AMERICAN GHOST SOCIETY
Presented by Troy Taylor, Author of the GHOST HUNTER'S GUIDEBOOK and President of the American Ghost Society
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PORTALS, DOORWAYS & MYSTERY SPOTS
This type of haunting, or paranormal phenomena, is the most controversial type of haunting that has been documented to date by paranormal researchers. The idea that this type of activity may actually exist is still mostly theory and conjecture... although evidence is starting to be collected which may actually prove these "portals" exist. The problem is that this type of haunting is the least understood and least traditional of all types of spirit activity.
Many ghost researchers reject the theories behind "portals" because they do not fit into their accepted ideas of haunted places.... but we cannot afford to do this. We cannot afford to just reject off-hand something that we simply do not understand. Just think, if we had done this, many researchers would still be thinking that "poltergeist" activity was the work of evil spirits.... and not activity caused by the hidden depths of the human mind.
So, strange and untraditional or not, the idea of the "portal" must be examined because evidence is starting to appear which just may surprise the doubters among you.
The idea of a "portal" or a "doorway" to another dimension is not a new one. Many researchers believe that there are places all over the world that serve as "doorways" from our world to another. These doorways are thought to provide access for entities to enter our world. They may be the spirits of people who have lived before, or they could be something else altogether. Some researchers even believe that they could be otherworldly beings from another dimension.
If that sounds far-fetched, believe me, it isn't as strange as it sounds. The entities sighted, reported and even photographed around what many believe to be "portals" could be the spirits of the dead.... or something much stranger.
If locations like this do exist and they are "doorways", isn't it an easy assumption to make that these spots could have been labeled as "haunted" over the years by people who have seen things near them that they couldn't explain? I believe this has probably happened quite often and these places didn't become "haunted" as other places do (through tragic events or death)..... these locations had already been that way for many, many years.
One of the most common locations for these "doorways" seem to be in cemeteries. Now, as a rule, most cemeteries are not haunted, but in the past few years, ghost hunters have collected dozens and dozens of anomalous photographs taken in cemeteries. There seems to be no explanation why many of these cemeteries would become haunted unless they provided access for spirits, or entities, to pass from one world to the next.
Of course, some of the cemeteries are haunted in the traditional manner.... it's the ones that aren't which causes the puzzle. It is possible that these sites were "haunted" long before a cemetery was located there. It is possible that the psychic draw of the area was what caused our ancestors to locate a cemetery there in the first place. They may have felt there was something "sacred" or "spiritual" about the place and without realizing why, they placed a burial ground there and made it a protected place.
The Native Americans chose their burial grounds in this manner, although they did it consciously. They found a place to bury and honor the dead which they felt was more closely connected to the next world. Many of these locations are now considered to be "haunted" or at least inhabited by spirits.
So why not our own cemeteries? Could our own ancestors have not chosen the sites for our own burial grounds in the same manner, albeit in an unconscious way? These "doorways" could be passages to the next world and the entities captured on film here could be the spirits of the dead... passing back and forth between two worlds..... or they could be something far stranger.
And, as I will show you in a few moments, graveyards are not the only places to find these doorways. I believe they exist in other places too. In fact, these doorways, and the strange entities that come through them, may just be the explanation for many of the sightings that have plagued the annals of paranormal research for years. For some time, investigators have attempted to dispel the some of the myths that "ghosts are evil" and that "they hurt people"..... but what if we are wrong, at least partially?
I don't believe that ghosts can hurt you... at least not the discarnate personalities of the dead. There are certainly cases of people being injured in hauntings, but most of these cases boil down to poltergeist phenomena, caused by a human agent and not a ghost at all. It is the other type of case that worries me.... the cases of strange beings that cannot ever be described as human, terrifying visions, and yes, instances of people actually being injured by the entities involved in the case.
What if these creatures are not ghosts at all? But strange entities that we cannot understand... who have passed into our world via these "portals"? We have to consider this... as it may provide many answers to cases where traditional methods of ghost investigation have not worked. This theory might even explain the "negative" spirits that are commonly reported!
The following are 2 locations which I believe are "portal" locations. I have investigated both locations myself and would describe neither of them as being traditionally "haunted". I have also been able to collect evidence at both locations which may point to the "portal" theory being correct. Of course, this is my interpretation of the evidence gathered and I would be interested to hear from any other researchers, who have investigated the locations, and who may have evidence to the contrary.
GRAVEYARD X: There really is no background information about this secluded Midwestern cemetery, which makes the strange findings and photographs obtained here all the more interesting and complex. Photographs obtained here can be examined in the SPIRIT PHOTOGRAPHY section of the website, under the listing of "Graveyard X".
