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    Across the Great Divide

    An exploration of Near-Death and Out-of-Body Experiences Let’s switch gears this month away from ghosts and the like, and take a look at another huge area of paranormal research- the Near-Death (NDE) and Out-of-Body Experience (OBE).  Hollywood likes to toy with the notion of Life after Death and the Out-of-Body Experience; sometimes in a beautiful way, such as in 1998’s What Dreams May Come, and the 1980 classic Resurrection.  I’d like to note that Resurrection was the first movie to base its screenplay not on superstition and cultural references, but on the research and ideas of Raymond Moody, whose 1975 book Life After Life led to the foundation of the…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Investigation Procedures: Presentation and Follow-up (Part 5 of 5) If you’ve been following this series we’ve covered quite a bit of information for carrying out a successful investigation into claims of paranormal activity.  You’ve designed and organized your group, researched the case and its history, carried out the hands-on aspects of the investigation, and meticulously analyzed your data.  In this final installment of the Investigation Procedures series we will cover the process of presenting your findings to the client and follow-up protocols you should consider and practice in regards to concluding your investigation. You and your crack team have thoroughly gone over every last bit of data not once, but…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Investigation Procedures: Analysis of Paranormal Activity (Part 4 of 5) Any paranormal investigation is only as good as the data collected and how well it is analyzed.  Some groups do a lot of their analysis on location as it happens, such as Discovery Channel’s Ghost Lab.  This has a lot of advantages in that you can quickly determine a course of action, or an area of higher priority.  You can also readily debunk claims by being able to recreate activity while still on the site.  If you get a shadow figure you can quickly refute or substantiate it by recreating it in the very location at the same time and…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Investigation Procedures: Getting Your Hands Dirty (Part 3 of 5) Perhaps it’s apropos that we’re on to the actual investigation portion and it’s October- ghosts, goblins, Charlie Brown, and all that jazz.  But, I digress… Only after some level of background research will you ready to enter the location and explore.  Even still, prior to setting up a mutually agreeable investigation date with the client, put some controls in place for the experiment. For instance, having the client communicate to their neighbors that there will be strangers parking out front and tiptoeing in the dark with flashlights in their home at an odd hour would be a good idea; police…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Investigation Procedures: Doing the Research (Part 2 of 5) Just visiting a place that has reported claims of the paranormal and snapping a few pictures or recording some audio doesn’t mean you’ve investigated it thoroughly.  Once you’ve landed a big investigation you’ll want to research the location as much as possible.  Background and historical research is a big part of any valid investigation of the paranormal, especially one with a long history of reported activity.  It involves conducting a lot of pre-investigation interviews of witnesses, tedious historical research, looking up prior media coverage, and contacting other investigation groups who may have been there before. Take organized and concise notes of…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Investigation Procedures (Part 1 of 5) By R. Wolf Baldassarro If you’ve been following my column for some time, by now you should have a pretty good grasp of the history of paranormal research and with the tools, tech, and spiritual workings associated with the field.  So now it’s time to go out and put all that into practice.  In this series we’ll discuss the steps for a successful and professional investigation.  There are five major components to an investigation- group design and organization, research procedures, the investigation, the analysis, and follow-up. First of all don’t be overeager.  It’s okay to have fun and enjoy the experience but keep your…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Michigan Hauntings I’ve had the fortune of visiting many interesting places to come away with some amazing personal experiences and evidence.  I’ve included links, where appropriate, to photos and EVPs from these locations.  Just click on the image thumbnails or the sound clip to access the links. In the spring of 2008 I was involved in the investigation of a house in the historic city of Mount Clemens, Michigan.  Nestled in a quiet neighborhood, under the shade of centuries-old oaks and maples, sits a home that was built in the 186o’s.  With such a long and profound history of the house and its neighborhood it was not surprising that tales…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Debunking Paranormal TV Shows Flip on your TV on any given day or time and there’s bound to be a paranormal reality show on.  They’re more common these days than the “evidence” they present.  The list of current shows include SyFy’s Ghost Hunters, Ghost Hunters International, Ghost Hunters Academy, and Destination Truth; ABC Family’s Scariest Places on Earth (seriously? ABC FAMILY?  *ahem…); Travel Channel’s Ghost Adventures; A&E’s Paranormal State; Discovery Channel’s Most Haunted, A Haunting, and Ghost Lab just to name a few!  So, really, how authentic are they?  TV is TV.  If it doesn’t get ratings it goes in the bin. Television has a long history of playing in…

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    Local Author R. Wolf Baldassarro Releases New Book and Launches Online Bookstore

    http://www.deepforestproductions.com Where Mind, Body, and Spirit Converge May 6, 2010— R. Wolf Baldassarro once again shares his imagination, his insight, and his passion with the world in Under a Sunlit Sky. Within this new anthology of poetry, short stories, photography, and social commentary unfolds a life filled with hope, despair, passion, and rejection. These are turbulent times in the Motor City.  The hard economic times and social climate has affected every aspect of life and like many people, R. Wolf Baldassarro has experienced the ups and downs of life’s highway.  The poetic verses in Under a Sunlit Sky run the full range of emotion and sensibility while the short stories…

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    Across the Great Divide

    Spiritual Work and Paranormal Investigations (Part 3 of 3) Everyone dreams.  Humans and other animals require sleep, and yes, they all dream.  Our mental and physical health is dependant on how we sleep and how we dream.  A common belief is that gods speak to us through dreams.  For example, according to Islamic belief, Muhammad talked to the angel Gabriel several times through his dreams.  As a result dreams are very important to followers of Islam and a person’s dreams are highly respected and private between the individual and the divine.  Some cultures believe we are nothing more than someone else’s dream.  Some shamanic cultures even say that what we…