Monday, July 30, 2012
Lots of ghosts shows have swept right over the part where the homeowners are left with the realization their home is haunted and now have to say goodbye to the team and live there alone again.
I have a set of steps I like to take a client through:
First, we determine if there are haunting features by seeing if any of the events are explainable and seeing if there seems to be unexpected input in the environment.
If it seems there is something going on, we then determine personal threat. If we're talking about doors opening and closing, footfalls, voices, cold spots, feelings of being watched, there is no real threat, only the unexpected. We learn to cope with unexpected things every day from a rain shower we didn't see coming to a busted water pipe. Cognitively reframing the experience is significant in lowering stress levels.
The next step is a very simple one, the comforting feel of the home can be shifted by doing simple measures like opening a Bible and leaving it out, playing soft happy music, and most importantly letting in light and clearing the clutter--organizing. These simple Feng Shui principles help change the very tone and energy of a home. It also lays down tracks of positive feelings and helps to make energy better able to move on and move out rather than cul-de-sac in dark cluttered corners. Honestly, the very emotional content of the people within the home and their relationships can very much attract activity. A home that is without constant reminders of disorganization, darkness, dirtiness, and clutter, can help elevate the moods of the occupants and make the home a not so friendly hiding spot and help the individual members to handle things with empowerment.
Some teams will advise calling out and telling the spirits it's your house and they need to scram. That's a fantastic tool to use when a family feels the time is right, but one thing investigators often forget to tell families is that this may not work. It may not work because the haunting is residual. In that case, they need to learn to live with a bit of history replaying itself upon occasion from sounds and scents to apparitions. Sometimes, it's as if old houses have memories like people do and they replay them from time to time.
Did you notice so far that I haven't jumped right into saging and prayer? All of these efforts are done in steps. There is no need to run for the big guns when some pepper spray is enough to deter.
Eventually, the belief system of the clients can be taken into consideration when further steps need to be taken. The key here is to not have people jumping to conclusions that what is in their home is bad, is permanent, or is evil. Usually the first steps work and we never have to resort to these unless the investigation team has not done their job at calming down the occupants and helping them reframe the experience so it is not the threatening unknown, but the universally perplexing mystery that it often times is.
There are always exceptions including members being hurt and that is when the further steps can be instituted and the people empowered with mental skills that can help them feel in charge.
There is no one perfect answer for coping with ghosts, but it should go in degrees and it should be done with a great deal of reverence for the power of the occupants who are living and respect for those who have passed on.