Author Topic: Paranormal State  (Read 3386 times)

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ljiljanac

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I watch Paranormal State and notice that quite often, if not in every episode, they perform a ceremony to cleanse the house of any spirits.  At the end of the show, they recap by stating that paranormal activity has stopped since.  I often wonder if the Paranormal State investigators intentionally perform the ceremony to cleanse the minds and fears of the family, rather than the house.  In the cases where paranormal activity has stopped, I wonder if it was in their minds the entire time, and the ceremony convinced them that the it was over.  If so, then I'm impressed by how well it works!  That would be a rather creative way of convincing people who cannot be convinced by any other means, that their house is not haunted.   

They also use a psychic in most, if not all, of their investigations (the same one), and I find that I am not convinced by him.  Mainly because he always comes in and has converstations with ghosts in every episode.  The investigators then believe that there is a spirit there and a ceremony follows.  I give them credit for professionalism, respect, and knowledge.  But I tend to think that their conclusions are hasty and based on what their psychic says, more than on any evidence that they collect. 

In the end, I am always curious to know how often "cleansings" are performed, how often they are performed by investigators themselves, and how often they work.   :)

Offline PPI Jason

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I'd have to say that every time I contact a client for a potential investigation the issue of cleansing almost always seems to come up. I always point out to them that we really aren't qualified to perform any type of cleansing. I don't fully understand them (other then that it usually involves the burning of sage). I don't necessarily shoot down the idea, however. Just because I don't understand doesn't mean it doesn't work.

Lily, I think you bring up a really interesting point about the cleansing and how it seems to "convince" many people that the paranormal activity is over. It's true we don't completely understand what paranormal activity is and what causes it. But our own minds are just as enigmatic. Psychological effects like the placebo effect are documented in scientific literature but still not fully understood. In the end, I supposed, whether cleansing techniques really do work or whether they are just a sugar pill that frees our minds from a self created world of paranormal activity, they seem pretty benign and there doesn't seem to be much reason to NOT try them if a client thinks it might help. But who knows...
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Offline Damian

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I just got back from the tradeshow in Vegas and had a chance to watch some of my ghost shows recorded on my DVR.  I watched the latest episode of Paranormal State where a guy and his wife were experiencing what they interpreted as demonic activity in their home.  You find out later in the episode that the homeowner practiced devil-worship for a period in his life then later decided to make some life changes and he walked away from Satanism.  The thing that struck me, however, is the fact that the homeowner concealed his former devil-worship activities from the investigators and even went so far as to deny any knowledge of some worship-related items.

I've noticed that clients concealing relevant details from the investigators is a common thread in Paranormal State, and I was wondering if that is a common occurance that PPI has encounted on their investigations.  I can understand clients being embarrased about certain things and that might be motivation to conceal.  What's PPI's take on this?
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It cuts the hand that wields it." --Rabindranath Tagore

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ljiljanac

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Hi Buddy!    ;D

I'm curious to know PPI's take on this as well!   

I can see how some people would want an unbiased opinion of what is going on in their homes and would be afraid to put ideas into an investigator's mind by disclosing that kind of information (of course, this is assuming that those people are skeptical of paranormal investigators and psychics).  I can also see this guy in Paranormal State not wanting to be blamed for bringing about the phenomena.  Who knows what the wifey might do to him.    ::|   I have not seen this episode.  I wonder what his demeanor and attitude were when he eventually disclosed this information, and what got him to finally give that information up.  I also wonder whether he practiced in the house or if he moved to the house after he turned over a knew leaf. 

As for this happening often in Paranormal State episodes, does it seem set up that way in production for the purposes of convincing viewers that what they are showing is credible by essentially saying ..."Wow!  These guys are good!!!  It just so happens that someone actually had played, ate, worked, sat, slept, pooped, and died here 354 years ago."   :o   Excuse the added humor, but I am always skeptical of T.V. show production for the purposes of entertainment and ratings.  In any case, I watch that show often and will pay closer attention.  I had not noticed that and find it pretty interesting.      :)

Offline Damian

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Howdy Lillie!  I think you're absolutely correct about setting up the production of the show so that these things just fall into place and the viewer is left with a sense of awe at how all the pieces nicely fit together over the span of 30 minutes.

I've been a part of filming and production and it is amazing what can be done with editing and post-production to create a specific string of events.  I have no doubt that when watching Paranormal State, many of these juicy nuggets of information are known previous to the investigation which allows them to conduct their investigation in such a way so as to give the appearance of validation or uncovering of important details.

I don't mean to be a nay-sayer.  I actually do really enjoy Paranormal State but only for the drama and entertainment value.  And you gotta admit, sometimes its fun to pick apart an episode.  ;D
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It cuts the hand that wields it." --Rabindranath Tagore

"Me fail English? That's unpossible." --Ralph Wiggum

Offline PPI Jason

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I've noticed that clients concealing relevant details from the investigators is a common thread in Paranormal State, and I was wondering if that is a common occurance that PPI has encounted on their investigations.  I can understand clients being embarrased about certain things and that might be motivation to conceal.  What's PPI's take on this?

