Author Topic: Do You Believe in Ghosts?  (Read 11992 times)

Fester

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #15 on: September 23, 2012, 09:10:08 PM »
Do I believe in ghosts?
Well, I enjoy ghost stories, novels and movies.

Real ghosts?
I have never seen one that could not be explained in non-supernatural terms.  Most “evidence” of ghosts are illusions and misperceptions with some of them being outright fakes.
I understand people's susceptibility to suggestion.  I also understand some folks need to see something meaningful in their experiences.  We are hardwired, it seems, to seek and recognize patterns in what we see. Admit it or not, we have all experienced examples of what is called pareidolia. Ever seen a cloud or rock outcropping that resembles a face or another object?  That is Pareidolia. 
In Ireland, many years ago, I visited the site of a miraculous apparition of a statue of the Virgin Mary moving. There were so many votive candles--each one prayerfully lit by a visitor--that the air around the statues shimmered.  One poor old lady saw the Virgin smile and wink at her. The lady then gasped and fainted dead away. I was standing close enough to grab her and break her fall. When she came to the old lady swore she saw what she saw.  I had been standing next to her, and all I saw was a beautifully carved and painted 19th century statue--totally immobile.  We tend to see what we expect to see.
And if we are expecting to experience a ghostly haunting, our minds will conjure one up.

Count_Zirock

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2012, 09:27:08 PM »
No, I don't believe in ghosts. I do love ghost stories, but I don't believe in the supernatural at all.
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Ghost

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #17 on: September 24, 2012, 01:52:26 PM »
Ghost: That was a great write up on haunted USU!  My folks went there when I was a toddler.  It was Utah State Ag College back then. I remember hearing stories about the Old Main being haunted, so those tales dated back into the late 1950s.  When I was a kid in Salt Lake we used to try to find the Bride of Memory Grove and get some sort of reaction from Emo's Grave.  But no luck.


Ha, I grew up hearing stories of Emo's grave and the ghost of memory grove among others from my dad. I collect local legends it is always cool to hear about spooky things supposedly happening in your neck of the woods.


Street Worm

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #18 on: September 24, 2012, 06:59:08 PM »
Nope, never saw one but my wife says she has...

I do think there is more out there then we understand...
I've had a lot of experiences that could be attributed to 'guardian angels'
(for lack of a better term...)

aura of foreboding

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2012, 07:08:49 PM »
Seen one.  Would rather not see one again. 

*And by one, I mean what other people would most likely call a "ghost" - an eerie black form that appears and disappears.  I am still not sure what I'd call it.  Guardian Angel?  Something from another dimension/realm that got caught in our own?  No clue.  But it freaked me out to the point that I now need at least a little more light in every room.   :)

lblambert

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2012, 07:42:35 PM »
I agree 100% with Count Zirock...I love a good ghost story but I do not believe in the supernatural at all.

I took a ghost tour in Key West just to hear some of the neat local ghost stories and quite enjoyed it. The guide had us take photos in some of the "haunted" areas and I got a good first hand look at how strong the power of suggestion can be. On two people's photographs, the guide proudly proclaimed that they had photographed ectoplasm which proved paranormal activity and got the group all excited. One of them was a red patch that, on closer examination, was circle shaped with a line diagonally through it, you could also clearly see it was on a white background with a black letter P. Yes, they proved the existence of a No Parking sign but the majority of the group refused to accept the rational explanation. The other were green blobs which had tiny strands connecting them to a darker elongated thicker strand. Yep...blurry tree branch with leaves and once again the majority of the group refused to accept it. These people just believed and wanted to have an experience so they convinced themselves they were having a paranormal experience when there was a logical explanation staring them in the face.

aura of foreboding

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2012, 09:02:38 PM »
This is a complicated question.  Yes, I believe that when people say they see something and call it a ghost, they are in fact seeing something.  I believe they are seeing something real, and not just something in their imagination. 

But as to what that something is?  I don't think any analysis has been done that answers that question....

I do think, though, that whatever these things are, when we get a handle on exactly what we're looking at, it's gonna be very surprising and it will be a quantum leap in our understanding of the universe.

A notion I fully subscribe to. 

You can't tell me that I haven't seen what I have seen.  But I can't honestly tell you what I have seen is ''a ghost.''  I wish science would take this subject more seriously, so we could get to the bottom of these strange encounters.  Unfortunately, there's a lot of noise out there that inhibits growth of actual knowledge or understanding.  I definitely believe in other dimensions beyond the ones we know now, and I believe those dimensions let down their walls when the circumstances are just right.  Whether those dimensions involve Past Time, Actual Dead People, or Something Entirely Different, I have no idea.  But I would love for a team to investigate the possibilities of these other-worldly realms.  There is so much out there we don't know...  To even get a hint of knowledge would be refreshing, possibly mind-blowing. 

neonnoodle

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #22 on: September 24, 2012, 10:21:15 PM »
Yes, absolutely.  But also, of course, I was not suggesting that people don't imagine they see things; they do.  And it's easy to hear a "noise" in the middle of the night and imagine that it's something unnatural when in fact it's something totally natural.  Our ability to imagine things is well known.  (Why, just look at this site!  It's dedicated to imaginary monsters!)   But yeah, in cases like aura of foreboding's above...I don't know aura at all, but that sounds like an actual experience of something strange and unknown.

See, here's my take on these mythologies...when someone says "I don't believe in ghosts," what they are often saying is that they don't believe in a particular mythology of ghosts; they are often saying, "I don't believe a person's soul or intelligence continues in some form after death," so even the disbelief, if you follow me, comes with presuppositions, predispositions.

