Ghosts are the spirits of human beings who have died.
There is no explanation as to what a ghost is scientifically because, according to current mainstream science, it is not possible for a person to exist in any form after physical death.
Religions across the world, and throughout human history, have spoken about the spirit realm. Due to this we can surmise that ghost activity is something humans have always experienced.
There has always been discussion around what our spirit is, the general thought is that our spirit is our consciousness. However, what is our consciousness? Is it a physical aspect, is it a spiritual aspect, is it our soul?
Religion and mainstream science both work towards answering this question.
What is accepted by many who believe in the paranormal is that when we physically die our consciousness moves on to another plain. No one truly knows where this is, what it is or how it exists.
Religiously speaking, each religion has its own explanation, for example Heaven or Valhalla.
Scientific research in to this has been going on for hundreds of years.
One particular piece of research worthy of reading, is that of Dr Duncan MacDougall of Haverhill, Massachusetts.
He theorised that our souls, (consciousness), had physical mass and therefore had a weight. In order to prove this theory he measured the weight of 6 patients in his care at the point of death. In one patient, (1/6), it was noted that they lost 21g at the point of death. He surmised that the weight of our soul must be that of around 21g. This study was incredibly small, it was never repeated to provide repeat results, and so it is not acceptable as “evidence” of soul weight. Despite this, it remains a captivating theory.
Different Types of Ghosts
Surely a ghost is a ghost? Well yes, but there are different categories of ghosts which create different types of hauntings.
Residual hauntings are those where the ghost involved has no interaction with its surroundings, it is unaware of any people around it or changes to the location. It is therefore considered unintelligent, not because it is stupid, but because it cannot intelligently interact. Many investigators believe these types of haunting are as a result of Stone Tape Theory, where the physical materials of a location store memories of events that have taken place. In the right conditions these memories are “re-played” resulting in a residual haunting.
Intelligent ghosts are those that are able to interact with us in a manner befitting the circumstances, such as making a nose when asked or answering a question with relevance via ITC or EVP.
These types of haunting are more interactive with the people experiencing it. They seem to have a consciousness, personality and memories of their physical life. They are often trying to provide us with information, request help to move on or pass on a personal message. Some of them just don’t want people in their personal space and are trying to ask us to leave.
These types hauntings are often hard for people to deal with and they are likely to request assistance from their religious communities, spiritual communities or paranormal investigators.
The term poltergeist literally translates to “noisy ghost” in English.
These ghosts are able to physically manipulate their environment causing objects to move. No one knows how this is possible.
Poltergeist hauntings tend to be of a more negative nature, causing significant distress and scaring the individuals involved in the haunting.
Some investigators feel that they may be more of a demonic type entity rather than a ghost, others surmise it is a type of entity created by psychokinesis (PK), a type of psychic ability whereby an individual is able to manipulate their physical surroundings. Some believe they are intelligent ghosts who have learned to manipulate their physical environment.
The individual targeted by the poltergeist tend to be in their teens and more often than not are female. This leads in to the PK theory as it is believe that the psychic activity isn’t being generated deliberately or with knowing. In teenagers they are undergoing profound physical and mental shifts, in turn creating an abundance of energy. The PK manifestation of a poltergeist is a direct result in the increase in energy of the individual. Poltergeist activity also tends to increase during highly emotional events for these individuals, which happens a fair bit with teenagers.
In the UK there are two very famous poltergeist hauntings. 30 East Drive in Pontefract, North Yorkshire and The Enfield Poltergeist, in Brimsdown, Enfield, London.
In the Enfield haunting, investigators from the Society for Psychical Research attended the home. Investigators were torn between accepting it as true paranormal phenomena or concluding that it was a faked event, but interviews with the people involved suggest they believe it was very much real.
We have investigated at 30 East Drive and have witnessed with our own eyes poltergeist activity. A small bedside table moved away from the wall by about 7 inches. Kirsty was so convinced this had been faked she picked the unit up to examine it for fishing wires, magnets or any other trickery that could have caused it to move. There was NO evidence of trickery at all.