Some sites are so haunted, even hard-core skeptics have to admit that something odd is going on.
But, in many cases, vocal, snarky skeptics can drive away ghosts.
Remember that — if you believe in them — ghosts are basically people. What makes ghosts different is this: They don’t seem to have bodies in this plane of existence.
Other that that, they’ll react the same way that you or I would, when ignored or dismissed.
Have you ever been ignored? Was there a time when someone looked right through you, as if you weren’t there?
Or, do you remember when someone talked about you as if you weren’t in the room?
A lot of people experience this at some point, especially as preteens or during their adolescent years.
In most cases, they avoid any situation where they’ll feel snubbed again.
It’s the same with ghosts.
A spirit may be doing his best to be noticed. It may not seem like much, compared with what a person with a body can do.
However, if a skeptic repeatedly ignores him or finds normal explanations for what’s going on, the ghost may feel offended.
If you go to a haunted site and nothing happens, be patient. Perhaps the last visitor to that location was an insensitive skeptic. The ghosts may still be there, but they’re stung by being ignored or even ridiculed.
It may feel silly to talk out loud to a spirit as if he or she were physical. But, maybe that will help the ghost feel more comfortable with you.
Many ghost hunters expect to wait at any haunted site for at least 20 – 45 minutes before anything ghostly happens.
Some ghost photographers recommend waiting that long before taking photos, even if ghosts seem obviously present.
Keep in mind that many ghosts may be from time periods when cameras — especially flash cameras — did not exist. They might be afraid that the camera captures their soul (or a part of it).
It’s worth repeating: Be very patient with ghosts. If ghosts are real, they’ve been traumatized by dying. They may even be in denial about death. Like the lead character in the movie, Heaven Can Wait, maybe they think that they’re entitled to a different outcome.
We can’t be 100% certain about our communications with ghosts. We can’t be certain why they’re here, or why they manifest to some people and not others. We can guess, based on everyday psychology, but many ghosts are profiles in abnormal psychology.
It’s difficult to make generalities about ghosts.
Few ghosts act like they do in fiction, movies, and on some TV shows. Ghosts may behave one way at one site, and completely differently at another.
They’re individuals. Remember that.
Keep an open mind and be very patient. If there’s a vocal and insulting skeptic in your group, leave. Come back without him or her, later.
I don’t mean a healthy skeptic, or someone who’s keeping an open mind.
I’m always in favor of people using their critical thinking skills, when ghost hunting.
Someone who’s too eager to believe or who jumps at shadows can be a significant problem during an investigation.
The problem is critical, snarky skeptics. That person is a distraction. He or she always has a smart, “logical” answer for everything. His or her mind is locked tight against any possibility that ghosts might be real.
If someone on your team is being rude to the ghosts — and that includes “provoking” or bullying the ghosts — get that person away from the site.
Be as respectful and polite with ghosts as you are with the living. Be compassionate.
That can be the difference between a successful ghost hunt and one that’s disappointing.