In culture after culture, people believe that the soul lives on after death, that rituals can change the physical world and divine the truth, and that illness and misfortune are caused and alleviated by spirits, ghosts, saints ... and gods.

STEVEN PINKER, How the Mind Works

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Why are there so many ghost stories about a "woman in white"?

By Esther Inglis-Arkell

Does your town have a Woman in White? Of course it does. There is no town that doesn't have a woman in a white dress who wafts around drafty halls of the local manor, or paces the widow's walk of the local hotel. Find out about the woman in white legend, some local examples, and share your own stories of ghostly women in white. I know you have them. Everyone does.

The I remember living in was mostly open land until the 1960s. It was built up in the few decades between then and the time I arrived. The only old structure in the entire town was a large Catholic school, and so that is where the Woman in White used to hang out. Some say the school building used to be a convent and the woman was a nun in love with a priest, some say it used to be the house of a robber baron and the woman was his unfortunate wife, some say it was always a school and she was a lovelorn teacher. It doesn't really matter. Just as long as a ghostly woman gliding over the grounds, the reason could be supplied later.

White Women or White Ladies, are an international phenomenon. In Holland and Germany, centuries ago, they are said to be healers and gentle spirits. German legend has them appearing at noon, blindingly beautiful in the light. Dutch legend has them haunting graveyards during the night, the spirits of healers passed from the earth. They are not necessarily ghosts. Often they're treated more as elves or earth spirits, though they began as humans. Up in Ireland, and more northern countries, wailing women in white are said to foretell death. Down south, in Mexico, the La Llorona legend has it that these women in white drowned their children, and lurk by water to drown more. Yūrei, in Japan, are vengeful spirits attached to certain objects or places, and attack the people who come into contact with them. But these are all old legends.

In modern woman in white stories, there is always a tragic love story. The woman in white is rarely someone's sister, daughter, or mother. Oh, she maybe be any or all of those things (It's a pretty safe bet that she's someone's daughter.), but those aren't the things that her legend is dealing with. One of the next major towns I lived in was on the coast. A restaurant that overlooked the ocean was built on a beach famous for being the landing ground for bootleggers bringing alcohol close to San Francisco by boat, and loading it on to trucks to make the journey into the city. This much is true. The idea that a woman in white walks the edge of the cliff (or what the less romantic among us would call the parking lot) is not as well established, but the legend continues. Supposedly she was the bootlegger's girlfriend, while having a less wealthy lover on the side. The bootlegger killed her. It's not clear whether she was killed at that drop off point or whether her body just washed up there, but the important points; love, sex, betrayal, murder, are there in most Woman in White Legends. She's someone's unhappy wife, or illicit lover, or suicidal betrothed, or some other sad tale of romantic woe.

San Francisco itself has a rather unusual ghost -an urban woman in white who walks outside. Most cities have figures that appear in the windows of great old houses, or flit through the walls or along the roofs of old hotels, but we have one that walks up and down California Street, a high-traffic road that crosses the entire city. Our outdoor woman in white is said to be Flora Sommerton. She was eighteen in 1876, a celebrated beauty, an heiress, and the toast of society. Her parents decided to cement her status by forcing her to marry a wealthy older man. Flora's legend is as confused about the details as any other. According to one version she fled down California on the day of her wedding, in her wedding dress. Another has her running out on everyone on the evening of her betrothal in a white ballgown. What's atypical about Flora is she shows up again - just not alive. Fifty years later, in Butte, Montana, a woman's body in the same white dress was found in a hotel room. The room was supposedly covered in clippings about the disappearance of Flora, but the body was never positively identified.

What also stands out about Flora is her age. All women in white seem to be young and pretty, but Flora is just a few years out of the stage when we would call her that other ubiquitous phantom, the Girl in White. Any places that don't have a Woman in White will tend to have a little girl in a white dress floating around a house, staring at people. While Women in White are generally glimpsed from afar and go away soon, little girl ghosts have more of a personality. Sometimes they're solemn and sad, staring at people from windows and doorways. Sometimes they're mischievous, can be heard laughing or running around, and will hide things in the house. Sometimes, they're downright Japanese-horror-movie malevolent. (It's not a coincidence that Linda Blair spent most of The Exorcist in a white night dress.) But they're always around.

