Glossary of Terms
ANOMALY - An irregular or unusual event which does not fit a standard rule or law. An anomaly is something which cannot be explained by currently accepted scientific theories. Anything weird, abnormal, strange, odd, or difficult to classify is considered an anomaly.
APPARITIONS - The appearance of the spirit of a person or animal. A full-bodied apparition shows the entire body. A paratial-bodied apparition is seen more often. This is where only part of the body is seen, such as the torso.
AUDIBLE VOICE PHENOMENA (AVP) – AVP's are anomalous voices and sounds that are heard in real time by investigators and captured on a digital or video recorder. The vast majority of AVP are noises—bangs, taps, gasps and moans—but rare AVP have included audible “spirit voices” as well.
BASELINE MEASUREMENTS - Investigators do a baseline measurement of environmental conditions of the location prior to investigating to determine environmental anomalies during the investigation. Measurements of temperature, electromagnetic fields, air density and pressure, and others are systematically recorded to determine what’s “normal” about the site; departures from those baselines, therefore, potentially suggest what could be abnormal or paranormal.
COLD SPOT - A small, defined area of cold, possibly 10 degrees colder than the surrounding area that cannot be readily be explained by either natural or mechanical means, such as drafts from a window or air conditioning. During a paranormal investigation, one theory is that when an entity is trying to manifest itself, it draws on surrounding energy which could be the heat in the air, thus creating a cold spot in a specific area.
DEBUNK - When a simple, logical and non-paranormal explanation can account for a reported paranormal event, the activity is said to be debunked.
EMF METER or EMF DETECTOR - A scientific instrument for measuring electromagnetic fields.
EVP's or ELECTRONIC VOICE PHENOMENA are electronically generated noises on the radio or an electronic recording that some people believe resemble speech or voices, but are not the result of intentional voice recordings. These noises are sometimes interpreted as the voices of ghosts or spirits. EVP's are usually the length of a word or short phrase. Recording EVP's is one technique used to contact souls during ghost hunting activities.
GHOST/SPIRIT - A shadow or sighting of a dead person believed to haunt people, places, or things. Some ghosts or spirits often do not realize they are dead, while others continue to interact with the everyday life of the living.
HAUNTINGS - Following are a few types of hauntings… intelligent, residual, and non-human.
1. Intelligent Hauntings: This type of haunting involves a spirit that is an intelligent or interactive type of spirit. These spirits are actual human spirits that have not crossed over, whether it was because of murder, unfinished business, an accidental death, undying love for someone, or the person died so quickly that they do not yet realize they are dead. They will try to communicate and are aware of the people around them. These spirits can open and close doors, move objects, run the faucets and interact with you directly because they have the personality, habits, and knowledge of the person that once lived. There is the potential for there to be benevolent or peaceful spirits as well as malevolent or angry spirits. These negative spirits are not evil but are angry. This could be due to their confusion of what is going on around them. They may also have been an angry person in life and have carried that over in death.
2. Residual Hauntings: These are the most common of hauntings. It’s like having a movie being looped over and over and over again. There is no interaction with the observer. We believe that these types of hauntings continue because we give them the energy to do so. If you expect it every day at a certain time, it will happen and your energy will help it to continue its pattern. It is suggested that this is similar to a ‘thought form’ except there is absolutely no interaction between them and us. You can hear sounds like doors opening and closing, followed by footsteps or smells, but again, they are at either the same time of day or year surrounding a tragic event. If they are no longer given energy from either us or our surroundings, the levels of activity would dissipate down to an undetectable level.
3. Non-human/Demonic Hauntings: Very similar to the 1st haunting because it is intelligent and can interact with you. The difference is that it was NEVER human. They have the same characteristics that include a strong, foul smelling scent that is usually like sulfur. While most hauntings are accompanied by a feeling of cold, demons often warm the area around them. In many demonic hauntings, the occupants claim to see a black mist, black fog or black shadows. These entities are malevolent and extremely violent and are known to harm its victims both physically and emotionally. Demonic possession, in which the body of a human victim is "taken over" by the demon or demons responsible, is also commonly reported. Professional help from a priest, minister or demonologist is needed to banish the entity.
4. Attachments: People can form attachments and that does not mean that it’s a demon at all and here’s why we say this. Sometimes, just like children and kids that aren’t being heard, a spirit or entity will begin to get more and more frustrated. They don’t understand why we don’t or can’t see them or acknowledge them and ask them to just stop, so they begin to start moving things, touching people, banging the hell out of things. In other cases, they are just plain angry…not a demon at all…just a very angry entity.
ORBs - About 99% of the time, an orb is an out-of-focus dust particle that is photographed with any still camera or
camcorder. There is a detailed article by Paranormal Research Group explaining that
describes the differences between 'Natural Orbs' and 'Spirit or Ghost Orbs.'
THOUGHT FORMS - Some describe a thought form as an apparition produced solely by the power of the human
mind. An entity that exists entirely because of the energy of one or more people, or other intelligent physical
entities feed energy or thought to it, whether through thought, worship or devotion. As opposed to a spirit which
can exist without feeding or being supported by intelligent physical beings. A thought form can become an intelligent
spirit, either by transforming it deliberately, or with the belief that it is independent.