The connection between the human world and the spirit world has been a question since the beginning of time. Not merely a question, but it is also a mystery. During the past, we have come across a lot of incidences where people have believed in exoticism. The unclear and unidentified connection between the human world and spirit world urges the need for proofs for such beliefs.
The pandemic caused by a deadly virus has turned the world upside down while exposing people to some unknown aspects. One of them is the paranormal world when people hope for a miracle while wishing for an end to this pandemic. Future tellers, numerologists, tarot card readers, astrologers, weather forecasters, etc. demanded during some undesired events in life are quite much prevalent during the predictions of COVID-19.
The desire to influence unpredictable activities and a need to resolve uncertainty for discharging anxiety compel us to believe in superstitions, a belief of supernatural elements. Do these supernatural things exist? Is the belief of people in the existence of God and Spirits justifiable through the existence of good and evil powers? If yes, who are these good and evil powers, or God and ghosts?
The apparent suicide of the Bollywood actor, Sushant Singh Rajput in June has exploded the internet since then. The recent disputable video of Steve Huff, an American engaging with spirits or a paranormal activity expert, claimed of communicating with Sushant’s spirit has generated 48 times more traffic. This accentuated fascination to know the unknown side already reflects how unproven and speculated these claims are.
In the video, Huff called his spirit through the unique machine set up. The weird voice responding to his questions claimed to be of the late actor. “I am getting the light” and “need love”, says the voice claimed as spirit. When asked about what happened a night before his death, the voice utters, “a big argument with men” and “they brought nails”. The shocking voice has fuelled some unanswerable questions on the existence of spirits and God. The ghost, a soul or spirit of a deceased person, is speculated to get appeared to a living person.
A set of three videos released by Huff has gained incredible attention of curious people while gathering a bunch of criticism and beliefs. Shishir Thakur, an Indian paranormal activity researcher, believes sessions to be fake technically. In his words to Deccan Chronicle, “Normally, a paranormal investigator first investigates the haunting – which is a house or an object. It is not about powers to summon an entity or ghost. A ghost would not leave the periphery of the house or object if it is emotionally attached to it. So summoning is not acceptable.” From the above statement, the existence of spirits is not denied, but there are claims of fault in the machine and techniques. Simultaneously, there are no claims on the existence of ghosts. While it is quite difficult to determine the existence of ghosts and spirits, but with the advent of technology and modern tools, researchers claim to hold a key to a walkway to the Spirits.
Deborah Blum writes about the scientists creating impacts by inducing phantom in the New York Times. It reads, “the sensation of being haunted by a shadowy figure — by stimulating the brain with electricity, it made perfect neurological sense. One could even argue that the existence of such sensations explains away the so-called supernatural. As Times reported, the researchers promptly concluded that ghosts are mere “bodily delusions,” electrical misfiring, and nothing more.”
Anyone, curious or not, like me, would wonder how to react to these videos? Should we believe in such supernatural things? How I would be feeling after watching them depends on the behavior, emotions, beliefs, and experiences of individuals. People who willingly eluded the ghost stories in big bungalows or carcasses may get scared witlessly while encountering such videos. The one having experiences of some ghosts staring them in the mirrors would be trembling tremendously after opening the video. It should be intriguing to us for analysing a more insidious idea about the world.
In a world full of mixed traditions, cultures, faiths, fantasies, and mythology, there exists a complicated cacophony of spirituality amongst people. For knowing spirituality, numerous researches are working for analyzing the increased population believing in supernatural powers. BBC mentions some reports and surveys claiming at least three-quarters of Americans in the paranormal. Not only this, over one in five people believe having seen a ghost.
Why should you believe in supernatural powers?
Researches not only deny the faith of people in immaterial beings, like God, Angels, Spirits, etc. They also disbelieve human abilities, like telepathy (mind-reading), telekinesis (moving things with your mind), clairvoyance (future predictions), magic, precognition, and extrasensory perception. But the Psychology Today claims that beliefs in supernatural powers are often caused by natural phenomenon.
From the unfavorable attempts to get desired happiness and escape from uncertainties of life, individuals tend to believe numerous superstitions like the black cat, number 13, or touching the wood. There are millions of movies or songs entirely based on horror or ghost stories. ‘The Conjuring’, ‘Crimson Peak’, ‘Oculus’, or ‘haunted’, etc. are just a few out of thousands of names reflecting upon the existence of supernatural powers. Further, some movies like ‘The Afflicted’, ‘An American Haunting’, or ‘The Amityville Horror’, etc. are claimed to be based on real events.