Perhaps there's a reason for that. Perhaps young girl ghosts grow up into Woman in White ghosts, and then when they can't squeeze into the dress anymore they head over to Butte, Montana. Whatever the protocol, it's clear that the Woman in White shows up anywhere and everywhere, including your town, right now - possibly reading this over your shoulder. Go ahead and look. I'll wait.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Hey everybody! Currently we are working a couple articles featuring some new locations in and around Regina. I hope to have them up in the next few weeks.

In the meantime here is an article about " True Believer Syndrome."

The true-believer syndrome merits study by science. What is it that compels a person, past all reason, to believe the unbelievable. How can an otherwise sane individual become so enamored of a fantasy, an imposture, that even after it's exposed in the bright light of day he still clings to it--indeed, clings to it all the harder?  --M. Lamar Keene

True-believer syndrome is an expression coined by M. Lamar Keene to describe an apparent cognitive disorder characterized by believing in the reality of paranormal or supernatural events after one has been presented overwhelming evidence that the event was fraudulently staged. Keene is a reformed phony psychic who exposed religious racketeering—to little effect, apparently. Phony faith healers, psychics, channelers, televangelist miracle workers, etc., are as abundant as ever.

Keene believes that "the true-believer syndrome is the greatest thing phony mediums have going for them" because "no amount of logic can shatter a faith consciously based on a lie." That those suffering from true-believer syndrome are consciously lying to themselves hardly seems likely, however. Perhaps from the viewpoint of a fraud and hoaxer, the mark who is told the truth but who continues to have faith in you must seem to believe what he knows is a lie. Yet, this type of self-deception need not involve lying to oneself. To lie to oneself would require admission that one believes what one knows is false. This does not seem logically possible. One can't believe or disbelieve what one knows. (Belief is distinct from belief in, which is a matter of trust rather than belief.) Belief and disbelief entail the possibility of error; knowledge implies that error is beyond reasonable probability. I may have overwhelming evidence that a "psychic" is a phony, yet still believe that paranormal events occur. I may be deceiving myself in such a case, but I don't think it is correct to say I am lying to myself.

It is possible that those suffering from true-believer syndrome simply do not believe that the weight of the evidence before them revealing fraud is sufficient to overpower the weight of all those many cases of supportive evidence from the past. The fact that the supportive evidence was largely supplied by the same person exposed as a fraud is suppressed. There is always the hope that no matter how many frauds are exposed, at least one of the experiences might have been genuine. No one can prove that all psychic "miracles" have been frauds; therefore, the true believer may well reason that he or she is justified in keeping hope alive. Such thinking is not completely illogical, though it may seem pathological to the one admitting the fraud.

It does not seem as easy to explain why the true believer continues to believe in, that is, trust the psychic once he has admitted his deception. Trusting someone who reveals he is a liar and a fraud seems irrational, and such a person must appear so to the hoaxer. Some true believers may well be mad, but some may be deceiving themselves by assuming that it is possible that a person can have psychic powers without knowing it. One could disbelieve in one's psychic ability, yet still actually possess paranormal powers. Just as there are people who think they have psychic powers but don't really have any such powers, there may be people who have psychic powers but think they don't.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The Devil's Toy Box

“The Devil’s Toy Box”
Written by James Paradie

Published in the White Mountain Shopper on October 1st, 2010

Authors Note: I am just reporting this and not claiming that I have done it, so please don't confuse me as the one who invented this theory. I am also not saying that you will get demons if you make this device as this story is for entertainment purposes only. I know this story or the Devil's Toy Box is extremely hard to find on here (believe me, I know, I had a very hard time finding the material for this myself), but that does mean I made this up. Any questions regarding the Devil's Toy Box can be sent to Joshua P. Warren at Other then that enjoy the article.

You’ve heard about Ouija Boards, Frank’s Box, Glass Swirling, but have you ever heard of a device named “The Devil’s Toy Box”? This device is somewhat unknown within the community of the paranormal. What’s the reason behind it’s unknowing? Is it because it has the name “devil” within it? Like demonic creatures are going to come in from the mirror, reach out, grab you, and take you the depths of the underworld? No. Or at least that’s never been reported.

The Devil’s Toy Box is where you take six mirrors; you can use any size, but the other mirrors must be of the same size; then, you form a cube with the mirrors. Although who created this technique is unknown at the moment the man who made it popular is fellow paranormal junkie, Joshua P. Warren. Mr. Warren first discussed the paranormal gadget on Coast to Coast AM with George Noory.

