There is an increasing amount of evidence taken during Paranormal Investigations where an object has moved and without any human action.
Cases of a haunting have long been known to involve the movement of objects. This has led to much speculation as to how an item might have been moved:
- Was the object touched by a spirit?
- Did the object truly move on its own or, possibly, by someone accidentally or fraudulently?
- Could the movement have been by some natural cause or even through the witness' own psychokinesis?
When a haunting is active, witnesses may report observing something
moving - it could be one or multiple items. But if there is one item
that seems central to the odd activity, then that is a 'trigger object'
of that particular case.
It is also a common practice to use items during investigations to see if a 'trigger object' can be found - something that will cause an active spirit to respond to paranormal investigators, proving the presence of an intelligent, invisible entity.
If you have an object of focus, something that seems central to the investigation, then you want to first investigate the movement. Some areas to explore:
- Can there be any natural explanation for its movement? (First assume it is NOT a spirit.)
- Can you run an experiment to make the object move on its own (e.g. Would a person walking by make it move?)
- Can you capture the movement of the item on video for closer study?
- Did something happen before the object moved; is it's movement tied to something else happening in the area? (e.g. Did an appliance turn on, then the item moved?)
Let's understand a bit better the area you are investigating by attempting to piece some of the facts and gain an understanding. If you can develop a theory based upon the story and any evidence, it is possible to test the idea.
- What have people seen or experienced to make them believe something paranormal is at work?
- Who do witnesses believe this activity to be? Is this paranormal activity sentient (aware - an intelligent haunting) or non-sentient (e.g. residual haunting)
- What connection might this paranormal activity have with the trigger object and why are they making themselves known?
Encourage. Ask for the trigger objects to move by talking openly - be sure and audio record such sessions and well as video the session. Your goal: Attempt to confirm who or what is involved and how you can help, if possible. If you can figure this out, and if you can help an disembodied soul, ask for a Medium to reconnect with spirit and to move them on. If your investigation is part of a haunting, then that haunting should end and the spirit should be freed. Paranormal investigation should be fun and rewarding but with an objective in mind beyond the experience if you encounter such evidence that you feel this is the case.
When using a objects to test movement, it is desirable to keep the experiment clean. That means eliminating access to the room where the trigger object is placed while ensuring nothing in the room, such as any appliance that may cause vibration or sound, can result in the object's movement. If an investigator is in the room with the trigger object, he or she should not be close to the trigger item or sitting on the same surface as it (e.g. the object and the investigator both sitting on a couch).
Video record the experiment so any movement will be easier to detect and validated. If the trigger object is small, such as a coin, place it on a piece of paper and trace around it with a pencil. The boundary of the pencil line will mark its exact spot. Write instructions to the spirit on the paper where your item is placed, especially if left alone in the room. Another method is to use masking tape if paper cannot be used. Again, leave a note for the spirit.
- an item that is already experiencing paranormal movement
- an item associated with the deceased person considered to be responsible in the case of a haunting.
The object of choice should be chosen to have the best chance at making an emotional connection with the lost spirit.
There are two ways to use the trigger object:
- Leave the room altogether, block access to it and allow a video recorder to capture any movement.
- Remain in the room, asking the spirit to move the object. If the object moves, attempt 'yes and no' questioning with the ghost. ("If the answer is 'yes,' then please move the object.")
The use of other equipment such as EMF meters and movement detectors that light up but not make a sound are also useful tools.
Try and match your trigger object with the facts of the case. (Be
sure and not select something for your experiment that can move on its
own such as a ball.) If a child spirit is believed to be there, then
choose a toy. If an old man, then use one of his possessions. If you do
not know how to tie the trigger object to the spirit, then why not try
using something colorful and out of place to spark some reaction? The
point is to use some logic behind your choice in order to gain the best
chance at triggering your ghost into action. You are trying to connect
with a spirit's emotions.
Some suggested trigger objects: jewelry, coins, non-electrical toys (e.g. stuffed animal), a watch, clothing, a book, a pipe, religious or wartime objects, photos etc.
Famous ghost investigator, Harry Price, used trigger objects while investigating the famously haunted Borley Rectory. Items were placed in different rooms in the attempt to attract the ghosts into interacting with him and his co-investigator (Howe). Notably, a cigarette carton and match box was used to try and tempt a former smoker to respond. (See Ghost Hunting Equipment of Harry Price)