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Publication: The Paranormal Insider
The Witching Hour and Why Things Go Bump in the Night

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Issue date: Saturday, October 7, 2006
P A R A N O R M A L  I N S I D E R 

Hi, Everyone!

A client asked me recently about the best time of day for 
doing a certain magickal ritual and the question prompted 
me to put together some information on why the darkest dark 
of night is most conducive to magick, as well as to ghost-
hunting and paranormal phenomena in general. 

The 'Witching Hour' is traditionally believed to be the 
time when ghosts, demons and witches are the most powerful 
and it is the time when spells and rituals are worked most 
effectively. To be precise, the witching hour is at 
midnight on a full moon. (Moon phases are crucial to magick,
with the new moon, waxing moon, waning moon and full moon 
all having their own distinct properties). Many people, 
though, refer to the midnight hour on any night as the 
witching hour. 

Looking at the field of ghost-hunting, researchers also 
say that most ghostly and paranormal phenomena occur after 
3 P.M., but the vast majority occur after nightfall, with 
peak hours for experiencing ghostly manifestations being 
between midnight and 3 A.M. which is in keeping with the 
general image we have of things going 'bump' in the night. 

A possible scientific explanation for the magic and 
mystique of the midnight hour is that the earth's 
atmosphere, which is constantly bombarded by strong solar 
winds during the day, is pulled in close and dense to the 
earth's surface while we are facing the sun. At nighttime, 
when we are sheltered from the sun, our atmosphere becomes 
much larger, stretching out into space and having much 
less density. There is, therefore, less interference and 
resistance to electrical and magnetic energies. This makes 
it easier for electric or magnetically based entities and 
phenomena to manifest, and perhaps even eases their very 
entry into our atmosphere. This atmospheric phenomenon is 
also the reason that in general, radio stations come in 
much more clearly at night, even those far away, than they 
do during the daytime. 

Many experienced ghost hunters also believe that "between" 
times are very conducive to ghostly manifestations. 
"Between" times include dusk and dawn, eclipses, equinoxes, 
and solstices. It is also said that while a clock is 
chiming midnight is a "between" time. Many also point to 
the end of the calendar year as a magical time, and speak-
ing of calendars, some people feel that ghosts still know 
very well what day it is on the other side of the veil as 
they often appear on or around the anniversary of their 
passing. These changes and shifts that we mark in earth 
time are perhaps felt in other planes and dimensions as 
well, and because they mark a shifting energy and 
conditions are in flux, this creates a portal or maybe 
even rings a doorbell in the spirit world. 

It seems that mysticism and science both hold possible 
explanations for the eerie reputation of the witching hour 
and the increase of paranormal activity people experience 
at night. We also have to consider that with less back-
ground noise and distractions at night, and our lessened 
ability to gauge our 3D world as clearly in the darkness, 
there are obvious factors that contribute to our heightened 
sensitivity at this hour, so while ghosts have an easier 
time making themselves known, we also have an easier time 
of perceiving them. 

Are you afraid of the dark? Or do you get shivers when the 
clock strikes 12? Perhaps you have a favourite relative 
that visits you in spirit form each year on a certain day. 
You are not alone. Washington Irving, authour of "The 
Legend in Sleepy Hollow", wrote, back in the 1830's: "Two 
pairs of eyes are watching me now, from the couch and the 
ledge by the window. Faerieland shines in those eyes. And 
I must leave you, for it's the witching hour and a full 
moon is rising..." 

carpe diem!
Zsuzsana Summer

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Now, here is a selection of letters from our Readers' 

Paranormal Encounters

I have a few experiences to share. I really enjoy reading 
your newsletter. You are welcome to use any of these; all 
together or separately as you see fit. 

Shadow person?

Years ago, when I was around the age of 13, I woke up in 
the night and saw what I now believe was a shadow person. 
The head of my bed was against one wall of the room and my 
bathroom doorway was directly on the opposite wall of the 
room. Standing in the bathroom doorway was a tall figure 
whose head almost reached to the top of the doorway. The 
figure was pitch black, solid looking, and in the shape of 
a man. I couldn't see any features other than the silhouette
shape. Behind this figure was a bright light that filled 
up the bathroom. I know this wasn't a waking dream because 
when I woke up, I was staring at him for a little while and 
I was wide awake. I said my brother's name and "Is that 
you?" but I didn't receive a reply and the figure didn't 
move. It just stood there. That's when I realized nobody 
in the house could fill up the doorway like that and how 
weird it was that I couldn't even make out a face. It 
literally looked the same as if you took a picture of a 
person and then drew over the person with a black marker. 
That's when I got a little scared, so I hid my head under 
the covers and eventually fell asleep. I have yet to see 
another shadow person but years later, this same room 
became my mom and stepdad's room. The night my great uncle 
died, my stepdad saw a shadowy figure standing at the foot 
of the bed. 


This happened at my mom's house one night while I was 
visiting around 1995-96. I was sleeping on the floor in 
the living room and my stepsister was sleeping on the 
couch. My mom has said that she's been abducted by aliens 
multiple times and she remembers a lot of it. This 
particular night, I woke up and saw three aliens walking 
around in the room between the living room and her bedroom. 
This room can be seen through a set of French doors and two 
windows. The light in this room has a dimmer and it was 
usually left on during the night so I was able to see these 
aliens well. They were about 4 feet tall, very skinny, long 
arms with no muscle tone, and the skin was a light greyish 
color. They were wearing long sleeved jumpsuits of a dark 
color. They had the alien heads but the eyes weren't quite 
as big as in most drawings. All I could do was lift my head 
up and I soon fell right back to sleep. The next day, my 
mom mentioned that the aliens came, and her description, 
including how many there were, was the same as what I saw. 


