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GLOSSARY OF TERMS

Afterlife - Life after our physical bodies die. Common other names for the afterlife are the great beyond, heaven, and hell. Every culture in the world has their own beliefs and ideas of the what the afterlife consists of.

Agent- The ghost or spirit seen by someone. Also used to describe the cause of the haunting. For example, in the case of a poltergeist, popular beliefs are that a child at the age of puberty usually is the cause of the disturbances through some form of telekinetic projection. In a case like this, the child is the agent.

All Saints Day-November 1, is the day the Catholic church honors it's saints. The day is said to be special for the spirit world and paranormal activity as well.

All Souls Day-November 2 is the day in which the Catholic church honors and remembers the dead. The day is believed by some to be even more charged and have more psychic potential than Halloween. A great number of paranormal events have taken place on this day.

Amorphous- Having no definite form or shape, spirits and ghosts often appears in mist-like forms or shapes.

Amulet-Any item that is believed to bring good luck, protection and/or the ability to ward off evil spirits. These can be almost anything, some of the common items that people use are religious objects, jewels, items with personal meaning, weapons (knives,etc.), and a number of other things.

Ancestral Spirit-An ancient spirit that follows families or certain groups of families to where ever they move. These spirits are said to watch and protect over the families, and often can give forewarnings of tragedies and deaths. Throughout history historic and royal families have claimed to have such connections.

Angel-A supernatural being that is believed to exist on a realm between God and mortal man. An angel serves many proposes and meanings, one of the many duties is to be guardians over man kind.

Apparition- The phenomenon where the ghost takes on a physical form that can be seen. These often appear to be transparent, normally faint and disfigured as in being incomplete.There appearance is normally for very short period of time. Apparitions of animals, humans, and even inanimate objects have been seen.

Apport-The arrival of object during a seance or a haunting, these can be animate or inanimate.

Asport-The disappearance of objects that reappear elsewhere or not at all. (Dematerialization)

Astral Projection-When the spirit travels outside the body to either the astral plane or another location on this plane. This is also referred to as an Out Of Body experience (OBE/OOBE) or remote viewing.

Aura-The emanation of energy that surrounds all living things. It is believed that our physical health and our emotional state is reflected in our auras. For example, if someone is ill, happy, or sad it will be reflected in their aura. Those with psychic abilities are able to see and interpret this energy. Two Russian scientists by the names of Semyon and Valentina developed the Kirlian Photography, through the use of this photography one's aura can be photographed. Some believe that the color of orbs is similar to that of one's aura.

Automatic Writing-Phenomena by which people write without conscious thought. Believed by many that spirits take control of the living person and are able to communicate through them by writing.

Automatism-The theory in which the subconscious communicates with the conscious by means of a vehicle such as a Ouija Board, automatic writing or pendulum swinging.

Autonographist-A professional in automatic writing.

Banish(ment)-The expulsion of a ghost, spirit, demon, or other entity/entities thought to be possessing or haunting a human being or location. The ritual, which may be conducted by anyone but should ONLY be undertaken by a professional, is usually secular in nature, but may call upon some Higher Power to cast out the evil force(s).

Banshee-A death omen in Irish folklore that manifests to herald an upcoming death. Often heard singing and wailing mournfully.

Battlefield Ghosts-These are places with great violence, trauma and intense emotion are typically subject to hauntings. There are no places more violent than battlefields, and it is rare to hear of a battlefield that isn't haunted. Most battlefield hauntings are residual hauntings where fragments of the battle are replayed over and over again. Other hauntings are from spirits who have not crossed over, most likely because they feel they can't due to the nature of their death. Some believe retrocognition is also an element in battlefield hauntings.

Benign Spirit-A spirit that is not harmful or evil to man. Spirit guides and angles fall into this category, also the spirits of loved ones that have come back to communicate something to us. Elementals are considered benign spirits.

Calling Ghosts-These are ghosts that call out the name of the living in order to get their attention and lure them to their death.

Caul-A thin membrane of amniotic fluid that remains covering the head of a newborn at birth. Those born with a caul are said to be blessed with luck, protection and supernatural powers. These individuals are thought to be able to see and speak with ghosts and spirits.

