- Religion and Philosophy
The Paranormal - Fact or fiction?
What is the paranormal?
Many of us associate the paranormal with ghosts – hauntings if you will, but the paranormal encompasses far more. It is a blanket expression for anything we can’t pigeon-hole in a nice, rational manner - yet.
Let’s see; we have ghosts, poltergeists, faith healing, witchcraft, voodoo, telepathy, psychokinesis, the Bermuda Triangle, the Pyramids and UFO’s are all members of that elite group that we acknowledge as being there, but can’t fully explain.
Take ghosts and poltergeists for instance. Despite there being many documented cases from people not ordinarily given over to flights of fancy, some believe and some do not. Some are prepared to say that there is something there, whilst others are not.
Some say there cannot be any truth in ghosts, poltergeists or spiritual entities as they would break the laws of physics, but then it was widely believed that humans would suffocate at speeds of over twenty-five miles per hour at one time and now look at us.
The Bermuda Triangle
The disappearance of so many aircraft and ships over the area affectionately known as the Bermuda Triangle has had theorists and scientists alike scratching their heads for as long as the term has been coined. Still though, no-one has a definitive answer for the apparently strange occurrences that have been linked to that area.
The pyramids are one of the wonders of the world and have the engineers of today at a loss to know how the ancient Egyptians managed to build structures five thousand years ago that we still can’t. The use of pyramids has not been questioned, but the methods used to construct them, certainly has.
UFO’s are something a great many of us have our own theories on. Like the reports of ghosts, reports of UFO’s have been well documented and the governments of today are fuelling the conspiracy theorists fires with what appear to be blatant cover-ups coupled with the refusal to confirm or deny reports linking them with UFO phenomena.
Psychic phenomena are more areas which can come under the banner of paranormal, encompassing areas such as faith healing, telepathy, psychometrics, telekinesis or psychokinesis to name but a few. In many instances, the psychics – for want of a better term, have been documented in scientific journals by responsible witnesses as being ‘real’.
There are those who can ‘see’ the future, those who can move objects with the power of the mind, those who can ‘talk’ to the dead and those who can heal ills for which, there were no medical cures and without the use of medical instruments or drugs.
Spontaneous Human Combustion
Perhaps the most baffling of all phenomena are the cases of SHC. Spontaneous Human Combustion is one of those things that many people have had a stab at explaining, but somehow can’t. There aren’t many documented cases of this, but those that have been seem to lean towards the fact that these people simply burnt.
All of the above can be partly explained, but not fully.
Fact or Fiction?
One man who hosted a phone-in on the radio for people who had had encounters with UFO’s, said that 95% or more of the calls that came in were obviously fakes, but the other 5% had no rational explanation other than that they were the truth.
I suspect that the same can be said of most if not all paranormal experiences reported; there are going to be fabrications, but then there are also going to be reports that are genuine.
It therefore stands to reason that the strange or apparently paranormal isn’t always caused by wilful spirits, demons or anything of that nature.
The Haunted Car?
A man sent a letter to the Pontiac division of General Motors with a complaint, stating that this was the second time he’d written, although he didn’t blame them for thinking he might be crazy.
He went on to explain how it had become a tradition in his family to follow their evening meal with ice cream, however the flavour varies as after the meal, they take a vote on which ice cream they should have. After that, he explained that it was his job then to drive to the local store to buy the chosen flavour.
He also explained that he had recently bought a new Pontiac and since then it had caused problems with the ice cream runs.
“If I buy vanilla, the car won’t start, but if I buy any other flavour, everything is fine.”
This seemed spooky.
Did the car not like vanilla?
Did it have something against that particular flavour?
It was something that baffled the Pontiac chaps too and they sent an engineer who was convinced he was on his way to a total nut-job and was surprised when he met a man in a nice neighbourhood who was well-dressed and obviously intelligent.
The engineer went with the man to the store and as luck would have it, he bought vanilla and sure enough, the car failed to start.
Several more times the engineer joined the man on his ice cream run and the next time they went to the store, the man bought chocolate and the car started first time. Next, it was strawberry and again the car started first time, but on the fourth trip, the flavour was vanilla and surprise, surprise, the car failed to start.
It was spooky.
On each of the runs to the store, the engineer took notes on outside temperatures, the kind of fuel etc and for a while was completely baffled, but then it dawned on him.
It was down to the layout of the store.
The fact was, vanilla was in a freezer at the front of the store, whilst the other flavours were further back and therefore took the man longer to locate and purchase. In addition, the car was suffering from vapour-lock, which was still present when the man returned from purchasing his vanilla ice cream, but had had enough time to dissipate when another flavour had been purchased.
So as spooky as it may have seemed, there was a logical explanation to the car’s ills.
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