Ectoplasm: Is it Real?

Our physical world is the most tangible thing we can know. We have spent centuries forming scientific theories on the natural laws and how things function and interact with each other. Our knowledge is based on a provable scientific method that is able to be reproduced at will.

The spirit world is a bit more tricky. We cannot prove through the scientific method that ghosts exist or that any of the paranormal activity experienced can be reproduced for verification. Ghost hunters can track information through their equipment and they have an ability to interact and communicate with spirits, but that is about the extent of the “proof.”

The study of ectoplasm is perhaps the most challenging of all. It is a hybrid of spirit energy and the physical world. It is one of the rare few things that has this ability to combine both realms. There have been claims of its existence for centuries. Furthermore, there are an abundance of photos asserting that it is real. Through quick research, though, anyone can find that ectoplasm was known as a bogus attempt by certain people in the paranormal community to lay claim that they possessed supernatural abilities. Their attempt to defraud people has led many to dismiss ectoplasm as merely a tool for deception.

Despite this trickery, there are certain instances that are not so easily debunked.

Could it be possible that the human body, mind, and spirit have an ability to exude a quirky fluid-like substance from numerous orifices?

This article will delve into this supernatural mystery and see if there is any possible way that ectoplasm could be real. We’ll take a brief walk through its controversial history and then see what scientists have to say. In the end I’ll make some conclusions based on the compiled information.

What IS this Stuff?

Ectoplasm is a slimy substance that most of us became familiar with after watching the production Ghostbusters. Here’s a quick scene from the movie:

Many folks have humorously treated this substance as just the fictional creation of a writer’s mind. Ectoplasm seldom has been taken seriously. But, at one point in history, this goop was viewed as a real, tangible thing. At the turn of the 20th century it had been reported by many witnesses that this creepy substance was seen oozing out of psychic mediums when they were in the height of their spirit connections.

“…it is a kind of gelatinous protoplasm, formless at first, that exudes from the body of the medium, and takes form later. ‘In the early stages there are always white veils and milky patches and the faces, fingers, and drawings are formed little by little in the midst of this kind of gelatinous paste that resembles moist and sticky muslin.'”¹

Ectoplasm is almost alive when it comes out of its host. It doesn’t just ooze out and pile up where it landed. “It was described as not simply remaining in place as a lifeless substance, but moving—sometimes rapidly—over the surface of the body and organizing itself into shapes and forms.”² Some of the common shapes were faces of ghosts or different body limbs.

Charles Robert Richet is the first documented scientist who attempted to study ectoplasm and is credited with coining this same term. “Richet won the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1913 for his research on anaphylaxis, a severe and potentially life-threatening allergic reaction.”² Twenty-three years earlier he led the study of this phenomenon and he came to the conclusion that ectoplasm was simply a substance that all human bodies created when they were consumed with hysteria. That said, he believed that mediums were hysterics. Since his study, five other scientists across the globe have performed similar studies on the mysterious ectoplasm. Here is perhaps one of the more interesting interpretations:

“German embryologist Hans Driesch saw this so-called ‘materialization’ during séances as comparable to embryological development. He termed the form-giving ability of this ectoplasm ‘entelechy.’ He wrote: ‘Think of the little material body, called an egg, and think of the enormous and very complex material body, say, an elephant, that may come out of it: here you have a permanent stream of materializations before your eyes, all of them occurring in the way of assimilation, of a spreading entelechial control.'”²

Of all the scientists who devoted their valuable time to the study of ectoplasm, none of them were able to bring about any definite conclusions – let alone scientific proof. As the popularity of mediums began to wane, mainly because many of them were being exposed as frauds, so too did interest in ectoplasm. Some mediums today, though, still claim that this substance is real and that they do exude it during seances.

The biggest catch with verifying the existence of ectoplasm is that there never has been a documented sample. There have been claims that chunks of it were obtained and put into sealed containers, but then they mysteriously disappeared inside. In many cases the ectoplasm would suck itself back inside the medium before anyone could capture a piece of it. There have been warnings, as well, that no one should try to take any of the exuded ectoplasm, as it would have a fatal effect on the person communicating with the spirits.