Nearly every photograph taken here was obtained in a small area of the cemetery, a short distance from a small hill. What this really means... I have no idea. But it seems to point towards a more active part of the cemetery and, I believe, a doorway. We have also obtained a number of documented temperature drops in this area. One reading, using a Raytech Raynger ST2, was photographed and shows two researchers pointing the thermal scanner at a luminous mist that was not seen at the time of the photograph. This photo was also taken in the same portion of the cemetery.
In 1997, during an investigation at this cemetery, several researchers and myself made contact with a spirit who was present. According to the planchette, it claimed to be that of a small child who could not spell her name, did not know her age.. but who claimed to not be alone at the location. Strangely, the first burial in the cemetery had been of a young girl who would have been described in just that manner. The problem was that I was the only person present who knew this and I had not been part of the attempts at communication.
Could the spirit making contact have actually been that of a young girl? Or could there have been other spirits who passed along information they thought we wanted to hear? Or could the entities have been something far stranger, and so alien to us, that they pretended to be something familiar to us and something that we could recognize.
I believe this option should be considered.
THE BELL WITCH CAVE: The story of the Bell Witch is probably one of the most famous hauntings in American history. We have a large section on the history of the haunting in our section on HAUNTED TENNESSEE. Many writers and researchers believe that the haunting was caused by one of two sources. First, that the spirit on the farm was an outward projection of a woman named Kate Batts, with whom John Bell had been involved with through a bad business deal. Other say that the haunting was actually a poltergeist manifestation caused by Betsy Bell, John's daughter, who targeted herself and her father for attacks by the "witch".
But I would like to suggest a third theory. I believe that the "witch" was a creature who already inhabited the site of the Bell farm, long before it started to haunt the Bell family. I do not believe that it is a coincidence that an Indian burial ground is located on the property (and directly above the Bell Witch Cave... but more about that in a moment). This burial mound is an ancient one and built centuries before by the mysterious mound builders of the region. If these Native Americans chose this location for a reason (and I believe they did) then it could have been because the location was a "sacred" site..in other words, a portal to the next world.
Imagine this for a moment.... let's say that an entity came through this portal and inhabited the area for many years before the white settlers came. When the haunting first started with the Bells, the spirit appeared in the form of a black dog and as a giant bird. These are both symbols from American Indian mythology and it is possible that the spirit had plagued the Indians in this location first, appearing as their mythological symbols. Perhaps the spirit had no concept that time had passed and that new people had come to the area.
The forms of the dog and the bird quickly passed and the haunting began with sounds of knocks, raps and guttural human sounds before it became violent. Consider the idea that the spirit may not have known the Bells at all, but just targeted them because they lived nearby. Perhaps it spent the initial days of the haunting learning human mannerisms, speech and language and learned of the Kate Batt's problem by simply observing the family. Once the spirit "learned" to speak, the problems seemed to intensify.
Again, this is all speculation, but it does fit rather neatly into the profile that we have created for a "portal" haunting and would solve some of the remaining puzzles from the Bell Witch case.
But what about the cave itself? It was never really a part of the original story of the Bell Witch, but it has its own share of mysteries. There have been numerous strange events that have taken place here, from strange sights, sounds, encounters, and even photographs that seem to be affected by some sort of energy in the area. As mentioned previously, the cave is located in the side of a Red River bluff.... directly beneath the burial ground. If this location really is a "portal"... it just might explain the bizarre events that have been reported here for decades.
But do I have any evidence that a "portal" is located on the property? As a matter of fact, I do!
While filming at the Bell Witch Cave for the ADVENTURES BEYOND documentary, "America's Most Haunted" in June of 1997, we inadvertently recorded a rather strange event in one of the passages of the cave. The "Adventures Beyond" producer, Bob Schott, was using advanced optical technology that had been developed for the military during the Gulf War and while taping, he captured a unique event on film.
Directly before the camera, in a narrow cave passage, a "doorway effect" opened from right to left across the corridor. The doorway was unseen by all of us at the time... as were the two macabre-looking faces that appeared in the doorway. It all happened so fast that we could not have reacted if we had seen anything. In fact, the faces appeared in single frames... only a mere second apart. They would not be discovered until post-production, some weeks later.
Unable to believe his eyes, Schott submitted the film for meticulous testing by two manufacturers of advanced technology for the military, B.E. Meyers and Litton Industries. Both companies were skeptical of the project until they received the tapes.... and both of them ruled the images as unexplainable!
So what does all of this mean? I will have to leave that up to you to decide....
Are "portals" real and do they really connect with another world, or another dimension? I believe the possibility is very strong! For now, the theory involves a lot of speculation but I do believe it has merit and should not be dismissed without much more study and research.
If we refuse to consider the idea, then where does that get us? Even after all of these years, the paranormal sciences are still in the beginning stages. All that we can do right now is to speculate and theorize and try to gather as much evidence as possible that something is out there.....
And in some cases, that something may be stranger than we think!
© Copyright 2004 by Troy Taylor. All Rights Reserved.
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