Are you a ghost hunter or paranormal investigator? Some people may not even realize there is a difference, but there is. This month I have decided to write my article on this because recently my favorite investigator of all time, Grant Wilson, did a video on it and it inspired me; plus I did a public event that made me think more about it. People identify with the term Ghost Hunter more than they do Paranormal Investigator it seems, which is fine and I am sure the show Ghost Hunters plays a big part in that. I love the show Ghost Hunters, I have a ton of their seasons on DVD and as I said, Grant Wilson is one investigator I have always admired. I based a lot of my team's ethics so to say on things Grant teaches. So when someone says “oh you’re a ghost hunter”, I don’t get offended or mad but I want to say I am more than that, and figured now would be the perfect time to do so. So what is the difference between a Ghost Hunter and Paranormal Investigator? Well, let me explain.
A ghost hunter is someone that likes to “hunt” for ghosts. They are usually in it for the thrill, personal reasons, or just have some type of interest and usually get disappointed when nothing happens. They go to places they know are haunted or rumored to be haunted. A ghost hunter will look for opportunities to go and find proof the other side exists. They are sometimes in a group or by themselves (which I don’t encourage because there is safety in numbers). They are usually the ones that do have their own equipment and recorders and go to public places or group events. (At this time let me do a little speech on no one should ever trespass out of respect and they should be respectful of the property and spirits). That’s basically where it ends for them though; just the actual “hunting” for ghosts.
A paranormal investigator goes way beyond hunting for a ghost, we do research, we are usually helping clients, which means keeping in touch with the people, doing interviews with the clients, follow up with the clients, sometimes finding resources for the clients, and more. We have learned it’s not always thrilling and sit for hours knowing that we may not get a single EVP or anything to happen. We go to locations to help people with concerns, not because we heard about the haunts of the place, don’t get me wrong, we will still go to known haunted places to see if we can have experiences there too but we go in with a different mindset so to say.
As investigators we actually investigate and try to debunk, we try to see if we can explain what is going on first. If we absolutely can’t explain something then we will say it’s possibly paranormal. We say possibly paranormal because maybe someone else in the field or a different field can explain it but we can’t. We aren’t quick on calling things paranormal until we rule out everything possible. Why do we do this? Because we want to contribute to the field also and we can’t contribute if we are calling everything a ghost; that will do this field no good.
A paranormal investigator does a ton of behind the scenes work, we help people, we take the time to actually investigate; I have had people wanting to join the team that were basically Ghost Hunters and found this wasn’t for them. We are a team that works hard together to help people with their paranormal concerns. I am not saying there is anything wrong with being a Ghost Hunter as long as they are doing things in a respectful way and not giving any of us a bad name, but I am saying there is a difference and now you can all see why. I am a proud paranormal investigator and our team, Tucson Ghost Society, is filled with investigators. It’s what we do and we will always help people with their paranormal concerns free of charge. So until next month when I write again remember you are never truly alone but if you want help with that, you know who to call.
About the Author:
Radio host of Mysteries Explained
every Thursday from 8-10 Eastern time
Owner of Tucson Ghost Company, LLC
(Tucson Ghost Tour, Tucson Ghost Experience, special events & more)
Founder/lead investigator of Tucson Ghost Society
(Free paranormal investigations)
Writer of Arizona Paranormal for Tucson Happenings