So… does our search for credible evidence end here? Um, not really….

Spirit Mist

At the beginning of this article you saw a photo taken in a graveyard at night. You will clearly notice that a mist is present which almost takes on the shape of an angel. My wife and I captured this mist in the Alton National Cemetery in Illinois. She was walking with a set of divining rods and we were following a spirit that was leading us through the gravestones. I walked behind her and held a digital camera over her head and constantly snapped photos.

While we were walking we did not see any kind of a mist in front of us. The photo was a surprising shock to us. Please keep in mind that we tried to debunk the mist by analyzing our breath and observing any possible environmental conditions. The mist remains unexplained.

Ectoplasm may very well take the form of this mist-like substance much like the one we captured. We believe the spirit we were tracking was attempting to manifest to us – as the camera’s batteries died very quickly. This phenomenon of pulling lithium power to manifest is quite common and has been captured by many more cameras than just ours. Here’s a few from Pinterest:

 

You will notice that these mists tend to either take on the shapes of spirits or they simply manifest as a cloud over a particular area.

Could it just be coincidence or pareidolia?

Perhaps.

Consider, though, that these clouds of mist are never seen with the naked eye, but they do tend to exist in the presence of higher EMF readings. High EMFs signify the presence of a ghost and perhaps the mist is just a precursor to the spirit developing into a full-bodied apparition. It takes a tremendous amount of energy to manifest in this way and so usually the mist form is as much as a spirit can muster up.

The bottom line is that science has not been able to prove that ectoplasm is real. All of the documented experiences that can be found about mediums and this sticky substance continue to leave us scratching our heads. There is no physical evidence of such a substance and until it can be found, ectoplasm will continue to live in the realm of pseudoscience.

On the other hand, many paranormal investigators like myself have more than one photo that shows an ectoplasm-like mist forming in the presence of ghosts which we know are in front of us because of the various types of tracking equipment being used. Spirits do manifest into physical form and so it doesn’t seem to be too much of a stretch to say that ectoplasm does exist.

It depends on which side of the fence you are on, and… because there is no tangible proof… we cannot bring this paranormal phenomenon to scientific closure!

What do you think?

Please feel free to submit your thoughts in the comment box below or any social media site where this article is found and thank you!! 

Works Cited:

¹ Brain, Robert Michael. “Materialising the Medium: Ectoplasm and the Quest for Supra-Normal Biology in Fin-de-Siècle Science and Art.” Vibratory Modernism. page 115.

² http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/862611-ectoplasm-ghost-slime-seriously-studied-by-a-nobel-prize-laureate-and-other-scientists/

Photo courtesy: http://morbidanatomymuseum.org/event/a-history-of-ectoplasm-an-illustrated-presentation-by-shannon-taggart/

Does a Full Moon Create Lunacy?

You may heard the saying that when there is a full moon the “crazies come out.” This phrase has almost become cliché and it has been thrown around so much in our spoken language that its real meaning may be lost. Have you ever noticed that people act differently when the brightness of this celestial body shines down on them? Do you feel any of its effects?

Many of us definitely think this is true. And so do I. But then I did some research on the subject, thinking there would certainly be a plethora of science to back up this belief. Funny thing – there isn’t.

Science’s Take on “Luna”cy

Study after study has been performed by dozens of scientists that declare the full moon has no effect on human behavior or psychology. In fact, no stage of the the moon – albeit half, quarter, new moon or even that tiny sliver in the night sky – has any effect on us.

“The sun’s light, which is supposed to be responsible for circadian rhythms, is about 5 x 10⁵ times as intense as the moon when it is full; even a 100-watt lightbulb provides 70 times as much luminance as a full moon. Given the fact that individuals spend between 75% and 90% of their time inside settings, which are usually lighted, it is hard to believe that their behavior would be affected by a source whose luminance is one fourth that of a candle.”¹

The sun and moon cycles, however, do have an impact on humans and animals in general. These “effects” are interwoven into the seasonal and circadian rhythms of life. They are what make us eat more in the winter and fall asleep with the sunset while camping. (It is so interesting to note that my children all go to sleep shortly after sunset out in nature when, at home, they will stay up late.)

