoo queen is said to be haunted by her voodoo familiar, snake named Zombi.

Objects as well as sites may be haunted. In Great Britain, for example, numerous tales exist of haunted skulls that seem to cause unearthly screaming whenever they are removed from their places in a home. Ebay has seen it's share of haunted antique furniture, paintings , dolls and common house hold appliances and jewelry go up for sale in more recent times.

Poltergeist ( pol·ter·geist Pronunciation: 'pOl-t&r-"gist: German, from poltern to knock + Geist spirit: a noisy usually mischievous ghost held to be responsible for unexplained noises (as rappings) hauntings are characterized by very frighteningly violent physical disturbances such as flying and levitating objects, banging doors, disappearing objects and physical assaults on humans. These disturbances often seem to be caused by energy from living persons; there is though some credible evidence that some poltergeists may be actual discarnate spirits.

Little is known about why or how hauntings occur. Thousands of hauntings have been systematically investigated by researchers and parapsychologists since the late 19th century. Many explanations have been proposed, but there is no conclusive evidence to support one more strongly than another. Federic W. H. Myers, one of the founders of the Society For Psychical Research (SPR), London, who did extensive research of apparitions in the late 19th century, believed that most hauntings are fragmentary and meaningless, the bits and pieces of an energy residue left by the living after their death. Others who have built on Myers' theory propose that hauntings do not involve ghostly personalities, but are those recordings of energy that take on personalities to percipients who are psychically sensitive. Psychic sensitivity may account for diverse experiences phenomena and another does not.

Elenor Sidgwick, former secretary of the SPR, theorized that hauntings are a form of psychometry. Just as an object appears to absorb and retain the 'vibrations' of it's owner, which manifest as impressions when the object is handled by a medium or psychic, then houses might also retain memories or psychic impressions. A house could incorporate the thoughts, actions and feelings of it's former occupants, which then manifest as a haunting to psychically sensitive.

Oxford philosopher Henry Habberly Price and American parapsychologist William G. Roll are among those who have elaborated upon Sidgwick's theory. Price's theory, called "deferred telepathy," posits that there exists a "psychic ether" that is a bridge between mind and matter and impregnates all matter and space. Certain thoughts and events are impressed upon this ether and remain on it for long periods, even years. When tragedies occur, the appropriate psychic conditions are created and lasting impressions result. Sensitive persons coming into contact with a haunted house might telepathically contact these thoughts and emotions which are then "replayed" as hauntings. "Deferred telepathy" has been criticized by others for not explaining movements of objects that are sometimes reported in hauntings.

Roll has proposed that all objects have a psi field that pervades and exudes from them. A sensitive individual contacts and reads the impressions of a house from it's psi field during a haunting. This theory had suffered some of the same criticism as Price's theory, particularly since persons who have little or no demonstrable psychic ability have witnessed hauntings.

Many leading parapsychologist often have re-studied several hundred cases of hauntings and analyzed their characteristics, relating them to different theories of hauntings and to Spiritistic theory. Bozzano came to five conclusions in support of his belief that hauntings were spirits of the dead: phantoms of the dead can haunt sites where they did not die and had not lived; hauntings consist of telekinetic movement of objects that suggests some type of physical presence; hauntings are associated with deaths to a greater extent than other types of tragedies or emotions; hauntings are intermittent; and when such actions as exorcism and prayers for the dead are preformed, the said actual hauntings stop, recede or actually end.

An explanation for at least some real ghost sightings, manifestations or actual hauntings often suggested by many paranormal ghost investigators is that of the "portal theory," an opening to another or often other dimensions that allows spirits or ghost to enter our physical world. Belief in haunted doors or portals is universal. Certain places that have been so deemed sacred quite often serve as natural portals. Wells have often been recognized as natural entryways for spirits to manifest.

Other portals can or do so open at places associated with death, such as funeral homes, haunted mansions, morgues, cemeteries, battlefields, public parks, bridges, and natural disaster sites; Often places associated with trauma and intense emotions, such as airports, train stations, hospitals, Jails, court houses, crossroads where accident are frequent, lonely roads in the middle of nowhere, hotels, schools, public highways, churches and theatres; and lonely places such as lighthouses and devastated hurricane and tornado destroyed areas or entire cities.

Too numerous or the actual remedies to end hauntings, they do so exist around the world. Some are really simple, such as sweeping out the ghost with a broom, or just asking the offending spirit nicely to leave. Other cures are more elaborate, such as formal Catholic rites of exorcism or ghost removal rituals. Such hard actions or grave measures do not always succeed when performed by a novice. Often most tend to aggravate the situation more if not professionally handled.


Types of Hauntings

General Hauntings

Hauntings occur with no regularity and for no particular reason. Some weird occurrences may manifest on occasion or even continually for a few days or hundreds of years; others may only occur on certain anniversaries; and others may be totally random.

