Friday, November 10, 2017

The Emotional Paranormal Investigator

I was asked recently if I had ever been affected by a location and this got me thinking. Can the paranormal affect our emotions? Or are we simply projecting our thoughts and affecting ourselves?

Paranormal Emotional Transference

This is the transferring of energy from a paranormal source onto a living entity. If you love reading about the paranormal you will, no doubt, have come across lots of stories about transference.
  • Dogs barking at nothing.
  • Horses getting spooked for no reason.
  • People being overcome by feelings of grief or unease.
These are only some of the many examples that have been documented and discussed over the years.

But, is there any truth to these stories?

Taking the above examples and looking at them objectively, we can come up with some logical explanations that may have been overlooked or simply ignored.
  • Dogs' hearing, especially at very high frequencies, enables them to hear things that most humans simply cannot.
  • Horses are notorious for getting spooked over seemingly trivial things - a bird fluttering in a bush, a sudden gust of wind, a piece of discarded rubbish - things that we may not notice ourselves are they are so commonplace.
  • Some people have little control over their emotions and may feel uneasy or sad without realising it. Even seasoned ghost hunters may suffer from tiredness, stress or illness and tis may lead to them appearing to take on some form of paranormal emotion.
Before we assume that paranormal emotional transference is the cause of these emotional outbursts, all other avenues should be investigated.
Rule out the obvious, the probable and the possible.
Only after doing this, can we say that paranormal emotional transference may have taken place.


It is far more likely that the seemingly paranormal experience can be explained logically on examination of all that facts.

But ...

Did I fall victim to Paranormal Emotional Transference?

I remember entering the kitchen area of a large abandoned building where woman - both young and old - had been treated brutally. I was chatting to one of the team and suddenly I felt tears well up. I tried to blink them away but the sadness I suddenly felt was overwhelming and I couldn't stop the tears from falling.
As I fought to hide my distress from the other people present, I heard one of the team remark that this area was called the crying room as people often became upset when they entered the area.

When I visited an old empty house that my parents were hoping to buy, I walked around on my own and as I reached the back of the house I suddenly felt sad. I sat on a ledge at the back corner of the house nearest the road. My Dad came around the corner and asked me why I was crying. I shrugged through my tears. I had no idea what had come over me.
Years later, we found out that a woman spent a lot of her life locked in an upstairs room at the back of the house on the side nearest the road. She was often seen by passers-by and they said she stood at the window weeping.

There are possibly logical explanations for what I felt but I believe that something outside myself affected me for those few moments.

Demonic Possessions

So, if energy can affect us, can energy manipulate us? Is this where the idea of demonic possession come from? Or poltergeists?

Once again, there are many theories but my own personal beliefs are that, as in everyday life, if we choose to give away our power then yes, energy can manipulate us, but we have a choice. We can choose how we react to energy around us - either by allowing it to affect us or by refusing to let it in.

  • If we walk into a room where there has been an argument, we can often feel the air thick with negativity. We then have a choice; either let the energy affect us and make us angry, sad or afraid or, we can choose to ignore the energy and carry on as if nothing had happened.
  • If a friend comes to us with their problems we can feel empathy for them and allow their anger, sadness or fear to become ours or, we can choose to listen, offer advice but refuse to allow their negative energy to affect us.

Future Investigations

I will continue to keep aware of my emotions during paranormal investigations and will report any new experiences or findings.

Perhaps we will never know if paranormal emotional transference really occurs.

But, I'll have fun trying to find out!

Further Reading

Monday, October 9, 2017

EMF? What has this got to do with Ghosts?

What is EMF?

EMF is the abbreviation for electromagnetic fields. According to the WHO, these fields are around us all the time but are invisible to the human eye. (WHO web link)


Natural sources include thunderstorms and the earth's magnetic field.

Man-made sources include x-rays, electricity and mobile phones.

Possible ill effects of high EMF

  • fatigue, stress and sleep disturbances
  • skin rashes
  • depression
  • sore throats
  • digestive disorders
  • infertility
  • cancer clusters
Research is ongoing and although these effects are often reported, no conclusive link has been found between them and high EMF levels.

So what has this to do with Ghost Hunting?

Most paranormal investigators carry at least one EMF meter with them. The meters' flashing lights are well-known to most paranormal fans.

But why do they flash? What does it all mean?

For years, paranormal researchers have believed that bursts of EMF signal the possible manifestation of a spirit.

There is no proof to state that this is the case but conversely, there is no proof that this is NOT the case!

Confusing? Yes.

These days, most paranormal investigators use these meters as, simply, another tool to point them in the right direction. Unexplained readings (flashing lights) guide us to spend a little more time in the area, perhaps taking more photographs or calling out.

Sometimes the pulsing of the lights seems to be intelligent. They seem to flash on demand or in response to questions. While this can be interesting, it does not prove the existence of spirits.

