IS IT A GHOST
YOUR GHOST STORIES
Rosemary Ellen Guiley
Is a full-time as a paranormal researcher, investigator and author. She has written 31 books on a wide range of paranormal, spiritual and mystical topics, including several leading single-volume encyclopedias. Her work has been translated into 13 languages and has been selected by major book clubs around the world. She makes numerous media appearances.
She is a columnist for TAPS Paramagazine and a consulting editor for FATE Magazine. She is a member of the League of Paranormal Gentlemen, a team of paranormal experts that works for Spooked Productions on docu-dramas about paranormal cases, and she is an investigator for the IAmHaunted.com paranormal team.
Guiley holds a BA in Communications from the University of Washington, Seattle. In 2001 she obtained a PhD from the International Institute for Integral Human Sciences in Montreal in recognition for her work in the field.
Living, Inc.. formed in
2000, is her umbrella company for her
publishing and media work. Guiley
lives in Maryland near Baltimore.
Are you working on any new books?
I am always working on something, I just finished with a new edition of the Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits, which will be out at the end of the year. It will include new cases new photographs.
Next year I have some young adult books on the paranormal coming out, I am the general editor of a series of books that my publisher is working on. The books will be aimed at young readers grade 6 through 12. We have 17 topics and I am editing them all as well as writing 5 of them. I have written Ghosts, and I’m finishing up on Vampires, then I will be working on Dreams, ET’s & UFOs’, Mysterious Creatures, Divination, Werewolves, Shamanism, Psychic Skills, Mediumship, Astral Projections & Witchcraft. I am also revising my Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft.
I have just taken on a monthly column for TAPS ParaMagazine. My new column is called “Rosemary’s Baby” Jason Hawes suggested the name. The first article will be on the controversial “Franks Box”. Because I have been involved in EVP as well as the ITC for a number of years, but I think that Franks Box is potentially a very useful tool for ITC and someday it may have use in an investigation, though that is not the original inventors purpose. Like any piece of equipment that attempts to open a bridge to the spirit realm, the results are determined and colored by the consciousness and intention of the user. Paranormal research is in many respects a spiritual path as well as a scientific path.
We are dealing with subtle things that we don’t understand that have to deal with the entanglements of consciousness and all of creation. I think that Franks Box is one of many tools that can further those bridges of communications between realms. We need to be careful how we use these tools, because like any powerful thing they cannot be used for the wrong reasons. A lot of people in paranormal research have not been exposed to ITC (Instrumental Trans Communication) it is quite a sophisticated field that has been going on for decades all over the world. One of my pieces of advice to investigators is that they need to know about ITC. Know your history of EVP and ITC it helps evaluate the data that you get. The thing about communicating with other realms, it that you are dealing with potentially explosive emotional conditions with other people. For example, I tell you that I have a way for you to talk to your dead father. Just the idea of that will unsettle someone at the very least. From a persons religious views they may not think that you can open those doors, or that if you do what comes through is not really your father it might be something Demonic. Just the idea of think wow.. I could really talk to my dead father could bring up a lot of psychological issues that could relate to closure over death, lack of closure, grief, your whole relationship with the person. These devices are generally not brought onto a public stage but used in a more controlled situation but I think that there are a lot of things that we have to grapple with when it comes to opening these portals, and our readiness to open them. This is one of the problems we have with things like talking boards, they are easy avenues of opening. They assume that what ever comes through ahs got to be some voice of authority and they give over their power to that.
I am still a consulting editor and writer for FATE magazine as well.
You have become quite popular in the lecture circuit as well, how is that aspect of your work doing?
I have a very active speaking and media schedule. I have a lot of Haunted Weekends to attend. I have been so busy that I have had a hard time finding time to write, but I am so happy that I can keep this busy in this filed.
Weren’t you at the Stanley Hotel a few months ago?
Yes, I was at the Stanley in March and that was an amazing place. It was very active. We were at there for 2 conferences back to back so by the time it was all over I was exhausted.
What other locations have you visited recently?
I just went to the Waverly a few weeks ago and will be returning 2 more times this year. I will be at the Eastern State Penn as well as the Queen Mary for a couple of events that IamHaunted is putting together, the William Irwin Haunted Cruise Ship in Duluth Minnesota and the Karsten Inn, which is in Wisconsin. So I have quite a few Haunted weekends as well as conferences. I will be at the American Ghost Society’s Spooktacular in October. It will be at the Lincoln Theatre in Decatur. His conference this year is going to be his largest, which is great because so many of the smaller conferences have gone under. There have been so many conferences that have cancelled this year, because of the number of them, unfortunately not everyone can attend them all.
I really have to compliment Dave and the Darkness Radio people that have been putting on the conferences with Jason & Grant from TAPS they are really good shows. They have the marketing background so they know how to do it properly. I really enjoyed working with Jason & Grant as well I think very highly of them and they have such a huge fan base.
When you go to one of the Haunted Weekend tours, do you ever get any “evidence” or is it more just a meet and greet with the people at the conference?