Chalcedony-A type of translucent quartz, usually a smoky blue in color, that was used by the ancient Egyptians to drive away ghosts, night visions and sadness.

Channeling-A popular tool of mediums and psychics for communication with the dead. The medium will summon ghosts or spirits and allow the entity to poses that person's body to communicate through. The entity can either poses the medium or communicate directly through them.

Circumambulation-Ceremonially surrounding a person or an object for the purpose of protection.

Clairalience-The psychic ability to receive a spiritís message through smell.

Clairaudient-The psychic ability to hears voices and sounds that are inaudible to the normal human ear.

Clairsentient-The psychic ability to feel things that are not normally felt by most people.

Clairvoyance-The ability to see objects, events, places and people not visible through normal sight. Some individuals are gifted with clairvoyance throughout their lives, while others may experience only one clairvoyant event in their life. Clairvoyance is a type of ESP (ExtraSensory Perception). Collective Apparition-The sighting of the same apparition by more than one individual. This type of spirit sighting is extremely rare.

Collective Unconscious-The collective memory of all of humanity's past, held in an individual's unconscious mind.

Cold Spot-An area where the temperature is lower than the surrounding environment. Cold spots are believed to be created when a ghost is presence within that area.

Confabulation-A term used to describe when real-life experiences are mixed with imagined ones.

Control-A control lives in the spirit world and is manifested by a medium, usually in a sťance, to act on the medium's behalf as guide among the spirits. A control may appear as a disembodied voice, speaking through the medium's own voice, write with the medium's hand, be materialized visually either partially or full-form, or take full possession of the medium's body.

Crisis Apparition-A specific type of out-of-body experience (OBE) in which the agent projects his or her astral body at a time of crisis or death to a particular percipient, usually a loved one.

Cross-Correspondences-Interrelated bits of information received from the spirit world from different mediums at different times and locations. The communications must be joined together to form a complete message from the spirit(s).

Deep Trace Medium-A psychic who allows a spirit to enter her/his body so that the spirit can communicate through them.

Demon-Evil spirits, the minions of Satan.

Direct Voice Phenomenon (DVP)-A spirit voice, spoken directly to sitters at a sťance. The sound usually seems to come from a point near the medium, through a spirit horn or trumpet, but not from the mouth of the medium.

Direct Writing-A spectral phenomenon, most often seen in a sťance, in which spirit handwriting appears directly on a previously unmarked surface.

Discarnate-A spirit that exists without a physical body.

Discernment-The ability to feel or perceive something with the use the mind and the senses.

Disembodied-A spirit that is functioning without a body.

Disembodied Voice-A voice that is heard that comes from no physical body, also known as EVP.

Drop-in Communicator-A spirit or entity that makes its presence known at a sťance. Its identity is usually unknown to the medium and the sitters.

Ectoplasm-A solid or vaporous substance, lifelike and moldable, that supposedly exudes from the body of a medium (usually from one of the facial orifices) to form seemingly corporeal limbs, faces, or entire bodies. Ectoplasm is a usually dense but liquidy, milky-white substance with the scent of ozone. It can also be the residue left behind by ghosts or other paranormal phenomena. Many experts believe that spirits use ectoplasm to materialize.

Ectoplasmic Mist-A term used to describe the appearance ectoplasm gives when photographed. Ectoplasmic mist is rarely captured and may be easily confused in photos with cigarette smoke, fog and vapor.

Electromagnetic Field (EMF)-A field progated by a combination of electric and magnetic energy that radiates from radio and light waves to gamma and cosmic rays. It is believed that a spirit can manipulate these fields or create their own.

Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP)- The use of audio equipment to capture voices and sounds of the dead where there are no physical presences in the area where the recordings are being taken.

EMF Detector-A device that measures and detects changes in the electromagnetic field. A common device used by ghost hunters. A reading between 3-7 milligauss is a good sign of paranormal activity, but higher readings have been recorded by spirits have been present. A complete scan of the area should be done first to detect natural sources. The EMF detector is also known as a Gauss Meter or a magnetometer.