Things that can affect EMF

Sometimes, on a ghost hunt, the EMF meters flash throughout the investigation. We have to rule out natural or normal causes such as;

  • mobile phones not switched off
  • passing taxis or police cars (the radios send out waves that can affect our meters)
  • other items of gear too close to the meters - my audio recorder sets mine off if I hold them too close together
  • electricity meters
These are the most obvious things we have to look out for but there may well be other things that we do not notice at the time (thunder, overhead power lines).

If we have a lot of activity with the EMF meters but no other items of interest during the investigation, we make a point of returning at a later date to see if we get the same response.

If, on the other hand, we pick up EVPs (electronic voice phenomena), unexplained mists or shadows on photographs or film and have some personal experiences around the time of the high EMF readings, we are inclined to say that they may be of a paranormal nature.

In conclusion

High EMF readings are always of interest. Shorts bursts may simply mean that we have inadvertently contaminated our investigation or that a spirt is trying to manifest or that a taxi has just driven past close by.

Longer, more sustained, high readings suggest that there may be a source of electricity, WIFI, cordless or mobile phone or other radio wave producing element in our vicinity. In this case (especially in a private house investigation), we will try to locate the source so that we can advise the homeowners that this may be a potential health issue.

EMF readings are interesting but not conclusive. No self-respecting paranormal investigator would rely solely on these little flashing lights - but, they are still fun!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Return to Ballinacarriga

This castle has always had a special place in my heart - it was the first place I went as a paranormal investigator. That night was full of excitement and for me, this beautiful castle has never lost its appeal.

A locked-off room where I thought I heard footsteps

I was the last to arrive and the team were already in place and about to begin. The rain was pouring down but it was a mild night and we decided to start the investigation at the top or chapel area.

In the past I have always picked up on a male figure on this floor but on this occasion I was disappointed. We did get some K11 hits but, unlike other times, only one K11 was affected.

I thought I heard shuffling footsteps behind me at one point but as nothing else happened to confirm this, I can not be sure that I actually heard them and so must put these down to a simple 'personal experience'.

We moved down to a lower floor and entered a room where I have sometimes felt a presence. I called out to Randal Og and sent him a personal message. One of the K11s immediately lit up. Again, only one K11 in the room was affected.

The top floor - in the rain

Barrie and I decided to stay in this room for a little while, leaving the other investigators to move down to the next floor. We didn't notice anything definite here but I was intrigued by a shadow by the door that appeared to move at times, getting a little bigger then shrinking back again. I wasn't able to document this or catch it on film so once again, I must put it down to a 'personal experience'.

We did get a full K11 hit here as we called out to Randal Og once more.

Barrie and I then moved to a narrow corridor. Barrie complained of pressure in his head and said that the place felt really heavy. I was talking away (as I usually do!) calling out and chatting with any spirits when I suddenly felt the need to be quiet. I felt that something wanted me to shut up! I also got a bad pain in my back but thought maybe this was because I had been standing for a while (it hasn't happened before though).

The ground floor

Barrie then discovered the 'pooka hole' at the end of the corridor. (The pooka is a celtic mythological creature that can change shape and can bring either good or evil, as it sees fit.) I knew that Barrie was feeling a bit  uncomfortable as his head was 'ready to burst' so I offered to change places with him and went to stand close to the pooka hole.

The Pooka Hole (Pic courtesy of Cork Supernatural Society)

Suddenly I found myself swaying and even as I was calling out, something seemed to want me to be quiet. I began to feel very sick. My head was aching, I got bad stomach cramps, I felt nauseated and the pain in my back was quickly becoming unbearable.

We moved to the corridor entrance, leaving the pooka hole behind, and I immediately began to feel better. We stayed at the entrance for a few more minutes and then decided to move to the ground floor for the last part of our investigation.

By the time we got down the stairs, I was feeling completely well although I did feel very tired and couldn't stop yawning even though it was only 10pm!

We didn't find anything else of note but the rest of the team were getting some good K11 hits and they seemed to get some intelligent responses.

On arrival home, I decided to listen to the audio. I was disappointed to find that I was missing at least twenty minutes from the middle of the night. Although my recorder clearly showed that it was recording all the time - I check it carefully as I set it down and again when I pick it up - for some unknown reason, it skipped the part where I called out to Randall Og and got the K11 hit.

Barrie reviewed his audio and found he has captured a woman's laughter while we were in the corridor near the pooka hole. Unfortunately, my audio was too near the entrance and picked up a lot of noise from the rest of the team, making it difficult to hear anything. I will, however, go over it carefully again to see if I have also captured the laughter.

All in all, it was a good night and I am sure that we will be returning here in the future.

Want to read more like this? Check out and follow these pages!

