Author Topic: Organizing your own independent investigations  (Read 1080 times)

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Offline PPI Karl

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Some of our forum members who are not part of an investigative group have asked how they might train themselves up for paranormal investigating.  Because PPI answers the call of private clients, whose confidentiality and privacy is a huge priority, we don't permit non-PPI investigators to join us on investigations.  Of course, there's no better way to learn about paranormal investigating than to join PPI on one of its paranormal tours in the near future. (We haven't officially posted details of those yet, but eventually some will probably be forthcoming.)  However, while you're waiting for that opportunity, there are other options you can pursue to get more experience--both, with the process and with the equipment involved.

One such option is Meet-Up groups.  MeetUp.com is a good place to start.  And, you don't just have to throw yourself at the mercy of another organized group:  you can organize a public investigation of your own.  The members of local Ghost Meet-Up groups are of varying experience and skill, so you would be in good company with newbies and veterans alike.  Here's a link to San Diego Ghost Meet-Ups, for example, but you can find your own city (or region) very easily on the site:
http://ghosts.meetup.com/cities/us/ca/san_diego/

Another excellent option is to attend paranormal conferences, most of which are held at sites purported to be haunted and which conduct tours of the premises or the area.  Under those conditions, you can watch others practicing the craft of paranormal investigating, as well as share experiences and start discussions about equipment, and so on.  For example, Ghost Rush 2008 (http://www.ghostrush.com), to held March 28 through 30, in Volcano, California, will even feature a presentation by PPI members Dave Walters and Britt Griffith on the use of technology in the field of paranormal investigating.  Naturally, I strongly recommend this conference, but other conferences are held throughout the country, throughout the year, and vary in costs so that you'll always find a conference to fit your budget and your available travel time.  The advice you get from these conferences can be invaluable, but the community you form with others interested in the subject can lead to organized investigations on and off the beaten path.

Finally, register for as many forums as you can find--including the TAPS forums (http://www.tapsmainforum.com/) --to discover who is in your area and who would be willing to team up with you.  A lot of times you'll also learn about WHERE to investigate locally.

« Last Edit: February 28, 2008, 04:14:08 PM by PPI Karl »
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Offline paranormalpeg

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What a fantastic idea....I just signed up myself and plan on going to a few. I never knew such groups existed. Thank you Karl :)

ttjoon

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Wow Karl.  You never cease to absolutely amaze me.  Thank you so much for all the time, thought and effort you put into this.   ;D

Offline PPI Karl

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Why, shucks, y'all.  'T weren't nothin'.  I'm just glad you find it useful. :)
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Offline PPI Karl

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As a resident of San Diego, I am interested in spots to investigate as an amateur.  I don't wish to intrude on anybody or anything, so public places are fine.  I promise to post anything I may find here first.  ;D

I'm playing gHarmony here.  (Twenty-one parallel dimensions of ghostly compatibility . . . somethin' like that.  Dolly, it'd be nice to have you back where you belong.)

Feel free to use this thread to generate an investigatory field trip and meet up with other prospective investigators.
If you want to end your misery, start enjoying it, because there's nothing the universe begrudges more than our enjoyment.

leslie

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Thanks, Karl!  You are too good ...  ;)

Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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Just some FYI.  The Meetup.com group is meeting March 15th at 7 this month.  This will be my first time going there, so I can't reccomend it or not, but hopefully it will be decent.
200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline PPI Karl

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Michael, would you be willing to "blog" your experience with the MeetUp meeting, in this thread?  I think that could be valuable.  Up to you though, of course.
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Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline Kristen

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I believe that I signed up with this Meetup group sometime ago but have yet to be able to make any investigations.  From their communiication, they seemed disorganized, which has actually deterred me from making time to go on one of the investigations.  I'd be interested to know what the group is like.
Nothing in life is to be feared.  It is only to be understood.  ~Marie Curie

Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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I still plan on going, I will let you all know how it goes.
200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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Just a reminder for those who signed up, the meeting is tomorrow night.  I will make a post about how it went afterwards.
200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline PPI Karl

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Thanks, Michael.  I'm anxious to hear how it goes.
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Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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I just got home from the San Diego Ghost Trackers meeting, which is the San Diego ghost group from meetup.com that Karl linked initially.  Here is my writeup on how it went, since this is "me" don't be surprised if it gets long winded.

First I want to say that I was a little nervous about going, I still have some issues about talking about the paranormal in public and wasn't sure how comfortable I would be.  I was also a little worried about who would be there, the paranormal is a big current fad with younger people these days, and since this group did meet online, I guess I wasn't sure what to expect.  I want to say that I was very pleasantly surprised with who was there.  About 20 people showed up (out of about 200 online members,) ages varied all over the place, everybody was just as "normal" as could be.  It was a very comfortable enviroment for people to talk and meet.  I felt very at ease.