This happened in the middle of the day. I went and laid on 
my side for a nap. After just a few minutes, I felt that 
the side of the bed behind me was dipped down as if someone 
was sitting on it. As soon as I was thinking about that, 
the mattress popped back up, I felt a light touch on my 
head, and then a whispery voice said, "Liiiiiiisaaa." I 
jumped up and nobody was there! I didn't know anyone that 
recently died, so I still haven't figured out who this 
ghost was. 



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Hi Zsuzsana,

I find your newsletter both interesting and comforting. It 
reinforces the knowledge that there is definitely something 
more after this life. To know that others have had similar 
experiences is so comforting to me. I have had only two 
"groups" shall we say of spiritual experiences but they 
have made a definite impact on my life. 

The first type of experience happened when my Grandfather 
died. I was only in the sixth grade when he died. His death 
was my first loss of a loved one. I had a "dream" that was 
more realistic than any dream I had ever had. I was in my 
bedroom when the spirit of my Grandfather came through the 
door. I jumped into his arms for one last hug before he 
moved on. This happened again when, at the age of 23, my 
father died after a two year fight with cancer. As with the 
other "dream", this "dream" was very different than dreams 
I had ever had. My father and I were out in our backyard 
sitting at a picnic table. The sun was shining brilliantly. 
He told me of how he was happier now and was going to be 
OK. He told me I shouldn't worry about him and that he was 
not in pain anymore. Was I dreaming or was this a way of 
both of these beloved men communicating with me before they 
moved on? To this day, and I am now 55 years old, no one 
could convince me that these were simply dreams. 

The other experience I had was with a cat. Again, this 
happened when I was only in my teens. My beloved "Kitty" 
(yes that was her name), had contracted feline leukemia. 
At that time, the vet told me and my Dad that the only way 
to determine if the ailment was indeed feline leukemia, was 
to give her a blood transfusion. If she failed again, she 
would have to be put to sleep.  I got an advance on my 
allowance and went ahead with the transfusion. Kitty was 
like a new kitten. She had energy again and started to play 
as if nothing had ever ailed her. However, two weeks after 
the transfusion, Kitty suddenly fell off of the table she 
was sleeping on. I scooped her up in a towel and my Dad 
drove us to the vet's office. I know that Kitty died in my 
arms before we got there. I don't remember if it was that 
night or maybe even a couple of nights later, I went to 
bed. I turned out the lights and started to drift off to 
sleep. I was suddenly startled back into complete 
consciousness because I felt something jump onto my bed. I 
felt the impression of paws walking up the bed to the side 
of my face. I heard purring in my ear and could feel breath 
on my cheek. I sat bolt upright and turned on the light. 
Nothing was there. After calming myself down and telling 
myself it was my imagination, I turned off the light and 
tried to get to sleep once more. Before I got into any 
state of semi-sleep, the same order of events happened 
again. This happened for a total of three times when I 
finally got up and made my way downstairs to the kitchen. 
I knew that I would not be able to get back to sleep any 
time soon as the experience had actually scared me. When 
I got to the kitchen, my Dad was sitting there. It was 
close to midnight and he would normally be asleep by then. 
When I told him why I had gotten up, he told me that was 
why he was sitting there. He had had the same experience! 
Sadly, I think Kitty knew I was frightened and never came 
to me again. I will always regret that. 

These encounters I have written about today are the only 
experiences I have had in my lifetime. I suspect that 
perhaps we are more open to such things when we are young. 
What is your take on this? Do you find that these things 
usually are more acute when we are in our youth? 

Marsha in Massachusetts

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The first "weird" experience I have encountered is the 
number 13. It just seems to come up for me all the time. 
If I grab a handful of something, there are 13. It started 
when I was about 20. To this day, I wear 13 rings on my 
fingers. I don't know what it means, but I call it my lucky 
number. Most people fret about Friday the 13th. Not me, I 
embrace it. 

The second weird experience happened when I moved into my 
house. I have an entertainment center that has several 
Christmas ornaments hanging from it. I was sitting on the 
couch and all of a sudden one of the ornaments took off 
swinging as if someone had hit it with their hand and sent 
it sailing. I looked around and there was no cat in the 
area (I have two). So I just told my spirit, I won't bother 
you if you don't bother me and we can live together peace-

The third weird experience has been my telephone ringing. 
I will wake up to hear a phone ringing, but it is NOT my 
house or cell phone. I just hear a ringing phone. Other 
times my house phone will ring once, or even half a ring, 
and when I wake up there is nothing there. I have 
attributed it to my Grandmother. She passed away two years 
before I got my house and I figured that was her way of 
telling me she is around and watching over me. If it's not, 
at least it feels good. It also makes me wonder if it was 
her knocking my Christmas ornament loopy, as Christmas was 
her favorite holiday. 

Any insight to these three consistent happenings in my 
life would be appreciated. 

Thank you,


If you have any comments for Lezlie, Marsha or Lisa, please 
post them to our forum at: Paranormal Insider Forum

If you wish to send me a story for publication, please 
email to: paranormal@zsuzsana.com 

Take care and see you next week!

Zsuzsana Summer

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