Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ghosts and walls.

I've come over all philosophical this evening.

I was thinking about the ghosts who walk through walls, but who can't seem to leave a particular building. It doesn't add up. If they can walk through the wall then why can't they leave, even through an open doorway?

I don't mean the 'recording' types. Those don't involve any spiritual activity. There are no actual dead people in them, they are just a form of movie, replayed over and over. What triggers them, and what records them in the first place, I don't know but I'm still working on it. These recordings won't give any insight into any life-after-death information but think what you could do with it - rocks in your garden could project an image when someone walks by, if we only knew how to record and trigger playback. I've been thinking about those sorts of hauntings again because its nearly time to go back to that riverbank I visited last December. I hope the weather improves. Rain, gale force winds and temperatures even I have to admit are a bit chilly can be off-putting. Shaky camera images taken with numb fingers will impress nobody.

The recording-type phenomena always do the same thing and usually at a specific time of day or year. Footsteps heard climbing stairs that are no longer there, that sort of thing. They will pass through new walls or walk on floors that are at a different level to the current floor but they don't interact, and don't vary their actions. They aren't spirits of the dead any more than a video of Elvis contains his soul.

No, what I've been wondering about are those ghosts, the ones that (I think) are dead people, who seem to be trapped in a place but who can walk through walls within that place. I've said before that I think they can't walk through walls that existed when they were alive, but they can pass through new walls. But that still doesn't explain it. If the new wall is made of the same material as the old, then it's not a property of the material. Also, if a non-corporeal being can pass through a solid object, why some and not others, even when the objects are essentially the same?

So if it's not a property of the material object, it must be a property of the spirit.

Okay, here's a scenario and a theory. If there are holes, point them out.

You have a house. Someone dies in it. When he 'comes to' as a ghost, he sees the building as it is. He's only been dead a few minutes so nothing's changed. A year or two passes and new owners put in new partition walls. Let's say it's a historical building and the new owners have put in walls to the same specification, using the same materials, as the original partition walls.

Our ghost can't walk through the original walls but he can walk through the new partition. Why?

He has no material substance. No wall should pose a problem. Yet he is stopped by the original walls. Even if the building is demolished, he can't leave its boundaries. That seems to come up a lot, notably in places like Borley rectory and in a new English shopping centre built on the site of a previously haunted house.

The best I can come up with is that the ghost's inability to walk through those walls comes from himself. He believes the walls are real and cannot, or will not, violate his own reality. It might be that the reality he sees is a comfort to him, it might be that it is in the nature of the ghost to see that reality. Either way, he cannot pass through those walls, not because they present a real obstacle but because he believes they do.

The new wall is not an obstacle. It's not in his reality. It's possible he doesn't see it at all. It's possible that even if the house is demolished and new buildings put up, the ghost still sees the original as it was at the point of death and reacts to it in the same way as we react to the reality we see. The exception seems to be people - ghosts interact and therefore are aware of living people but their interactions make no sense unless they think they are still in their own homes. In that case, the living visitor is an uninvited guest. Perhaps they don't see us any more clearly than we see them, so their fright and occasional violent reactions would be understandable.

The test would be to take out one of the original walls and see whether the ghost can now pass through where it was. If the theory holds, he won't be able to because for him, it's still there. That does depend on getting a ghost to co-operate, which isn't going to be easy.

None of this explains why, since reports of ghosts opening interior doors are common, they don't just open the front door and leave. Or leave while someone else has that door open.

Perhaps it's too frightening outside. Perhaps they can't open the outer door because they think it's still locked. Perhaps, given the limitations of the human mind, their projected reality only extends so far. Perhaps, to them, there is nothing outside.

If only one of these ghosts would give answers that meant something, if only one of them would get into a conversation with us, we could answer some of these questions.

Then again, most investigations seem to concentrate on when, how, and who died. Not on what happened after.

Investigators should, perhaps, regard their questions as far more than just a confirmation tool. It's useless anyway - information that can't be verified can't be proof, and information that can be verified could have been looked up beforehand. It'll never sway a sceptic.

So ignore the sceptics and study the ghosts. Work on the mechanisms and let's find some kind of concensus on what's happening. As it is, every researcher has theories but we are all working alone. It's time to find some definitive common denominators between hauntings. Collect the information first, worry about the proof later.

With enough data, the proof might show up on its own.


Atrueoriginall said...

Your answer would lie in knowing what a ghost is made of or rather consist of. Obviously, this is going to have to be something that cannot be seen with the human eye but yet exists and our scientists would already be privy to that existence.

Physics is aware of everything that we cannot see with our eyes. They understand it and they test it. If not by an electron microscope, they've discovered everything else through tests of some type.