My approach is more like, We have unexplained experiences all the time, and unexplained experiences are the catalyst for a scientific thought process.  What is that glowing ball we see in the sky every day?  It lights up the world, keeps us warm, grows our crops.  Today we call it our sun, but once upon a time it was an unknown.  I think the people who see what people call "ghosts" are sometimes seeing a new unknown.  Maybe one that occurs with less regularity than the daily appearance of our sun.  It seems premature to assume that it "is" something (like a spirit, or a goblin, or whatever) without a whole lot of data and analysis of what the thing "is."  Until we can study it more, I would call the thing an unknown.
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aura of foreboding

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #23 on: September 24, 2012, 10:25:45 PM »
Exactly!  And that is one reason why I dislike a lot of the "ghost tours."  While they are fun, and I am sure some of the stories are based in some kind of fact, a lot of people just see things because they want to.  And that reduces the credibility of folks who have actually had unexplained encounters. 

Like you said, we just don't know what these unexplained things are... yet.   tynhrt

neonnoodle

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #24 on: September 24, 2012, 11:03:48 PM »
I went on a couple of ghost hunts a while back.  Even did one on Halloween night!  People had audio recorders, magnetometers, video cameras.  Everyone was playing scientist.  But you know what was REALLY going on?  A bunch of people were getting together on a dark night in a spooky house and enjoying a good creepy scare, that's what was going on!  I think people mainly do those things because it's fun and it exercises the imagination.  Hey, I enjoyed it too.

You know, "they say" that one of the very best ways to NOT see a ghost is to go hunting for ghosts.  Supposedly, the majority of people who see these mysterious things are not looking for them.
Beautiful moving, shifting colors!

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aura of foreboding

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #25 on: September 25, 2012, 07:28:31 PM »
Oh yeah, the ghost tours are a lot of fun.  And I would never suggest getting rid of them.  But, come now, people, you didn't all just see a full bodied apparition in the corner, so don't go around telling everyone you did! 

And you are right...  If you go hunting for one, you won't find it.  It's all about the surprise...  Believe me, I'd rather it not be.   ;)

ravenloft

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #26 on: September 25, 2012, 10:36:17 PM »
well...
I have had some strange experiences...
Once the phone rang and it was a woman crying and I could get no answer out of her so I hung up then immediately my dad called from the hospital to tell me my grandpa had just died. He hadn't told anyone else yet. What a strange coincidence!?!
I often thought I heard my grandpa roaming the house in his distinctive slipper shuttle down the hall to the kitchen where I listened to plates and a fork perhaps clinking while my neck hair raised! I used to perk up my ears to catch again a perceived muttering that sounded like my grandpa's normal grumblings when he was alive.
I have a whole bookcase dedicated to ghost stories everything from Victorian classics to kids paperbacks. I joined the local paranormal investigation group but soon realized that they were using pseudoscientific  techniques and dropped out. I have several supposedly serious scientific books on the subject as well but the only one that is actually a serious scientific inquiry in the subject is "Spook" by Mary Roach http://www.amazon.com/Spook-Science-Tackles-Afterlife-ebook/dp/B001CBMX92/ref=dp_kinw_strp_1
I definitely sincerely wish ghosts are real but I have succumbed to logic and reason and know that there is no scientific proof. I chalk my earlier experiences up to just waking up and being groggy, being young and alone in the house with an over active imagination and just chance coincidence. But I sure love a good ghost story! I read them all the time and can retell many from memory at the right spooky moment on a camping trip or in a dark corner. My twin brother forum member "Ghost" has already shared a few of our ghost hunting adventures in college. We will never stop looking for ghosts and I hope one finds me even if I don't have the chance to prove it to others  ;)
a parting thought: most religions automatically imply belief in an afterlife as well as a soul or spirit that survives physical death. Is a ghost a soul of a dead person and a cognizant entity? or is it some form of energy that has been recorded to playback under certain conditions? A trick of optics, atmospheric or lighting conditions? A mental glitch that has yet to be explained medically or physiologically? Or is it just wishful thinking of people who enjoy a good fright?  ;)

CreepysFan

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #27 on: September 26, 2012, 12:01:38 AM »
  There is so much out there we don't know...  To even get a hint of knowledge would be refreshing, possibly mind-blowing.
   
  Lovecraft might disagree.  I've experienced what is referred to as Shadow people at a young age.  I don't want to know.....I'll stick with reading Lovecraft instead.  Once was enough for a lifetime.
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aura of foreboding

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #28 on: September 26, 2012, 12:29:17 AM »
   
  Lovecraft might disagree.  I've experienced what is referred to as Shadow people at a young age.  I don't want to know.....I'll stick with reading Lovecraft instead.  Once was enough for a lifetime.

Haha!  Point taken.  Yet, people do always seem to be more frightened by the unknown.  Strange... because what they don't know can't hurt them.   Or can it?   je7u6ker6

And it's interesting that you should bring that up about the Shadow People.  As my experience might fall into the "Shadow People" category as well.  Really horrifying experience that still gives me goosebumps and has me looking over my shoulder.  And I was 20, so I know it wasn't a dream. 

Herr Hussmann

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Re: Do You Believe in Ghosts?
« Reply #29 on: September 26, 2012, 08:18:25 AM »
The old Art Bell radio show had a psychic/spirtualist/"remote viewer" named Ed Dames who claimed that "Shadow People" were actually the shadows of ghosts and that ghosts had no consciousness, they were only residual energy left over from dead people.