But, you take six mirrors of the same size, put them into a cube form…Okay, what else do you do? Do you do any special séance or do you put some witch spell on it? Neither. You simply let it sit and let it do it’s “work”. Supposedly if you were to let this sit for awhile the six mirrors, according to Mr. Warren, cause a back and forth energy loop. Over time you could be hearing strange noises coming from the cube. Growling and other weird noises have been reported coming from the mirror. However, this is only from Mr. Warren’s word and I have not been able to touch base with other reports of anyone else doing this and I haven’t either. Would you do it?

Some would say not, and to stay clear away from anything that has to do with mirrors within the paranormal world. Some sources have told me that negative energy loves to use mirrors as an entrance point and exit from our world to their world. Then, some religions, such as Wicca, use The Devil's Toy Box to capture and remove negative spirits. The Wiccans also believe that the reason they leave is because of the mirrors and they can't stand the sight of themselves.

An Ouija Board may be considered dangerous, but a device that supposedly causes growling noises to come from it? With how neat this device sounds it’s too bad that so little information can be retrieved about it, but maybe there is a reason for that. It could be just some sort of false hocus pocus to get people scared sheetless (no pun intended) or maybe something a little more “devilish” then what it intends?

Monday, February 28, 2011

Entity Caught on Video During Paranormal Investigation

Call it an apparition, ghost or entity. Something is captured on video during a paranormal investigation of a house in East McKeesport, Pennsylvania.

Photo Copyright 2009 by Doreen Hill
Apparition Caught By Doreen
Investigator Doreen captures an apparition. She was up on the second floor of a home, she was in a room by herself when this was caught.

Barb King is the founder of the PA. Dept of Paranormal Investigations or PDPI, a non-profit investigative team based in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania vicinity. She describes Doreen Hill as "a strong investigator with good skills," then adds, "I trust her totally."

One evening in March, 2009, Doreen Hill and a handful of researchers from the Pittsburgh Paranormal Society accepted an invitation to investigate a rental property in East McKeesport, Pennsylvania.

The mother and her two sons living there felt threatened. The family witnessed shadow phenomenon in the stairway leading to the second floor. Vile odors wafted through the residence. They began sleeping on the living room floor before finally retreating to a relative's house since they did not have anywhere else to go.

When investigators arrived, there was a "TERRIBLE" smell in the home. They asked the tenant to check her refrigerator to see if maybe something had gone bad... nothing.

Two investigators immediately decided to check things outside.

Doreen escorted the mother upstairs to escape the stench, shoot video, and maybe run an EVP. Being somewhat "sensitive," she was drawn to a bedroom currently being used for storage. The mother returned downstairs to be with her children and to check on what everyone else was doing.

Doreen shot some video without incident.

Routinely checking what her Sony Handycam Hybrid DCR-SR45 had captured, her eyes more than likely popped out of her head reminiscent of some 1940's animated cartoon.

"I never saw that apparition in my view finder," Doreen explained. "After an hour or so, I wanted to check my video and that is when I saw her! I could not believe it and ran downstairs to show the tenant and the founder of the paranormal group what I caught. When I got downstairs, I found everyone in the basement because one of the investigators got pushed against a wall and they were making sure that she was okay."

The apparition can be clearly seen at 0:06 seconds as the camera pans slowly left and is really blurred at 0:16 seconds as the camera pans very quickly to the right.

We have three choices here:

1.) Deliberate hoax? Doreen Hill's integrity and her lack of technical savvy negate any hint of hoax.

2.) Mistake? To counter skeptical arguments that she merely recorded her own reflection or someone else in the house, Doreen says, "As far as the colors I was wearing....I know for a fact that I was wearing a black shirt with white lettering and jeans. The shirt I was wearing was the shirt I wore when I was with Pittsburgh Paranormal Society." This is no reflection or accidental capture of any living person present in that dwelling. The family is African American. No one in attendance dressed in the manner of this apparition. This is no orb or pareidolia.

3.) Real deal? Shawn Kelly, the Founder of the Pittsburgh Paranormal Society, states for the record, "The video is for real and it is a true apparition. It is the best piece of evidence out there to this day."

Thursday, February 17, 2011

'Haunted' church ravaged by ghost hunters

CBC News

A 190 -year-old church in Quebec has become the target of ghost hunters amid rumours the building is haunted.

