Chapter 05: Fear, Anxiety and Hysteria

Fear, Anxiety and Hysteria

Fear is the human response to danger. We are conditioned to be afraid of ghosts, which is a connection to the fear of death and a fear of the unknown. The unknown can be unpredictable and presents unexpected dangers.

Fear, anxiety and hysteria are influences on the perceptions of ghosts and other paranormal experiences. When individuals believe a house is haunted, the fear of ghosts drives seemingly normal events into the realm of the paranormal. Daily occurrences, no matter how small or insignificant, falsely become paranormal events caused by ghosts. There is a belief that the lives of those living in a haunted house are in danger. The fear can be so intense that some families flee their homes in terror. Much of this misguided fear comes directly from propaganda and disinformation. Fictional movies and books created for entertainment purposes provide much of the misleading perceptions of ghosts. Fictional stories typically portray ghosts as menacing forces.

There is also a problem when individuals living in haunted houses begin “actively” participating in the haunting. When individuals listen closely for strange noises, even the smallest sound becomes magnified. Many times these are natural sounds that previously went unnoticed. Fear will cause individuals to lie awake at night, staring into the darkness until their eyes finally see something scary. Fear can control the situation and create false encounters – a dark apparition, a moving shadow or an evil face. Often the fear of ghosts is so powerful that just the simple suggestion of a haunting is enough to cause individuals to believe they are experiencing the paranormal.

Fear and hysteria during a ghost hunt can have negative results. Eerie things will happen during ghost hunts and those events could be directly connected to the haunting. It is essential to remain calm and not allow a sudden frenzy of emotions to overpower the situation. There is nothing wrong with a ghost hunter leaving the investigation in order to clear his head and regain control of their emotions. After the ghost hunter has regained his composure, he can return to the ghost hunt if he wishes to continue.

The human mind can involuntarily create an atmosphere of unnecessary terror. The vast majority of ghosts are non-violent. With more education and understanding, ghost hunters are able to realize that most ghosts are not threatening. People who have learned to live with ghosts have described it as an enlightening experience.

NEXT Chapter 04: The Study of Parapsychology