Recent Blasphemy

The “Ghost” Thing Pt. 1

“Aside from music, one of my lifelong obsessions has been the paranormal.”

Note: This piece was adapted from an old blog of mine. To give some additional background perspective, I was a ‘Paranormal Investigator’ for several years. My intent with these articles is merely to offer my experiences as an investigator, along with chronicling my personal history studying the field. As you should expect, I will offer no ‘proof’ of life after death here. I have had some incredible personal experiences that were, for lack of a better term, ‘weird’. In later articles, I may tie in my own Satanism in relation to these incidents even though I would not have self-identified as such at the time. In retrospect, I can recognize several instances where my ‘de-facto’ Satanism influenced my perceptions of an incident, or a case.

To reiterate, I offer no ‘proof’ of anything here. These are merely my own experiences as I lived them. -M

Indulge me in a little personal reflection, I guess that’s what blogs are for after all.

Aside from music, one of my lifelong obsessions has been the paranormal. Specifically, a deep-seated fascination with “ghosts”. Note the “quotes”. If we were face to face I’d be doing the air-quote thing every time I said the word “ghost” (See, did it again.) You would be annoyed, so I’ll forgo the quotes for now. Just assume they’re there. The quotes, not the ghosts. Or vice-versa, if it pleases you.

I’m not exactly sure when I got into ghosts, but my standard age estimate would be 5 or 6 years old. I was reading at that time, and in addition to the usual comic book fare or the newspaper, I would read whatever books were lying around. One book in particular commanded my attention. It was a Reader’s Digest book called ‘Strange Stories, Amazing Facts’. It was a compendium of various stories from the magazine, focusing on everything from dinosaurs (another early love), to space exploration, cryogenics, to strange customs from around the world. That sort of thing. Of course there was a chapter on the ‘supernatural’, the more common term of the time rather than ‘paranormal’ or ‘supernormal’. It was my favourite part of the book, and I would read the stories over and over again. Even today the names and legends from that book wash (somewhat) good memories over me. Springheel Jack, werewolves, and in retrospect one of the most influential tales of my life- the story of Harry Price and Borley Rectory. “The Most Haunted House In England”. You can still find the book for sale online today, and it’s quite inexpensive.

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Borley Rectory became an obsession for me. With the benefit of hindsight, given where I headed as an adult, I probably should’ve studied Harry Price the man rather than Borley the house. No matter. I devoured anything I could find at school and the public library on the case, always feeling a twinge of sadness that the place burned down decades before I was even born. Apparently even to this day trespassers are verboten on the grounds, so fanboy investigators like me are shit out of luck to even try and see if anything is/was there. Even though I would read the Borley accounts repeatedly, it would consistently terrify and enthrall me. I was young, after all. I’m still haunted to this day by the pictures of “Marianne get help..” scrawled on the wall. Of course whether or not the scratches were real is another question, but for a young kid with an imagination the possibility of them being real was proof enough. I often wonder if some my early personal experiences with the paranormal were triggered by my reading these stories, or the other way around. That recollection is lost, for good or for ill.

Since this is already a long-winded post, let’s just say that if you told young me that someday he’d be investigating haunted houses he’d be thrilled beyond belief. Just don’t tell him Borley Rectory will never happen. I don’t venture out on cases anymore, but call it a temporary retirement as the fascination remains strong. If I was called to go out to investigate a place today, I probably wouldn’t turn it down.

Oh, and I still own that book! It’s aged delightfully with a nice mustiness, even if some of the stories haven’t aged so well.

-M

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