Don't forget I detail some of my most interesting investigations in my Irish Paranormal Haunts book series.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Abandoned Manor House

Four of the team recently investigated an abandoned manor house. The house is set on a hill and overlooks a nearby town. It has extensive grounds, although now, horses roam the once well-tended gardens and the house itself is in a sorry state with most of the roof missing and no doors or unbroken windows.

The downstairs rooms are full of rubble and debris. Here and there, hints of the once splendid house are still to be seen.

The staircase is rapidly becoming dangerous and the first floor is badly water-damaged from the elements. I did not venture further than the landing at the top of the stairs.

Paranormal Background

Paranormal investigations had been carried out here before this one. K11 hits and EVPs had already been noted here and some of the previous investigators felt that this was an active location.

We were all looking forward to this one.

On the night, things were very quiet. We did not get any K11 hits - although we do not rely on these to indicate the possibility of paranormal activity, we use the emf meters along with our other gear to guide us in the right direction.

We carried out a live EVP session and again, we did not get any sign of activity. We also used a spirit box but there were too many radio stations cutting in and this made it almost impossible to hear anything unusual.

Despite the lack of activity on the night, I am aware that sometimes places are simply 'quiet'. We all agreed that the location has potential and we will be carrying out more investigations here.

The house has a long history and as with all old buildings you never know who or what might be lurking in the shadows. Perhaps, on our next visit, we will have something to report!

I haven't yet gone through all the audio from the night but if I find anything of interest, I will publish the results.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Let's Get Personal!

Many of you are interested in finding out more about the paranormal and in particular, about what I actually do and the team I am with.

I have put together a list of links where you can go to find out more about us. Please feel free to share these with your friends and spread the word!

My flickr photos More photos from my investigations

Stuff of Nightmares Facebook page All things Paranormal

Shadowhunters Facebook page My old team

Cork Supernatural Society Facebook page My current team

Diary of a West Cork Ghost Hunter One of the team members new page

Forgotten Ireland Our team leader's new page

Irish Paranormal Haunts Book Link Details of my investigations. Now available on Audible too.

Irish Paranormal Haunts Vol 2 Book Link More details of my investigations

My Twitter feed Follow me!

Instagram Follow me here too!

And don't forget to sign up for the newsletter Sign up Here (Privacy 100% guaranteed)

If you have any questions or queries, don't hesitate! Get in touch! I'd love to hear from you!

Irish Paranormal Haunts

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Paranormal Musings

I have often wondered why people are so interested in the paranormal. Is it because we all love a good thrill? Or because so many of us think we have experienced a paranormal event? Or is it simply because it is a mystery and after all, who doesn't love a good mystery?

I think the mysterious aspect is what intrigues me the most. I hate not having answers to my questions so I continue to investigate, study, read, share, listen - you name it and I'll do it - in my bid to find the answers.

As well as searching for answers, I am also able to indulge my passion for visiting old castles and ruins. Some of these locations ooze history while others hold mysteries within their ruined walls.

We may know who built them and roughly when, but who were the everyday people who worked in these grandiose places? The lowly kitchen workers, the put-upon man servants, the guardsmen or the farm workers and hunters providing the food for all?

These are the people that I would love to communicate with. To hear their stories would be priceless and well worth braving the wind and rain that seems to accompany so many of our investigations.

The knowledge we could gain from these people would be wonderful. Imagine being able to get a real glimpse of days gone by, straight from the horse's mouth as it were.

We know so much about them already but there is so much more to learn. How did they feel about their work? Were they satisfied with it because they knew no better? Or did they secretly dream about another life?

Of course, there are a few other questions that I would love to have answered:
  • Can they see us?
  • Do they see their surroundings as they are now or as they were then?
  • Can they understand us - do they speak Irish, English or another European language?
  • Do they choose not to communicate with us or are there rules that prohibit them from revealing too much about themselves?
  • Are they allowed to communicate within limits?
  • Are they energy?
  • Can they use our energy or the energy from our equipment?
  • Why do they seem to be more active in some places rather than everywhere?
There are so many questions!

I know that I won't find the answers to all these questions (and the many others I have!) but this won't stop me. I will keep investigating and I hope you follow along with me!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Orbs, Paranormal or Not?

Every time I go out on an investigation I come back with lots of pictures with anomalies in them. Most of these anomalies are orbs. So have I made contact with the other side? Are spirits trying to communicate with me?

These lights (above) were photographed at Carriganass Castle in Co Cork. There were no lights coming from this area at the time and I couldn't see anything that would reflect light back to me. However, as it was taken outside in the open air, I am fairly sure that these were insects flying around at the time.

