"Freakuently" Asked Questions
What do I need to ask of the spirits and what are some guidelines for doing this?
One of the things we try to do is include the Spirits in a conversation but keep the questions to the Spirits simple so the answers should be only one or two words long. We believe it takes a lot of energy for a ghost to answer these questions so we need to keep them as simple as possible. We also try to allow 15 seconds or so in between questions to give a spirit time to gather energy to answer.
Here are some of the questions we ask:
1. Is there anyone here that would like to talk to us?
2. Can you tell us your name?
3. How old are you?
4. Why are you here?
5. Are you sad or angry?
6. Are you alone?
7. How many of you are here?
8. What is your favorite color?
9. Do you know what year it is? If so, please tell me/us.
10. Can you tell us what happened to you?
11. Can you see us?
12. What do we look like?
13. What color is your hair?
14. Do you know my name?
15. Would you like us to leave?
16. Is there any way that we can help you?
17. Can you show us what you look like?
18. Is someone keeping you here?
19. Are you afraid where you are?
20. Do you have anything to tell us?
What do I need to know before doing a ghost hunt?
1. 1. Pick the Proper Location
Paranormal activity can occur in all sorts of locations. For example hotels, cemeteries, prisons, hospitals, private homes, parks, bridges, scene of accidents, major disasters or murders, etc. Anywhere that residual energy might dwell.
What kind of ghosts do you want to encounter? Lost souls, murderers, accident victims, demons? Do you want playful spirits or the really angry ones who will push you down a stairwell if given a chance? Pick a location where reports include the type of energy you’d like to encounter or investigate. You may not want to lock yourself in an old abandoned mental ward until you’ve been doing this for some time.
2. 2. Do Your Research
Once you’ve chosen a location, do some research. You must know what to expect, what permission you need to have, and what areas you need to cover.
3. 3. Get Permission
If you’re investigating on private property always obtain permission from the owner to do your investigation. You will be trespassing if you don’t. Just be sure to respect the property, do no damage, and leave nothing behind.
4. 4. Assemble a Good Team
The following suggestions of people to have on your team include….
A Researcher – the person willing to surf the internet, scan reports, get details, make phone calls, and secure permission to get onto the site to investigate.
A Lead Investigator – this is the person who will lead the investigation. They will decide where the team goes and when, how the equipment is divvied up and set up, and will generally make decisions regarding the safety and efficacy of the team. Audio/Visual Techs – you need people who can take digital photos, hold the video cameras, hold the digital audio recorders, work the EMF detectors, monitor the temperature, and document all the goings on during the investigation.
Intuitives – people who sense and feel things. Be very careful not to rely totally on what is sensed or felt and to always corroborate this with evidence, readings, recordings, photos, historical accounts, etc.
Skeptics or Science-types – In addition to your intuitives, you also want to bring along a skeptic or scientific person. Bring a skeptic in order to scientifically investigate reported phenomenon to see if it can be replicated in an earthly way.
Humor– always have a joker or two on your team to keep the mood lighter and the energy higher.
5. 5. Use the Proper Equipment
Taking along as much equipment as you can will help you verify the presence of the paranormal. Items include but are not limited to the following:
Digital Voice Recorder
6. 6. Be Safe
Things that may help with safety are the following:
Food and Water
7. 7. Go in Strong, Rested, and Sober
Alcohol and drugs do not mix with the paranormal. Everyone present on an investigation should be alert, be of sound mind, and not weakened to the point that something else can influence them.
8. 8. Never Hunt Alone
It is much easier for a lone person to become the object of paranormal or spiritual attacks when alone. Use the buddy system as you would to walk to you car at night for safety.
9. 9. Know the Signs of Spirit Possession, Oppression, or Mental and Emotional Distress of Members
Some of these indicators include: Sudden and intense outbursts of emotions such as anger, physical combativeness and attacks on other people, sadness, and/or inappropriate expressions of emotions such as laughing uncontrollably at something sad or distressing, strange comments, change of personality, delusional thinking, nausea, panic attacks, hearing voices, hallucinating, sweating, shaking, eyes rolling back in head, fainting spells, and many others.
In the event that the aforementioned things do occur, it is always advisable to know and have a working relationship with clergy and mental health professionals who can assist with spiritual as well as mental issues of those involved.
10. 10. Learn How to Analyze Your Data
Learn how to correlate and put all readings and observations together effectively and be ready to put in long hours of analysis, watching and listening to evidence, and being willing to stay alert and to go back over evidence sometimes over and over to verify. Also learn how to infer and either confirm or disprove things based upon your data.
Why are some people more prone to seeing ghosts?? Why can’t I see ghosts?
