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Two Types Of Haunting: Do you know them?

It is understandable that an air of confusion brushes over the average person when we discuss terminology and phrases. Those buzz words that are often shared between teams, researchers and enthusiasts alike.

How can the normal person on the street understand what is transpiring without a more open discussion and explanations.


So to the fantastic readers of this website, with a good healthy interest in all things ghostly, this one is specifically for you.

I wish to point out the difference between a Sentient Haunting and a Non-Sentient Haunting, and I can only imagine thus far you are scratching your head wondering what on earth this means, and what the implications are.

Sentient means a life form with the ability to feel, and perceive things along with conscious interaction.

So the Non-Sentient, is obviously the opposite to this, and in a moment I will explain in what context this can apply to an alleged haunting.

In my time working within the field of paranormal research, I have amassed a great deal of knowledge, personally hypothesised and partaken in great lengthy discussions about this topic.

Many hours had, and still, spent in deep brainstorming sessions with very able Investigators such as Christopher Huff from the North-East of England. We dig deep and come to some temporarily acceptable conclusions, in how we would define the above.

Set the scene, you are in the kitchen washing your dishes when suddenly, a full manifestation of a transparent ghostly figure catches your eye.

On noticing this manifestation you lock eyes with it, it smiles at you, moves a few objects, and then dissipates in to the ether.

You call out for the phantom to make a noise, it obliges with tapping on demand, as if in some type of communication with you. You have just witnessed a Sentient situation where the manifestation has consciously interacted with you.

Using the same circumstances, again washing the dishes, this time you catch a glimpse of the phantom with the corner of your eye, and then attempt to lock eye sight.

It completely ignores you, no interaction at all, and it seems as if it’s following a set movement pattern. There is no awareness from this manifestation, and on top of this, it’s been reported doing the same movements without interaction by many past witnesses.

This is a non-sentient haunting, a recording if you like, which has somehow etched its energy into the environment, then triggered under certain circumstances.

Now, to attempt to call out for a sign from a non-sentient apparition, is akin to asking your coffee table to make a noise if it can hear you. It’s absolutely pointless and a waste of time and energy.

Many locations with reported activity may-be subject to this, thus we gather no real usable evidence. Some researchers may even class the place as not haunted, when the better definition would be possibly, a non-sentient energy being active.

Only good prior research and some investigative skills would allow the proper definition to be used.

It’s only when we get a clear response, good witness testimony of interaction, and physical movement of objects, that we begin to dig deep and apply the proper protocols for spirit interaction.

Some in the field do this, some do not even know the difference, unfortunately.

We could hypothesise at great length into the how, why and what of non-sentient energy and triggers, but experience tells me it could get lengthy and messy.

Lets just say its an area still being looked at by myself, and many other able investigators.

So to you, the fantastic readers and fellow researchers, think back the way to your experiences, and have a look at what group your story may fall under.

This is the first step to understanding the circumstances surrounding what you have personally experienced – or in some cases – may be researching.

How can you adapt your sessions, gather evidence, or trigger more activity? Jump outside the box and think uniquely on this.

  • Sentient – Interaction and physical manipulation.
  • Non-Sentient – No Interaction and Identical Sighting Circumstances

Feel free to leave your ideas, questions and criticisms below.

Ryan O’Neill
Paranormal Researcher & Investigator
Haunted Scotland Owner
IPI Coordinator & Founder
Ryan@Haunted-Scotland.co.uk


2 thoughts on “Two Types Of Haunting: Do you know them?”

  1. This is an extremely informative post. I love the way you explained it in layman’s terms . I’ve read several articles on different types of haunting sand had no clue what they were talking about because everything was so formal. This makes it easy to understand . Thanks

  2. Hey Nik, thank you for your feedback and kind words!

    I truly hope to dive into more topics, and really strip them back for people. We are all in this together, I want everyone to understand what may be happening, then acquire the ability to take action in confidence!

    Hope you had an excellent end to 2013, and have an awe-inspiring 2014! 🙂

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