The group just had a recent change in leadership, and is looking for a new venue that can accomodate more people.  We talked a lot about the future of the group and what the long term plans were.  Basically, think of this group as a paranormal support group.  It is mostly about getting together and talking with people who wont think you are crazy and such.  There are plans in the future for some workshops on investigating, and every few months investigating a public place, but the groups focus is more on meeting and discussing Ghosts and such.  It's a great meeting place for people who are just getting interested in the field or also looking to meet others to investigate with.

Ok that about covers the group in general.

Now to talk about the group and "me."  While I truly enjoyed the experiance, it is a little to casual for me.  I totally intend on keeping going, because the people are great and I enjoy the subject matter, but it's not enough for me.  I want to committ to helping people, and am prepared to dedicate massive amounts of time to doing so, this group see's it more as a hobby.  In fact, when I retire in three years, the paranormal is going to be my "job."  So I want to gain as much experiance and knowledge as I can.  I did meet a couple of people who are interested in investigating and such, but I'm not sure if they will be up for it every week.  Also we would obviously need to start small and work our way up, we would be a long way from actually "helping" people.  I'm still hoping I get accepted into PPI, but if I don't; at least I have some people now to investigate with.

No matter what I'll keep going, even if I get into PPI.  I think it is a good place to find people who may be having real problems, at the very least, I can refer them to PPI so that you guys can help.
200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline PPI Karl

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Michael, many thanks for such an excellent and thorough review.  This is what I was hoping to hear about the MeetUps because a good many people (and this next bit is clearly not directed at you) seek out paranormal investigating solely to validate their own experiences and beliefs, rather than to help others and to test theories.  I'm not suggesting at all that I don't using investigate to validate my own experiences, or that there's anything wrong with wanting to discuss the subject with others.  In fact, I'm jealous these groups exist; I wish they had been around twenty years ago when I was beginning to work through the paranormal experiences of my childhood and teen years.  I spent a lot o' years "keeping in the closet" about this when I could have spent that time productively conversing and learning with a supportive group of people.

However, the investigating side of this area really does something for me that mere discussion could not.  Sometimes, I sound a little jaded because once in a while clients involve PPI, not because they want help, but because they want a captive audience, or because later they're going to brag to someone about us having been to their home.  Those are people who, rightly, should have gotten involved in a MeetUp group as well and used the support system it provides.

That being said, what, in your honest opinion, are the main ideological differences between a MeetUp group and a paranormal investigation group like PPI or TAPS (i.e., whose primary agenda is to disprove a haunt)? 
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Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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Well to start out, I agree that this group is great.  I also kept my beliefs ands such in the "closet" all my life, not exactly something you talk about in the big macho military.  Even though my schedule deterred me from investigating, I would have loved to have gone to such a support group.

Idealogically the group is pretty varied.  Since all you have is stories, there is no way to really debunk anything that is said, so you are forced to take everything at their word.  Which is good though, because that is what this group is for.  Some people are much more into the sensitive side, they want to help every spirit cross over and such.  These tended to disagree with the TAPS mentallity because they felt TAPS didn't have enough respect for the spirits.  Others were more clearly scientificly minded and just wanted proof and such.  All discussions were calm and collected though, and all views were respected.  Keep in mind though this was only about 20 people at a restaurant, we will see how it goes when we get 50+ people in a more private venue.  When that happens, I will probably talk to the leader about possibly splitting up into groups of like minded people if beliefs start to get trampled.

I'm pretty open minded and can mesh in anywhere, I believe that all views are right in some fashion and the key is just finding the science to tie them together.

200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline MichaelF (FPIE)

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Just FYI, the meetup group is meeting again this Sunday at 1pm.  You can still access the group from the link Karl provided.
200 years ago, our communication over computers would have been deemed magical and we all would have been burned at the stake.  200 years from now, explanations for what we call Paranormal will be in Science Textbooks.

Offline charlio

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Karl, thanks for posting that meetup link. I found it very interesting and it looks like a lot of fun. I just wanted to write and introduce myself. My name is Charli and I moved to San Diego from the Vegas area in 2007. I've been reading a lot of posts on here and you seem like a fun group! I'm more of a ghost fanatic than and investigator, but hopefully that can change. I'm excited to learn as much as I can from you guys and get to know you.

Offline PPI Karl

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Karl, thanks for posting that meetup link. I found it very interesting and it looks like a lot of fun. I just wanted to write and introduce myself. My name is Charli and I moved to San Diego from the Vegas area in 2007. I've been reading a lot of posts on here and you seem like a fun group! I'm more of a ghost fanatic than and investigator, but hopefully that can change. I'm excited to learn as much as I can from you guys and get to know you.

Charli, I'm so glad you found the link useful, and it's a pleasure to have you on the forums.  We're all looking forward to getting to know you.

We have a number of excellent articles, podcasts, and essays on our main website (http://www.pacificparanormal.com) that you might find of interest, too.  Many of our discussions on these forums turn into the educational content of our website.  We love to hear from our forum members about what provokes their interest and what they'd like us to write about to investigate further.
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Offline Brigham

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Oh hey, there you are, Charli. For some reason this didn't show up at all in my "new posts" list when I log in.

Welkommen til forumet!   {8I
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