Neurohormones

Of all the biological functions that might be affected by the full moon, our mysterious and not yet fully understood hormones would be at the top of the list. We should all be familiar with the fact that humans are controlled by these “chemical substance[s] produced in the body that control and regulate the activity of certain cells or organs…. Hormones are essential for every activity of life, including the processes of digestion, metabolism, growth, reproduction, and mood control. Many hormones, such as neurotransmitters, are active in more than one physical process.”²

In the layperson’s world these brain and body chemicals help us to control or not control our moods and temperament. Imbalances of these substances will inevitably create a disruption in our behavior. But here in this article we are asking the question if the full moon has any affect. Numerous studies have been conducted and some confirm, yes, it does. Yet other studies show that, no, it does not. What is interesting, though, is that we do know that electromagnetic fields CAN alter our brain chemistry. These are the warnings given by paranormal investigators when they study the activity on  a site. One of the first things for debunking spirit activity is to check EMF levels. Many times in the basements of homes there will be wiring that emits high levels of electromagnetic fields and these can be the reason behind supposed ghost activity. These more intense EMFs can create nausea, hallucinations, rapid heart rate, and behavior changes.

But what about low-level EMFs like the ones emitted by a full moon? Is it possible that smaller exposure amounts over an extended period of time might have the same effect?

Electromagnetic Fields and Animal Behavior

Water is a great conductor of both electric and magnetic fields. Changes in the ocean’s currents has a direct affect on the Earth’s electromagnetic fields and transversely, the Earth’s EMFs has an effect on ocean currents. Such a unique relationship might also give rise to the question:

Since the human body consists mostly of water, wouldn’t electromagnetic fields have a similar impact on us just as it does with the Earth’s oceans?

Add in the fact that salt plays an important role in this equation. “While fresh water has a very low conductivity, a salt concentration of about 35 grams per liter turns the oceans into good conductors.”³ The sodium chloride concentrations in the human body do vary based on the individual, but the reality is that blood plasma is composed mostly of salty water. Are we then simply good conductors for electromagnetic energy?

So what about those low-level EMFs?

Scientists have turned to studying the rat to see how these fields affect animals. In an article published in Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine the results of one study shows:

“Naturally, the presence of electromagnetic waves in our living environment affects all components of organisms, particularly humans and animals, as the large part of their body consists of water…. the result of this study demonstrated that exposure to ELF-EMF can alter the normal condition of animals and may represent a harmful impact on behavior.”⁴

There seems to be at least a small thread of evidence that suggests that low-level EMFs do have an impact on animal behavior. The one constant that I found in every article that either supported this claim or did not, was that further research was needed to fully make any kind of statement. This does leave open the possibility that perhaps the moon’s low-level EMFs might have an impact on human behavior. The results are still inconclusive.

Deductions?

So far it seems that in all probability that lunacy is not created by the energy of the moon. In another study done on rats it has been found that low-level electromagnetic fields do have marginal effects on these animals, primarily in the realm of anorexia. Fields in the 1 Hertz range stresses their brain chemistry and causes the symptoms of anorexia. Boost that same EMF to 5 Hertz and the brain triggers a defense mechanism that counteracts these same symptoms, thus reversing the anorexia. This said, the moon’s EMF levels would have to fall fairly close to the 1 Hertz level to create a behavioral disruption, assuming the human brain acts similar to a rat’s. In reality, its levels actually fall far below this number. The bottom line with the moon is that it has a very weak electromagnetic field around it because it does not have a moving molten core like the Earth.

In a nutshell, people do not turn into werewolves, crimes are committed with the same frequency on full moons, and psychiatric hospitals do not suddenly come alive as if it’s the zombie apocalypse.

So why would this legend hold such merit through history?

Belief

The power of the mind is a phenomenon that we are continuously exploring and understanding on a deeper level. Your perception of yourself and the world around you shapes what you think about and how you go about creating thought. In some sense, you create your own reality.

