I have been part of the paranormal community for many years now. I have learned several lessons along the way, many of which are from my trial and error. Nobody ever told me how to be a paranormal investigator. Everyone I talked to usually said, "Go out and get experience." I couldn't exactly pick up the phone and call someone and ask for lessons.
So, how does one get started in the paranormal then?
Some may laugh at this (and it's totally okay), but I actually got started on Craigslist. I posted an ad with something catchy about "Want to investigate the paranormal with me?" or something along those lines. Several people responded. I met most of them. Some did not make the cut. Some stuck around for several years. Some are still with me today.
I remember my first case like it was yesterday. A demonic possession of sorts. Talk about getting thrown into the fire without much practice! There I was...a newbie...sitting in front of a person who was snarling and growling at me like I they were a guard dog and I was an intruder. Surreal.
These are lessons that make us better investigators. I did not know what to expect during that first case, but I learned a tremendous amount. And through the years, I have learned several valuable lessons by investigating the paranormal. Here are a few:
a.) Do not think you can choose the paranormal, for the paranormal, if it finds you worthy, will choose you. Many times we try to "force" the activity....or get frustrated when nothing happens. Remember, you are on the spirit's time, they are not on yours.
b.) Treat every case and every spirit with RESPECT. No taunting. As a young investigator I did try provoking a few times, and the results were not ideal.
c.) Always leave a home or location with better energy than when you arrived. This one is hard to explain, but once you get experience with the paranormal, you will know exactly what I am talking about. We tend to bring a lot of negativity or bad energy into environments that, quite frankly, could do without it. If you do not understand that as an investigator, and understand how to leave your energy and attachments at home, you could be making the situation worse by simply showing up.
d.) When in doubt, throw it out. I am referring to evidence review. This is perhaps the most controversial topic in the world of the paranormal because thousands of us can argue a simple point: What is evidence?
There is the personal-experience kind, where nothing was actually captured on tape or witnessed by others, but you as an investigator could FEEL something happening to your body...your energy...even your soul. You know it's real, but nobody else experienced it. So I ask you:
Is that evidence?
Of course, there is the "scientific" kind of evidence that people often share around. It's a voice picked up on an audio recorder, or a strange light on video, or a ghostly apparition caught on film (check our photo evidence section, by the way). Yet, through my time researching and trying to document the paranormal, one thing has become extremely clear to me. And that is this:
An investigator will spend half their life trying to capture the perfect piece of evidence, and the other half of their life trying to defend that evidence. So is it really evidence if people aren't willing to believe it?
I could spend another hour on here writing to you about many things that the paranormal has shown me. However, I will leave that to another post in a few days. Thank you for taking a moment to read through this, and I look forward to reading any comments that you may have.
With Light and Love,