Hayley is a Ghost

EMF & ghosts

Paranormal investigators often have a couple of EMF meters in their investigation kits and will use them for a variety of reasons. The most favoured theory is the one that suggests a high level EMF suggests a ghost is present.

Paranormal researchers will often take ‘base line readings’ of a supposedly haunted building. They will often measure things like the temperature and the electromagnetic field in each room or area using an EMF meter. Then during the rest of the investigation they will continue to take readings to see if they rise or fall in the different areas and will make note of such fluctuations.

These fluctuations are often attributed to spiritual energy manifesting itself or are, at least, noted as odd. However, unless you take these base line tests and monitor the EMF levels in the building over a long period of time, it’s pretty impossible to be able to know if a reading is anomalous or not.

Also, magnetic fields are physical fields produced by electrically charged objects. The electric field is produced by stationary charges and the magnetic field by moving charges – or currents.

EMF is often described as being a static field – one that does not charge or fluctuate over time (thus a suddenly higer reading must be anomalous), whereas, in fact, it does change over time – but very slowly. When fluctuations in the EMF are detected at locations that are reputed to be haunted it is more likely and probable that the fluctuation is caused by items in the building that are electronic or things that electrically or magnetically charged – rather than the spirits of the dead.

Experience-inducing fields are simply fields that have experience inducing properties. Current evidence suggests that EIFs are varying magnetic fields with low frequency and a moderate intensity/amplitude.

EIFs overlay any existing ambient and static magnetic field present in any certain areas – this would probably be the geomagnetic field itself (the magnetic field that is constantly present at the Earth’s surface and in which we are subject to continously), something that is considered as static but actually does change over long periods of time.

Solar flares and solar wind can have major effects of the geomagnetic field – depending on the suns activity day to day but such magnetic fields are at present not considered to be important in inducing hallucinations in any way and EIFs, if present, would most likely appear as fluctuations on top of the local static field.

EIFs are not caused by or contributed to by household appliances that are powered with electricity from DC or mains supply. EIFs also do not cause everyone to hallucinate when they have been exposed to high levels of EIF for a long period of time. Only around 25% of the population show an increased susceptibility and this is usually due to increased neuronal instability in certain regions of the brain.

This is another theory that ghost researchers use and anothe reason they use EMF meters on their investigations, however, it’s also worth noting that these EIFs are not detectable with your standard EMF meter.


8 Responses to "EMF & ghosts"

Very interesting artical and view on EIF fields with EMF

[…] was sceptical, I’ve written about the misconceptions people make about electromagnetic fields and ghosts before, but I was willing to be convinced that this device […]

I have seen investigators claim that heavy use of electronic equipment in a small area was likely the cause of some seemingly paranormal events – interference, strong fields, etc. But you say that household items do not cause EIFs.

What does cause EIFs? Are they only man-made as in electrodes placed on your head? What natural environments/events are associated?

I’m not overly familiar with the subject, however according to ASSAP there are a number of possible causes. I think it’s important to remember the word ‘possible’ though. I’ve highlighted what I could find – there is a large chunk of text highlighted where it starts discussing artifical causes… below the highlighted stuff it goes in to discuss causes in homes etc. (I just didn’t have time to highlight it all, sorry)


@idoubtit As the brains function relies on electrical activity a big leap of imagination is not required to see that either strong magnetic or electrical fields could effect its function in some way. In a recent TV programme here in the UK electrodes attached to the skull were demonstrated to disturb the subject in the completion of a task.

I don’t have knowledge of EIFs but do remember my university professor (electronics & electrical engineering) stating that he attributed a family member becoming depressed when they were on holiday in a certain part of England to high levels of radioactivity in the granite rocks.

Many ‘supernatural researchers’ do not understand (or want to understand) what is present in the “ether” that surrounds us all.
If you can pick up a signal on a radio set then obviously the waves of the frequency you are tuned to are present in your surroundings. Take a multi band radio, or better still a wide band spectrum analyser, and you will see that the environment is just full of radio signals. The majority will be just micro volts,or less, but this is something that wasn’t around before the invention of wireless! Idiots who use ghost (franks) boxes are just taking samples of these signals. Before the invention of radio there were probably only ‘signals’ generated by lightning. You can hear these on a LW radio during thunderstorms.

