by Karen Frazier, Managing Editor
Paranormal Underground Magazine
I recently heard someone on a paranormal television show call some piece of evidence “proof positive of paranormal activity.”
“How could that be?” I wondered, “Proof positive?”
Is there such thing as proof positive of paranormal activity? Here’s where I stand. There are things that have happened to me that I personally feel as if they meet my own personal preponderance of evidence to be paranormal. Was it beyond reasonable doubt? Nah. There’s almost always reasonable doubt where the paranormal comes into play. Would another person feel that my experiences showed a preponderance of evidence? Not necessarily – it depends on the person.
For every “fact” that I could lay out as “evidence” of the paranormal, many of my very scientifically and logically-minded friends could offer up alternative explanations. That’s just how it is in the paranormal, and I’ve been on both sides of the argument. I’ve been the one offering up alternative explanations. I’ve also been the one saying, “No – I know what it was. I know what I experienced.” If I was a politician, I’d be labeled a flip flopper.
What it all comes back to – at least for me – is the subtlety and ambiguity of paranormal experiences. I know of very few paranormal experiences that are of the slap you in the face, 100% no other logical explanation available variety. And even if they are of that variety (and there have been a few), I personally have never then come back with hard evidence that says for certain that my anomalous experience was paranormal.
Sure, sure. I have EVPs. I have a few photographs. I have some interesting anomalous black masses on video. And of course, I’ve got orbs up the wazoo. But let’s be real. Orbs are very likely dust. Or bugs. Or rain drops. Or light artifacts. Black masses on video could be IR shadows. We don’t really know what EVPs are. Sure they could be the voices of the dead – but are they really? I’ve heard all sorts of explanations for EVPs that make as much – if not more – sense than that they are ghost voices.
True skepticism demands that we are always open-minded when dealing with evidence. And in my opinion, open-minded works two ways. Keeping your mind open to the possibility that it is paranormal, and keeping your mind open to the possibility that it isn’t.
Many of you know that for a long, long time I was the biggest paranormal agnostic out there. I was waiting for that definitive experience that made me say, “Oh yep – there’s definitely something going on.” And so, for a long time, my answer when asked if I believed in ghosts was a big, fat, “I don’t know.”
Then I had that experience. It’s floating around in these blogs somewhere. I am sure that many wouldn’t consider it a smack you in the face kind of experience. It was actually quite subtle – or at least a series of quite subtle events. Each event was wrapped up in ambiguity with alternate explanations galore. In the end, what it came down to for me was a gut check. My gut told me something and I listened. I find that I usually can’t go wrong when I listen to my gut in such a way. That experience was followed by others – all in the same place. And to me, I felt as if I had discovered an answer to a question I’d had forever. I had my proof positive – even though I understand that many would never view my series of experiences as proof positive for themselves. I’m okay with that.
So where does that leave me? Am I a believer now? Well – yes and no. I believe that my encounters with the unknown were encounters with ghosts. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that I believe that everything unexplainable is a brush with the paranormal. I see myself as still an open-minded skeptic – evaluating each experience on a case-by-case basis.
I am a contradiction. I have a logical and scientific bent; however, I am also highly intuitive and rely on my gut to tell me the truth of things. Throughout my life, this has served me quite well. But it also means that there is almost always a war going on inside of me. My head fights with my gut on a regular basis. My logic and my intuition don’t always agree with one another. In fact, they almost never do. What it leads to quite often is a “hey – this is TOTALLY real,” in the moment, followed by, “Oh come on – there are all kinds of logical explanations,” after the fact.
In the end, this may be why the paranormal holds such fascination for me. Because it is an exercise of my logic and my intuition both. It leads me to continually seek in hopes of finding something that satisfies both my logical mind and my intuitive gut. When that happens, I can promise you this. You’ll be the first to know.
Enjoy reading Karen’s blog? Her new book, Avalanche of Spirits: The Ghosts of Wellington> is now available. Click here to buy.