Between blog posts and my fiction writing, I have been putting in some hours getting words on the page lately so, when the evening rolls around, I like to watch an hour or so of TV to let my mind unwind. Of course, some of the things that I watch are back episodes of paranormal shows and, of course again, watching those shows queued me up for yet another blog post.
If you have been following the blog for a while, you will know that I am all for people doing paranormal investigation (and I include things like looking for Sasquatch here) as long as they do it in a safe manner. Safety starts in the physical world with using your common sense and staying out of crime ridden neighborhoods and old unstable structures, not trespassing, having survival gear packed if you are going into the woods and so on. I should not even have to mention this but the tragic stories that come out, now and then, about people who are injured or killed because they ignore basic safety precautions encourage me to remind folks to be careful out there. Chasing ghosts and other things that go bump in the night does not obviate the need to pay attention to what is happening on this level of reality.
Watching these paranormal shows, though, I am struck, over and over, by the need for investigators to follow some basic energetic safety protocols. I can not count the number of times I heard someone on one of the shows talk about opening themselves up to whatever was going on in the site they were investigating. As I have pointed out, again and again in these pages, you want to know what you are opening to before you make such an invitation. It is the height of idiocy to walk into any haunting, especially one that is being presented as hostile and open yourself to whatever presences are there. Even mediums, who work day in and day out with spirits, know that there are basic protocols to follow when making contact with the Otherworld and that those protocols help to keep them safe.
Safety is not gained by trying out your new Shakti Helmet in the midst of a haunting where a young girl is being plagued by a being described as a ‘lady vampire’. While, in actuality, this entity did not turn out to be one of the astral predators that feed on energy, the investigator in this case did not know that at the time that he undertook this experiment. As I have pointed out on a number of occasions as well, safety is also not gained by going into hauntings with a deliberately provocative and belligerent attitude. Such behavior may stir up activity and make for good television but there is a reason why magicians have a saying that one should not call up what one can not put back down.
In a very real sense, the paranormal investigators who are walking around, calling out to spirits that are supposed to be in a place are practicing a rough form of evocation that can lead not only to paranormal activity but to attachments and worse. I am minded of one investigator who stated that he was effected for several days after a particular encounter. This should not happen; investigators should, at a minimum, have the tools to cleanse themselves energetically after ghost hunting.
Every occultist has favorite techniques for protecting themselves but, if you have no experience in this realm then I encourage you to read Michelle Belanger’s The Ghost Hunter’s Survival Guide: Protection Techniques for Encounters with the Paranormal. Occultists of all stripes love their ‘tech’ and, reading some of the books out there on psychic protection and/or self defense, you might become convinced that you have to become a practicing witch or ceremonial magician to take care of yourself energetically during a paranormal investigation. Ms. Belanger approaches psychic hygiene from a non-denominational viewpoint and allows anyone with an open mind to learn how to work with energy and how to use it to protect and cleanse themselves in the ghost hunting milieu. This is a good book to get the rookie ghost hunter started in protecting themselves and makes a good companion volume for Ms. Belanger’s other book, The Psychic Energy Codex: A Manual for Developing Your Subtle Senses, a book that will get the novice started on developing the sensitivity to know what sorts of energies they are coming into contact with and what level of protection they might need. Sometimes, with some wrathful entities, it is better to back away and re-group than to stay.
Be aware though that, in my experience, once you have developed some talent for energy work, you begin to ask “well, what else can you do with this stuff” and the next thing you know your bookshelves and Kindle are crowded with books on esoteric subjects. You have been warned, the rabbit hole awaits!!