Can you imagine tasting colors or seeing sound as shapes? This is how some people with synesthesia, known as synesthetes, perceive the world. According to Wikipedia, synesthesia is a perceptual phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway.
What this means is that certain senses are inextricably linked. Sound might also be seen visually as waves or shapes, letters might have a color or words might produce tastes. Can you imagine saying the word ‘ruler’ and being able to taste chocolate? That would be a calorie-free way to cheat on your diet.
Studies have suggested that 2 percent to 4 percent of us experience synesthesia naturally. For some people they’ve lived with it all of their lives, never knowing they were different. Their perception of the world around them is a secret artistic landscape full of experiences that those around them can barely imagine.
One common form of this phenomenon, known as grapheme-color synesthesia, makes letters and/or numbers appear as colored. The number ‘1’ might be yellow while the letter ‘R’ might be blue, kind of like those magnetic plastic alphabet pieces we used to play with as children. Some synesthetes actually see the colors while others just naturally associate a color with what they are seeing.
Another form, known as spatial sequence synesthesia, causes the synesthete to experience a sequence of numbers as floating in space. Each number, depending on its value, occupies space in relation to each other number. The number ‘1’ might be seen as closer than the number ‘2’ and so on.
The phenomenon comes in any combination of forms. One synesthete might hear the sound of a bell and see a shimmering golden triangle hovering in the air while another could hear the slamming of a car door and smell rain. Each synesthete experiences the phenomenon differently.
Synesthesia varies from person to person and usually links at least two senses together but in some rare cases, all five are involved. It also runs in families, with more females than males reporting synesthetic experiences. Science isn’t exactly sure how this works or what causes it but further study is needed.
Hopefully, sometime soon, science will be able to narrow down and replicate synesthesia and perhaps share it in pill form. I know I’d be a lot more likely to write if the words I was typing tasted good. Until then, I will continue to blog about things that I find fascinating and share them with the rest of you.
Several years ago a paranormal investigator I knew was approached about being on a paranormal show where all the participants would investigate naked. He, of course, declined. We were talking about it one day trying to figure out what was the point to the whole thing? Was it for the sensationalism of naked ghost hunters flailing away in the darkness searching for entities or was there a valid reason for it?
Some people believe that certain spirits feed on negative emotions and therefore when you are scared you give them more power to manifest. Could this be part of the reason? Being naked in a dark place, unable to see anything around you and searching for ghosts could certainly create feelings of uncertainty and perhaps inadequacy. But is that enough negative juju to cause something to manifest? Does feeling vulnerable and embarrassed generate the same energy as being anxious and scared? Is enough negative energy generated no matter the emotion?
Then there are the spirits themselves to consider. What reaction do you think a ghost would have as it watched you and your group running around naked in their space? Would they be shocked and outraged? Could their indignation at being invaded by a bunch of nude strangers cause them to manifest and deliver a stern scolding? What sort of disembodied sounds or EVP might this elicit? Ridicule? Laughter? I wonder if the ghosts would be put off by the nudity or entertained by it? I suppose it depends on what era they were from.
There are also environmental issues to consider. What if the investigators were outside and there were bugs flying around? What if it’s really hot at the location, or god forbid, really, really cold? What if the investigators are inside and want to sit down? How sanitary is that? Would they be allowed to wear shoes or some sort of covering for their feet or forced to stumble around in the dark stubbing their unprotected toes? There’s a lot that could go wrong there and a lot of unusual injuries that could be sustained if not careful.
A bunch of ghost hunters running around naked sounds like a great show. I’m sure quite a number of people would even watch a few of the episodes, hoping to see something exciting. But, I think the novelty would wear off fairly quickly once viewers realized that all of the good parts have been blurred out. Network television isn’t actually going to show you the naked part of naked ghost hunting. Everyone might as well be wearing blurry swimsuits because that’s about the extent of what you’d be watching.
It would be interesting for someone to experiment with this idea and compare the data from a naked ghost hunt to a clothed one. Would one capture more data than the other? I’m not really sure that it would. If anyone has investigated naked and captured a lot of data I would certainly be interested in hearing about it. Until then, I believe in keeping America beautiful and until it’s certain that there’s a beneficial reason for stripping down to my birthday suit I will continue to ghost hunt clothed. But, for those of you who prefer to ghost hunt naked, good luck and good hunting. Just be careful.
There are people in the world that have had life altering paranormal experiences. There are those that claim to interact with the supernatural on a daily bases. Some, like myself, even seek out and attempt to further their understanding of the paranormal by doing things like ghost hunting. And then there are those that have had absolutely no paranormal experiences what so ever and wouldn’t know what was going on if they did. I affectionately call these people dead inside.
So, they aren’t actually dead inside but I’ve wondered over the years what is so different about them that sets them apart. Many of my friends have shared with me ghost stories and unusual encounters involving unknown entities. I’ve even taken a few of them ghost hunting and they’ve had some spooky encounters of their own. Others, not so much. What about a person dictates the level of paranormal experiences they can, or will have, over their lifetime?
I have three such members in my group and let me tell you, it’s frustrating sometimes. You take them to a perfectly haunted hospital or hotel and pay a lot of money for nothing to happen. I honestly don’t understand. They want to have experiences like the rest of us but they never really experience anything. Why is that?
One of the members of my group, let’s call him Dan… because that’s his name, loves ghost hunting. He’s always ready and willing to investigate. But he rarely ever experiences anything from the ghostly realm. We were investigating at the Temperance Building in Harriman, Tennessee several years ago. He was recording with his night shot camera as his wife and I explored the second story landing. As we passed by one of the dark, empty rooms, I heard someone whispering his name. They called his name several times like they were trying to get his attention. I stopped and asked if he had heard the voice, which of course he hadn’t. I even recorded the voice on the recorder that I was holding and I was farther away from the room than he was.
