Brian Cano, tech guy from Zafis’s show “the haunted collector,” has been preaching about paraunity. Pretty sure that’s a term he made up but the point is he wants the paranormal community to come together and stand strong with each other and not tear each other down or compete. I think that’s a great idea. I also believe it will never happen. Or perhaps like Eeyore, it will never work.

First, there are always sects of groups that believe something different than the rest of the group. You see this in religion (not all Mormons have multiple child-brides, not all Muslims want to dive-bomb the U.S., not all Christians hate gays (thanks Westboro!), etc.) To analogize writing: you have a heading, let’s say the paranormal. Then you have a subheading, let’s say – ghosts (meaning not UFOs, not Bigfoot, etc). Then you have your bullet points – believers, skeptics, and what they believe is relevant to the ghost world. Then you can get into nitty gritty like equipment. Let’s back up.

From the get-go we’ve already segregated ourselves from the UFO hunters and Bigfoot Hunters. There are arguments that these also fall under the paranormal, and there are arguments that they do not. The bottom line, either way, is that we are still different from them. That’s just a fact. They’re looking for something different than we are. There’s nothing wrong with that! But it does make having a conversation about the paranormal more tricky.

Then we have the fighting between believers and skeptics. Here’s my two-cents on the whole deal, so take it for what it’s worth: it’s not my job to convince you. If you need convincing, no amount of proof will do it, if you already believe no amount of proof is needed.

The fighting between believers is amazing. It’s like a spiderweb with off-shoots of dissidence. Obviously I’m not going to be able to get through all of it so let’s address “The Big Ones.”

Just because some people investigate on television and some do not DOES NOT (this bears repeating) DOES NOT mean the TV people know any more or less than you. Everyone comes from their own background, with their own techniques, and their own belief system already in place long before they met you or a TV crew. You have may some absolutely amazing techniques with one-of-a-kind homemade equipment but think because you are not on TV that clearly something is wrong with television, studios, producers, cable TV, etc. Don’t turn up your nose. You have no  more proof of what you’re doing than anyone else. Theirs just happens to be broadcast and with the Internet, you can be famous with your awesome equipment and bad ass findings in no time, anyway. People are people and people are fuck ups. It’s life. Deal with it.

No equipment is better or worse than any one elses. If you get the same information who cares if it came from a psychic, a dowsing rod or an Ovilus? If its right, its right. The ends are the same, the road you take to get there does not matter. Again, one piece of equipment over another does not make proof any better than another. We all have our favorite forms of “proof” from video to EVP to FLIR sensing. Some work better than others in different scenarios. The best you can do is evaluate ALL evidence with a clear head and non-bias. Someone you may hate because they threw their pudding at you in third grade may have a full-bodied apparition. Don’t knock it over the pudding, if its legit give them credit. If you think it’s fake, state why.

Stop taking things so damn personally. There IS a thing called constructive criticism. Its constructive because you are supposed to use it to build on. These things can be simple tips and tricks like move your camera more to the left if you are going to be on the right, or don’t wear a shiny bra because the infra-red picks it up like your shirt is see through. “She sucks” is not constructive so stop it. Name-calling is for people with nothing better to say.

Research and investigate. Seriously. It’s not hard and it can’t come back to bite you but guess what can? Spouting ignorance.

There is a thing called healthy competition. The problem here is that for some reason paranormal groups have only competition. It seems weird to me because any paranormal group worth their time does not charge for it. So you’re not competing for paychecks. It’s been my personal experience that people LIE to the high heavens about what’s going on in their places so it’s not like your competing for evidence. Besides, even if they weren’t lying what are the odds all that spectacular evidence is only going to occur when your group is there that time? Get real. And if you do catch that one amazing piece of evidence- what then? You share it with the community anyway, either for accolades, to further research, or to hope for your TV show.

My only personal debate is if there are a finite amount of resources that we are all competing for – only so many haunted places with so many haunted ghosts before everyone has investigated everywhere. Highly unlikely.

My final thought: Knock it off and grow up.

About Jane Arrow

Aspiring author
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