I can't speak for the entire team on this issue, Buddy, but I can give you my experience.

Both in my day job and with this group I spend a HUGE part of my day getting lied to, by good guys and bad guys alike. What I have come to believe is this....

(What is about to follow are the ideas and opinions of Jason only. They do not reflect the views of PPI nor her sponsors, including but not limited to "Barona Casino," "Hello Kitty," and "Ghost be Off" the newest and latest in paranormal ghost repellants. Remember, "If a poltergeist is pulling your chain, Ghost Be Off will make you sane")

Okay, enough of that.


I have not had any client hide or conceal any information from me that I am aware of. But I have never really dug too deeply either. In the end, as paranormal investigators, we are there to help the clients only to the degree that they want to be helped. If they were to lie or conceal something that they felt was embarassing then I, at least personally, respect their right to do so. In most instances, however, they have no need to lie. When we ask clients to fill out a preliminary investigative report, or contact them for details about their experiences, we explain that any information they provide is voluntary and they are more than welcome to exclude any information they don't want to share. We also adhere to a strict rule of confidentiality with our clients. If we find interesting evidence from an investigation, we clear it with our clients before we post it. And we never share specific details, address, names, phone numbers, etc...

I used to judge people that lie very badly. I still agree that lying can range any where on the "morality spectrum" from "unhealthy" to "malicious." But I have come to realize that everyone has baggage they just don't want others digging through. Not everyone lies to hurt others or to get something for themselves. Sometimes people just get embarassed (tell me that you wouldn't be embarassed to tell others that you think you have a ghost in your home  ;)) sometimes we just get scared (even Peter lied three times before the cock crowed), but either way we we're all just humans trying to get by the best we can.

Just my thoughts. These and 4 dollars at Starbucks will barely get you a decent cup of mocha frapuccino.
Probably the earliest flyswatters were nothing more than some sort of striking surface attached to the end of a long stick.
-Jack Handey

Offline Damian

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Not only was that well said Jason, but nice work tieing in Hello Kitty and Ghost Be Off!

You said something specific that I wasn't able to articulate but I could not agree with you more... "In the end, as paranormal investigators, we are there to help the clients only to the degree that they want to be helped. If they were to lie or conceal something that they felt was embarassing then I, at least personally, respect their right to do so. In most instances, however, they have no need to lie."

And I think you're right about being carefull not to judge a lie, or a client who might lie, too harshly.  As it relates to Paranormal State, they generally have the feel of an all-purpose investigative, detective, and cleansing team, and all in the name of "paratainment" (new favorite word, by the way).  And that digging into the case and client history, driving to uncover "the truth", is inherently a dramatic process that translates into engaging paratainment.

Nice, I've used the word "paratainment" twice so far today (this last use doesn't count)... only 3 more times to meet my quota.   ;)
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It cuts the hand that wields it." --Rabindranath Tagore

"Me fail English? That's unpossible." --Ralph Wiggum

Offline PPI Jason

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I guess I should clarify something further that I failed to touch on in my original post as it relates to lying.

We do come across individuals who lie to us for reasons other than the ones I've mentioned. For example, some lie because they are just pulling our chains. For example, a child gets a hold of our website and starts sending fraudulent requests for investigations with equally fraudulent claims of paranormal activity in much the same way that they might call up a grocery store asking if they have "Prince Albert in a can." I personally would never have stooped to such a level as a teenager. At least not more than just a few times and I was 14 years old and now I'm all grown up so get off my case Mom!  ;) Some people just can't let go. I don't have a huge issue with this type of lying as long as it is meant to be in good fun and doesn't make us waste too much time trying to verify their claims. Asking for "Prince Albert in a can" is one thing. Setting us on a wild goose chase for a week, all while laughing from a distance, is much more malicious.

I've also come across adults who lie about having paranormal activity because they hope TAPS or some television based paranormal group will catch wind of their claims, show up with cameras, and help boost their business. This would be more likened to the "Balloon Boy Dad" and his clearly fraudulent claims intended to advertise his science television show. This type of lying is much more malicious in my opinion. They don't represent an attempt to hide embarassment or deal with fear. They are deliberate attempts to manipulate others for the benefit or entertainment of the fraud. I have a much less tolerant attitude for this type of deceit and would definitely push for legislation favoring prison time  P^/

So I guess, as with everything else in life, there is a spectrum to deceit. I try to stay on the harmless side of it as best as possible and just hope that we all try to do the same.  :)

Probably the earliest flyswatters were nothing more than some sort of striking surface attached to the end of a long stick.
-Jack Handey

Offline Damian

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That's a very good point.  I guess I hadn't really thought that there would be people out there who fabricate paranormal activity and claims, but you're right.  I'm so interested in this stuff and because I've had a number of experiences, it's hard for me to remember that there are those who either have a disrespect for the paranormal and those who choose to study it and those who have utter disdain and ultimately fear of even acknowledging the possibility of something beyond what we consider the norm.