Take social media, for example. How many folks do you know that live their lives out on Facebook? They will post things about themselves which the people who actually know them can verify that what they are posting about themselves isn’t true. Perhaps the belief that a full moon bringing out erratic behavior in people is a self-created reality. The mere anticipation that a full moon can create legendary disruptions like werewolf transformations might be considered a form a mass hysteria. When groups of people agree upon a belief, for them it becomes a reality.

Sensory Processing Disorder

Another food for thought with full moons, and one I can relate with, is the fact that certain people have sensory issues.

“Sensory processing disorder is a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that comes in through the senses…. Some people with sensory processing disorder are oversensitive to things in their environment. Common sounds may be painful or overwhelming. The light touch of a shirt may chafe the skin.”⁵

People who have this disorder, which does fall into the autism spectrum, may or may not realize that their brain has difficulty processing certain senses like sound, textures, and… sunlight. Each person, as well, experiences this disorder differently. Some will throw up at certain sounds, other people will simply find the sensations annoying.

There are times during the day when the sunlight is too overwhelming for me and I find that I cannot wait for the sun to set. In some ways I feel like the proverbial vampire. So too, when the moon is big and bright in the sky, I can feel the sun’s energy as it reflects off its surface. I always attributed the energy I felt as a direct result of the full moon, but now in hindsight, this energy may simply be my brain’s difficulty in processing the sunlight at night. Might this be a possible explanation for some lunatic behaviors that have been attributed to the full moon?

Final Thoughts

There is no real, provable scientific evidence to support behavioral disruptions in humans by the full moon light. For the first time on this website, scientific closure has been found for the full moon paranormal phenomenon!

Or has it? What do you think?

If you have any experiences or thoughts that would help support the full moon phenomenon, I’d love to hear them. Please feel free to write them in the comment box below or anywhere this article is posted! And… thank you!!

 

Works Cited:

¹ Rotton, James. Kelly, I.W. “Much Ado About the Full Moon: A Meta-Analysis of Lunar-Lunacy Research.” Psychological Bulletin 1985. Vol. 97. 286-306.

² http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=3783

³ Maus, Stefan. “Electromagnetic ocean effects.” From website: http://geomag.org/info/Smaus/Doc/ocean_encycl.pdf

http://www.thewellforhealth.com/neurotransmitter-imbalance/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16407788

⁴ Seyed Mohammad Mahdavi, Hedayat Sahraei, Mostafa Rezaei-Tavirani & Akram Najafi Abedi. “Common behaviors alterations after extremely low-frequency electromagnetic field exposure in rat animal model.” Electromagnetic Biology and Medicine Volume 35, 2016 – Issue 3.

http://thinkspacegallery.com/shows/lunacy/

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.3109/15368378.2015.1054401

http://www.webmd.com/children/sensory-processing-disorder#1

Do Ley Lines Only Have a Paranormal Explanation?


“Philip Carr-Gomm and Richard Heygate describe the origin of ley lines in their ‘Book of English Magic’: ‘Alfred Watkins, a landscape photographer in Herefordshire, noticed that ancient sites seemed to be aligned with others nearby. His idea was that our ancestors built and used prominent features in the landscape as navigation points. These features included prehistoric standing stones and stone circles, barrows and mounds, hill forts and earthworks, ancient moats, old pre-Reformation churches, old crossroads and fords, prominent hilltops and fragments of old, straight tracks. Watkins went on to suggest that that the lines connecting these ancient sites represented old trackways or routes that were followed in prehistoric times for the purposes of trade or religious rites, and in 1921 he coined the term “ley lines” to describe these alignments.’ “¹

The idea that some sort of land or water structure could represent a “trackway” for prehistoric travel purposes does make sense. Back then, the only navigational tools available would be the position of the stars and any natural or man-made landmarks. Placing these in some sort of a “line” would make travel easier and decrease the chances of getting lost.

