What is a Ghost ?
A ghost - or spirit or apparition - is the energy, soul or personality of a person who has died and has
somehow gotten stuck between this plane of existence and the next. Most researchers believe that these spirits do not know
they are dead. Very often they have died under traumatic, unusual or highly emotional circumstances. Ghosts can be perceived
by the living in a number of ways: through sight (apparitions), sound (voices), smell (frangrances and odors), touch - and
sometimes they can just be sensed.
What is a Haunting ?
A haunting is a kind of "recording" of a past event on an environment, such as a house, building or a battlefield.
These recordings play back, over and over in a kind of loop - always the same, like a film or video. It is thought that the
presence of certain people can trigger these recordings to play back. They are not ghosts capable of interacting with the
living. It is not known how these recordings are made, but they are often associated with a traumatic or strongly emotional
What is a Poltergeist ?
"Poltergeist" is a German word meaning "noisy spirit." Current research indicates, however, that poltergeist
activity may have nothing to do with ghosts or spirits. Since the activity seems to center around an individual, it is believed
that it is caused by the subconscious mind of that individual. It is, in effect, psychokinetic activity. The individual is
often under emotional, psychological or physical stress (even going through puberty). Effects can include rappings on walls
and floors, the physical movement of objects, effects on lights and other electric appliances - even the manifestation of
What is the difference between the three ?
Despite popular belief, there are distinct differences among ghosts, hauntings and poltergeists:
- Ghosts are spirits of people that have been caught between this plane of existence and the next. They
are intelligent beings, often capable of interacting with the living.
- Hauntings are recordings of an event on an event on an environment. They do not interect with the
- Poltergeists are neither ghosts nor hauntings, but are caused by the unconscious mind of a living
person, usually under some kind of stress.
It is worth noting that a combination of these phenomena can occur in one place. One can effect or even
trigger another, which is why a variety of such phenomena can be found in a "haunting."
What is EVP ?
EVP - or electronic voice phenomena - is a mysterious event in which human-sounding voices from an unknown
source are heard on recording tape, in radio station noise and other electronic media. Most often, EVPs have been captured
on audiotape. The mysterious voices are not heard at the time of recording; it is only when the tape is played back that the
voices are heard. Sometimes amplification and noise filtering is required to hear the voices. Some EVP is more easily heard
and understood than others. And they vary in gender (men and women), age (women and children), tone and emotion. They usually
speak in single-words, phrases and short sentences. Sometimes they are just grunts, groans, growling and other vocal noises.
EVP has been recorded speaking in various languages.
What is DOP ?
DOP - disappearing object phenomenon - is a relatively common phenomenon in which an object disappears from
view and later inexplicably returns. For example, a person puts their car keys on a kitchen counter, where they are always
kept. When the person goes to get them, they are gone. A thorough search turns up nothing. Later, the keys are found on the
counter where they were originally put (or some other obvious place. It's difficult to document a genuine DOP occurrence because
people can be careless, simply misplace things or be forgetful. But there are many compelling stories from people who are
certain they looked for the object in the place that it later appears. In some cases, people audibly call out for the object
to be returned - and it is. In some rare cases, the missing object has actually been seen materializing out of thin air.
It is also known as the "borrower" phenomenon. It may be related to Poltergeist phenomena.