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Glossary Of Terms

Listed below are the definitions of common terms you may encounter on this web site. We have made every effort to ensure they are accurate and correct. If you find something in error, have something to add or a suggestion of something to change, please [Contact Us] and let us know! The Wikipedia lookup links next to many of the definitions are more detailed/technical meanings of the words, provided for your reading enjoyment. Wikipedia is an external website, coined the 'Free Encyclopedia', it is not a part of NTPRT.ORG. Our definitions are shortened and more to the point for quick reference.

[Wikipedia Lookup]
Life after death or a continuation of existence.

AMULET [Wikipedia Lookup]
An object thought to hold supernatural powers of protection. Amulets are most commly worn as necklaces or carried on one's person for safety.

A condition or occurance that is not 'normal'.

APPARITION [Wikipedia Lookup]
The manifestation of an entity with distinct features that enables one to recognize it as a person or object. Most commonly associated with 'Residual Hauntings'..

BANSHEE [Wikipedia Lookup]
A female death omen and probably one of the most feared spirits normally manifesting to warn of an approaching death in the family.

Most battlefield hauntings are residual hauntings where parts of battle are played over and over again. These are often caused by spirits who fell they cannot cross over due to the nature of their death.

Ghosts that call out names of the living to get their attention and ultimately lure them to their death.

CHARM [Wikipedia Lookup]
Used around the world for protection against evil forces, similar to amulets.

CLAIRVOYANT [Wikipedia Lookup]
A living person who can 'see' visions of paranormal objects, events, places and people who are not visable via normal sight.

Cold spots occur when an entity drains thermal energy from an area in order to accomplish some form of manifestation or to carry out an activity, like tossing a book across the room.

CROSSROAD [Wikipedia Lookup]
A symbolic term denoting the union and joining of paths. The association of the crossroad with witchcraft goes back to ancient Greek and Roman times. The classic crossroad is a point where three roads join. 1) The balance of opposites, 2) the meeting of time, 3) the meeting of space. Crossroads in the paranormal world are often "a locus of paranormal activity".

DEMON [Wikipedia Lookup]
Typically associated with a hostile entity, reportedly non-human and more animal-like.

Rods typically in an 'L' shape reportedly can pick up on spiritual energy. Available in many forms, these devices are inexpensive and have been around for many years (with different uses). Diving rods in the past have been shown to help find lost articles or in the very far past locate water.

ECTOPLASM [Wikipedia Lookup]
Vaporous substance that takes the form of a 'fog' sometimes looking like faces, limbs or bodies.

An angry or malicious spirit. These are intelligent entities that have never been 'alive'.

EMF DETECTOR/METER [Wikipedia Lookup]
These devices measure electromagnetic field fluctuations.

ENTITY [Wikipedia Lookup]
A common word to describe any ghost, spirit, demon, poltergeist, etc.

The ability to sense sound, taste, smell and touch with out physically doing anything.

EVP [Wikipedia Lookup]
Electronic Voice Phenomena - is a mysterious event in which human-sounding voices from an unknown source are heard on a recorded tape, in an untuned radio station (non-air channel) or sometimes on an untuned TV channel (snow). The most common form of EVP are captured on tape. EVP voices are not heard at the time of recording; it is only when the tape is played back that the voices are heard. EVP results vary greatly, some are more easily heard and understood than others. EVPs have been gaining popularity since the movie release of "White Noise". They can be both male & female, be any age and emotion. EVPs are typically spoken in single-words and short sentences. Sometimes they are simply just grunts or groans.

EXORCISM [Wikipedia Lookup]
Typically associated with expulsion of demonic entities from a physical environment or person. Depending on reglious beliefs, etc. this type of act may be performed by a Priest or Rabbi. Many believe this is an extremely dangerous situation.

Can best be described as the energy, soul or personality of a person who has died and has gotten stuck between this plane of existence and the next. Many researchers feel these 'ghosts' do not know they are dead. Usually, they will have died under traumatic or highly emotional circumstances. Ghosts are commonly detected by the living in a number of ways: through sights, sounds, smells and sometimes thru a "6th sense".

A group of people (normally 4 to 8) investigating reports of ghosts, sightings and hauntings to determine their authenticity. The collection of paranormal 'evidence'.

Ghosts of women who died violently for the sake of love or from a loss of love. Grey lady gets it's name from the color it typically appears as, however, they can also appear to be wearing white, brown and black clothing.

GUARDIAN SPIRIT [Wikipedia Lookup]
A spirit who guides or helps (protects). Believed to look out for it's possessor keeping them safe from harm. It is said that everyone has a guardian spirit, however we may not realise it.