These anomalies are definitely raindrops reflecting my camera flash. The night was extremely wet and it was pouring with rain at the time I took this. (Kilcrea Castle, Co Cork)

We photographed a lot of orbs in this mill. There are a lot of strange things going on here - voices, footsteps, laughing, children appearing in one of the rooms. The orbs seemed to be following us around that night but once again, it was probably just dust.
My mind is open on this one though, as there is a lot of energy here and perhaps not all of the orbs were dust that night ... (Russagh Mill, Co Cork)

This strange picture was taken outside an old graveyard. We did not notice any mist but as it was taken fairly close to the sea, we can not rule out that a sea mist crept up on us unnoticed. We did not have this strange effect in any of the photographs taken either directly before or directly after it but I can not rule out the mist theory.
This graveyard really gives me the creeps and I would never go there on my own! I used to go there every day in the daytime to check on my horses in the field beside it but I always felt uncomfortable there - I never take any notice of any other graveyards either on my own or with others.

So, before we get too excited about orbs and other anomalies, remember that there is usually a simple explanation for them - dust, moisture, insects, reflections.

But occasionally, we might just come across an unexplained one ...

Monday, August 21, 2017

Kilcrea Castle and Abbey

We recently played host to a paranormal team from the United States. Craic Ghost Hunting (give them a like on Facebook!) live up their name!

We met Kerriann, Katie and Sheri on what turned out to be our wettest ghost hunt yet!

We visited the beautiful Kilcrea Abbey and Castle in County Cork but, due to the weather, our time in the abbey was limited as we were all soaked by the time we had finished investigating the castle.

It was so wet the pictures are full of water orbs and it was very hard to even stand outside to take them! Such a pity as it is a beautiful place. I will make another trip there to get some good pictures and try to do this fantastic place some justice.

I was fascinated by the perfect archways over the doors and windows.

We were able to get to the top of the castle and the view of the courtyard and surroundings was beautiful, unfortunately the rain prevented me from getting any good pictures.

We split into two teams and began our investigation. I was with Kerriann, Sheri and Katie from Craic Ghost Hunting and also, my own teammate Paul.

Matthew, Don and Ivan started on the upper levels while we concentrated on the ground floor. It was very quiet and the castle seemed very peaceful. The only thing of note was something small seemed to drop on one of the ladies every time we asked for a sign. We could not verify this although we were able to rule out drips at that spot and there was nothing that looked like it was loose higher up the wall so we really have no explanation for this.

When the teams met up again we all agreed that it was a beautiful place but very quiet and peaceful. We really did not expect to get any evidence so were surprised when Matthew announced, a few days later, that he had picked up a faint male voice on an EVP.

I have not gone through my own audio at this time and will update this post if I find anything of interest.

After we had finished in the castle we made our way back to the abbey. We had to return through a huge turnip field and although it had been quite damp the first time we crossed it, now it was very wet with a lot of surface water to splash through.

Needless to say, by the time we reached the abbey we were all too wet to stay too long or even to take any photographs so I will have to return to get some pictures.

A very sodden but happy, ghost hunting team!

Thank you Craic Ghost Hunting! It was a pleasure to meet you!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Coming soon to Audible!

Irish Paranormal Haunts will soon be available on Audible! Be one of the first to listen to a sample of the audio!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Carrignaphooka Castle

Sometimes it's not just about the ghost hunting. Sometimes it's great to explore places just for the fun of it.

I recently paid a visit to this beautiful castle with three other paranormal enthusiasts. We hoped to pick up the odd EVP or two or at least get some K11 hits. However, all was quiet although a sensor light did come on for no apparent reason and I did feel a burst of energy hit me in the chest just before this happened.

It may have been a simple coincidence but who knows?

It was a beautiful evening and although the 'farmers' among us (myself included!) brought wellingtons to cross the field to the castle, to our relief the ground was dry and the weather held fair for us.

The castle makes an impressive sight as it comes into view. Set on a rocky promontory in the middle of a field, the castle looms over the landscape and it is easy to imagine the apprehension beating in the enemies' breasts as they approach it.

We climbed the steep steps up to the entrance gate and stood for a moment enjoying the view of the surrounding area. Although the bulk of the castle was still overhead, the view from this relatively low level was already impressive.

We entered the castle and began to set up our gear.

It was very quiet in the castle with the only noise coming from the cattle in the nearby field. We did a calling out session on the top floor but not even the cows answered us.

We decided to move down to a lower level and try our luck there.

This is the area where the sensor light turned on by itself. It was tucked away in a window slit on the stairway and we were all around above it - well out of the way of its sensor. We had our backs to it and were facing this direction (see pic above) when I realised that the light had come on. We did not hear any birds or bats moving in the stairwell but there is still the possibility that they somehow triggered the light unnoticed by us.

We returned to the ground floor but once again we were greeted by silence despite our best efforts.

Although it was a disappointing night from a paranormal point of view, the castle itself has a sense of peace that deserves a visit despite its long and often bloody history.

If you are travelling in the Macroom area of County Cork make sure you take the time to check out this hidden gem. It's worth a visit just for its beauty and feeling of timelessness.