I'm curious Jason, what do you do for a living?...if that's too personal of a question for the forum, I apologize.  You alluded to it in your earlier post and piqued my interest.
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It cuts the hand that wields it." --Rabindranath Tagore

"Me fail English? That's unpossible." --Ralph Wiggum

ljiljanac

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Thanks Jason    :)    I know that this is the most Q & A that I have done in my entire life on the subject, and I have kept my experiences to myself for years out of fear of people thinking I'm crazy.  I also know that people in certain professions rely on their credibility and "common sense" to succeed in their circles or to maintain their reputations.  Try walking into a board meeting or dinner party to talk about your impending promotion and saying, "I have ghosts in my house."  Mmmmm, k nah.  Furthermore, if you were ever married to someone like my ex, you would keep things to yourself as well.   :-X    Heaven forbid you embarrass your other half by claiming to be haunted.   
 

Offline PPI Debra

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Thanks Jason    :)    I know that this is the most Q & A that I have done in my entire life on the subject, and I have kept my experiences to myself for years out of fear of people thinking I'm crazy.  I also know that people in certain professions rely on their credibility and "common sense" to succeed in their circles or to maintain their reputations.  Try walking into a board meeting or dinner party to talk about your impending promotion and saying, "I have ghosts in my house."  Mmmmm, k nah.  Furthermore, if you were ever married to someone like my ex, you would keep things to yourself as well.   :-X    Heaven forbid you embarrass your other half by claiming to be haunted.   
 

I understand how you feel Lillie. I used to be afraid to share my strange experiences.
Jason, your humor is great. It also makes learning so much easier.

« Last Edit: February 12, 2010, 02:34:24 PM by Debra, PPI Consultant »
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Offline PPI Tracy

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I think people do not admit that they have either used a Ouijia Board or have done things that would attract paranormal activity because they are afraid that they will be viewed as maybe they "asked for it".  Why doesn't a person who has been the victim of a crime not report it?  Afraid that they will be put under the spotlight, not the person who harmed them?  I have clients that I know for a fact aren't honest with me and sometimes certain facts do come out.  Never ever though do I make a client feel "bad" or "blamed" as though it was their fault, even if I might have the opinon that the events could have possibly in some way lead to the actvity.  The client is afraid of being blamed and if they are blamed, they are afraid that we won't help them because they "brought it on themselves". 

The truth of the matter is that Jason is right; we do not know what causes paranormal actvity so how can we blame someone and think they or their actiions are the catalyst.  However, we do at times.  I will be honest; if I have a client who practices using a Ouijia Board and they are having all sorts of activity in their home, my first thought is that the practice could possibly have something to do with it.  It is what we see, hear, read and learn that allow us to form our opinions, and that is all that we have to go on.  I really don't have an ending sentence for this post so I will just say, "Secrest Out"
« Last Edit: February 12, 2010, 03:27:00 PM by TAPS Tracy »

Offline Damian

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Well said Tracy!  I'll have to continually remind myself of that mindset and give the client support without blaming anything on what they may or may not have done.
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It cuts the hand that wields it." --Rabindranath Tagore

"Me fail English? That's unpossible." --Ralph Wiggum

Offline PPI Tracy

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Well said Tracy!  I'll have to continually remind myself of that mindset and give the client support without blaming anything on what they may or may not have done.

Thanks, Damian.  I was seriously wondering whether my post even remotely resembled the english language.  (you know those days right?  well....I have them quite frequently)

Offline TAPS Jen

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The clients I get frustrated with are the ones who push and push for you to say their place is haunted because they're trying to sell it, the ones who get angry because Jay and Grant didn't come with the tv cameras ("we can wait until they're available!") and the ones who invite the whole freaking neighborhood over complete w. food and music and expect youto be the evening's entertainment!

Who knows why activity happens? I believe that you can innocently open a door as a child and have something walk through decades later. (I don't believe that time works the same way in our plane of being as it does in others) You can't get angry at someone for asking for help. I see it in my patients every day. The absolute hardest step is putting yourself and your trust out there and asking for assistance.  Who are we to judge or blame?
"Well behaved women rarely make history."

ljiljanac

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I see it all this way.....people don't know what they're getting into.  Not their fault.  They "open the door" without knowing it or believing that they are actually doing it.  Not their fault.  What's the difference between them calling on a spirit with an Ouija Board or spell and us calling on a spirit with EVP, EMF, and recording devices?  As far as I'm concerned, these people who bring on paranormal activity or hauntings provide the paranormal research community with opportunities for enlightenment, truth, and understanding.  There's nothing wrong with that.    :)

Offline PPI Tracy

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The clients I get frustrated with are the ones who push and push for you to say their place is haunted because they're trying to sell it, the ones who get angry because Jay and Grant didn't come with the tv cameras ("we can wait until they're available!") and the ones who invite the whole freaking neighborhood over complete w. food and music and expect youto be the evening's entertainment!