The only thing out there (I'll call it a 'fabric' for a better word) capable of becoming an entity of some kind in death, would have to be of our own earth's magnetic field.

How else could we walk through walls or lay down our life’s' experiences, pictures, memories and knowledge if we didn't have something to adhere it to. We would be brainless wonders and wouldn't even wander since we wouldn't have the knowledge to even know what wandering is.

Consequently, the odds are looking pretty good that the actual fabric of the spirit is nothing more than a very small part of earth's magnetic field and our life's experiences are being laid down on that magnetic field just like we lay down sound and pictures to magnetic tapes similar to how it is done to a cassette or VHS.

In respect to us not becoming one with the 'whole of things' (as in the larger portion of the magnetic field), which actually wicks out somewhat beyond our atmosphere), I suspect that our central nervous system could be responsible for that separation and how we become individual entities. It could be the fire, or it could even be the action of the synapse within the CNS. Then again, it could be specific chemicals that the body manufactures such as the ones produced through the CNS including hormones.

Of course nobody really knows. What we do recognize is that present day entities are already separate from one another and not attached to something much larger. Lastly, as we grow we take on/in more of that magnetic field and it basically grows with us and actually gets larger.

As far as why ghosts won't leave a particular building or come up from a dark, damp cellar I think it may have to do with sound. Vibrations would probably drive them batty since they would forever be inundated with sound vibrations passing through them. That sounds like a living hell. Possibly this is why we're to be buried and also why there aren't 80 billion ghosts running around the world since there are about 80 billion that have lived on this earth thus far. Just possibly our ghosts we do experience were subject to cremation instead.

It makes one wonder where and how we would want to die. Hospitals are fairly quiet but not always and for that matter, why don't we ever hear continual reports that hospitals are haunted instead of only the archaic ones that once housed prisoners, plagues and tuberculosis.

There are a lot of unanswered questions that can drive us batty but the biggest one of all is why the ghost doesn't give up the ghost and tell it all.

heyjude said...

aside from you Rom, my ghost 'education' is mostly from popular fiction from which I get the impression that the ghost is 'stuck' to a certain place/area until old unfinished business there is resolved so it CAN move on.

Romulus Crowe said...

Atrueoriginall - it's not true to say that scientists, not even physicists, know everything. There is a great deal still to find.

Your point on magnetic fields is certainly interesting though, it's something I've considered in the non-spirit 'replay' hauntings but not in the case of true hauntings. Perhaps a magnetometer would be an interesting addition to the investigator's kit. The EMF meter has not proved to be particularly useful.

We don't know what ghosts are made of. That's the bottom line. Any ideas are worth looking at, at this stage. Keep them coming.

Romulus Crowe said...

Heyjude - there are cases where it appears that the ghost is stuck and has 'unfinished business', or believes they do. Mostly it's a useful plotline for fiction, but once in a while it does happen.

However, the business they consider unfinished might relate to something from so long ago that it no longer applies to anyone alive. So it can't possibly ever be completed.

There, you touch on the ghost's perception of time, another thing we know little to nothing about. Some don't believe they're dead so they aren't likely to believe they've been hanging around for a hundred years or so. Some think they're dreaming - and dreams have no definite time element so they might believe they'll wake at any moment.

Just like the living, every ghost is an individual. Each have their own reasons for hanging around.

It's a tough subject to study when every data point (each ghost) is different, but that's what makes it so interesting.

Southern Writer said...

There are some really interesting thoughts here. I kinda like the magnetic field theory. I don't think this is what Atrueoriginal means, but maybe ghosts are held here by magnetic energy.

The thing I wondered as I read your post, Rom, is how we know ghosts can go through some walls, but not others? Has that been observed and tested? How do we know that they simply chose not to go through a given wall? And how do we know they don't leave? Maybe they leave and return. I'm with you. I'd like to know a whole lot more about it.

Romulus Crowe said...

What Atrueoriginall said is very interesting and worth following up.

If ghosts are any kind of electrical or magnetic energy then they'll be affected and restricted by electrical and magnetic fields.

So ghosts on one planet can't leave it. The real test will come when there are permanent bases on the moon or Mars and someone dies there. That's not likely in our lifetimes, unfortunately (and I mean that in the logical way, not the 'I hope someone dies' way)

As for restriction to places, such as buildings, it might be that the ghost is really restricted by the magnetic/electrical signature of the walls or it might be just that they think they are. It's hard to tell because the ghosts themselves won't know. All they know is they're stuck.

It'll take a cooperative ghost to work it out, and there aren't many of those.

Southern Writer said...

What about DNA? Is it possible they could be stuck where their own DNA has been left behind?

btw, I don't think your subscription thingy is working. I haven't received the followup comments to any of these posts. Then again, it may be my problem. My Firefox has been screwed up for weeks.

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