Photo courtesy Kenneth C. Zirkel
By Jess Colwick | Herald Contributor
As we welcome fall and the beginning of October, I thought it would be fun to tackle the age-old spooky question of whether ghosts exist. Personally, I believe 100% that they do. While I’ve never had an experience myself, I have heard many stories from reliable people about their experiences with the supernatural. However, apparently the majority of the American public is not convinced, as only 40 percent of Americans believe in ghosts according to The Atlantic. Perhaps the following five reasons will convince them and you as well…
1. Medium Contact
There has been a lot of controversy surrounding mediums over the years as some frauds have been exposed. But I assure you that the real deal is out there. Scientists have even tested people claiming to be mediums and the results may be surprising. Harvard-trained Dr. Gary Schwartz of the University of Arizona conducted a double-blind study using numerous self-proclaimed mediums. The study suggested that some of them had the amazing ability to acquire information that could only be known by the deceased. While his methodology may be attacked by the traditional science community, those with an open-mind are convinced.
Paranormal researchers believe that orbs are a manifestation of spirit energy caught on camera. While they could be brushed off as a speck of dust, water, or camera malfunction, there are examples of orbs that cast their own light shadow (suggesting they are internally illuminated) or are partially hidden behind objects in the distance (suggesting they are too far away to be a dust particle or something else obstructing the camera’s view). In addition, people have actually captured images of full-blown apparitions. There are old photographs (before the time of Photoshop) that contain faint images of people who weren’t there when the photo was taken.
3. Historical Precedence
Stories of ghosts and spirit phenomena have been prevalent across many cultures going back thousands of years. The ancient Greeks and Romans have written about ghosts, and there is even mention of them in the Bible (1 Samuel 28). While this alone does not prove the existence of ghosts, it shows that the idea of them is not a new one and people of the past have also experienced supernatural phenomena.
4. The Immutability of Energy
Physics has taught us that energy can neither be created nor destroyed, but simply changes forms. Therefore—if we were to define human consciousness as a manifestation of electrical energy—when we die, our energy does not cease to exist, but merely changes into a different form (hence the origin of ghosts). We must remember that in the past, things such as bacteria and viruses seemed highly unlikely to exist because we could not see them. However, with the invention of the microscope it became clear that bacteria and viruses do, in fact, exist. Perhaps the existence of ghosts will follow the same pattern: they exist, but their existence seems unlikely as we do not yet have the proper scientific tools to see them.
5. Eyewitness Accounts
While eyewitness accounts may not be the most reliable source of evidence, there are too many accounts of ghosts for it to be a mere coincidence. According to a 2009 research survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, 18 percent of Americans have said they had come into contact with a ghost (that’s 58.158 million people.)
From mediums to personal experience with the paranormal and everything in between, hopefully I have convinced a few non-believers that there just might be more to life after death than they once thought. But don’t just believe me; perhaps you should visit the nearby notoriously haunted Lizzie Borden house and see for yourself.