Over time ley lines have been a bit redefined as being avenues of intense energy that ancient civilizations knew about and harvested to their advantage. These lines of energy are believed to have electromagnetic properties that ebb and flow as the Earth changes. These energy pathways may be associated with telluric currents:

“Telluric currents are natural electric currents flowing in the Earth’s crust and mantle…. Geophysicists have known for decades there are electrical currents in the earth and that these electrical currents are modified by natural resources which can be resistive (fresh water aquifers, oil, gas. salt, etc.) or conductive (brines; clays; minerals like copper, iron, lead, zinc, gold, silver, and rare earths; Kimberlite Pipes; etc.)”²

Despite any changes in energy, ley lines remain more powerful than the areas that surround them. Furthermore, it is also believed that, when two or more are crossed together, ley lines create a type of energy vortex that many believe increase paranormal activity,

And so this leads to the bigger question – does this phenomenon actually exist or is it just some convoluted idea that really has no foundations in scientific proof? There is plenty of skepticism out there….

Pareidolia

Sometimes the human brain can create something that doesn’t actually exist by simply “filling in the blanks.” In the paranormal world a good example of this is when a ghost tour guest or paranormal investigator claims to have seen a ghost in a window. Many times the objects in the room behind the window, the angle of light on its surface or the texture of the screen can make it appear that someone is standing in the window.

The photo on the left is from one of my paranormal investigations of a local crematory. If you look closely you may be able to see shoulders at the bottom of the window with a darker pointed collar above them. A vague head can be seen as well with darker hair flowing off to the right.

Having trouble seeing the figure? Well, that’s the mystery of pareidolia – some can see them, some cannot. And it is this argument that sets skeptics afire. It is claimed that sacred sites only line up exactly if you choose to see it that way. Consider the fact that a quarter-inch line on a map to equate to a fifty-foot line on the ground. That’s a pretty big chunk of real estate to connect together. Consider also that some parts of the world have multiple sites in a concentrated area. As an example, England itself has thousands of locations that are considered ancient or sacred. Anyone with any concept of what a line is could draw ley line connections between any of these sites.

The Origins Of Ley Lines

As was mentioned in the opening quotation, Alfred Watkins, a British photographer, is attributed with coining the term “ley lines.” He noticed that in his travels of taking photos that certain sites seemed to line up in straight trajectories. In his book Early British Trackways, he discusses the implications of what he believes he may have discovered at a lecture given to the Woolhope Naturalists’ Field Club at Hereford – September, 1921. Here he offers up a provable experiment whereby he was able to draw out all of the natural and man-made objects can be linked together in this straight line. He goes further by stating that the concept of a ley line has even evolved in our spoken language:

“The fact of the ley is embedded in the rural mind. A country man in directing your path will invariably bring in the now misleading, but once correct, ‘keep straight on.’ It was once absolutely necessary to ‘keep straight on’ in the ley, for if you did not you would be de-leyed on your journey. This is not said as a pun, but as in some succeeding sentences, to point out the place of the ley in the evolution of our language.”³

For all he did present as possible proof, Watkins always kept himself a bit reserved in  admitting that ley lines absolutely exist.

“My deductions may be faulty. But the facts are physical ones, and anyone can test in their own district whether moats, mounds and churches do not line up in straight lines with a hill peak at one end, and with bits of old tracks and antiquarian objects on the line…. I had no theory when, out of what appeared to be a tangle, I got hold of the one right end of this string of facts, and found to my amazement that it unwound in orderly fashion and complete logical sequence.
Make your own deductions when you have verified….”⁴

Since his time, New Age thinkers have taken his discovery and transformed it into an entire discipline that encompasses feng shui and Gaia – the planetary consciousness of Earth.

What Does Science Say About Ley Lines?

If you search through Google Scholar and other academic resources, you will be hard-pressed to find anything reputable that mentions ley lines. In fact, the disciplines of geology and electromagnetism have nothing or very little to offer. It would seem that science has not been able to use the scientific method to verify the existence of ley lines. But does the search for answers really end here? Let’s consider some things we do know about energy and its impact on humans – both alive and deceased.

