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Embracing the Esoteric from a Woman’s Perspective

When people think about Ufologists, Paranormalists, Cryptozoologists and Ghosthunters, they think about men. They think about Jason and Grant from Ghosthunters, Loren Coleman, Stan Friedman and Nick Redfern. It’s not their fault. It’s not like people go out of their way to ignore the women in the Esoteric community, but it doesn’t help that no one’s looking.

In high school, I knew a girl who swore she was the descendant of a vampire king. She lived in a world between the absurd and the abstract. Every noise was a ghost, every evil tongue that licked her way was a sign of the devil...every enemy was possessed and to her credit, there was nothing she couldn’t do because she was special. As in, superhuman powers kind of special. She called herself a ghosthunter and gave the paranormal a bad name.

She wasn’t the first.

Madame Blavatsky tainted the image of women in the Esoteric way back when. It seems that much like the image of Petrie as the eminent Archaeologist, excavating Egypt for all posterity...better yet, Indiana Jones...there seems to be a kinship between the image of the Adventurer and the masculine. Because a foray into the esoteric is an adventure.

Since when have we seen a woman in the field, chasing after UFOs? I mean, we hear about them, but usually it comes with a price. One particular woman researcher has her own spot on a national podcast and has done her fair share of work in the field, but when something completely hokey comes hurling out of the Ufological community, she’s too gullible and therein lies the rub.

How to reconcile the fact that a lot of the ‘characters’ of Esoterica have been women? Well, I am not going to make excuses for them, but I will say that just as there are some strange so-called researchers out there, of the female persuasion, there’s a fair share of males.

So, where’s the love?

Where are the TV shows showcasing a female ghosthunter, on her own...not being escorted by some prominent male researchers who trump her in every regard? I am not saying there aren’t any women researchers out there. On the contrary. What I am saying is there aren’t any getting the share of the spotlight—as in, respectability and not fame. Although researchers who are men seem to enjoy a great deal of fame these days.

From a woman’s perspective, getting into the esoteric has nothing to do with fame and riches, and everything to do with finding answers. When I discover a new mystery, my mind doesn’t wander off to fantastical pursuits like writing books on the subject and appearing on OPRAH.

I suppose I am no different than the boys in the field because all I think about is coming face to face with the ever elusive bigfoot. Catching a glimpse of Nessie’s humps across the moors. Witnessing the landing of a flying saucer. I just want to be thrilled. I want to be frightened. But mostly I want to be fulfilled, awed, and downright compensated (spiritually and intellectually), for all my years believing in the unbelievable.

Isn’t that how we’re all supposed to feel? Male and Female researchers alike?

Why then is it more acceptable to see the Esoteric community prominently lead by men? A few months ago a certain male host of a certain popular paranormal talk show joked about getting a good-looking female to co-host. He rambled on about how it would make them popular to have a good-looking woman in the room. No mention of how nice it would be to have her be knowledgeable in the paranormal. All she needed was a nice set of legs.

So, do we have to storm the community en force?

What’ll it take for the esoteric to embrace the women out there trudging through slippery terrain, sleeping in haunted vestiges, meticulously documenting native stories of strange animals that shouldn’t exist? What do we have to do to get our own TV shows? What do we have to do to fill the halls of conferences, speaking hypothetically, theoretically and scientifically about Monsters, Myth and Malarkey?

Who do we have to sleep with around here to get things done? And I was only half-joking with that sentence.

Contact Tina Sena

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Tina Sena's blog : Yufology