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The following e-mail to me came in from our own researcher, Tere, who gave me the following thoughts... (It has been edited slightly)...

From: "Tere"
To: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Subject: editorial re cemeteries and premature burials

Hello Matthew,

Interesting editorial about the cemeteries and premature burials. I don't think we can even imagine the terror of waking up in a buried coffin, six feet under. And, yes, if someone was buried alive in this horrific way it could certainly lead to some ghostly activity.

As for the activity, or lack of it, of ghosts in cemeteries (other than the above)...I always wondered...since there is so much emotional energy at cemeteries from the family and friends of the deceased...I would think that there might just be the possibility of some activity since ghosts can be attracted to this type of energy and the visitations of family members, etc.,some on a very regular basis, might be the catalyst of some activity if only for a rare few. I am wondering this...Is it always the personal energy of the ghost that causes it to return to a certain area, as in a violent death at a certain place etc., or can it be the energy of someone who was very close to them, for whatever reason, when in this dimension?

One quick example...when my mother (who did not believe in ghosts nor NDE's and ended up experiencing both, by the way) was in the hospital she told me on the QT that my father, who passed away 16 years previously, had been at the doorway of her room and they had a very interesting conversation pertaining to her present condition. If we can presume that this was an apparition then it was not in a place it had ever been in life and was not attracted to any place personal but someone else s energy, so to speak.

If that is so, why not activity in cemeteries where some family and friends spend a lot of time in a highly emotional state. (My mother went weekly for 16 years.)

Now, I suppose we have to make the distinction between ghosts and spirits.

Ghosts being earth bound and spirits having passed over into the light and just coming for the occasional "visit" to perhaps finish off some incomplete business or help in some other way. IMHO

Do ghosts only "haunt" the places that they have known in their lifetime or experienced strong emotions in or around and spirits can basically go anywhere they are needed, etc.? And if that is the case, how do you explain "personal" hauntings of certain people, no matter where they move to?

I am not convinced that there is nil activity in cemeteries, Matthew, just because we have not come across any yet. I would think that the percentage is about the same as with any other area that contains strong emotional energy even if it is not the "ghost's". I also think that in a few extremely rare cases the people left behind have such strong ties and such strong emotions regarding the deceased that they can literally "hold on" to the deceased and keep them earthbound. IMHO

In conclusion, I do not discount cemeteries but try to leave my mind open to all possibilities.


...and my own e-mail back to Tere (admittedly edited) was...
Hi Tere and yes, I agree with YOU whole heartedly on many points...

#1: I don't discount cemetery ghosts... I do have concerns though with people who sit in cemeteries for hours hoping and praying that their tape recorders or cameras will pick something up because "as everyone knows, cemeteries are very haunted with the souls of the dead." <- Quote from a large, well known US ghost website.

One of the things I point out to people is that getting a picture of an orb in cemetery is not really that big a coup as dust, rain and pollen are all prevalent in one way or another. As for sounds, being in literally a forest of rocks standing up in the soil is very conducive to sound echoes and therefore EVPs can not be put forward as absolute proof from a cemetery unless a strict level of protocols (that would be impossible in the GTA) were in place.

#2: When I say "statistically" there aren't many "true ghost stories" from cemeteries, I'm not only referring to our own database of submissions but of the countless ghost books I've read (and comparing notes with other researchers too). Cemeteries are not very well represented in ghostly literature or in our submissions.

#3: Honestly, I'm open minded too! I know it doesn't SEEM like it but there's a really good reason I rebuff the cemetery stories...

First of all, they're rarely "stories" at all. Most of the reports we've received from cemeteries are orb photos or "creepy feelings" or the like. Those "stories" with a history that are "stories" more than feelings are on the webpages of the site. Again, not saying that these reports can or should be ignored but it's difficult to trace back the historical references to such reports.

Also, not too long ago another research group (who I won't name but I can safely say they are no longer "working") decided to do the cemetery thing... They went off to a semi-abandoned cemetery and took a lot of photos and a lot of attempted EVPs.

Sadly, they also displayed photos of orbs proclaiming proof of hauntings near memorials that the names were VERY visible on. The families of two of these memorials were HORRIFIED with this but "in the name of research", this group sallied forth.

The next problem was that one picture showed them using a headstone as (more or less) a coffee table a one fellow was sitting on another. Again, both names on the stones visible.

Even though the site was not exactly the most popular or well visited site, these investigators quickly garnered a few extra people on their next weekly trek to see what they could get. Sadly, these "new people" also contained drunken vandals who, doing the old "Oooo! I'm SOOO scared!" stupidity managed to damage more than a few markers.

Now, that all being said, I agree about the theory of emotions (negative and positive) giving places a particular power... Case in point was the ghost investigation in Kitchener that I mention in the course...

The sensitives (there were two of them) that media personality had brought in immediately gravitated to the kid's closet in his bedroom even though there had been no reported activity from there. I asked them both if the closet could be "empowered" by the kid spending night after night staring at it with dread and the answer was "Of course". I found that very telling as there are certain places that do seem to have generally "absorbed" the atmosphere... Any "quiet room" in a hospital for one and I have three excellent reports of my own about places like this... both involving my mother who doesn't know where her kids get this interest (in ghosts) from...

In the late 1970's, we were touring The Tower of London by ourselves and while in the bloody tower, my mother was overtaken with a feeling of profound sadness to the point of absolutely needing to get out of this one room post-haste. On inquiring, we found out that the room was where the two princes had been suffocated. My mother said "No, that's not it... There's something more recent" at which point the guide that we were talking to mentioned that the year before, the IRA had exploded a bomb killing three schoolchildren on tour of the facilities in the same room.

Another story is the house on Chaplain Cres. in Toronto which had the one room NO ONE liked! My parents were looking for a house and this had everything my mother especially wanted in one of Toronto's best neighbourhoods at a price that was VERY reasonable. It was to the point that she was desperately trying to get my father to write the cheque there and then!

...until the one room.

The house was centre hall and at the cross-over of the stairs to the second floor with a window in the front of the house was a yellow room painted brightly with a single chair in it and a radio playing, my mother and myself crossed the threshold of the room and once again, my mother hurried out vowing NOT to buy the house.

She described a feeling of loneliness mixed with "anger and resentment".

On leaving the house, she talked to a neighbour mowing his lawn and asked about the house and that room. Ends up the house was in a family of two daughters and a widower. One of the daughters married and moved on and the other stayed and took care of her father. Her father lingered to a ripe old age and she ended up passing on as a spinster not too long after her father passed away.

The room in question was "her" room for knitting and just sitting in to watch the world go by.

My mother figured the feelings were based on her not having a fulfilled life.

Okay, one last story as this post is getting VERY long...

Lynda was house-hunting in Keswick and found a wonderful home but was warned that it was indeed stigmatized.

While touring the home, she came to the master bedroom and noted with some uneasiness that one of the windows had deep gouges all around the wooden frame. She asked about it and was told that the lady of the home had been bludgeoned to death... in the master bathroom but the gouges that bothered her were from a pet parrot who had been trapped and died of starvation in the room after the murder. The bird had tried to "peck" it's way to freedom to no avail.

Added to this story is that when Lynda went to look into it, she found that not one but historically TWO woman (obviously years apart though) had met their ends by being bludgeoned to death in the same bathroom of the house.

Heck, even my place in Leaside has a story like this too!

Anyway, this has gotten WAY too long and I'll close out.