First of all, just as radio equipment can pick up different frequencies/stations only at certain times and only on certain stations and only with the right equipment tuned the right way, so too is one’s ability to receive paranormal waves or to have paranormal experiences. You have to be able to pick up certain things and be in the right place at the right time with the right equipment. There is a commonly held theory that paranormal things are going on around us all the time but that we do not pick up these things b/c we have trained ourselves not to hear or see them. We do not expect to see or hear therefore we do not. It is a fact that some people seem to have more finely tuned or sensitive perceptory abilities than others. For example, not everyone can sing or dance or act yet it seems to come so naturally to others. Furthermore, some researchers wait their whole lives to capture ghostly phenomenon and do not. This does not mean that you are in some way flawed b/c you see ghosts or spirits all of the time or b/c you do not. Everyone is different. The best way to maximize your chances is to use technology such as recorders, camcorders, cameras, DVR’s that you can run while doing your thing or leave running. Then you will have more coverage to pick up those things when the conditions are just right and when you may not be so tuned in. In summary, use technology to your benefit whenever you can.
How do I know I'm experiencing a haunting?
Important clues to a haunting include the following 14 items:
1. Visual apparitions either very clear or transparent and fuzzy or dark shadows moving around. Repeatedly glimpsing things out of the corner of one's eye that stand out and cannot be explained.
2. Unexplainable noises like knocking, banging, footsteps, shuffling, etc.
3. Voices, whispering, moaning, laughing, giggling, music playing, singing, or growling when/where there is no other source or explanation for these sounds.
4. Things being moved around either right before one's eyes or when one is not watching or hearing things move and then looking and seeing that the object has been moved while one was looking away. Objects may include furniture, curios, dolls, dishes, pictures, or most other household items. Things may also disappear and show up in extremely unlikely, impossible, or unexplainable locations. For example: car keys, wallets, etc.
5. Objects moving or levitating, or doors, windows, cabinets, cupboards, etc. opening and slamming by themselves.
6. Electrical problems such as lights turning on and flickering by themselves or TV's, radios, etc. turning on and sometimes when not plugged in, bulbs reportedly blowing up/out. In addition, batteries may come up repeatedly drained for no known reason.
7. Feeling watched or actually being touched by someone/something unseen.
8. Experiencing cold spots or drastic temperature changes.
9. Animals behaving strangely such as dogs or cats staring wildly and attacking something unseen such as cats hissing, dogs barking, birds fluttering, etc.
10. Children coming up with strange stories of seeing things or talking about and playing with "new friends" or detailing and describing things that they would not otherwise know of. Children may also watch unseen things or predict events to occur around the home or in the family's life or unexplainable things may occur with their toys or during play activities.
11. Strange dreams, premonitions, visions, or a sudden increase in psychic ability.
12. Bizarre sounds showing up on recordings or visual abnormalities or anomalies showing up in photographs.
13. Strange smells or odors that cannot be explained such as perfume, cigar or cigarette smoke, or pungent odors of death, flowers rotting, etc.
14. Unexplained injuries on one's body such as abrasions, scratches, bruises.
So now that you know it's a haunting, who ya' gonna call??? Drop us an e-mail!!!
What does "TFC" stand for?
TFC stands for "The Final Crossing" in an ode to our quest to explore beyond the final crossing that is death. We originally named the group as a joke after a cruel comment that was made by someone as they saw us pass by in our shirts and who made reference to the oddness of our hobby of ghost hunting. After many jokes over our name and growing tired of fielding questions over the true meaning of our name, Reade came up with the idea of "The Final Crossing" to go with our already well-known acronym. And so it is "The Final Crossing."
How do I get started investigating the paranormal?
You may find a group to follow out on an investigation and get them to show you the ropes. Initially reading up on the topic(s) is/are also helpful. Otherwise purchase a digital audio recorder and/or digital camera, camcorder, EMF detector, temperature gun, etc. Make sure you are able to record both audio and visual phenomena alike. For starters, just an audio recorder and camera/camcorder will be very sufficient. Then just find a location, secure permission to be there, and just go out and have fun.
What do you do when you go out for the first time on an investigation?? What protocol do I follow?
Simply walk around and ask questions with your recorder running. These questions should include but not be limited to the following: Are you here? Who are you? What is your name? Then pause for small amounts of time to wait for a response. You may not hear a response until you later play back the recording. Some people are gifted to hear responses at the time. Others are not. If you know the name of the spirit reportedly haunting the location then use their name when asking questions. Make a polite request for them to give you a sign of their presence if they are present. Provoking may be in order but do not do this until you get more experienced. As you are doing audio recording either stationarily or walking around you may wish to periodically snap pictures to see what you pick up. If you have a camcorder, preferably with nightshot, you may wish to keep it recording as much as possible. If you have EMF or temperature devices, you will wish to make periodic readings in order to document co-occurrences of temperature changes with EMF spikes or fluctuations. Be as quiet, respectful, and focused as possible in order to maximize your chances of gathering documentable and reliable data. Be careful about too much talking or whispering as it may be mistaken later for paranormal activity. Then when done go home and listen to the data. This is the fun part. Most people love the hunt but not the hard work that follows it. Go through the evidence slowly and surely and do not get too excited until you’ve had several people listen to or look at/watch whatever you have caught. You want to keep a skeptical eye and try to consider many different explanations before jumping the gun.