I also took him to the Walking Horse Hotel where I’ve witnessed a disembodied voice laughing, caught multiple EVP and experienced chairs being moved away from tables after I left the room. I’ve gone several times with another ghost hunting group and we’ve captured some interesting evidence and had some amazing experiences. With Dan along, the most interesting thing that happened was, a mouse fell off of a board inside the wall we were sitting against, startling us. That’s it.
The first time I ever took Dan and his wife ghost hunting in a graveyard, his wife and I were standing close to one another and heard a man clear his throat between us. She and I were surprised. Dan didn’t hear anything and he was less than ten feet away.
Sushi is another one that is dead inside… I mean hasn’t ever had a paranormal experience. Sushi was one of my co-hosts for the Ænigma Project and the SEPS Paranormal Podcast and she’s a member of my ghost hunting team as well. She really wants to experience something other-worldly but just can’t seem to. She’s very analytical and can debunk just about anything. My nick-name for her is the Debunkinator. I’m convinced she could meet a full body apparition face to face and in a matter of minutes convince it that it wasn’t real. She’s been on many investigations with me and has never experienced anything she would call paranormal (other than capturing a few EVP).
The question I have is, why? Do we put off a field of energy that attracts or repels entities depending on our polarity? Does our belief in the paranormal affect energy on a quantum level and either allows a ghost to manifest or dispels it into the ether? Or is it more simple than that and the ghost knows that the person doesn’t believe in the paranormal and they just don’t want to waste their time trying to convince a non-believer that they are real?
There’s also the possibility that we make ourselves see what we want or expect to see. There are a lot of strange naturally occurring phenomena out there. What if, as believers, we are misinterpreting these events and seeing things that aren’t really there? Are we overreacting to stimuli due to being in a dark, spooky place? Or is the opposite true and these paranormal events are real and there are people that just can’t accept it as the truth? Maybe a little of both?
I’m not really sure why some people don’t experience the paranormal. My personal opinion is that we affect reality on a quantum level that we don’t understand and we allow or deny ourselves an experience based on our beliefs. I’m honestly not sure but hopefully one day we will understand more about the paranormal. Until then, I’m going to continue to investigate, attempt to record the best evidence I can and drag my friends who are dead inside on investigations and see what happens. With a little luck and the right timing, perhaps they will start having experiences as well.
I’ve been asked by several people, why do hauntings mostly happen at night? And I always tell them the same thing. They don’t. They happen during the daytime as well. Usually this answer surprises them until I explain. At night, there is less going on to distract you, therefore you are more aware of activity taking place. During the day, you can explain away odd sounds as the children playing, the neighbor next door being too loud or a loved one in the next room. At night, you are hyper-aware of your surroundings thanks to TV shows that feature True Crime home invasions or ‘based on actual events’ movies. And of course there’s the plethora of ghost hunting shows showing demonic and paranormal activity.
Add to that the fact that at night you are very aware of every sound in your home, hoping it doesn’t wake the kids, or worse, it’s not actually one of the kids getting up sick. You move quietly through the darkness of your home, respectful of those that are sleeping, and that’s when you are more aware of noises and activity. Most people are put off by the dark anyway and you have a moment that is ripe for heart-pounding fear.
Paranormal activity takes place during the daylight hours, probably as often as night time. We are just braver during the day. While the sun is up, we also have soccer practice, home work, dinner or TV to distract us. We don’t pay attention to that creak behind us, or the person that we only saw for a second out of the corner of our eye. It was just the house settling or some foreign object messing with our vision. We blink several times to get the offending particle out, and clear our eye sight. But at night…we take it seriously and it scares us.
I’m sure some of you are asking, ‘Well if paranormal activity happens during the day, why do you investigate at night?’. That’s a valid question. And the answer is… at night we can use Infra Red and/or Ultra Violet cameras. To explain further, you have normal vision, which is the light spectrum that we see in everyday. On one side of that spectrum, you have Ultra Violet light, which the human eye can not see, but certain cameras can; and on the other side, you have Infra Red. Again, the human eye can’t see this, but certain cameras are made to do so. Adding both of these spectrums, with our cameras, adds to the evidence we are capable of capturing. This gives us a greater range of possibilities when it comes to evidence gathering. Not to say that we will capture something every time, because honestly we don’t. Sometimes it’s a case of right-time, right-place.
So, hopefully, to put your mind at ease, if you aren’t being absolutely plagued by spirits during the daytime, then you are probably all right at night. But if you are being harassed, then call a legitimate paranormal group to help you determine what sort of entity you are dealing with so that you can make an educated decision on how to handle the situation. Not all entities are mean-spirited, and not all activity happens at night. Hopefully this post will give you a different way of looking at things, and maybe clear up some questions you’ve had.
Tonight, May 6th 2016 10 PM EST, check out Destination America’s Ghost Brothers where Sushi (Julie Kurtz Kunesh) and I will be investigating aboard the Delta Queen with Dalen, Juwan and Marcus. We had a great time and want to thank the guys, the production team and Pilgrim Media for allowing us to join them. If you get a chance, check it out and let us know what you think.
Join us on the Ænigma Project live Monday May 9th to hear us talk about the experience and behind the scenes details about our investigation. www.aenigmaproject.com/listen-live/
Join Spring Wolf, Sushi and Paul Cagle as they discuss Animals Possessing People. Everyone has heard horrific stories of demons possessing people and making them do unspeakable things, but is it possible for an animal to possess a human? Join our hosts live to hear them discuss this topic and the possibilities. You can also share your questions, comments or stories in the chat room. This will be an interesting topic! www.aenigmaproject.com/listen-live/