May 3rd is National Paranormal Day! Yup, that’s a real thing and the perfect excuse to talk to you about ghosts. The question is, do ghosts exist? Several surveys asked this question and found that anywhere from 40-57% of people do believe in ghosts. Are you one of them?
There are also many scientists that don’t believe that ghosts exist. and here are some of their theories:
1. The Power of Suggestion: If someone tells you a place you are visiting is haunted, you’re more likely to report having seen a ghost than people who were told that the same location was being renovated. If you look at something ambiguous and want to see a ghost, you’re more likely to see what you want.
2. Magnetic fields and “infrasounds”: Science shows that applying various electromagnetic fields to someone’s brain could cause perception of haunting or a presence. Several studies have linked infrasound, which is audio frequencies that are below the level the human ear perceives sounds, to induce bizarre sensations.
3. Toxic hallucinations: Another explanation offered is the brains reaction to poisons such as carbon monoxide, pesticides, and mold.
4. Hypnagogic and hypnopompic hallucinations: These I am personally familiar with, and you might be too. Hypnagogic hallucinations occur when you are falling asleep but not in REM, or dreaming sleep yet, and hypnopompic hallucinations occur when you are waking up but not all the way out of REM sleep. Another feature of these hallucinations is sleep paralysis. This is when you perceive yourself to be awake, but really aren’t, and you are unable to move your body. Often during this state you may also see things that aren’t really there. I know this is a legit thing, so if someone tells me they saw a ghost when they were lying in bed, I’m skeptical.
5. Those orbs on ghost hunting TV shows… It’s been proven by the Paranormal Photography Investigations Center (R.I.T. Professor Andrew Davidhazy) that those are not ghosts but are just airborne dust close to the lens and caught in the light of the camera.
My thought: In the right circumstances these explanations may be a legitimate reason that some people believe they’ve seen ghosts. But what about the other times when the conditions listed above are not present?
We just reviewed the science against ghosts being real. Guess what? There are also some scientists that argue in favor of ghosts existing.
In an article published in Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing, Dr. Gary Schwartz of the University of Arizona concluded that it was possible to measure the presence of spirit by an increase in photons in an otherwise black box when a spirit appeared inside the box. Dr. Schwartz has written several books on his experiments on multiple paranormal subjects. You can find his book here on Amazon. Dr. Schwartz isn’t the only one doing photons and laser grids to prove the existence of ghosts. If you click this link you can find hundreds of other similar articles.
Two days ago I went to a presentation by some local paranormal experts and tonight I’m going on a ghost hunt with them. If I come back alive tonight, I’ll give you my perspective in a couple posts near and on National Paranormal Day!
Have a great weekend! ~Phil