So Many Orbs and Fairies
I never thought that when I coined the term "orb" back in 1994 to describe the shape of a paranormal anomaly that it would evolve into a term that would automatically equate to a spirit or ghost. My coined term was simply an easy way to describe the ball of light.
Today, most novices use the term to mean a ghost or spirit, which is incorrect. I get mail all the time now, which says, "I got an Orb!" My response to this kind of email is to say, "So what?" An orb is not a ghost or a spirit; it is a term to describe the shape of an anomaly. Such shapes are common to airborne dust particles, tree and grass pollen, moisture and ice crystals and a vast array of other environmental particles.
An orb is an orb and not automatically a spirit. This is a good example of how inexperienced novices have filled the World Wide Web with ordinary dust particles. After eight years of posting photos and reviewing hundreds of thousands of photos, the vast majority are nothing more than ordinary, everyday dust particles. I get remarks, such as, "I have no dust in my home, I keep it very clean." I write back and ask them if they wipe their television screen or dust the table, the resulting accumulations are fallen orbs, dust particles that have settled to the ground.
We even lost a good friend to tree pollen. The yellow pollen was so bad that it covered our RV in yellow, yet our friend could not accept the yellow orbs that we could clearly see floating in the air as pollen. Our friend maintained that the yellow orbs were spirits and this hardness destroyed our friendship.
The scientific approach is one of keeping an open mind and continued learning, and not keeping a closed mind or preventing common sense to take root. It is no wonder that the orb phenomenon is so grossly overstated.
I hear about the orb controversy, but there is no controversy if the novices would simply learn to compare their photos with existing proven base lines. These novices have not gone out and photographed dust particles so they can compare the dust particle orbs to their own orbs. Common sense suggests that most of these novices should put their digital cameras away and seek a different hobby where they are willing to study and learn the fundamentals before attempting to explain away their orbs with irrational explanations.
Now, this may sound critical, but truth be known, novice ghost hunters are dime a dozen because they do not want to learn, but they do want the fame. The worst offenders are novices who snap a digital photo, find orbs in the photo with faces in them, and automatically associate these faces with her dead grandfather or grandmother who died two years ago. No way, no how are faces in orbs related to spirits.
Orb faces are a clear indication that the orb is an airborne dust particle that was close to the lens when the person snapped the photo. If paranormal events are happening, the events and photos of airborne dust particles are not evidence of that event. The two are not related. This seems to be a difficult concept for many to understand. This is not to say that the paranormal events are not real, but that the dust orbs are not evidence of the haunting.
We get the second type of offenders, those who snap photos of mosquitoes and call them fairies. I cannot tell you how many write to me and claim they have proof that fairies exist. When they send me the photo, all I see are the many mosquitoes that they captured.
A few years ago, we spent time in the Mosquito capital of the USA. We learned the hard way that Minnesota was home to ten thousand lakes. What this really means is stagnate ponds, breeding grounds of the famous monster mosquitoes. Minnesota has monster mosquitoes and we learned that at night, there is no way that we could take a photo without having at least one or more mosquitoes included in the picture. We were introduced to these interesting photo anomalies, but they are not the fairies so many claim they are. We established our own baseline and established that the white legged anomalies with wings are not fairies, but good old fashion mosquitoes.
We teach that ghost investigations work best when done with a scientific approach, avoiding psychic wannabe's and tea leaf readers with overactive imaginations. I have watched television shows of psychics who claimed orbs in motion that leave contrails were in reality angel wings and that hundreds of dust orbs were really angels greeting the living. If the psychics have no clue as to understanding ghost photos, why would we expect them to understand and be accurate when they describe what they see during an investigation?
Dust orbs are just that, orbs when captured with a camera. Orbs are not special or unique. Orbs are spheres that appear on our photos and nothing more. Why we have a need to see spirits in a dust storm or when it is poring down raind and we find people who snap a photo of the rain, yes, they will see orbs, hundreds of them, as in raindrops! One web site teaches people to stand in the rain to get spirit orbs. This mentality is amazing and a little bit scary. What is our society coming to when we label dust orbs as spirits or ghosts.
Is it too much television or to little common sense? If you believe your place is truly haunted, why not try for evidence that is not airborne dust particles. Why not set up a tape or digital recorder and see what ghostly voices you can record.
We offer a step by step guide for recording and analyzing ghost voices that is successful for those who follow our guidelines. The book is thermal bound and is 81/2 x 11-inch, with 22 pages filled with our techniques and secrets for EVP investigations. We even tell you how to hook up your recorder to the computer and how to use the software for removing background noise and or boosting the voice strength on the recording. Each page is crammed with valuable information and insights that we use on a regular basis for our investigations. We ship by the two or three day Priority Mail, not by the slow boat to China (Media Mail) that takes weeks to arrive.
We love our digital cameras and use them during our investigations, but we use them with responsibility and with common sense. We do not automatically claim that every orb captured is a ghost, but we check the environment first. Shine a million power candle power spot light, as in a Wal-Mart variety, into the air, if you see any floating anomalies in the beam of light, these floating anomalies are recorded as orbs with a digital or film camera. Use common sense. If you see floating anomalies in the air, these must be natural and not related to the paranormal.
Dr. Dave Oester
August 24, 2003 Newsletter
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