"What's Being Attracted To Your Domain?" 

poltergeist.jpgIn the field of Astrology, the occult or water houses 4, 8 and 12 refer to the cycle of life, death and rebirth and they also refer to barriers that are broken down when human specters or entities enter the plane of the living. The 4th house concerns the circumstances surrounding death, the 8th house concerns the actual demise, and the 12th house concerns circumstances regarding a soul's afterlife other dimensional experience. When a soul or spirit does not pass through the Gate of Death in the 8th house and onward towards either a pleasant or hostile afterlife, it remains earthbound and chooses a location or several locations to occupy. This is when problems can occur and some professional paranormal help is needed. Paranormal investigators, researchers, and demonologists fall under the rulership of the 8th house but individuals who are gifted in helping spirits "move on" fall under the rulership of the 12th house. Paranormal counselors who help families or individuals with any crisis concerning a haunting in the home fall under the rulership of the 4th house. Often times, these people are "naturals" when dealing with trauma concerning all facets of death. During a paranormal event the 8th and 12th houses are often triggered simultaneously. An example of this is as séance that goes awry or a poltergeist attack.  

baraduc.jpgIs there truly an energetic essence that is released when we die? Is this a photo of the Soul in flight? This old black and white photo was taken in 1907 by French neurologist Hippolyte Baraduc. The photo is of his dying wife as she gave her three final gasps of life. Baraduc harbored a fascination for psychic research and believed he had caught his wife's spiritual energy on film. He called it "vital current." 


Artistic rendition of the devil
from the closet.

In winter of 1998, a small group of Atlanta college aged students gathered together at the home of a friend who lived nearby. When they arrived at the friend's home, they found him to be acting rather strangely and extremely nervous bordering on manic. He told them he had been experimenting with spells and decided to see if could conjure up "something from the other side." He claimed that the experiment worked and that he had actually video taped a "devil" which made its entrance from the closet in his bedroom. The friends were skeptical until they viewed the video which despite the fact that it had been filmed in the darkened bedroom, clearly showed a satyr like being with horns and cloven hooves emerge from the closet and then disappear. To this day they believe the video while "unexplained" to be absolutely authentic and very scary having left a profound psychological effect on their friend.  

graveyardgirl.jpgLater that spring, the same group of young people decided to visit a local graveyard after midnight. Their visit got out of hand and while "chugging a few brews" they began challenging spirits to come out and play. One young man took a dare from one of the group and decided to lie down on one of the graves. Nothing unusual seemed to happen until the next day when the young man began experiencing strange occurrences in his bedroom in the middle of the night which constituted poltergeist activity. Books and personal objects flew off a dresser while the young man lie frozen in bed praying for relief. The activity diminished and ceased after a week.
(Names have been eliminated per request for anonymity.)



 Hunters Sam and Dean Winchester
(Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles)
of Supernatural.

Who ya' gonna' call? The media is full of shows and entertainment involving the paranormal encompassing everything from real life situations to legends. In a nutshell everything supernatural has become rather chic. These para-tales whether they are televised or retold to us by friends and relatives based upon their personal experiences engage and enthrall us and for the most part scare the daylights out of us. There are real ghost hunters, researchers, psychics and demonologists out there doing real work. But just how dangerous can some of these real life situations play out once we depart from the glamour and hype of television and why are we so attracted to those things that go bump in the night? 



In Shadow World - True Encounters with Beings from the Darkside, paranormal author and investigator Brad Steiger says, "Accounts of ghostly manifestations, regardless of how terrifying they may be, demonstrate that life exists in more than one dimension of reality... and that there is some aspect of the human mind-body-soul construct that survives physical death."1 Another consideration is that human beings are ever seeking proof that good can conquer evil in certain paranormal situations that occur. But - just how safe is it to cross the boundaries of the shadowy realms in such situations? Are those individuals who are brave enough to confront the Darkside protected from physical and mental harm?  

John Holbrook, an Atlanta based paranormal expert, has been involved in paranormal investigation for over twenty years. His experiences with the supernatural have been numerous and varied dating back to his early childhood. Even though John prefers a scientific approach to investigation his dealings with energies and entities have often times been far from pleasant. The following is an account of some of John's personal experiences:

"In the first few years I started out conducting paranormal investigations I had some experiences that shaped my theories and beliefs. The first one was linked to a location that had always held my interest. It was near my house (about 8 miles) and it was an old cemetery that was called the Witch's Graveyard. From my understanding it was called this because of a couple of graves on the outside of the cemetery that were believed to be the graves of witches. There were also graves of slaves on the outside of the cemetery all buried in unconsecrated ground. The cemetery had a well-defined boundary and had not been used in many years at the time I was investigating during the late 70s early 80s.

During one of my visits to the cemetery I planned to take a friend to see what she thought about the area. My friend had begged me to take her the next time I went to the cemetery so I finally relented. Unknown to me until the day of the trip, she invited two additional people that I had never met. My friend had an understanding that anytime one is dealing with the supernatural all involved need to be in the right frame of mind and properly protected. So I drove the four of us to the cemetery on a Saturday afternoon in my S10 Blazer and we parked on a road that was across the railroad tracks from the cemetery. We spent three or four hours at the location split into teams - I and my friend together and the other two people together. We did not have any experiences at the cemetery except for an uneasy feeling when we were leaving.