HALLOWEEN [Wikipedia Lookup]
Or Hallows Eve celebrated the night of October 31, most notably by children dressing up in various costumes and going to door-to-door to collect candies and treats. Many european cultures agree that Halloween is one of few times out of a year that spirits can make contact with the physical world.

Hauntings can best be summarized as the manifestations of ghostly presenses. There are a few different levels of hauntings, including: poltergeist (typically evil), residual (like the looping of a video that replays again and again - these entities are often unaware of their living observers), demonic (non-human) and intelligent (those that can interact with the living). Hauntings are commonly attached to a particular environment, including houses, buildings or locations where strongly emotional or traumatic events may have occurred. It is, for many, believed that the presence of a certain person/persons can trigger these 'events'.

INFRARED LIGHT [Wikipedia Lookup]
Is not visable to the naked human eye, but with the use of night vision and cameras that can 'see' infrared light it is visible. This type of lighting allows viewing of objects in total darkness while providing camcorders enough light to see everything. You can test your digital camera/camcorder by pointing a TV remote at the lens - look at the screen, and while doing this, press a button on the remote, you should see the light(s) in the end of the remote illuminating. Spiritual energies have been known to cross into the infrared spectrum, making cameras/camcorders that can see this type of light a valuable asset to the ghost hunting community.

ITC is a method for attempting to record spirit or transdimentional images on your TV using a video camcorder. By setting up the camcorder directly in front of the TV, it will create what is known as a loopback event. It is said that this produces a frequency to which ghosts are found to be visible on. The entire method is rather simple to deploy and is very close to that of an EVP, only this method employs audio and video. A demo can be found on about.com [http://paranormal.about.com/od/ghostaudiovideo/ss/aa111405.htm].

LEVITATION [Wikipedia Lookup]
A phenomenon typically associated with poltergeist activity where solid objects are lifted by unknown/unseen forces. These solid objects and be furniture and even humans.

MEDIUMS [Wikipedia Lookup]
Much like psychics, mediums claim to have extra sensory abilities, however these people typically obtain information from spirits or dead people. Mediums in a non-official manor are also more likely to be 'possessed' for short periods of time, claiming the spirit was controlling their body and speech.

MIRROR [Wikipedia Lookup]
Mirrors have many lores based on the part of the world you live in.

  • Ancient times - mirrors were believed to reflect the soul and must be protected
  • Some believe mirrors are a creation from the devil, stating that mirros can draw souls out of the body
  • Some also believe mirrors and other shiney surafces must be covered in a house after a death to stop the recently deceased from taking a living soul with it.
  • It is widely believed that mirrors should be removed from rooms of the sick. It is considered bad for the sick to see themselves as it puts them at a greater risk of dying.
  • It is also considered foolish to look into a mirror at night or by candlelight, as one may see a ghost, which some believe signifies inevitable death.

MOON [Wikipedia Lookup]
Every 28 days the moon 'dies' and is 'reborn', it is often thought of as a temporary stopping place for souls after death. The earth's moon, for years has been reported to cause emotional changes in human behavior also. Typically, when a full moon is present violence, crime and abnormal or psychotic behavior is at it's highest levels. Although this theory has been attempted to be disproven, many folks will agree, full moon brings out the loonies.

NIGHT VISION [Wikipedia Lookup]
Allows the human eyes to 'see in the dark' - ORBs can commonly be seen while viewing possible haunted areas with night vision goggles. This is very similar to the infrared light the camcorders/cameras can use to 'see in the dark'.

OUIJA : AKA OUIJA BOARD [Wikipedia Lookup]
A form of divining consisting typically of a platform with letters, numbers and other various symbols printed on it. Also containing a 'plancette' which participants place 2 fingers along the edges of. This device is designed to 'glide' across the smooth platform or board and spell out messages to the users. This device can be made from household items or purchased at many major toy and discount stores. Although marketed as a game/toy, the OUIJA device (pronouned WEE-JEE) is believed by experts to be an extremely dangerous tool that can lead to possible invitation of unwanted, unpredictable and possibly invasive forces.

