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Subject: Re: IGHS

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Date Posted: 18:49:28 10/03/03 Fri
In reply to: KennyB 's message, "IGHS" on 22:47:59 12/13/02 Fri

> are you ever right!

the tip off is the very unbalanced and skewed statements they make about religion. No genuine academic would approach it that way. I know.

Its too bad as the paranormal is very interesting.

People should read Rupert Sheldrake if they want to read some really interesting things about the paranormal.

"Dr. Dave " etc Im afraid are not what they claim to be.


This is a new article just recently posted on this
>site, in the Articles section. I hope all will enjoy.
>If not, I'm certain I'll hear about it!
>This articles deals with the co-founders of the IGHS,
>Rev. Dr. Dave Oester and Rev. Dr. Sharon Gill. Their
>website is located at Ghostweb.com. They began as a
>sight that simply collected photos from anyone who
>would send them in. These photos were supposed to be
>reviewed before being posted. The two co-founders
>started to hold seminars in 1997 in Decatur Illinois.
>After this, they began holding seminars in various
>places across the country, like Gettysburg, Virginia
>City, Salem, San Antonio and New Orleans. They’ve been
>featured on many shows, in newspaper articles and on
>radio programs.
>In recent times, more and more groups are
>disassociating themselves with the IGHS. Why is this?
>Perhaps I can explain it here. One only needs to take
>a quick look at the IGHS site to see the pure
>commercialism presented there. As one navigates
>through the site, you would be hard-pressed to find a
>page without a PayPal link. But let’s start at the
>The co-founders both state that they are licensed
>ordained ministers. Yes, this is true. They are both
>registered with the Universal Life Church. You can
>also become a licensed ordained minister, exactly like
>these two, in fewer than 30 seconds…as long as you can
>spell your own name and know where you live. They did
>not go through any classes or take any exams; they
>simply filled out an online form and were registered
>in California as ministers.
>Both also make the statement that they have Doctoral
>degrees. Yes, this is also true. Dr. Dave has an
>honorary degree from the Universal Life Church. A
>quote from the website of the ULC… “Doctor of
>Divinity. This honorary degree is accredited by the
>International Accrediting Association. To receive this
>degree, we ask for a free-will offering of $35.00.YOU
>will legally be entitled to use the title Dr. in front
>of your name and D.D. after your name. Please
>remember, this is equal in the eyes of the law to any
>other Doctor of Divinity Degree issued by any other
>institution of higher learning such as Harvard or
>Yale, MIT or USC. You cannot use the title Dr. to
>imply in any way that you are a Doctor of Medicine or
>Psychology because that would be deceiving the public
>which is an offense against the state and deceiving
>the public. The title Dr. is a "protected" title in
>all fifty states so if you expect people to address
>you as Dr.________ _______ you should carry yourself
>in a professional manner and speak appropriately in
>order to show yourself as worthy of your higher rung
>on the ladder of social respectability and public
>leadership as well as a position of honor in our
>society - deservedly so.” So, for a small fee of $35,
>you can act like a Harvard graduate. That last part
>seems a little…stuck up.
>Sharon Gill PhD. received her degree from the
>University of Metaphysics. I had a packet of
>information sent to me from this school and was
>extremely surprised. They send a “Research Report; A
>Doctoral Career in Metaphysics” along with all of the
>enrollment papers. The entire report explained various
>ways to make money from this. It went into Seminars,
>Books, CDs, Cassettes and even online sales of items.
>Sound familiar? Like maybe…the IGHS and their website?
>This report also makes sure to note that Metaphysics
>falls under Religion, and not any form of Psychology.
>In other words, they are not held to the same rules
>for giving advice as their licensed counterparts.
>The photos, which used to be free to view, are now
>archived in a members-only section. If you’re willing
>to shell out $12, you’ll be able to spend a few hours
>going through thousands of photos. Unfortunately, I am
>convinced that most, about 99%, simply go from e-mail
>right to the site, without any type of review. The
>“free” section shows the newest photos, and does not
>require the $12 fee. These still look as if they have
>not been examined. My advice would be to save you
>money and visit any number of sites that offer free
>viewing of all of their photos. Incidentally, we
>should note that when you visit these other sites,
>you’d actually be viewing photos taken by that group.
>The IGHS offers two Home Study courses. One for the
>“ghost hunter” and another for the more advanced
>“Paranormal Investigator”. Each one costs $150 plus
>$10 for S&H. If you want both at the same time, then
>it will only cost you $260 plus $20 for S&H. I don’t
>see what credentials they have that would allow them