In the realm of quantum physics, our understanding of what exactly matter is composed of is slowly changing. Decades ago we understood the basic building blocks of physical objects to be made up of protons, neutrons, and electrons. Now we understand that matter’s composition may be more about energy than it is about physical stuff. The physical particles themselves consists of swirling vortices of energy that each have their own signature spin. We are slowly discovering new information each day through the Hadron Collider and scientific research, changing our understanding of matter and energy. As an example, quantum entanglement – a term used in quantum theory to describe the way that particles of energy/matter can become correlated to predictably interact with each other regardless of how far apart they are – has redefined the physical laws of energy/particles and their relationships. The unknowns discovered through our pioneering efforts may also play a role in proving the existence of ley lines.

Consider also that the Earth is surrounded by electromagnetic fields. They are what keep our atmosphere protected from solar radiation. These fields are created by the flow of the Earth’s liquid iron core which is whirpooled around by the planet’s spin, or Coriolis force. These electromagnetic fields have a direct impact on life itself – as has been observed in the medical field.

Geopathic Stress

Electromagnetic radiation has both positive and negative effects on humans. We know that adequate sunlight allows plants to grow and humans to produce healthy levels of vitamin D. Transversely, overexposure can have detrimental effects:

“It has been reported that living close to power lines can cause or exacerbate headaches, depression, allergies, anxiety, irritability, and may even lead to fetal difficulties, increased tumor growth or cancer.”⁵

When the Earth’s magnetic field is disturbed in some way, it is known as geopathic stress. These disturbances can be made naturally, like geological faults or underground water – or they can be man-made through power lines, mining, construction of underground transport systems or the building of stone structures. Just as an example – if a hospital is built on top of or near a disturbed site:

“Patients in hospital beds where geopathic stress is a problem are likely to suffer more post operative complications and take longer to get well…geopathic stress can undermine the patient’s energy and sleep patterns thus delaying their recovery.” ⁵

Furthermore, it can be observed within many patient care facilities that Sudden Cardiac Death happens between the hours of 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. Half of all heart disease deaths happen this way. This type of death is attributed to an electrical disruption or arrythmias in the heart. Many of these patients have ventricular or atrial fibrillation, a common diagnosis of racing heartbeats, fluttering, and a feeling of being “off.”

“…sudden cardiac arrest occurs when the electrical system to the heart malfunctions and suddenly becomes very irregular. The heart beats dangerously fast. The ventricles may flutter or quiver (ventricular fibrillation), and blood is not delivered to the body. In the first few minutes, the greatest concern is that blood flow to the brain will be reduced so drastically that a person will lose consciousness. Death follows unless emergency treatment is begun immediately.”⁶

Interestingly enough, as the sun moves across the planet’s surface, the disruptions in its electromagnetic fields are at their greatest. It has been theorized that an increase in SCD may be linked to this massive disruption of electromagnetic fields on the planet as the sun begins to rise.

What Might We Deduce?

If we take all of the information previously mentioned and examine it together, there are many things we do understand about the Earth and its electric currents. We know that its core is responsible for its electromagnetic fields that exist around the planet in distinctly separate circular patterns. We also understand that telluric currents run under the crust and throughout the mantle and that they can be modified by natural and man-made resources. Matter, as we continue to understand it, is quickly becoming a discussion more so of energy than physical stuff. Humans are directly affected by the Earth’s electromagnetic surges and wanes, as in sudden cardiac death.

Is it too far of a stretch to make the link that perhaps the Earth does have lines of concentrated energy that can be harvested, or at least understood? In all of the mysteries of past civilizations, might those peoples have figured out that by erecting sacred sites along these energy lines that an amazing potential would be achieved? Might we be able to say, scientifically, that ley lines do exist?