It is generally assumed that hauntings involve apparitions, or ghosts, of the deceased. In fact, apparitions are seldom seen. Most hauntings involve noises like footsteps, a tapping or knocking sound, strange smells, sensations like the cold prickling of the skin, cold breezes, and the feeling of being touched by an invisible hand. Other hauntings involve poltergeist-like activity such as solid objects being moved, broken glass, doors that open and close by themselves, and manipulation of lights and electrical devices.

People who visit haunted locations also report a variety of overpowering emotions, including anger and fear. Many cases like this are mistakenly called "evil" or "demonic." Other places seem to involve friendly, or at least harmless, emotions.

Poltergeist Activity

A variety of phenomena can be connected to poltergeist activity: knocking and tapping sounds, noises with no visible cause, disturbance of stationary objects like household items and furniture, doors slamming, lights turning on and off, fires breaking out, etc.

The widely accepted theory behind poltergeist phenomena is that it's usually caused by a person. This person is usually an adolescent girl who is going through an emotionally troubled time. The theory is that this person may be unconsciously manipulating the items in the house by psycho kinesis, which is the power to move things by energy generated in the brain.

Kinetic energy remains unexplained, but even mainstream scientists are starting to admit that it may exist. It is unknown why this energy appears in puberty-age girls, but it has been documented. When the activity begins to occur, the girl is usually in the middle of emotional or sexual angst. It is also possible for young boys, and even adults, to manifest this odd ability. The majority have no idea they're causing the activity.

Of course, not all hauntings can be so easily explained. In some cases, people aren't the cause of the situation. Sometimes it's possible that the source of the activity is an intelligent spirit. These entities try to make their presence known by moving objects. (If this is the case, then it's time to think about moving).

Residual Hauntings

This type of haunting is much more common than people realize.

The easiest way to explain this type of haunting is to compare it to an old film loop. Imagine an old movie tape is stuck in the VCR and the same clip keeps repeating itself. In locations where these hauntings take place, a powerful event or a series of events may be imprinted on the atmosphere. It can then suddenly pop up and play itself at random. But it's not necessarily visual; they are often replayed as unexplained sounds. The famous "phantom footsteps" reported in many haunted locations are a perfect example of this.

How does this kind of thing happen? The sounds and images are related to traumatic events that took place at the location, causing some sort of disturbance sometimes called a "psychic impression." This is the reason why so many battlefields have become famous for their hauntings over the years. In other situations, the images have been created by events or actions that were repeated, which caused an impression. Reputedly, that is why so many haunted staircases exist, because of the number of times people go up and down them and the amount of energy that is expended in doing so.

These kinds of haunted places act as giant storage batteries, saving up the impressions of sights and sounds from the past. As time goes by, these impressions appear again as if the VCR had been turned on. While apparitions are most commonly connected to these types of hauntings, much of the activity may be in the form of sounds, and even smells.

Portal Hauntings

The idea of a "portal" or a "doorway" to another dimension is not a new one--though it may be a wild one. These doorways may provide access for entities to enter our world. They may be the spirits of people who've died, or they could be something else altogether--perhaps otherworldly beings from another dimension? Hmmm...

One of the most common locations for these "doorways" seems to be in cemeteries. As a rule, most cemeteries are not haunted, but recently, ghost hunters have collected dozens of anomalous photographs taken in graveyards. There seems to be no explanation why many of these cemeteries would become haunted unless they provide access for spirits, or entities, to pass from one world to the next.

It is possible that these sites were "haunted" long before a cemetery was located there. It is also possible that the psychic draw of the area was what caused our ancestors to locate a cemetery there in the first place. Native Americans chose their burial grounds in this manner, although they did it consciously. They found a place to bury and honor the dead that they felt was more closely connected to the next world.

Traditional or Intelligent Hauntings

This type of haunting is perhaps the most widely accepted kind of ghostly activity, although it's not as common as you might think. Here, the spirit or entity involved is an "intelligent" presence in a haunted location. It is there because of a connection to the site or to the people in the location. This ghost is best (and most simply) described as the personality of a person who once lived and who has stayed behind in our world instead of passing over to the other side.

This sometimes happens in the case of a murder, traumatic event or unfinished business. At the time of death, the spirit refuses to pass over because of these events. The spirits often linger because of emotions that tie them to the earth, from anger to love. Or perhaps the person does not pass not because they couldn't, but because they did not want to. In other cases, there is the chance the spirit does not even realize they are dead (like Patrick Swayze in Ghost). This can occur when the death is sudden.

These spirits are made up of the energy that once made up the personality of a living person. These intelligent spirits are not evil or demonic, as some would have you believe. Spirits are simply human personalities, or souls, and if the spirit was a kind and caring person in life, the spirit will most likely be in death. On the other hand, angry and cruel people will also keep those same nasty qualities as spirits. These negative spirits can be frightening, especially to people not trained in the paranormal. In very rare cases they have been able to harm the living, but that is generally not the case. It is much more common to hear of an encounter with a benevolent spirit than with a negative one. That's a relief, isn't it?