>to “certify” others for anything. Everything you need
>to learn to be either one (Ghost hunter, Paranormal
>Investigator) can be found on the web, for free. There
>are many sites out there that put the information up,
>or will willingly answer you questions via e-mail…all
>for no charge!
>You must also keep in mind that you wouldn’t only be
>buying their information, but their opinions as well.
>One thing that many of us have noticed is that the
>IGHS co-founders are extremely stiff in the views.
>They are unwilling to accept theories that do not
>follow their own. This is very disturbing since there
>are no “right” or “wrong” answers when it comes to
>anything dealing with the paranormal. To the best of
>my knowledge, no one has a ghost locked away in a lab
>and conducting all types of tests…every psychic has
>not come together and actually agreed on the ways of
>the afterlife. Therefore, everything is a theory or an
>idea. Research is the only key when it comes to trying
>to validate these theories. Look into the sciences, do
>your homework. The answers are there; it just needs a
>lot of time and bookwork to find them. Opinion is the
>start of the research, it is the reason you started
>looking for the answer, not the answer itself.
>We mentioned at the beginning of this article that the
>IGHS site seems to be pure commercialism. I already
>mentioned the numerous PayPal links all over the site,
>so let’s focus on a few of the items they are selling.
>We’ll start with their EMF detector. The item they are
>selling is manufactured by A.W. Sperry, manufacturer
>number EMF200A. They sell it for $120. The same, exact
>model can be purchased for $99.95 from
>The Infrared Temperature gun they sell is the Reytek
>Minitemp MT Series Hand Held IR Temperature Sensor
>with that extremely annoying laser pointer. The IGHS
>sells this item at $149, plus another $13 for the soft
>case. The same item can be purchased at
>www.infrared-usa.com for a slightly lower
>price…$69.30. The case is only $8.95. If you want to
>save some more cash, you can skip the annoying laser
>pointer and get the gun for $55.30
>The commercialism doesn’t end there. The conferences I
>spoke of earlier will cost you a whopping $80 per
>person. This price does not include food, lodging or
>even the local ghost tour. It will focus on EVP,
>teaching you the difference between digital static and
>real EVPs. They will teach you the proper techniques
>for recording EVPs. As a bonus, they’ll teach you the
>psychology of earth bound spirits. What? The
>psychology of a ghost? Hold on a second. My dictionary
>states that Psychology is science of the mind or
>mental states and processes. 2- the science of human
>behavior. How can one study the science of the mind of
>a ghost? A ghost…an entity that cannot be kept in a
>lab and experimented on at will, nor can it be
>psychoanalyzed. I would love to know where this
>information is coming from and who is behind it. (But
>I’m not going to shell out $80 to do so, at least not
>to them).
>But wait, half the features of the conference is “time
>to meet other ghost hunters and researchers, mingle
>and meet Dave and Sharon!” I have met both on several
>occasions and I’ve been more impressed with the ghost
>hunters that are just starting out. Dave and Sharon
>have a rehearsed inventory of answers. As stated
>above, they are very stiff in their beliefs. But, that
>could be an entire article onto itself. Everyday is an
>opportunity to meet ghost hunters from all over the
>world. The members of PIRA are in contact with quite a
>few teams in the States, as well as a few in England
>and Ireland. I’ve worked with several groups on
>investigations and share information with them. What
>I’m saying is, you don’t need to shell out $80 to talk
>to people with the same interests as you. They’re all
>out there…for free.
>This last thing is probably the one that gets me the
>most annoyed. The IGHS Clip ID Badge for
>Investigations. For $11, you can get this plastic
>badge stating that you are a Registered Ghost Hunter
>of the IGHS in good standing. So, instead of shelling
>out the $150 for the Home Study Course to be a
>certified Ghost Hunter, you only need to let go of $11
>for a badge. Yes, when the officer asks you what your
>business is inside the fenced in cemetery…flash him
>that badge. Let me know how it goes (from your jail
>The bottom line is that these two are making
>themselves out to be more then they are. Those who
>give in to their beliefs are supporting
>them…financially. If you purchase the overpriced items
>from them or go to their lacking conferences, you’re
>simply allowing them to continue their trek around the
>country in that RV. Have you ever seen an
>investigation report from them? Have you ever read an
>article from them that included scientific fact to
>back up their claims? Have you ever read a newsletter
>from them that DIDN’T put other groups down? Have you
>ever read a research report concerning an
>investigation from them? I can say “no”. It seems that
>a Paranormal Investigator should have these…to be an
>This article was written by Ken Biddle of PIRA.
>Any and all comments should be directed to him.

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