Evocation-The summoning of demons or spirits by usage of ritual, gesture or verse of incantation.

Exorcism-The explusion of ghosts, demons, spirits or other entities that are believed to be disturbing or possessing a person or a place that people frequent. The ritual, conducted by an exorcist, is usually religious in nature, and calls upon some Higher Power to cast out the evil force(s). Exorcism can range from a friendly conversation to rituals demanding the entity to leave.

Extra Sensory Perception (ESP)-The ability to receive information about past, present or future events that can not be obtained through the normal senses. These include telepathy, clairvoyance and precognition. It is believed that everyone has some level of ESP ability, but some individuals possess a heightened ability.

Gauss Meter-A device that is used to measure the electromagnetic field, also referred to as EMF detectors or magnetometers.

Ghost-A ghost is believed to be the soul or the life force of a person. When someone dies, this energy is released from physical body and is believed to do one of two things; either it goes onto a higher spiritual place or plane (heaven), or it stays behind and lingers on for an unspecified time. Why it stays behind, no one knows for sure. Many of the famous "psychics" differ on their explanations. Some of the more popular theories are as follows; unfinished business, a strong emotional ties to someone or something, saying goodbye, wrongful death or perhaps to pass on a warning. Animals and even inanimate objects, such as builds, cars, ships trains, etc. have been reported as ghosts.

Ghost Hunt-A ghost hunt is an informal attempt to record data (video, photos, audio , temperatures), notes, interviews and other evidence to prove/disprove the paranormal phenomenon in a location that is known to have had paranormal activity or is suspected to haveparanormall activity. Time commitments and number of people present vary. While more loosely structured than an investigation, the same investigative protocol are followed.

Ghost Hunter-A person who searched for and attempts to gather evidence of ghosts, spirits, poltergeists, entities, and paranormal phenomenon.

Ghost Investigation-An investigation is a carefully controlled research project, set up to gather data (video, photos, audio , temperatures), notes, interviews and other evidence to prove/disprove the paranormal phenomenon in a location that is known to have had paranormal activity or is suspected to have paranormal activity. This requires a professional approach and dedication to detail. It will require a minimum of three to five hours to complete, mostly taking place at night and sometimes taking until the early morning hours. Occasionally, investigations require an overnight commitment. Team numbers are strictly limited and full investigative protocol are followed.

Ghost Lights (Ignis Fatuus)-Meaning "Foolish Fire," ghost lights are a variety of ghost or spectral lights. Closely resembling orbs, but are much larger and brighter in appearance. These are mostly seen in remote places and have been seen changing colors, directions and sometimes heard making a buzzing sound. When these lights are confronted by approaching people, lights or noises they will quickly disappear. These lights will "haunt" a particular location for anywhere from days to years. According to some folkloric traditions, the lights are souls of the dead; in other legends, they are imp-like spirits.

Ghost Ship-The appearance of a ship that has been know to have wrecked or disappeared years or centuries before to fore warn of a pending disaster. This term has also been used to to refer to ships that have been found to be empty where the crew and passages had mysterious disappeared,but the ship shows no signs of distress.

Globule (0rb)-Spirits and ghosts are often photographed as globule, also known as an orb. These are tiny spheres of electromagnetic energy. These are not always perfect circles, and they come in a large variety of colors.

Grey Ladies-The ghosts of women who died a violently for the sake of love or pined away from loss of love. The name grey lady comes from the frequent appearance of these ladies who are dressed in grey.

Guardian Spirit-A individual's protective spirit, often thought as an angel.

Haunt-A ghost or spirit that continually returns to the same location is said to haunt it. Ghosts and spirits generally haunt places, not people. However it is not uncommon for a spirit to attach itself to a particular individual or family due to a familiar connection.

Haunted-A person, place or an object to which a spirit is attached. The spirits can be human or inhuman in nature.

Haunting-A phenomena where the spirit or the ghost of a deceased person or animal that attaches itself to a certain location, object, or person and continues to remain or revisit them causing paranormal activities such as apparitions, strange sounds, inducing smells, electrical disturbances, etc. A haunting is often repeated and experience by those who enter the area or come in contact with the person or object that is the object of the haunting for days or years.

