Paranormal State: My Journey into the Unknown

Paranormal State: My Journey into the Unknown by Stefan Petrucha, Ryan Buell

Book: Paranormal State: My Journey into the Unknown by Stefan Petrucha, Ryan Buell Read Free Book Online
Authors: Stefan Petrucha, Ryan Buell
later, famous philosopher and psychologist William James founded the Society for Psychical Research, which attempted to use the scientific method in collecting evidence of apparitions, haunted houses, and other phenomena. It began in the United Kingdom but spread to other countries as well.
In the 1920s, Harry Price spearheaded investigations with the National Laboratory of Psychical Research. In the fifties and sixties, the work was continued by German and American independent researchers such as Hans Holzer, who first coined the phrase “ghost hunter,” and the world-renowned Ed and Lorraine Warren. In the seventies and eighties, various independent investigators conducted field research and laboratory experiments.
The advent of the Internet, as well as movies and TV shows such as Ghostbusters , Unsolved Mysteries , In Search of . . . , and The X Files led to a rise in the popularity of paranormal investigating. Reality shows such as Ghost Hunters on the Syfy Channel and, of course, Paranormal State continue to increase interest and feed an ongoing boom.
Today, scores of paranormal research groups exist across the world. Small businesses even sell ghost-hunting equipment, such as electromagnetic field detectors, white noise generators, and infrared motion sensors.
Unfortunately, the boom can also lead to inexperienced groups and people looking for a thrill to cause property damage, or worse, as in Ohio in 2007 when a group of teens decided to check out a “spooky” house. The reclusive owner feared he was being robbed and opened fire, permanently paralyzing a seventeen-year-old girl.
    S HADOW M EN
     
Both fiction and paranormal literature are full of references to dark figures appearing in the night, most often as a quick movement in the corner of the eye that vanishes when you stare straight ahead. Sometimes it seems to move. Explanations range from the eyes playing tricks on a tired mind, pareidolia (explained in a sidebar on page 147) to ghosts, aliens, time travelers, or beings from another dimension. They have also been associated with the alien abduction experience.
With the popularity of investigating paranormal phenomena at a height, reports of shadow men (also known as shadow people) are on the increase. Some claim to have photographed these apparitions, while others say they see them clearly for long periods of time.
Stories about misty ephemeral figures go back thousands of years. The word “shade” is a synonym for ghost that goes back to ancient Greece and the Old Testament. The term in ancient Hebrew, tsalmaveth , means literally, death-shadow.

Chapter 6
Loose Ends
     
     
    I bury the dead, like the boatman who takes them across the river Styx.
     
    During “Dark Man” everyone was just getting to know one another. We were all trying to figure out what did and didn’t work. As quickly as our next case though, which would come to be called “The Cemetery,” the relationships became more relaxed. That was partly because the location, Clearfield, was only thirty minutes from State College. The shorter travel time helped our tight schedule.
    Being college students, the shooting schedule had to work around classes. By and large there was a two-and-a-half-day shoot for each case. We’d leave Friday, then get back Sunday night to be in class Monday. Here the extra time allowed for some of our best investigatory work, most of which, unfortunately, didn’t make it to the final cut.
    It was November when we learned about Matt Franson, a cemetery caretaker in his midthirties, and his bride, Chandra. As part of his job, Matt lived in a house with a barn adjoining the cemetery grounds. He’d lived there six and a half years and had experienced some activity on his own. He had felt paralyzed and seen a female apparition. But it was when Chandra moved there in June 2006 that their troubles really began.
    Chandra began experiencing intense pains. Her back ached. At times her hands and feet became so inflamed

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