It is hard with data collection because you are dealing with large groups of people, and sometimes-inexperienced investigators so it is hard to get what we would call ideal conditions for an investigation. But a lot of the time I have gotten EVP and occasionally some photographic anomalies as well as I have seen some apparitions and had a number of sensory experiences. I find that these forums are a great way to share ideas and information between the people that attend. A lot of the people who attend are seasoned investigators and I find it is always great place to network, talk shop & share other peoples experiences and expertise.
When you go to a well known “traditional” type haunting as opposed to a private home that is having issues, do you see a difference in the amount of activity?
It really varies, for example the Stanley Hotel was very active and the Waverly probably tops the list. Every now and then a private home will surprise you. They don’t have the long history that the large public places do however there are a lot of active private locations. I have visited a few private homes that I quite frankly would not like to live in because of the activity.
What impact do you think that the Media’s current coverage of the field such as Ghost Hunters, Most Haunted, Etc…. has had to the general public?
I think that it has been a positive thing; the media coverage that has been in the past few years has brought the paranormal into mainstream discussions. I think that it is very good for people to talk about their paranormal experiences and share stories about things that they cannot explain. The more people talk about their experiences and feel that they can talk about the paranormal without being regarded a weird or strange the better it is for research.
What would you recommend to someone who is interested in getting into the field?
I think that it is important to understand the background of psychical research and the different research that has been done. Research the scientific study that has been done on survival and apparitions. It is also important as an investigator to develop you intuitive side. No matter what equipment you use, ultimately a lot of your success will be based on your own intuitive sense. What you pick up on and how you interpret it is how accordingly you will use your equipment. Study in how consciousness interacts with unseen. Sometimes people with no experience will kind of jump into the deep end of the swimming pool and it’s an experience that they can’t handle well.
What would you recommend for someone who is trying to find help for activity that they are having?
I recommend to people that they can do some research on the Internet. I usually send people to Troy Taylor’s web site because he has chapters in every state now and I feel that the standards that Troy has set for the American Ghost Society are a model that more than likely you are going to find a high quality group. I also recommend that they look on the TAPS site. They have the TAPS Family group that is pretty high caliber as well. I think that it is a good idea to steer clear of groups that charge money for investigations, its one thing to expect to be reimbursed for gas costs but investigation groups do not charge. They will not require that they sign over the rights to the possible evidence that might be collected at their location.
One of your subjects that you have written extensively on is Folklore and Myth. How did that work its way in with the rest of the genre that you work with?
Most of my focus is on subjective experience, how do people experience what they do and why and how does that compare to what human beings have experienced throughout history? I think that our historical accounts shows that our paranormal experiences change over time, people put different labels on them, explain them a little differently but the characteristics of them are fundamentally the same. I think that Folklore comes from people’s experiences and our present experiences fit in with this as well. So that gives us a spectrum of human experience that can shed light on what these paranormal realms are, how we encounter them the conditions under which we encounter them and what they have to say about us as a piece of the bigger Cosmic Pie.
How do you approach an investigation when you have people that are of different religious backgrounds?
I think that our experiences are quite often colored by our cultural and religious beliefs. We are likely to have an experience that fit in with a collective conscious. As an example, if you are conducting an investigation with a household that has a different religion, which would have a different role, in which the spirits play. It definitely impacts the way their perspective.
Do you consider yourself more of a Technical or Metaphysical researcher?
Imp kind of in the middle of the road. I have some equipment I have a few EMF meters, some digital recorders as well as a camera. I think that it is just as important to pay attention to your own intuitive data as well. Because we are all data collectors. Everyone is psychic to some degree, and really successful paranormal investigators even if they do not realize it are using their own psychic ability to sense the environment. By doing this they determine how best to use their equipment. All of these things are integrated together, I don’t advocate using just Psychics senses and I don’t advocate using just Tech I think that tech alone is an incomplete picture. I think that it is important to consult psychics and I like working with psychics. It is important to do good screening of psychics but no psychic is ever 100% accurate but they can provide a lot of information that the equipment cannot, they can get impressions of personalities and things that can be researched historically, so they can be of great help. I find it rather odd that investigators say that they do not use psychics because they are not reliable, but will then go into a haunted place and unwittingly use their own psychic ability to experience things. They will hear things, feel things and see things, those are all psychic experiences. And they also interviews eyewitnesses about their psychic experiences if you’re going to give credence to witnesses about their psychic experiences don’t bash the professional psychics for theirs.
What do you think of the new practice of turning off all of the lights and then turning on all of the night shot equipment to record? Do you feel that it has relevance or is it because it looks spooky on TV?
I do feel that some phenomena is easier to sense in the dark, and there does seem to be some ability for infra red or night vision to pick up on very subtle things that they cannot see in daylight. But the most unusual unexplained photographs that I have seen have been taken in daylight. So we cant limit the occurrence of paranormal phenomena to just the night. I think from the standpoint of the entertainment industry it just looks better.
Do you find that activity occurs more during the day or the night?
I think that there are certain times that activity seems to ramp up. One of those times is the change from day to night, and another is the middle of the night and there are occult underpinnings for this. In Occult science and Metaphysics there are certain currents that become more active at night and provide better openings for us to witness paranormal phenomena. I do think a lot of it is the human mechanism, as the world outside gets quieter; we may be in a better position to pick up on more subtle things. I think that activity takes place around the clock.