Saturday, June 28, 2008

What Exactly is a Ghost?

By Nigel Nix

It doesn't matter what part of the world you come from or what religious faith you belong to, people all over the world are fascinated with death and the possibility of an afterlife. Most live in hope of "something" after this life. Some claim to have seen such entities or have photographic proof of their existence. More often than not these specters have evil inclinations and create fear at a primeval level. But what exactly is a ghost?

Is it the residual energy left in a certain location or a recurring echo doomed to rerun its own show for eternity? Is it a hellish demon masquerading as a mortal casualty? Or is it simply a lost soul abruptly taken and trying to find an exit without realizing its own tragic fate? Whatever ghosts are they remain a fascination and continue to captivate us in our everyday life, in books, through orally related tales and on the silver screen.

So when exactly did the deceased take on such a macabre persona? In order to evade further rhetoric we must look into our ancient past. Imagine being one of the first people in existence. Frolicking in nature and never taking notice of lifelessness even when killing other beasts to feed your hungry body. Taking your continuing existence for granted. Breeding, loving and raising your own offspring. Suddenly something unthinkable happens. One of your favorite offspring is killed by one of the beasts you regularly dine upon. Dystopian heart tearing sadness fills your being. A dark empty void is left where an integral warm piece used to reside. Unwilling to let go, you continue to speak with the memories to your cherished one. Continue to wish that they would return and that things could be as they were before this constant sorrow. You want it so strong that you start to believe it possible and eventually you make it a reality.

Through the use of hallucinogens shamans believed they could speak with the dead and summon powers beyond this earthly realm. The common folk thirsted for such hope and these elemental sorcerers commanded both fear and respect from their simple followers. They were a necessary comfort and aided in creating a stable content society. Believing in a hereafter gives purpose to an otherwise pointless and trivial life journey. In these times our expired relatives were looked upon with tremendous awe and great respect.

During the subsequent ages ghosts have become more imaginatively sinister through the writings of great story tellers and spectacular Hollywood productions. But despite these distortions, no solid proof of an afterlife kingdom or its evil inhabitants has yet been proven. It continues to be a long and intensely studied topic but has failed to produce hardcore proof. Ectoplasm itself eludes the eager professor of parapsychology hoping to find a shred of real evidence to justify his folly. However motivated these nocturnal thrill seekers remain, it seems that nature stubbornly denies them the fruit they so badly desire. Ghosts, I'm afraid, as spooky as they have been portrayed, remain an object of our ever fascinated and overactive imaginations.

The author thinks ghosts are cute.....mostly..... Supernatural Merchandise

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