Ghosts And The Mind

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Religion and Spirituality  |  House: Booksie Classic

A brief but strong argument to say that the concept of spirits and ghosts should never be cast completely away

 

The supernatural has always been something of controversy. From the very earliest days of paganism right up to the period of civility and science we find ourselves in today, people still insist that ghosts or spirits or whatever you want to call them, are very much real. Then there the quantum physicists who believe that in the future, manipulation of time has been harnessed and we simply interact with other time streams piercing our dimension. Myself, I can only speculate as a member of the unknowing majority. Notice I say majority; not everybody. As I research and discover new truths along the pathways of curiosity, I slowly come closer to seeing the veil popular convention and government pulls over our eyes. The great Howard Marks went to visit an American Indian tribe where he learned their shamans would smoke three foot long cigars every day; six of them. Yet in the entire history of the tribe not a single member became afflicted with cancer. Why do we get cancer? It’s not because of genetics or an insufficient immune system. It is because of the many super long-worded chemicals put with tobacco on our shelves to make them ‘consumable’. To sterilise them of any nastiness that should be there (even when health and safety seems to forget the human body has an immune system that has evolved for millions of years; and in that time humanity had been smoking without their ‘help’) and to make them last. To make them ready for a consumerist money making-market. If only they could put salt with it for such preservation. So. The government purports to constantly be mindful of its people’s health by banning the smoking of cigarettes indoors and putting dreadful pictures of surgery on the backs of tobacco pouches as if to say ‘Smoke and you will end up like this guy, you disgusting fumigating fool’. However, they are hypocrites. They are the ones who listen to bearers of the red tape and so, in the interest of public health, they put chemicals in tobacco which has flipped the whole situation back to square one and beyond. Those stupid bastards.

So what does all this tobacco debacle have to do with ghosts? Well I simply demonstrate it as an example of how we are all wonderfully ignorant to the truth about something until we are fortunate enough to happen across it factually. Until that little eureka moment of enlightenment we will believe whatever a large group of people tell us to believe. Like the government saying ‘Tobacco is bad...it kills...but we’re not gunna outlaw it cos we’re making far too much money’. Or the Pope telling Christian soldiers ‘Ok go to the holy land and give me more power. You can kill whoever gets in your way, I’ll have a pep talk with God and you’ll still go to heaven. Never mind the Ten Commandments’. So this is how I feel about the supernatural. No one is one hundred percent on it. Therefore we drift aimlessly pondering all the what ifs and theories and even desperately going back to primitive texts within a time of knowledge to find information on the hazy topic.

Many people I have spoken to laugh in my face when I tell of my experiences ‘It was just the cat’ or ‘It was dark mate, it coulda been anything’ or any other pathetic attempt at rationalising an event they weren’t even at. When I ask them the question (which I already know the answer to) ‘Well, do you believe?’ they predictably say no. Which I then use to set up the line ‘Well that’s because you’ve never had an experience before’. Vindictive as it might be to say, I daresay if one of these people’s close relatives had died recently they’d suddenly be more inclined to believe as it is then the one and only medium that offers a chance to be with them again. It is totally fair for someone who has never experienced what our society calls the supernatural, to not believe. How could you believe something shrouded in controversy and bullshit television programs? How could you believe in something that you can’t see but can only hear, easily dismissing it as ‘the wind’? Of course, this scepticism is all cast away upon the death of a loved one. Extreme times call for extreme measures, exactly how, when near to death or in an extremely stressful situation, the biggest member of non-religious peoples will get down on his knees and pray in the vein hope that there is someone out there to help him. Is this an example of a human psyche that tricks our brain into wanting to see these things? Alas this can’t be answered and we continue to ponder away right back at square one. Just how much does human psychology have to do with this? Was there a part of my brain that night that genuinely tricked me into thinking the back of my neck was being breathed on by an extremely close-by onlooker? Is there a part of my brain that made me hear the creaks of the stairs ascend in the right rhythm and order, only to descend once again after I politely asked the spirit to leave? I think not. What purpose could evolution ever serve the brain by giving it the ability to create sounds and sensations?

I watch movies and Derren’s Brown’s little tricks and programs that proclaim to be the real thing. I sit back and shake my head at every one of them. They’re all fake and, without sounding arrogant, I know because I’ve experienced the real thing. If any TV crew happened across the actual real thing do you really think it would be televised for all the masses to shit themselves about? No, the TV shows you things that it expects to be dismissed.

