Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Ghost Hunting Experiments: Using Your Senses

Ultimately, no matter what equipment we take into the field, it comes down to the hunter and his/her senses as the true witness to phenomena. It is important that we hone those senses before hitting the field. Sitting alone in a quiet reportedly haunted location is not the time to realize you hate the dark or your hearing is faulty. Here's some experiments to practice your skills as a witness.

You will need: Another person, ear plugs, blindfold.

SIGHT: Sit down in a room with the lights out. Be sure that it is very dark. It can have traces of light, but not enough to see the objects in the room clearly. Have a friend join you in this room, but ask the friend to remain standing and to do so as long as you are in there, but to occasionally quietly move around, sometimes just an arm up in the air, sometimes, take a step or two to the right or left or squat down and stand back up again, but do so with no rhyme or reason, making the timing sporadic. Now, place ear plugs into your ears, getting a good seal so that all you're hearing is your own breathing. Be certain you sit up against a wall so that there is nothing behind you that you need to monitor. Study the room, letting your eyes adjust. Any time you think you see a change in movement, call it out "something moved right," "something disappeared," "something flickered." When you call it quits, find out how accurate you were. You can see how your mind fills in gaps in your vision's capability. You also learn how to discern from the tiny bit of light, when something dense is blocking it. Don't be surprised if at some point your companion manages to sneak up near you and you don't realize it. More on honing that skill in "Body" below.

HEARING: Sit down in the center of the room and put on a blindfold. Have your companion wait a while, letting you get used to the sounds of the environment. It's best to do this with all sounds off, fans, heater/air-conditioner, TV, in as quiet an environment as possible. When your companion feels ready, he/she can make a sound by sliding, pushing, opening, moving, tapping something. When you hear the sound, call out what you think it sounds like. This is going to work your skills. You know your home, your room, and what sorts of sounds you regularly hear and usually ignore, but now you must identify if they sound metallic, creaking, snapping, popping, falling, or plunking. When you're done with this exercise, let your partner show you what produced those sounds or, better yet, you show him/her what you think it was.

BODY: Our bodies and "sixth" sense tell us more than we ever realize. In this experiment, put on your blindfold, stand up, let your companion guide you around in circles and back and forth until you're disoriented about where you are. Now have her/him guide you somewhere and stop you there, perhaps facing a window or back to a wall or in a corner for a room. Without moving your arms around to feel your way, remain the way they faced you and feel. If you want, click your tongue against the roof of your mouth and turn your head slowly to hear if the sound changes, giving you a hint of how close you are to objects. Feel if there is anything solid nearby, blocking air movement, any sense of great space, and if there is anything in your body, like feeling wired and energetic or relaxed and comfortable. Explain what you sense and let your companion remove the blind and show you where you were placed. Do this a few times.

Next, walk around without the blindfold and plant yourself in front of a window that faces a doorway. Be sure the blinds are open, the door is open. Stand with your back to the window and facing the door and close your eyes and just feel in your body how it feels. Now, turn and face the window and close your eyes and feel. Is there a difference? Environments have energy pathways and we feel these in our bodies often and especially when we cross a powerful one. If you are going through a building and feel some goosebumps, look around and see if you can find energy culprits such as windows, mirrors, open doorways that allow energy to go back and forth and see if you are in line with these energy pathways.

EXTRA: Consider practicing these skills outdoors at night. Sit down in the yard in the dark on a moonless night and watch, listen, feel. Close your eyes and feel. When you think the wind is going to peak up an crest, raise your arms in the air. See how perceptive your body is, picking up cues that you are not conscious it's graphing internally.