Ignis Fatuus (Ghost Lights) -Meaning "Foolish Fire," ignis fatuus are a variety of ghost or spectral lights. Closely resembling orbs, but are much larger and brighter in appearance. These are mostly seen in remote places and have been seen changing colors, directions and sometimes heard making a buzzing sound. When these lights are confronted by approaching people, lights or noises they will quickly disappear. These lights will "haunt" a particular location for anywhere from days to years. According to some folkloric traditions, the lights are souls of the dead; in other legends, they are imp-like spirits.

Intelligent Haunting-Paranormal activity that takes place around a person or location that is caused by an intelligent or conscious spirit. Best described as the spirit of an individual who has passed away but not crossed over. The spirit interacts with people trying to make its presence known through repeated sights, sounds, smells, and the manipulation of objects.

Levitation-The raising of a person or object into the air without any visible means. Levitation is a popular event during hauntings, meditative trances, seances and possessions. Levitation is a major part of Poltergeist activity with object being moved and thrown around.

Light Rod-A light rod appears as a bar or stick like shape. When a light rod sometimes takes a bend, it is then called a swirling light rod.

Malevolent-A malevolent spirit is one that wishes to do harm.

Manifestation-The appearance or taking of form of an entity. This can also mean the outbreak of paranormal activity.

Materialization-The formation of a visible and/or the physical form of a spirit. These are usually brief in appearance and often is just a face, hand and are not a full formation of a spirit.

Medium- A person that acts as a bridge between the living and the dead.. They receive and relay information through a "sixth sense" for the spirit whom is communicating through them.. The common name used today for mediums is psychic. There are two types of mediums: light and deep trance.

Necromancer-A person who holds abilities or knowledge to draw power and skills from the dead along with summoning and controlling ghosts, spirits, demons, zombies, etc. It is believed that through this ancient practice, the one who practices necromancy can use the summoned spirit to find hidden treasures, cast spells on others, learn about the future and even hurt other living beings.

Orb-A spherical shaped, translucent mass of energy resembling a ball or globe of light. This is the most photographed and most basic form of a spirit. These are balls of energy have been recorded on film, digital cameras, infrared monitors, and videotape. Orbs usually appear in most haunted places. Orbs can also be caused by moisture (rain, snow, fog), bugs, insects, and dust.

Ouija Board-A game board that is used to communicate with spirits. The players ask questions and the pointer will answer yes, no or will spell the answers out.

Outward Manifestation-Any type of paranormal activity. These many include, but not limited to disembodied voices, odors, movement of objects, manipulation of temperatures, electrical disturbances, etc.

Paranormal-Anything that does not take place in the natural order or in a normal way of things that take place in the realm of the world. This term is used to refer to unexplainable events. These would included but are not limited to ghosts, ESP, telepathy, UFO's, Bigfoot, the Loch Ness monster.

Parapyschologist-Someone who studies parapsychology.

Planchette-The triangular instrument used as a pointer to answer questions on a Ouija board.

Possession-There are several different types of possession. Mediums will allow the a spirit to enter their body for the purpose of communication. During partial possession, the host (person)remains in the body. In full or perfect possession, the spirit of the host is displaced from the physical body. In cases of demonic possession, the entity enters the body without permission and will not leave on it's own will. An exorcism is necessary to expel the possessing entity.

Premonition-Feeling or warning about future events. This can be vague or it can be very specific.

Psychic-A person with the ability to see, hear and feel by the use of senses other than the natural senses, also referred to as a "sixth sense." Also a classification of unusual happenings.

Spirit-Spirits are believed to exist in an invisible realm that can only be seen under certain circumstances or by people with special abilities. Unlike ghosts, the term "spirit" is used for demons, angels, fairies, elves and even places. Mountains, woods, lakes, trees and sacred sites are all said to possess a spirit...and in many ancient and indian cultures, this is a living spirit.

Vortex-A vortex as a funnel shaped image similar to the Swirling Light Rod. The vast majority of vortexes that are photographed, are nothing more than a camera strap or hair in front of the lens.