 Ghosts do not take form or manifest in anyway, visually. They are not entirely within this plain of existence and so they’re interaction with us is limited. It is limited to sounds and chance interactions with the bare environment, that being the walls around them, the floor, or that delicately placed vase that decided to fall off the table. Now, when people have a strong experience they throw their arms up in horror and even I find tears in my eyes from the fear of reliving certain events. Of course it’s scary, its that same unknown ‘thing’ but this time the government isn’t telling us what to think of it. So what do we do? We fear it and reject it as fiction as a result of rationalising something we can’t decipher. The truth is (from my many experiences) ghosts and spirits are harmless. I think they are stuck within the small environment in which they died and they are lonely in purgatory. The breathing on my neck, the creaking up the stairs and seeming motionless onlooker at my bedroom door then leaving after I asked it to; it’s all a kind of morbid fascination from them. Naturally they used to be human too and still totally have the right to look on at us, full of sorrow or boredom or even envy. However, as I said, a ghost could never hurt you. A ghost could obstruct you as one did with my mother when she physically could not move down the stairs, but they do not have the physical manifestation to actually commit harm to someone. The predominant thought in everybody’s mind is always the one that incites the more fear. The fear that something could hurt you badly. This thought is borne of scary films, hammered into our subconscious by the media. Scary sells, so of course they will take a popular myth of the supernatural and draw on it. Our fear of ghosts is literally from that; brainwashing. A strong word, I know, but movies are, whether they like it or not, extremely subliminal. We base our ideas and morals and daily lives and behaviour partly upon what the films themselves stem from. Like a vicious circle of humanity and it’s contemporary conventions, never ending. That is exactly what films are great for and what they will later be great for. Like Shakespeare or Marlowe or Keat’s poetry or Dylan Thomas’ grey insights to the industrial revolution, films will forever do just that. So, people of the future studying the past and the myths that floated within it, will likely look at the films coming out now (insidious, paranormal activity, blair witch) and say ‘Why where they so worked up about the supernatural?’. Or perhaps they’ll remain at the same phase we seem to have remained at for so long. The phase of utter confusion and lack of understanding of something that seems to want to keep poking it’s nose into our world in every culture and every society and every time period.

This recurrence of a popular belief  of some other forms of beings walking alongside us from time to time has sprung up within every possible society to inhabit this world. It’s far, far too much of a coincidence for me to swallow. I’m sorry non-believers but the statistics are telling me this is far more than just anomalies sparking off in the networks of our synapses.

Oops, I’ve digressed once again. This time about films. Sorry about that. The main thing I wanted to draw upon a little more was the idea of this innate fear we seem to have. The assumption that the unknown will hurt us. Its this same assumption that makes me very cautious of first contact with an alien species. A typical human trait of shoot first ask questions later, borne of a brimming set of emotions and uncertainty leading us to lash out. Perhaps it is this terrible quality of ours that makes the ghosts want to stay hidden. I know we can’t hurt them but it’s an unpleasant scenario for them to come to terms with all the same. Like Frankenstein being rejected for being different. And just look what humanity did to him! The fear of getting hurt by these unknowable specimens should really only be applied to demons or poltergeists. Now that is something to be scared of and as I write on I remind myself of the murky waters in which I tread, thinking of what surrounds my feet. Is there a spirit leaning over my shoulder, reading avidly, my ponderings of his existence? It is pretty cold in here. Yes, I am a firm believer of the temperature drop test. Gohsts are an entirely separate entity to poltergeists and demons. 


Submitted: November 03, 2011

© Copyright 2022 Nick Banks. All rights reserved.

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Comments

yoyodog

This was an interesting rant, unfortunately I didn't have the concentration to get through it all, but I can't help but feel this is not the proof that I was promised in your other post.

You have a nice adaption of the classic "ghost" and given it a nice modern twist - almost Casper in style - I must admit I would much rather listen to stories of friendly ghosts than overgrown children that still check under the bed. I need not get into yet another discussion on the supernatural, for the present time at least this is something that will have to remain an unanswered question, but I would like to see a little more substance in your arguments. I did not state whether I agree or disagree but your points do seem to be somewhat one sided – I note that you have somehow missed the billions of dollars tobacco companies spend on advertising in contrast to the Government’s efforts to control smoking , off hand I think it is in the region of $12billion.

All that being said I was pleased with some fresh ideas and, for the large part, your general writing style. I assume you are a budding writer, perhaps in College? What I often feel useful is to write things on which I don’t agree on. At the moment your work goes slightly off track because of your enthusiasm and so it would be nice to see a more clinical piece of work infused with your unique ideas. Give it a go, I have been told by students that they feel disrespectful writing to disprove things they believe in but, as I say, use it purely as a teaching exercise.
Keep up the good work and if you would like I’ll try and keep up to date with your publications and remember “An idea, like a ghost, must be spoken to a little before it will explain itself.”

Sat, November 19th, 2011 2:23pm

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Reply

Thanks a lot for your comment. Yes I am a student in third year at university studying English lit and lang. I have various other rants hidden away in my computer, some more recent than others and that will show in my writing style; if and when I publish them here.

I appreciate your critical comments and have taken them on board. The points you make are fair enough. I was quite troubled when you said you couldn't finish it, however. Was it through fault of my own?

If you liked this, you may enjoy my other entry. It's an extract from my book mentioned on my Bio. A fair bit longer, I'm afraid.

The way you commented here though, makes me wonder if you are an academic in the field yourself. May I ask what it is you do?

Fri, November 25th, 2011 9:24am

Nick Banks

Thanks a lot for your comment. Yes I am a student in third year at university studying English lit and lang. I have various other rants hidden away in my computer, some more recent than others and that will show in my writing style; if and when I publish them here.

I appreciate your critical comments and have taken them on board. The points you make are fair enough. I was quite troubled when you said you couldn't finish it, however. Was it through fault of my own?

If you liked this, you may enjoy my other entry. It's an extract from my book mentioned on my Bio. A fair bit longer, I'm afraid.

The way you commented here though, makes me wonder if you are an academic in the field yourself. May I ask what it is you do?

Mon, November 21st, 2011 6:00pm

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