The Sun publishes some pictures proving the existence of supernatural powers. Quenching the thirst of curiosity, there are over 10,000 haunted tourist sites in the U.K. for curious tourists. Some recent surveys have shown the increase in the population believing in ghosts, including some scholars, scientists, and psychiatrists across the globe.
Some facts about the paranormal:
It is believed when Winston Churchill had a canny experience when he was visiting the White House after World War II. He reportedly met by the ghost of Abraham Lincoln after having a long bath with scotch and cigar. Composed, even while completely naked, Churchill said: “Good evening, Mr. President. You seem to have me at a disadvantage.” The spirit smiled and vanished while Churchill welcomes an illustrious company later. It must have intrigued you while imposing questions on you holding more insidious beliefs about life, death, and beyond life.
Arthur, Conan Doyle, a British writer, and medical doctor, spoke to ghosts through these mediums. Furthermore, the father of modern computer technology and philosopher, Alan Turing could not elude himself from believing these unsolved and unproven claims.
According to researchers, involved in researching the virtues behind some beliefs, a few supernatural experiences are explainable due to some faults in the brain. As per the Reports, damage to certain regions of the right hemisphere that are responsible for visual processing such experiences may include the uncanny feeling of being stalked or encountering faceless shadows loitering in the surroundings due to certain forms of epilepsy.
Jennifer Whitson at the University of Texas, says, “It’s such an aversive state that if it cannot gain control objectively, we will get it by perceiving more structures around us, even if they do not exist.” He further mentions, “We should all be ready to evaluate our assumptions more thoughtfully.”
People in America might believe in the lucky charms to have a stroke of prosperous luck ahead, on the other hand, people in India might believe in sweetened curd before stepping to a ladder of success or event to be successful. Some might be knocking the wood for luck, while others might be appeasing their lucks through different rituals. The co-incidence of both the events, that is belief and the favorable outcome, sometimes urges you to believe in the supernatural powers.
The existence of numerous rituals or beliefs may vary from religion to location and from education to background. Considering religious people, who are devoted to one deity, do not possess flickering beliefs but a stable acceptance of what their religion implies. On the other hand, atheists, and people inactive in a religion, freely believe in Bigfoot or consult a psychic. Mostly, the agnostics and atheists do not believe in God, and a minority of them rejected the actuality of supernatural powers.
As per LiveScience, “Christians and New Agers, paranormalists, etc. all have one thing in common: a spiritual orientation to the world,” says sociology Professor Carson Mencken of Baylor University. “Among Christians, those who attend church very often (and are exposed to stigma and sacrifice within their congregations) are least likely to believe in the paranormal,” Mencken told LiveScience. “Conversely, those Christians who do not attend church very often (maybe once or twice a year) are the most likely to hold paranormal beliefs.”
Accordingly, Asian countries like China, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, and Thailand celebrates the seventh month of the lunar calendar as the Hungry Ghost Festival. As per some beliefs, the ghosts of deceased people visit places while getting released from the lower realm temporarily. It is believed that people of Taiwan believe the presence of wandering ghosts during Ghost Month, and therefore, avoid some risky behaviors during the month. Additionally, people expect the month that causes accidents to a living.
“Ghosts in Asia can be asked for help in healing humans, winning the lottery and protecting one while traveling or while pregnant,” says Justin McDaniel, a professor of religious studies and director of the Penn Ghost Project at the University of Pennsylvania. He further adds, “Like American ghosts, they have an attachment to the human realm that keeps them haunting and helping humans. Like, in the West, people in Asia have kept their belief in ghosts despite the rise of science, skepticism, secularism, and public education. In places like Japan, where secularism is extraordinarily strong, and the belief in ghosts is still high. Even hyper-modern and liberal Scandinavia has a high percentage of people believing in ghosts.”
“There is no such thing as a ‘scientific proof’ of anything: all that science can assert is that a particular theory has so far not been contradicted by observation. A scientist, faced with a theory, such as ‘my house is haunted’ (for example, to explain strange noises and lights), would apply Occam’s Razor – i.e., out of several possible theories, the least complex is likely to be correct. It depends on your system of beliefs in the existence of ghosts is a less complicated explanation than (say) one based on electrical phenomena (in turn ‘explained’ by quantum physics which is non-intuitive),” says Mark Lowney, Cardiff EU to the Guardian.
There are no imposed beliefs about beyond life. The tendency to have faith in supernatural powers somewhat depends but not entirely on religious, personal, or beliefs depending upon experiences. These intriguing thoughts should force you to question the existence of Supernatural powers, along with the reasons to believe in or not. It remains a mystery, and none of the aspects proved. Which would you believe when the world is continuously trying to untangle both?