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- Paranormal Beliefs & Experiences
New evidence for ghosts
Is there life after death, and are they ghosts?
Don’t get me wrong. I am a hard core atheist. I do not believe in the after-life, and I certainly don’t believe that when Aunt Allie’s dust was scattered across the ocean that she went to meet her maker. So the concept of a) ghosts being the end result of the death of a human being and b) that there are actually things like ghosts are not concepts that I would insist on. That said, during the past year there have been sufficient videos and photos in the press that claim to be that of ‘spiritual entities’ to make me wonder.
Religion colours many different explanations of what we see. If we believe in god, then depending on which culture we are born into, we might call that god Yehweh or Allah or Shiva. By the same token, if we are adherents of Hindu, we might not wish to eat a cow because it might be our great grandmother on our mother’s side reincarnated, but if we were Christian, we would only believe in one life and would be inclined that a ‘ghost’ was the spirit of a dearly departed.
But what if we took away religious explanations and that there was a more objective one. Perhaps our eyes are not able to pick up certain things. For instance, we cannot see atoms. We also know that animals can detect a far greater range of sound that humans can.
It’s possible that there are other life forms which share this planet with us, and that they have nothing to do with the spirits of the dead. Perhaps our eyes just can’t see them in normal light. And perhaps the change in camera technology is now able to detect them…
Photo fraud or better technology?
During the past few years, numerous photos and videos have surfaced of shadowy figures on photographs. The photographers claim that the person wasn’t there. In addition, more and photographs are coming up with splashes of white light. I have experienced that myself. I was extremely upset that during the celebrations of the Queen’s jubilee, all the photos I took of the carriages and the cars in the parade had large circles of white light on them. I have never been able to explain them except that my camera might have been faulty that day.
Still, while the white blotches can be explained away as reflected sunlight (even on a grey day), figures that manifest in photo where there was no figure before are a bit more difficult – unless someone shopped it in.
Daily Mail Newspaper
The topic is obviously of interest to a large number of people, and topics that garner that much interest always sell newspapers. So it’s no coincidence that the British Daily Mail has recently been publishing numerous videos and photos that supposedly display figures of ghosts.
The Enfield Hauntings
During the years of my childhood, there was an international story of a house that was haunted in Enfield, England. It’s not the first time that there has been that type of story, and it won’t be the last. In fact, I have one of my own. Let me share it with you.
My own story
I must have been 18 or so when I woke up to see three dark shadows standing next to my bed. As I was heavily into psychology at the time, I thought nothing of it, thinking it a trick of the light. During the next six or seven years, I would occasionally be in that state of wake and sleep where I would see them. However, again, I shrugged it off as a trick of the light or a twist of the mind.
That changed one night in Maseru (Lesotho) when I woke up as my two dogs were barking wildly. They were staring at something on my right, and there they were – those three dark shadows. It was in that instance that it occurred to me that it was not my imagination.
About fifteen years later, living in Johannesburg (South Africa), I had bought a house. Several things began to happen. When I went to sleep at night, I would wake up and hear someone going up and down the stairs. I could also hear movement in the kitchen – the bang and clash of pots and pans. I tried not to be scared, to touch on my rationality, telling myself it was all my imagination. All good and well until a boyfriend slept over one night and asked me if I had walked up and down the stairs all night…
But there was something else. For six or eight months, about once a month someone would drive into the rear end of my car when I stopped at a red light. It was statistically unlikely and I spoke to a friend of mine. She suggested I consult a Songoma (African shaman). I did so. He told me there was a Tokoloshe in the house and that I had been cursed by a woman (My ex evil stepmother?). In any event, after he did his bit, nothing for a while.
Six or seven years later, I started hearing noises in the kitchen again. By this time it frightened me, and despite ongoing prayer, none of it went away (Yes, I used to believe in God in those days). So I called someone from the Spiritualist Church because I heard that they believed in ghosts. They gave me a name – Mike someone. I called him and told him told that I needed help with getting rid of poltergeist (I finally said the word) in my house. He then said, “Don’t say anything more and proceeded to tell me it was in my kitchen and in my daughter’s room.” Um. Yes. Comforting. He told me not to worry and that in an hour, I would get a very light feeling and they would be gone.
That’s not what happened.
Instead, that night I lived through one of the most terrible, horrific nights of my life. It felt like Mount Kilimanjaro was chucking rocks on my roof. I never slept. I could only pray. And then morning came and it stopped.
I called Mike, explained. He said, “That’s unusual. Do you mind if I get rid of the good spirits as well?”
“Good spirits?” I asked. “There are good spirits around me?”
“Oh, yes,” he replied.
“Get rid of them all. I don’t want anything unworldly around me.”
About an hour later I felt very light, and then I never heard noises in my kitchen again.
Was it over?
Move on another four or five years. My daughter and I were living in London (UK) and shortly after we arrived we were sharing a bedroom. One morning she woke up and said, "Who was that with you last night?” I asked her what she meant. She said, “You got up out of bed and someone followed you. I could only see the shadow – a black figure. I couldn’t see who it was.”
Well, yes, I did get up to go to the loo. There was certainly nobody with me.
So do I believe in ghosts?
But there’s something going on that I don’t understand. And I think quite a few of us can admit to that.
Have you ever had an experience that you cannot explain in terms of current scientific understanding?
So do ghosts exist?
“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy,” a quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet comes to mind. We do not understand what life is and so it is difficult to determine under what conditions life can exist and under what conditions life cannot. We are constantly surprised as scientists find new things – life forms under the sea that aren’t carbon based and that live on the side of ultra hot volcanoes under the seas. Life isn’t supposed to be possible under those conditions, but it exists there. Not all lifeforms are carbon based, it seems.
© 2015 Tessa Schlesinger