The experiences did not start until we were all in my vehicle. The first thing that happened was as we closed the last door of the Blazer the door of the glove box fell off. It did not open - it just fell straight down for no reason. It was not broken and was easily put back in its place. I thought that someone may have been messing with my vehicle so I got out and checked the tracks around the vehicle and could only find our tracks. I got back in the Blazer and had a hard time getting it to start. It would not crank even though I had at least a half a tank of gas and the starter was working correctly. Before the battery started to get weak, the car finally did crank and ran like there was no problem at all. I took everyone home without turning off the engine until I got home just in case there was some other problem. I checked my Blazer thoroughly from top to bottom and did not find anything that was wrong with it that would cause it not to start. I also opened the door and slammed it several times trying to get the glove box door to fall off again with no success.

The next day, I took my film to get it developed at the local photo booth. My friend called me up every day until I got my pictures back. She was sure that I had captured something on film because she was having weird dreams. She also told me that her friends had called her to tell her that they were having strange issues with their own car. I had not captured anything on the pictures that I had taken but after talking to my friend I knew that something was up with one or both of her friends. My friend said that her friend's car issue had stopped but that there other issues she wanted me to check on with her.

As we arrived at her friend's house I did not have a good feeling about it and after I was inside I knew why. The inside of the house ‘felt' to me as belonging to someone who practiced dark arts or witchcraft. I did not draw this judgment based upon the books they had or all the different occult items they had all over the house but from the lack of anything that would be considered ‘light.' The only thing that I could see in the house that was light was the walls and they were more a gray. All the candles that I saw were black or red and the upholstery and curtains were dark tones. It was a very dark and gloomy house and the dark feeling I had when I was outside the house was getting worse. We only stayed thirty minutes of so before we left which was none too soon for me.

My friend talked with them several times on the phone and they continued to have different problems, but I was not sure if it was residual from the graveyard visit or because of the energy in their house. I did have other friends that had visited the Witch's Graveyard without me who had no car problems or any other issues. I never knew for sure if the problems I had with my car were because of something that was trying to cause a problem from the graveyard site or if it was being generated by these two people that I did not know. The fact is that when I and my friend went to the site we protected ourselves and were not trying to conjure anything up... we were just taking pictures and respected the graves. I am to this day not sure about the intentions of the two other people on the site. This experience back in my early days taught me on a small scale that things can go wrong on an investigation and that they can have a residual effect.



Popular TV ghost hunters Grant
Wilson and Jason Hawes of TAPS
prefer a scientific approach. 

I have always protected myself whenever I go on an investigation and there was once that I think that I was protected from going on an investigation. The story begins with an investigation that was planned for a Saturday afternoon that was several hours away by location. I did not set up the investigation but was invited to take part in the investigation by another paranormal investigator. The background story that I was told was that the site used to be a plantation that housed many slaves most of who were killed on the property during the Civil War. The investigator who invited me to assist on the investigation also said that the client was being very pesky about having the location investigated.  

We made all the arrangements to meet at a local restaurant that was on the way to the investigation site. We had planed to meet up there and all ride in the same car to the site. I was the farthest one away from the meeting place and the site of the investigation and was going to have to leave at 10 am to get to the meeting place by 12 pm. So I set my alarm for 8 am and had all my equipment ready and in my vehicle before bed. I went to bed early because it was going to be a long day and I did not think that I would be home before 2 or 3 am.
It was around 6 am when I was awakened with the need to go to the bathroom and after I finished I went back to bed. Then at 7 am I was suddenly awakened feeling very sick. It was hard to sit up or even get to the bathroom. So for the next three hours I was so sick that I decided that I was not going to be able to go on the investigation. I called the investigator and cancelled and went back to bed. Then around 12 pm I woke up feeling really good like I had not been sick at all, no ill effects or fever. I knew that I could not get to the meeting point as I did not have the directions to the site of the investigation. I did not have any clue to why I had been so sick and then was suddenly feeling better. I did some work around the house, I had my meals and felt really good, now when I say I felt really good that includes not feeling depressed or guilty about missing out on the investigation. I was also in a very upbeat mood. On Sunday I contacted the investigator and was invited to look over photos taken on the site. I was also told that it was a ‘really weird place' and that everyone who was on the team agreed on the way home that the place gave them the creeps.

The very next Saturday I met up with the team and they all had some interesting pictures - lots of orbs some of which were red. I did look at all the pictures and listened to each person's story of the investigation (most of the people that went on the investigation were hobby hunters and were not very objective). So when the rest of the group left, I sat down with the lead investigator and went over the pictures while asking questions. I noticed that most of the orbs were dust but there were some shadows that were out of place. From what I could tell the orbs that were red were from the redeye light that some cameras have or from a laser thermometer that they were using to take temperature readings. Then I saw something that caught my eye - there were red spots on some of the pictures that were taken outside/outdoors. The lead investigator took several pictures that had these spots. They were not orbs and always appeared in twos. I asked questions about the area outside and could find no natural or manmade reason for the red dots. The investigator did not even notice the dots until I pointed them out. There were other pictures of the same area taken at a different time and the dots were not evident.

