If you have to stare, it’s probably not there!

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Hello again!
Welcome back to another massive rant regarding the paranormal world!
Today’s brain fart comes in the sweet smelling form of photos of apparitions!

Check out the header photo! (Who’s that guy? The answers at the end!)

These come in all shapes and sizes and if you look up photos of ghosts or once again “evidence” of ghosts you will come across a mass amount of these strange looking photos that, due to the context you are putting them in can give a little chill down the spine!

Well in a moment of severe boredom I found a certain website dedicated to such photos with no less than 357 in the library! That boredom led me down a path of explaining each and every one of them! Yes I really do mean severe boredom but when you think part of the job is looking at 60-80 hours per investigation of footage of various empty rooms, the ability to click ‘next’ was a smidgen more exciting!

Of these 357 photos 2 caught my eye and made me think “what the f*ck is that?” And if you do the math that’s only 0.56% of the entire library! Basically not a lot!

These photos where placed in the following individual brackets (placed in worthwhile order):

•Mmmm interesting!

Photos that would require deeper research but wow! Pretty good!

•Good but blurred!

Look good but the motion blur stirs up all kinds so not far off simple pareidolia!

•Pareidolia!

Every investigators first call on anything that looks like a person, face or figure! Works with sounds too but ill go into that in a bit!

•Camera fault!

Self explanatory but cameras, both digital and film showing failure in the software, lenses or settings etc!

•Atmospheric disturbance!

Rain, mists, orbs, camera straps, people, pretty much anything outside that camera!

•Fake!

Well it says it all! The b*stards! Making my job a lot harder and causing me to have to remember almost every silhouette for ghost photo apps!

•Really??? You gotta be shitting me!

Completely stupid attempts at stamping something paranormal for example, the most obvious natural things like a stick being a full apparition! Basic attempts of “everyone look at me I found a ghost! Please be my friend”

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Haha really made me laugh!

These 7 reasons seemed ample in my boredom quest to cover the 357 photos and explain what each was!

The reason behind this story comes from the results, the vast majority of them was caused by “drum roll please???”

Pareidolia!!!!!

For those who aren’t clued up in the psychological phenomena that is Pareidolia I shall explain and for those who already know??? Well read on you never know what you may learn!
Pareidolia is a beautiful phenomena that has allowed us to have a massive evolutionary advantage and find our place through natural selection (sorry creationists!)

This cognitive function allows us to spot, judge and react appropriately too threat from other people or animals! An example being we are walking through the woods and we see someone stood facing us! But there face looks like they want to kill us! We know this almost instantly and at the point we make the decision to run or fight! The basic flight or fight response! And sometime the freeze! But we don’t want to admit to that!

This works the same if its harmless Bob from down the road, we see him recognise him so we smile and both realise that everything is ok and get on with our day!
This also plays a role in smileys, drawings, paintings, photos and pretty much all artificial interpretations of faces, figures, landscapes etc

🙂

See this is just a round blob of yellow with what a half moon and a couple of circles but we perceive it as a face with an emotion!

Remember Jesus and Mary have been spotted on alot of inanimate objects!!!

Exactly the same happens with sound! (But ill save that for another post)

So to avoid digging further into the ventral fusiform cortex, further apophenia or the full force of our own brain I will leave the explanation there! Hopefully you get the idea!

My point to all this babble is if you see a face in a photo usually in smoke, mist trees or an orb it should in no way be seen as evidence your mind is quite literally playing tricks on you!
This is the same with figures standing in the distance and a photo shows us nothing, a sequential photo gives us a better idea but close but no cigar!

After all of this I want to mention the number one irritation I experience whilst poking my nose in the paranormal world and that’s inducing of the pareidolia effect! It’s the “take a look at this photo!” “If you look closely you can see the shape of someone stood in the door” etc etc etc “oh and look if I zoom right into this pixelated mess you can see what looks like a person!”.

In order to gain reliable evidence, you should not need to point out the shapes or faces! It should stand out! It should jump at you the second you see it!
Anything else goes into the interesting file (remember that one) for later review!

Doing this will help de-murk the evidence pool over time! And give the people who truly are trying to find out what is going a chance to find out some answers!

And as for the answer to my question at the top!
That’s smoky joe the ghost of an evil demon who’s been known to……….;-)
I’m joking its smoke from my cigarette capturing a beam of sunlight! Just goes to show how easy this phenomena can happen!

2 thoughts on “If you have to stare, it’s probably not there!

  1. Extremely interesting read Kev 🙂 I totally agree.
    The other thing I tend to see a lot of, is the blatant use of Pareidolia within the context of something Paranormal, to instill absolute fear and suggestion into people’s mind.
    One such extreme example, which to be honest totally discusted me (I apologise in advance, because this is a complete dig at a specific religion, and more precisely, the religious fanatics and nuts associated with such), was when I happened to come across online a web site (or article on a web site, I can remember which), written by a christian group, stating that the fall of the WTC in New York on 9/11, was down to satan brought on by satanic worship and all the other non-christian religions out there, and their “proof” was photos of the towers burning and collapsing which showed the face of the devil and/or demons in the smoke billowing from the buildings.
    Despite being totally discusted with the way these people were using the Pareidolia phenomena as a means to instill suggestion, I did end up laughing hysterically, because one of the images that showed the “devil”, to me looked almost identical to the iconic caricature (and tattoo) of the “Laughing Devil”!!!!
    People posting images such as you have shown above and stating it as “proof” of paranormal activity is one thing, but using it to enforce an individual’s, group’s or a cult’s spiritual and religious dogma is VILE!!!!
    Sorry if I have gone off an a slight tangent or rant, but this Blog subject touched on a bit of a nerve :-s

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    1. In the time I have written this blog I have seen no more than 40 photos posted up of this phenomenon and watched no less than hundreds of people with comments like “wow that’s amazing” “great capture” “god that freaky” and each time I swear I lose a small part of my hair line!

      Like

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