ORB [Wikipedia Lookup]
Usually a round, semi translucent object that appears 'floating' in photographs and video recordings. ORB's typically are white in color, but some may show blue and red tints. Some say the color of an orb may indicate it's level of evil, as related to the paranormal world. True paranormal based ORB's are also reported to be invisible to the human eye due to their high IR content. Many older 'film' based cameras did not have the ability to see infrared light. With this in mind, ORB's are more common in today's world due to the fact that digital cameras are more sensitive to infrared light than old 'film' style cameras. ORB's can be misleading though, many will agree that both bugs, moisture and dust can form what appears to be an ORB. ORBs can be different in color, here are the most common colors and their meanings (not scientifically proven accurate):


PARANORMAL [Wikipedia Lookup]
Any occurance or phenomena that is not accustomed to or is uncategorized by standard academia
(unexplainable events).

Traditional 5-pointed star design representing both spirituality and protection when point is up. When inverted it is said to signify diabolism.

PENDULUM [Wikipedia Lookup]
Used to find spirit energy, usually the pendulum is attached to some form of string and will begin swaying back and forth upon a spiritual encounter.

POLTERGEIST [Wikipedia Lookup]
Poltergeist, just like in the movie typically centers around a single person more commonly a child or adolescent. This word actually originates from a German word meaning "noisy spirit". It is believed that poltergeists are caused by the subconscious mind of that individual, see also psychokinetic activity. This 'person; is often under emotional or physical stress. Common signs of this type of intrusion include noises and thumps on walls, ceilings and floors, it may also include physical movement of objects and have abnormal effects on lights, tvs, radios and other susceptable electronic appliances.

POSSESSION [Wikipedia Lookup]
Invasion of the human mind by either a spiritual or demonic entity. Lasting for a undetermined amount of time, can influence the personality of the 'host' causing abnormal and often rude behaviors.

PSYCHIC [Wikipedia Lookup]
A psychic is a person who claims to have extra sensory abilities, including clairvoyance and precognition. Psychics are often attacked by critics as being fakes, but many seem to be able to more easily communicate with the next plane of existance.

PSYCHOKINESIS [Wikipedia Lookup]
A phenomenon where objects are displaced or moved around with out being touched. It is reported that the power of the mind causes the item(s) to move.

A rare type of encounter when the spirit and witnesses can see each other and interact.

This type of entity normally does not interact with the living, it just does the same thing over and over - like watching a video clip over and over. These type spirits are typically leftover from a repeated or highly emotional activity where life was ended abruptly.

RETROCOGNITION [Wikipedia Lookup]
A displacement in time where one apparently sees into the past.

SEANCE [Wikipedia Lookup]
A group effort in which the living attempt to group power to contact the spirit world. Typical seance's include a group of people holding hands or with hands palm down flat on the table's surface with fingertips touching adjacent partners. Seances vary in design, normally a candle will be lit for light and often an article or belonging to a once living person the group is attempting to reach will be brought into the room. It is thought that the bringing of an item that the once living person owned or cherished will enhance the ability to communicate. Seance's are potentially dangerous and are not recommended to try without professional assistance.

These entities are typically not evil or demonic, but simply represent a different configuration pattern than the previously documents ORBs, vapors, ectoplasms, etc. Spirits of the dead may manifest in many configuration patterns according to what they choose. It does take more energy to be displayed as a full body apparition than being a ball of light or a vapor of energy.

Discarnate being, essence or supernatural force.

The process by which physical marks appear on a body, without any reasonable explanation.

An experiment in psychokenisis where three or more participants lightly place fingers along the edges of a small table top. Normally associated with a a unison chant "table move... table move" - it is reported that with enough concentration and participant cooperation the table will begin to wobble and possibly move out of place. Extreme cases have shown the table moving around an entire room or elevating slighly on one side.

A design or inscription that is either worn or carried for invoking strength, power and protection.

This device measures the ambient air temperature and can indicate a change in air temperature.

URBAN LEGEND [Wikipedia Lookup]
A story too good to be true, usually consists of a strange story of a supposedly real event.

An anomaly which often will show up in photographs as a translucent tube or funnel shaped object. They are relatively rare in appearance but can normally be seen in photographs taken at the site of a suspected haunting. Researchers believe the vortex is an entry point into the spiritual world or dimension.

WHITE NOISE [Wikipedia Lookup]
White noise is a signal that has a flat frequency spectrum. The signal has equal power in any band. A white noise signal combines every possible tone humans can possibly hear (20,000) in to one audible 'noise'. Since it contains all freqencies it is often used to mask other sounds. Tune in to your FM radio in between stations, that "static" you hear is actually a close form of white noise.

WITCHING HOUR [Wikipedia Lookup]
A time of night when it is believed that the 'other world' can come to the mortal plain. The witching hour is defined as falling at midnight on the night of a full moon. The time window for the strongest witching hours are said to be between 12am and 3am.