The 19th century St. John's Anglican Church in Gore, Que., has been plagued by unwelcome visitors of late, and both the church's warden and the Anglican diocese are considering abandoning it.Some of those breaking in are simply vandals, but others are doing more than just mischief. Spectre-seeking late-night crowds have begun congregating in the church after rumours it was haunted started to spread online.

Rumours were started on chat sites that at one time the church's congregation committed mass suicide. Although the stories had no basis in fact, they soon had supernatural thrill seekers and ghost hunters breaking in to the church at night. They've been performing seances on the grounds, trying to conjure up the spirits of the dead.

In the process, the ghost hunters are despoiling one of the few remnants of the 19th-century village of Shrewsbury, a Scottish and Irish settlement founded in the 1820s. The village, located within the modern-day municipality of Gore, disappeared over the last century because of disease and a lack of fertile soil.Jim Kyle, the church's warden, says almost every week another tombstone is desecrated or another piece of the church defaced.

"It sickens me to know that there are people out there with so little to do with their lives that this is what they take pleasure in," Kyle said.

Kyle's grandmother once played the organ in St. John's, but now it lies in ruins, along with the church's original furniture.

"They think if they do this they'll anger the ghosts, and the ghosts will come out," Kyle said.

The Anglican diocese is preparing to deconsecrate St. John's Church, putting an end to Anglican services there.

"It's sad. It feels in a sense like we got defeated.... We've had to give up after almost 200 years," said super archdeacon Edward Simonton, a rector in Rawdon, Que.

But the community of Gore hasn't lost all hope. The community plans to apply for provincial funding to restore St. John's as a non-denominational church where people can still hold baptisms and weddings.

Gore is about an hour's drive north of Montreal.

The church was built in 1858.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Location - The Regina General Hospital

The Regina General Hospital began construction in 1909. Originally, the building had a 100-bed capacity, cost over $100,000 and took two years to complete. Additions were built onto the main structure in 1913 and 1927, upgrading the facility to a 410-bed capacity. Additional construction took place in 1949, upgrading the building's capacity to 800 beds - and again in 1966, with a final addition constructed in the late 1990s.

There are a number of reported spirits haunting this hospital. Many people have seen an elderly nurse who rushes around the hallways of the hospital at speeds not humanly possible. There has also been many reports of people seeing a lost little boy wandering the old wing of the hospital and then suddenly disappearing. Some people have also claimed to see the ghost of an older nurse standing behind them but when they turn around she disappears.

The Tulip Staircase

Ancient footfalls often resound in the Queen’s House at the Naval College in London. Nothing is known of the hooded figure climbing the steps aside from his apparent grief and the glimmer of a ring on the first or second finger of his right hand.

Taken in 1966, Reverend Hardy and his wife used time-lapse photography, perhaps in an effort to capture an image of the ghost, on the unused staircase. Off limits to the public, the staircase was barricaded to prevent visitors from wandering about; I guess no one thought to tell the ghosts… After the photo was developed and the images found, it was examined by photographic experts, including Kodak, for its authenticity. Further attempts to duplicate it using props and actors yielded disastrous results, leading experts to conclude that the photo is genuine and there’s some creepy thing crawling up the stairs at the Naval College.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Ghosts are trying to make contact with living friends using mobile phones, a paranormal expert claims.

The Sun

The number of mystery calls to mobiles attributed to spooks has rocketed by 43 per cent in the last four years, a study found.

Spectre investigator Phil Hayes from Paranormal Research UK believes a third of all hauntings are now through mobile phones.

The calls often feature heavy static and the voice sounds faint and distant, he revealed. Nine in ten show as "withheld number" or "000000000000" on caller ID.Statistics show two thirds of all paranormal phenomena feature sounds, with just 20 per cent being actual sightings of ghosts and 15 per cent based on smell.

Around half of audible hauntings were captured on voice recorders by specialist spook hunters, with eight per cent coming through TV or radio.New research shows one in three Brits claim to have seen an apparition in a photo or captured paranormal footage on their mobile.The study by Tesco Mobile revealed Paranormal Research UK have seen a 70 per cent upsurge in paranormal evidence in the last year due to people using their phones.

More than half of Brits claimed they would try to capture a sighting of a ghost — but one in five admitted they would be terrified and run away. Three in five people say they know someone who has experienced paranormal activity, with half having felt an unexplained shiver down the spine when entering a room. Phil Hayes said: "There is evidence to suggest that ghosts can use phones to communicate, with reports of people receiving phone calls from deceased relatives."