The lead investigator said that the lady (client) that had originally contacted her was calling her every day for information asking when the team would come back out to the site. We discussed the psychology of the lady and decided that she was not mentally ‘stable' and that it would not be a good idea to go back out there. The lead investigator received a call from the lady before I left and I did hear the lead investigator say that she would send a copy of the pictures but that the team would not be coming back out to the site. The lead investigator had a hard time getting off the phone and said the lady did go a little ‘psycho.' We called it a night and I went home.

The next day the investigator called me and said that she had a tough night with bad dreams about the lady and that lady had called an additional two times. I advised the investigator to tell the lady that if necessary a harassment complaint would be filed if she did not quit calling the agency. The investigator said that she did ask the lady if she had seen the red dots before. She said that the lady got upset again and then asked who in the group had seen them. The investigator advised her that she had shown me the pictures but that I had not visited the site. The lady wanted to talk to me but the investigator advised her that she was the contact person for the group and it would not be OK to call me.

That night after we had talked, I had some bad dreams about the area that I had seen in the pictures. The red dots were not dots but eyes and they followed me everywhere I went and I felt very threatened. I awoke from the dream with the feeling that someone was in my room at the foot of my bed. I tried to turn and look to see who it was but I could not move - I could move catseye.jpgmy eyes but I could not move my body. Then I felt a pressure like something was on top of me trying to push me through the bed. I could not speak but I was still breathing and could only scream in my mind. The pressure changed from holding me down - it seemed to get colder and smaller and was trying to get inside me. I could tell that I could not stop this by myself; it was like I could tell by the way it was starting to feel that my willpower was not enough. Just my telling it to stop was not going to work so I started to pray and ask for Divine help.

As soon as I started doing this, the feeling of cold stopped and turned into a feeling of pressure and then it was off me and I could move again. I sat up looking around my room and could see a shadow that was in the corner of the room where there was nothing to make the shadow. So I continued to pray and called for it to leave and to never return but now that I could move I said it out loud. I got out of bed and again in prayer demanded it to leave and never return. Then the shadow just faded away and the feeling in the room became more angelic. I turned on some light and looked at the clock and it was 3:05 am,* so I then got out my sage and smudged the room before I went back to bed. I did not turn off all the lights and did not go to sleep right away. I did not wake up till late morning feeling sore and drained. 


Lead investigator Ryan Buell
and psychic Chip Coffey of A&E's
Paranormal State are no strangers
to dark entities.

I called the lead investigator later that day to see how the team was doing; they said that they all had a tough night with nightmares. I told them of my experience and said they should do a clearing also just like I was going to do and that any equipment that they had used on the site should be cleared also. I did my clearing and did not have any other problems but the lead investigator had many different problems even after the clearing. I think that they were still having problems because the lady from the site continued to call the investigator.  

Sometime later that year, I was talking to one of my personal spiritual mentors about the incident. My mentor believed that one of my guides or Angels kept me from going on the investigation because of what was there. My mentor thought that there were evil entities on the site and that because of the nature of the clearings that I had to do that it would have been bad to have gone there with the team. It would have caused more problems than actually happened and that the investigator's problems continued because of the contact with the lady. After talking with my mentor and doing some reading I came to believe that my mystery illness that morning before the investigation was to keep me at home. So my guides or Angel were trying to protect me from whatever was out at the site. It was my own continued involvement in the investigation after the fact that caused the attack. It is important to have protection when dealing with the supernatural and it is important to remember that the paranormal is not always ‘Casper the friendly ghost' but something that may want to cause harm."

*Note: 3:00 am - 4:00 am is considered ‘The Devil's Hour' or ‘Dead Time' by some paranormal investigators and is believed to be a time when paranormal activity and occurrence is at its height.

seance.jpgWhat about other circumstances such as a séance where many things can go awry? Just how protected are those who are participating in the communion with the dead? In the early 1940's a stage magician by the name of Johnny Reno was in the process of conducting a séance with a small group of several friends. Johnny was known to be quite psychic and no one was really sure just how much he dabbled with the dark side. All participants sat around the table holding hands firmly. The lights were quite dim when the proceedings began but there was enough light that the two participants holding Johnny's hands could see and feel his hands clasping their hands. As soon as Johnny began calling in the spirits the group all heard a loud slap and those close to Johnny saw his head get whipped to one side. The séance was immediately stopped and the lights turned on by one of the participants who was not holding Johnny's hands. A large red handprint was clearly visible on Johnny's face. To this day there remains no explanation except that "something was very angry." The situation wamost disconcerting to those in attendance since all of them knew that a human spirit is not capable of causing great harm. Entities of a different make-up however are quite a different story.

1 Steiger, Brad. Shadow World - True Encounters with Beings from the Darkside. New York: Anomalist Books, 2000. 8.