Save Yourself the Trouble: How to Find A Good Paranormal Investigative Team
Experiencing paranormal activity can be a frightening experience. Many people are afraid to report their experiences for fear of being ridiculed, and because of such fear, will suffer in silence for years. What is even worse is when families and individuals reach out for help and understanding, only to find that they have become a victim of fraud. Sometimes charged hundreds of dollars by con artists who guarantee a solution to their problem, these victims are left worse off than when they began, cheated out of their money and still suffering from their initial problem. It is despicable when events like this occur and such fraudulent examples challenge the credibility of paranormal investigators everywhere. So, how does one go about finding a quality investigative team in their area and how can those who are experiencing paranormal activity avoid exploitation?
For those individuals who are experiencing the paranormal, finding assistance is not difficult. A web search will reveal hundreds of paranormal teams located across the globe. What is far more difficult is choosing the right team to investigate. What is important for people to remember is that once a group is chosen, the team will be allowed to enter into their homes and lives-even if it is only a temporary entrance. That being the case, it is even more important to find a group that is trustworthy.
First and foremost, it is important not to be over eager when selecting a group. When people are experiencing paranormal activity, especially activity that they neither understand nor want--the rush to rid themselves of such activity can lead them straight into trouble. Although being eager for assistance is expected considering the circumstances, it is extremely important not to turn anxiety into an impulsive decision one might pay heavily for later. Taking time to look into a group's credentials can save individuals from additional, unnecessary troubles. There are myriad steps individuals can take to protect themselves from exploitation and strife.
First and foremost, it is important to review your selected group from an economic stance. Does the group charge for investigations? Many credible teams are non-for-profit groups who do not charge for investigations. Such teams fund investigations with their own finances or pay for investigations with money collected from donations and sponsors. Meanwhile, some teams might not charge for local investigations, but will ask to be reimbursed for lodging and travel expenses if they are required to travel long distances.
Neither option is unreasonable: investigations can be costly and requesting minimal travel expenses or accepting donations help to defray the cost of equipment and travel. Also keep in mind that just because a does not charge for investigations or only requires minimal fees, it does not mean that the team is incompetent or unskilled. Many investigators study the paranormal simply because they enjoy doing so and are willing to conduct investigations for little to no money at all. Conversely, alarm bells should be heard if a team asks for mind-boggling amounts of money to assist you. If that is the case, it is a far better idea to shop around.
Team experience is also something that should be considered. Many teams offer web sites that provide information pertaining to both past and pending investigations. Additionally, many teams will post their investigative procedures and protocol on their site-be sure to read them thoroughly. Also consider how many investigations the team has performed and where. Some groups centralize the focus of their investigations. For example, one team might only investigate cemeteries while another group might investigate private locations. Other teams may investigate both businesses and private homes. Make sure the team that is being considered investigates the type of location in question. Finally, if after reviewing a team's web site it is still unclear what kind of locations they investigate, contact the team, and ask. In this business it is imperative to ask questions.
Of equal importance to past and present experience a team might have, it is important to determine exactly what type of services a team offers. Review what kind of equipment they use and how they use it. Some teams will investigate only to collect evidence of paranormal activity while another group might have specialists in various areas or members that provide religious support. Nothing is wrong with either choice as long as the team is forward about their intentions. It is essential to know what a team will or will not do. Finally, in regards to services, be wary of a team that guarantees a solution to paranormal difficulties. Promises of spirit release or a guaranteed ending to any activity should cause one to question a team's credibility.
Another important thing to consider is a team's religious affiliations. If the individual requesting the investigation has a particular religious view that does not mesh with an investigative team's practices, problems could arise. A clash of belief systems is not at all impossible-thus, whether or not a team has vastly different religious views is important to consider.
On the same token, a clash of beliefs does not have to be of a religious nature. There exist numerous theories pertaining to paranormal activity and what one person or team believes may not suit another team or client. Therefore, understanding the theories that investigative teams might embrace becomes essential to the investigative working environment. The best defense against exploitation is for one to be informed. People should not be afraid to do independent research, not only on the team, but on paranormal activity in general. Knowing more about the paranormal will empower individuals with the ability to make good decisions.
Moreover, individuals should never be afraid to ask questions, especially questions pertaining to disclosure principles and confidentiality agreements. Ask if the team will fully disclose their findings after the investigation. Also, ask when such findings will be shared and make sure that a team is willing to protect any and all identities if requested. An individual can experience nothing worse than wanting to remain anonymous only to later find their identity revealed all over the World Wide Web. Finally, the most important thing an individual can do to protect themselves from exploitation or other undesirable difficulties is to make sure they read everything they are required to sign! Far too many times, individuals are handed releases to sign they don't even bother to read-this certainly causes a problem for individuals who wish to remain anonymous and then sign a release permitting full use of their name in all present and future media works! In short, finding a quality investigative team to research suspected paranormal activity is not a difficult task, but it is a task that requires a little leg work. By studying the paranormal, reviewing a team's ethics, investigative protocol, past and present experience, and area of expertise, it then becomes possible to reduce the risk of exploitation and future inconveniences. In the long run, it pays to do your homework and ask good questions! A little precaution goes a long way.
Original Posting appeared at Suite101.com.
Article written by: Dayna Winters and Patricia Gardner
Copyright © 2004-2008 ISIS Paranormal Investigations. All Rights
Credits: Graphic Allusions
and Tairo Designs.