Sources: The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits by Rosemary Ellen Guiley & The Enchanted World of Ghosts



Haunted Places To Investigate in the United States
Popular tourist destination for ghost hunters, parapsychologists, and paranormal enthusiasts

112 Ocean Avenue in Amityville, Long Island, New York, is reputedly haunted due to a mass murder that took place in the house on the evening of November 13, 1974. The new family that moved into the house thirteen months later only managed to stay there for 28 days until they fled one night.The Amityville House of Horror

Alcatraz - an American prison, no longer used, where visitors and tour guides have made claims of hearing screams, slamming jail doors, and footsteps.
Chickamauga Battlefield in Northwest Georgia. Site of one of the bloodiest battles of the American Civil War. According to some, Chickamauga is haunted by the ghosts of killed soldiers and a frightening entity known as "Green Eyes"

Driskill Hotel in Austin, Texas - One of the most famous hotels in the state of Texas, and long a gathering place for the state's political players, it is said to be haunted by at least half a dozen ghosts, including the spirit of a young girl heard bouncing a ball down the main stairs; the ghost of founder Jesse Driskill himself; and a "suicide bride" who killed herself in room 427 in 1989.

Franklin Castle - Mansion in Cleveland, Ohio. This one is commonly thought to be a favorite of wine-os, as those are the most likely ghosts in there.
Moonville, Ohio - A forgotten mining and railroad ghost town, left behind little to mark its place except a railroad tunnel haunted by potentially three spirits. The town's cemetery is also suppose to be haunted.

New Orleans, LA - Numerous sites in this city, especially in the French Quarter, claim multiple hauntings. Lalaurie house, Saint Louis Cemetery number 1. Arnaud's and Brennan's restaurants, the Hotel Monteleone, City Park and Saint Louis Cathedral at Jackson Square, and most of Royal Street are among the French Quarter's most famous haunted sites. Since Hurricane Katrina, many residents report higher paranormal activity than usual.

Ohio State Reformatory - nineteenth century prison reputedly haunted by a Mrs Glattle, who was killed in 1950 when a gun accidentally fell, went off and killed her.
The 'Old Town' section of Spring, Texas hosts many ghosts, including spirits from Spring's days as an American Old West town, and a bank robbery credited to Bonnie and Clyde.

The Lemp Mansion Restaurant and Inn in St. Louis, Missouri is said to be haunted by ghosts of the members of the Lemp family. Four of the Lemp family members committed suicide. Glasses have suddenly flown off the bar, feeling of being watched, apparitions, etc.

Sunnyvale, CA - Many Toys 'R' Us employees have reported seeing unusual rearranging of toys in the aisles, and reported sightings of a man dressed in old clothing and in his 30's. His name is believed to be Johan, and the store still remains opened today. In fact, most customers are completely unaware of this legend.

The White House - its kitchens are reputedly haunted by Mamie Eisenhower, wife of President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Mrs. Eisenhower had a difficult relationship with household staff who worked in the kitchens. After her husband left the presidency, kitchen staff during the Kennedy and Johnson presidencies reported finding the kitchen reorganised overnight back to the way Mamie had demanded. After the death 'Mamie reorganisations' were reported by a number of staff in the kitchen who could find no explanation for the changes and none of the security staff on duty saw anyone entering or exiting the kitchens at night. Some staff claimed to have seen Mamie on occasion in the kitchen rummaging through cupboards.

The Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California, USA is supposedly haunted by the ghost of its eccentric builder, Sarah Winchester. Ironically, she built the rambling mansion to protect her from the spirits of all those killed with her late husband's famous line of rifles.

The Whaley House in the "Old Town" section of San Diego, California, is a reportedly haunted house. The house was one of the regions first court houses as well as hanging grounds before being converted to a residence.

The Lizzie Borden House in Fall River, Ma, which is now a Bed and Breakfast, may possibly be the most haunted house in America. The sight of a double murder, one of the most famous in US history, has produced sightings, noises and the feeling of a cat walking across them have all been reported.

The Old jail house of St. Augustine, Florida, which is haunted by the prisoners there.
A field just to the northwest of Chicago's O'Hare International Airport was the site of the crash of American Airlines Flight 191, and residents of a nearby trailer park have reported specters of the passengers approaching their homes or walking up to them, as well as knocking sounds and strange lights.

Several buildings located at Church Street Station in Orlando, Florida are reported to be haunted. While the attraction itself has been closed down for a few years, many of the remaining local businesses have moved elsewhere because of the paranormal phenomenon. Church Street Station is now, however, a very popular tourist destination for all local and visiting ghost hunters, parapsychologists, and paranormal enthusiasts.

The Masquerade, a now-defunct performance theatre/music venue located in the historic entertainment district of Ybor City, Florida, is said to house ghosts whose moods were dictated nightly by the quality of music played.

Hollywood, California has been home to many of the great stars and there are those who believe that their ghosts remain there after death, earning it the name Haunted Hollywood.

Boone County, Illinois has several intersecting roads south of the city of Belvidere with a reputation of being haunted, most notably Bloodspoint Road. Stories circulated by the surrounding populace include a phantom vehicle that chases cars, a vanishing farmhouse and various apparitions.

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_haunted_locations"




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