Amen sister!  Or they tell you to keep it on the "down low" then we show up and they are having a party next door and they make these "ooooooooh" ghost sounds as we walk up the driveway.  Nice.  Oh and then there is the drunk guy from next door that stumbles over to the van and goes, "hhh  hhhh hhey...wh wh whatcha doin?  You guys those ghost people on the tv"?    Ugh.  |8x

ljiljanac

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K, that's when I would turn around and start loading up the car again.   ;)

Offline PPI Tim

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Or you can break out a can of  BUMAWAY and spray it at the dude. ;D
Sounds interesting...Go on.

ljiljanac

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heehee!!!    :D

Offline PPI Tracy

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This has nothing to do with this conversation but if I don't say something I am going to burst at the seams.  I had a horrifying experience on the way to work this morning.  In fact, I don't know if I will ever be the same again.  I am forever changed.  My mind and senses assaulted to the extreme.  I went through almost 8 minutes of sheer and utter agony.  I heard......"We are the World".....remake.  I think I need therapy.

Offline Damian

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Wait... BUMAWAY???  Isn't that the stuff that...  Oh, nope, I'm getting BUMAWAY confused with POO-BE-GONE.  Two totally different things! ;)
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It cuts the hand that wields it." --Rabindranath Tagore

"Me fail English? That's unpossible." --Ralph Wiggum

Offline PPI Tracy

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Well, on that note.....breakfast anyone?  |8x

Offline jkaullen

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The only thing that would bother me is the following...

Ok, you contacted a group of Paranormal Investigators to HELP you explain what is happening in your house, work, barn...whatever. And then to turn around and lie to the people YOU contacted to help just bugs me. If im so freaked out in my house that I have to call in the "pro's" to help me explain it/get rid of it, there is no way im lying about it.

Look at it this way. 99% of the issues fall into 3 categories (residual, intelligent, paranormal), but there is that rare chance that what is in my house (mind) is Demonic? Oh heck no, im telling you everything that has ever happened to me or anyone i know if it will help solve the problem.

my 2 cents

-Justin

"Let me guess, you picked out yet another colorful box with a crank that I'm expected to turn and turn until OOP! Big shock, a jack pops out and you laugh and the kids laugh and the dog laughs and I die a little inside." - Stewie

ljiljanac

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Justin....I hear that!  Paranormal State kind of reminds me of Star Trek, but in reverse.  In Star Trek, every actor on the face of the earth had a bit part in the motion picture or t.v. spin-offs to be a part of Star Trek history.  Well, it seems that, in order to be a part of Paranormal State history, you must be haunted by a demon that must be cleansed from the house.  I'll bet there are more demon hauntings on the show than there are in books.  Paranormal State = demons, demons everywhere!   >:]

In terms of "lying" to investigators, I agree that it is especially important that clients be honest about what they are experiencing, when, how, who, what, and so on.  Super important!  However, many people are afraid of being thought of as crazy or over the edge by even investigators.  I remember when I posted my experiences on a the forum for all to read and my face-to-face interview with PPI.  I knew I was among a group of people who are dedicated to this type of investigation and who would not be involved in this if there weren't credibility to it.  HOWEVER, I was nervous as hell and was afraid of what their reactions would be.  I was so used to people thinking I was weird or crazy that I was nervous about telling the pros.     :-\

People hide details for a variety of reasons (i.e. fear, embarrassment, nervousness, etc).  We've discussed this same topic on the Paranormal State thread (I'm pretty sure it was that thread).  It was mentioned that the omission of facts at the beginning that are brought to the forefront toward the end may be done on purpose for entertainment value, or "paratainment".  How cool is it when the star of the show figures things out and pulls out vital information from the client at just the right time????   ;)

And, of course, there is always the possibility that they are full of crap and are talking a good game but haven't figured out all the angles yet.  I don't believe a liar would make it to the Preliminary stage with PPI.    ;D     

Offline PPI Tracy

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The only thing that would bother me is the following...

Ok, you contacted a group of Paranormal Investigators to HELP you explain what is happening in your house, work, barn...whatever. And then to turn around and lie to the people YOU contacted to help just bugs me. If im so freaked out in my house that I have to call in the "pro's" to help me explain it/get rid of it, there is no way im lying about it.


Welcome to OUR world.....  :-\