All pieces of electronics unless completely screened and filtered, generate their own alternating electric signals. That goes for everything that uses a ‘clock’ to step through its functions if digital (even a pocket calculator) or anything analogue with an oscillator such as (superhetrodyne) radio, tape recorder etc. or anything with its own generated alternating electrical signal; for instance motor control etc. EMF detectors are useful for finding electrical cables in walls but ‘ghost hunters’ like to use them for looking for the paranormal. Unfortunately neither the equipment or the investigators are scientifically sophisticated enough for that task!

As for static electrical fields, these can be generated by many means; I expect most of us have rubbed a balloon and stuck it to the ceiling. Clothing can also generate high electrostatic charges hence the requirement for special measures when producing or packing electronic equipment. 30KV is not uncommon hence the special anti-static bags for computer parts. Whether such high field strengths would cause effects on the brain over prolonged periods I do not know but many people complain of “sick building syndrome”. When I worked as electronic design engineer we had antistatic carpeting throughout but that was to protect the devices rather than us!.

So even in the middle of the countryside, miles from anywhere, we are all surrounded by lots of electric fields whether they come from radio transmissions, power lines or even our underwear ! 🙂

David. Yes, good points about EMFs being all around us. However, I have strong reservations about a few of your points. First, electrodes generating a EIF around the brain is a controlled situation. I am really interested to find out if those kind of fields can be simulated by natural events. I have a feeling this is VERY rare considering the relative weakness of EMF fields generated to those that affect our brains. Radioactivity in rock is something completely different! Radon, produced by granite, causes ions in the air. Ionized air in relation to mood is controversial so this story is just a story. I’d place no credence in it. But this is an interesting phenomena that I have looking into in relation to behavior prior to earthquakes.

I’m all in agreement that ghost researchers have no idea about what goes on around them. They are making total leaps of logic to conclude that any environmental variables are measuring spirit activity. My question, instead, is: Do the environmental variables have anything to do with why people _feel as if_ they are experiencing a paranormal event? Or is this just a case of cultural conditioning and bias?

Hi idoubtit. I wasn’t thinking of Radon when recounting the story my Prof told me. I had Gamma Radiation in mind which is part of the electromagnetic spectrum.

Sure, Electrical field tests on the brain are done under a controlled laboratory conditions so that gives a good measure of susceptibility. You ask if those fields can be generated by natural means and you suggest that such an event may be infrequent. IF such transient conditions could occur then to quantify them scientifically would be, by their very nature, exceedingly difficult. I don’t know of any such occurrences or any attempts to monitor them; but then I am neither well read or an expert in that field.

As you say, some thing “at distance” would have to be very strong to replicate the effects of electrodes attached directly to the skull. To attribute such a source of energy (if it existed) to anything related to the ‘soul of a dead human being’ is, to my mind, unscientific. How would such large amounts of energy be stored or generated?

If “sensible” investigators wanted to do a long term test of a site they would have to make sure they weren’t recording transmissions from local taxis, aircraft, Radio Hams, Baby Alarms, Mobile Phones, CBers etc …. quite a daunting task. The amount of equipment needed would be beyond the means of the average ‘ghost hunter’.

I once attended a meeting of people petitioning about a replacement radio mast on our local police station building. I saw people leaving the meeting with mobile phones clamped to their ears ignorant to the fact that the microwave field strength in their brain from their mobiles was many times greater than any radiation would be from the proposed new lower frequency aerial at a distance.

YOU ASKED …. “My question, instead, is: Do the environmental variables have anything to do with why people _feel as if_ they are experiencing a paranormal event?”

My answer would be YES … just watch any TV ghost hunt! But you ask is this due to cultural conditioning and bias. Well, I too feel it a bit spooked walking in the woods at night but is that due to reading and hearing fairy stories or something ‘wired’ in our brain for survival purposes? I wouldn’t want to bump into a hobgoblin or be bumped-off by a large flesh eating animal. What do you think?

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Hayley is a ghost

Hayley Stevens is an advocate for science-based research into seemingly paranormal experiences and occurrences. With a background in the pseudo-scientific research into ghosts, Hayley offers a unique insight into the strange world of ghost hunting through her experience.

She describes herself as 'a ghost hunter who doesn't hunt for ghosts' and this is her personal blog where she writes about ghosts, people, and other interesting things. Read more here.

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