by Leah

Have you ever been interrogated? By the police, your parents, your boss? No one likes to be talked to in this manner. Well, someone might, but that’s a different thing altogether – if you know what I mean. (Another blog for another time…)

Imagine being stuck in a place that you simply cannot leave. You’ve got no family or friends around you. You see the same old scenery every day. You have a story to tell, but no one even knows you’re there, so how can they listen? It’s like being trapped—on an operating table, in a coma—and you can see and hear everything that’s going on around you, but no one even knows you are there. Or that you even exist.

In my mind, that’s how I imagine spirits feel. For whatever reason, they may be trapped in a building, a forest, a home…and some of them aren’t even sure how they got there, where they really are, or even that they have passed on. If they are still here in the world of the living, even in a spiritual form, they may have unfinished business that they are determined to address. They may be horribly sad over the passing of a loved one, or because they can’t find the friends or family that they so loved once upon a time. They may be scared—why am I here? Who are all of these people that keep trudging through my “home” and are they going to harm me? Or, in all likelihood, they may just be very lonely.

When I go on an investigation, I am fully aware that I’m possibly invading someone’s space. Whether it is what they consider to be their “safe place,” or whether it’s a location they hate but are trapped in—they still don’t want me invading what’s become familiar to them.  Not only do I want to be respectful of their situation, but I also don’t want to piss off a spirit, to put it bluntly. I’m equally curious about and wary of the unknown—so I’m not taking any stupid chances. If I want to be a daredevil, I’m going to find some other way to appease the thrill-seeker in me.

So, whether on an investigation with my partner, or with our group, I always respect the unknown upon arrival. I talk to anything or anyone that may exist in that location as though I am meeting a person for the first time, and though I don’t want to come across as condescending at all, I also tend to take the role of “mother figure” when speaking to any entity. A typical introduction for me upon starting an investigation goes something like this:

“Hello. Is there anyone here who would like to speak with us?”

“I can assure you that we’re not here to intrude upon your space, to bother or annoy you, or to cause any trouble. We’re merely curious about anyone who might be here for whatever reason. I’d love to talk with you and hear your story – at least whatever you’re willing to share with us.”

“My name is Leah. I am not here to harm you. I simply want to listen if you would like to talk with me or with our group. Can you tell us if someone is here and if you’d like to talk?”

Based upon whatever response or activity we get from such an introduction, we then move on to asking basic questions until we get a response that we can build upon for getting even more information.

“Thank you for talking to us. We really appreciate your response. If you’d like to talk to us more, please let us know by turning the flashlight on and leaving it on.”

“Can you tell us what happened to you?”

“Are you here alone, or do you have friends here with you to keep you company?”

“Do you like it here?”

For whatever reason, in such investigations, spirits seem to respond better to the females on our team. We usually chalk it up to the motherly tone that we take in conversation or maybe the desire of virtually everyone (deep-down) to have a chance to talk with their mothers, or a similar female figure.

At some of the investigations I’ve been on, I’ve heard some individuals (usually men) take a tone of authority with the spirits or to carry themselves with an attitude. This will, in most instances, only serve to irritate a spirit, which will often prevent them from talking to you altogether. If they do talk, they often get attitude back, or in the case of one playful spirit we encountered at a local boat ramp/rec area, they may just try to twist their responses into a hopeless pretzel that you can rarely untwist.

Of course, not all spirits are lonely or even remotely friendly. I always approach a situation with the assumption that the spirits at said location will be friendly. But, if at any point they seem to be hostile or rude, then that changes the stakes—at least to a certain degree. Speaking gently to a spirit who has already said something rude or ugly to you will get you nowhere. Typically, you don’t know the particular attitude of a spirit until or unless you start using a spirit box. That’s when you know—because you can detect tone when you can hear their voice(s), and that can make all the difference. At that point, you will want to take your cue from what’s being said via the box.

In using a spirit box, you will hear all kinds of things coming through, but once you’ve heard a voice come through, there’s no question that you’re hearing from a spirit. Some of the voices I’ve heard through the spirit box have been sad, some drab, but more often than not, I’ve heard voices with attitude. When a spirit is able to actually make his or her voice heard, tone will tell you everything you need to know about how they are feeling about their current situation. Yet even when I encounter voices loaded with sarcasm or anger, I still try to speak reasonably with them, though I am much more firm and unyielding with my tone. They can be annoyed that I’m here invading their space and asking them to talk, but there is no reason to get cocky or abrasive with myself or my team. At that point, I will typically give them the option of speaking more appropriately to me or keeping their mouth shut.

Wherever you are investigating and whatever your purpose, please remember to speak gently and kindly to any spirits that may be present. If you’re rude, they likely will not talk to you at all. If they take the time and the energy to let you know that they are present, please take the time and patience to let them speak to you at their own pace, and always be aware that they probably are just as wary of you as you are of them.