Lance Batchelor, CEO of Tesco Mobile said: "We'd recommend those brave enough to capture any spooky sightings should MMS or email their pics to the paranormal society for investigation.

"Keep your camera phone on the highest quality resolution setting and use the recorder to capture the noise of any spectral sounds."

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Heavyweights of the Paranormal - The Winchester Mystery House

In 1884, a wealthy widow named Sarah L. Winchester began a construction project of such magnitude that it was to occupy the lives of carpenters and craftsmen until her death thirty-eight years later. The Victorian mansion, designed and built by the Winchester Rifle heiress, is filled with so many unexplained oddities, that it has come to be known as the Winchester Mystery House.

Sarah Winchester built a home that is an architectural marvel. Unlike most homes of its era, this 160-room Victorian mansion had modern heating and sewer systems, gas lights that operated by pressing a button, three working elevators, and 47 fireplaces. From rambling roofs and exquisite hand inlaid parquet floors to the gold and silver chandeliers and Tiffany art glass windows, you will be impressed by the staggering amount of creativity, energy, and expense poured into each and every detail.
We may never know for sure if Mrs. Winchester built her house to accommodate the spirits, but over the years the story has come down that she believed her life was unavoidably affected by departed souls. Presumably she wanted to be friendly with the “good” spirits and avoid the “bad” spirits – and the way to be friendly with the “good” spirit, it seemed, was to build them a nice place to visit.

According to this theory, Mrs. Winchester accommodated the friendly spirits by giving them special attention. For example, it is said that there were only three mirrors in the entire house at the time of Mrs. Winchester’s death. Legend has it that spirits hate mirrors, since the sight of their reflection causes them to vanish.

This is why Mrs. Winchester’s servants and secretary reportedly used only hand mirrors or went without.

The mansion also contained a profusion of light sources, from gas jets and countless candles, to electric light bulbs. Supposedly spirits feel conspicuous and humiliated by shadows, since they cannot cast their own.
Was Mrs. Winchester making a special effort to please her spirits companions?

In any case, for nearly thirty-eight years, the round-the-clock sawing, sanding, and hammering at the Winchester Mystery House™ never ceased – not even on weekends or holidays. It was never a rush job. Mrs. Winchester had all the time in the
world – at least, all the time needed to maintain a steady pace. With her financial freedom, she was content to honor whatever whims came from her imagination and from the spirits she believed were guiding her.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Haunted Places In India You Don't Want To Visit, or maybe you do

Think of ghosts and your blood runs cold. There are certain haunted places in India where you wouldn't put your step on. These places are haunted with ghosts from a very long time and if you pay them a visit they get hysterical leaving you unconscionably struck with fear.
The list will make your hair stand as it could be one of those places you paid a visit to recently.

1.The Shaniwarwada Fort – This famous fort is in Pune, the land of many ruins. The Shaniwarwada Fort is now a tourist place where millions flock to see this beautiful palace. The haunting story of this palace is that some of the locals who stay close by hear the cries of Narayan, the heir of the kingdom
who was chased by his assassins on a full moon night.

2.Sanjay Nan – This place is located in New Delhi. The Sanjay Van is one place where you would not want to visit. It is said that a lady in white often walks the forest area and most of them who have been in this area close to Sanjay Nan have seen her appear and suddenly disappear.

3.The Raj Kiran hotel – This hotel is said to be a perfect place to spend if you are not afraid to be with a ghost. There is one particular room on the ground floor at the Raj Kiran Hotel which is spooky and haunted. Guests who have stayed at this hotel have said that their bedsheets were pulled off in the middle of the night and when they awoke, it was still thrown off them. The Raj Kiran Hotel is situated in Mumbai.

4.Ramoji Film City – This is another spooky haunted places in India. Situated in Hyderabad, this Ramoji Film City haunts the women and troubles them every time they are alone or with a group of girls. At the Ramoji Film City, the light men who are on the top often get pushed over and receive multiple injuries.

5. Sumas – Situated in Gujaart. The Sumas is yet another haunted places in India where many have complained about the voices they have heard as you take a walk along the beach. Especially at night you would hear voices telling you to turn around and not go further into the beach for it is dangerous and dogs in that area keep howling and seem uncontrollable. This is said to happen as Hindus burn their bodies in this area.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year!

Whew ... I'll tell you don't forget you blogger password. What a ordeal that was. Anyways, hope to post more material in the next few days.