What are some resources to consult in learning about the paranormal?
The internet is invaluable, consulting other groups’ sites, going to paranormal conferences, watching TV shows, shadowing and going out with paranormal groups, reading whatever you can find, and finally, gaining and utilizing one’s own personal experience.
I fear that if I speak out concerning my experiences people will think I’m crazy? Does your group respect confidentiality?
First and foremost, read “The Role of the Counselor in Validating Paranormal Experiences” under Casey’s Stories. Then please be careful whom you tell as some people are not as receptive as others and may be judgmental as well. You may be assured that TFC will respect your confidentiality. We know these things are sensitive. You may request that we do not post anything on the site and we will not. TFC has many investigations that are not documented on our site at the individual’s request.
What types of people comprise your group? Are you a bunch of weirdos?
Quite on the contrary. Our group is composed of some very credible, highly-intelligent professional people who are moral individuals and very active in the community. We have a case worker with a master's degree who is studying to be a licensed counselor, a registered nurse with a PhD from Texas A&M, a licensed counselor/contractor/consultant in private practice, a restaurant manager, a senior information technology consultant, a TDCJ prison guard, someone who works in the oil field who is also an ex police officer and a veteran, a jack of all trades, and someone who works in a reptile sanctuary. All of these people are dependable and respected.
How do I become a member?
We are not always looking for members but you may contact us via our e-mail link on our web page. First and foremost, we look for people with open minds. We will interview you and make decisions including possibly asking you to accompany us on a hunt or meet with us to discuss your array of skills. Most of all, we need people with computer, video, and technical skills.
Do people call what you do evil?
Yes, we have been called evil amongst other things. However, we do not worship dark forces, do witchcraft, or chant in covens by the full moon light. We are not witches or Satanists and our members are strongly religiously and spiritually based. We all share a common care and concern for people in general which we strongly evidence in our willingness to go into people's homes, validate their experiences, and help them (when evil exists and the situation warrants) to draw upon their faith and clergy and combat certain forces. I will conclude by saying that we call upon clergy ourselves and vigorously tap into our own faith. In fact Jesus Christ himself mentioned ghosts in Luke 24:39 - "Behold my hands and feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a ghost hath not flesh and bones."
Are you "ghostbusters?"
No, thanks to wonderful Hollywood for that sensationalistic term. We are scientific researchers who employ all manner of scientific techniques to either disprove or confirm hauntings. We seek to debunk whenever we can. We do not "bust" ghosts. We merely evaluate evidence for or against the presence of paranormal activity. Whenever needed we refer to appropriate religious resources for ridding homes of unwanted and antagonistic infestation. About 70-80% of alleged paranormal activity can be debunked and explained in ways other than paranormal ones.
What do I do if I either think that I have a haunting or know someone who does and wants an investigation?
E-mail us from our link on our website and we will contact you. We will get more information and contact you further and then make the decision to either investigate or not. Due to volume, we may not be able to investigate every report that comes through but will do our best. In any event, if we cannot help or are not the best ones to help then we will route you to whomever can help.
Do you charge for investigations?
Absolutely not. To do so in our estimation would be unethical and would put us in the same category with fakes and charlatans who prey upon and exploit people in need.
Do you do lectures, ghost hunts, and ghost tours?
Yes, we could be pursuaded. We have done combination dinners, lectures, and ghost hunts in the past and they have gone very well. Contact us on an individual basis through our website and we will see what we can work out.
Where (what geographical area) do you perform investigations in?
We have tended to stay within the South-Central area of Texas with some investigations done in Jefferson,TX, Oklahoma, and some in Louisiana. A couple members have done some investigations in the Massachusetts/Connecticut/New Hampshire/Rhode Island areas and also Mexico. We are more than willing to venture out of the area. Contact us on an individual basis and we will consider each request, that is, if resources permit.
What kinds of equipment do you use to do paranormal research (ghost hunting)?
Basic equipment includes the following: Handheld camcorders, preferably infrared (nightvision) cameras to use when walking around and filming in the dark. We also use a stationary DVR system that is set up with infrared cameras which we set up and hook to a screen. We put these cameras in areas known as “hot spots” and watch as we record live video from a central monitoring station. Other equipment includes: Both digital and tape recorders used for either leaving in hot spots for recording while away or for carrying around while asking questions. Good quality external omnidirectional microphones hooked up to recording devices are also used. We also use temperature guns which measure temperature remotely by means of a laser beam, electromagnetic field meters for capturing transient electromagnetic fluctuations accompanying paranormal activity, motion sensors, 2-way radios, baby monitors, candles, and flashlights. The list goes on but these are the basics.