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Creepy, mysterious and spooky: is that house really haunted?

Creepy, mysterious and spooky: is that house really haunted?

By Rick Hinton

A former paranormal investigator I knew had preconceived notions – pointing out houses on the Southside, declaring, “Would you look at that … it just has to be haunted. I’m sure it is!” Well no, not really. …

Beech Grove, Southport, Franklin and Greenwood have their share of houses that from all outward appearances have attained the dubious moniker of “haunted,” with no rhyme or reason other than it has the “creep” factor. However, that doesn’t mean it has any type of paranormal activity inside. Looks can be deceiving. A house resembling the one from The Addams Family television show might have absolutely nothing going on within its walls, while a simple unassuming brick ranch might have activity off the scale. You just never know.

Houses are receptacles for those who have passed through on their life journey. Many such structures have a long history of occupants because of their age; others a shorter span of time, but no less significant because the human element always brings something to the table. Think of a house as a sponge that absorbs not only joy but also drama and sometimes tragedy as its occupants call it home during their brief sojourn. It is believed that the environment within houses can play these snippets back – sometimes periodically, sometimes on a regular basis; sometimes never. Perhaps it could be the very land the house sits upon, for it too has been known to soak up events and replay them like a movie. (Think of the Gettysburg Battlefield.)

Haunted … or not? (Photo by Rick Hinton)

Dramatic and tragic incidents within a residence (murder, suicide, drug use, etc.) don’t necessarily mean it will become haunted later. Yet there are many reported cases where these events do affect the residents within; and many more stories of these activities not affecting the house at all. Tragic, violent deaths don’t always guarantee paranormal activity. There are no absolutes!

However, there is a flipside to the coin (there always is). Suppose dear Aunt Edna loved life, loved her family, loved her house and loved to cook. And then Edna passes on. You now live in her house, awakening one morning to the sounds of movement in the kitchen below, pots clanking and the sudden phantom smell of bacon cooking. You creep downstairs, holding a ball bat and discover nothing! Edna’s house was her sanctuary while alive. It became a part of her. There was no dramatic death, just a prolonged illness.

In questioning how all of this works, did Edna decide to remain behind? To continue on with a life she had come to know and enjoy? Or did the house simply “record” her while she was alive, only to play back her memory later? Paranormal investigators wrestle with that.

“That place just has to be haunted!” Well, just maybe. …

Happy New Year!

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