I leave you with one final quote to mull over in regards to ley lines and the paranormal:

“…most of the Earths leys are positive but when two of these leys cross or intersect a vortex of negative energy is then created. It is like a powerful magnet attracting all kinds of lower vibrational spirit, energy or entity and even sometimes people. These entities can then draw off the energy, feed on it and use it to manifest. Bodmin Jail (Cornwall) is a place where two such energy lines cross and therefore they form lower energy vortexes and this, in turn, will also affect the way people behave in such places. They will be prone or influenced to lower vibrational thoughts, paranoia, anger, ego and fear etc………it can be a source of food to an entity to recharge their essence.”⁷

Works Cited:

Photo courtesy Nicholas Raymond:                                                                         http://freestock.ca/ireland_g53-poulnabrone_dolmen__hdr_p1689.html

¹  http://www.livescience.com/41349-ley-lines.html

²  H. R. Nelson1 , Les R. Denham2 , and D James Siebert2. “Telluric and Earth Currents, Lightning Strike Locations, and Natural Resource Exploration.” May 12, 2014.

³  Watkins, Alfred. Early British Trackways, Moats, Mounds, Camps and Sites. 1922. pg. 17.

⁴  Ibid.

⁵  Freshwater, Dawn. “Geopathic Stress.” Downloaded from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/51308274_Geopathic_stress

⁶  http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/sudden-cardiac-death

⁷  http://supernaturalmagazine.com/articles/ley-lines-and-the-connection-to-adverse-spiritual-phenomena

https://www.flickr.com/photos/twelvizm/

Cryptochromes and Our Magnetic Sixth Sense

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Scientists have recently made an interesting discovery in the field of animal magnetoreception. Each of us should be familiar with the migratory habits of animals we find in our own backyards. Crows fly east in my neighborhood every year. Geese fly south for the winter. Even Monarch butterflies take to the air when the winter season is beginning to settle in. Magnetotactic bacteria, which you will find written about on this site, have very strong magnetic qualities because of their iron-based backbone. The ability for certain mammals to travel in specific patterns is guided by a biological component in their brains and throughout their bodies. This is called magnetoreception.

“Sea turtles, honeybees, spiny lobsters, dolphins, migratory birds, and more all have a magnetic compass which allows them to use the information that’s coded into magnetic fields.”¹ It allows them to ascertain direction whether in the air, on land or immersed in water. This ability, which sensory biology is just beginning to understand, has been discovered in humans as well.

drosophilia-cryptochrome-3tvs
Dropsophilia (Fruit Fly) Cryptochrome

There are structures found in the human retina which, when removed and placed into a fruit fly, have the ability to detect magnetic fields. They are blue-sensitive photoreceptive proteins called cryptochromes. Scientists are unsure how or if humans use this protein, but what they do know is that detecting the Earth’s magnetic fields may well be the primal sixth sense for us.

Birds, as an example, have cryptochromes in their retina which allow them to see magnetic fields as clearly as they can see visible landmarks. It is asserted that the magnetic fields are layered on top of the physical contours, giving them their amazing sense of direction.

“…cryptochrome isn’t unique to birds – it’s an ancient protein with versions in all branches of life. In most cases, these proteins control daily [circadian] rhythms. Humans, for example, have two cryptochromes – CRY1 and CRY2 – which help to control our body clocks. But Lauren Foley from the University of Massachusetts Medical School has found that CRY2 can double as a magnetic sensor.”²

The discovery of this protein raises all sorts of questions and poses some doubts, but the fact is “that Cry2 is heavily active in the human retina. ‘It’s beautifully poised to sense light but we don’t know if it has the downstream pathways that communicate magnetic information to the brain. The possibility exists.'”

600px-electroreceptors_in_a_sharks_head-svgAn example of these “downstream pathways” are abundantly represented in sharks. A shark has a massive amount of “holes,” or ampullae of Lorenzini, in its head which lead into jelly-filled chambers that disappear somewhere into their body. Changes in DC voltage of the water and magnetic fields emitted by certain prey are detected through this mechanism. How animals in general, and humans, use the magnetoreception mechanism is the current great challenge of sensory biology.

The discovery of human magnetoreceptors opens up the possibility of understanding our relationship with the Earth’s geomagnetic fields and EMFs in general.

What could this discovery possibly have to do with the paranormal? Let’s delve into some information on magnetic fields, first, to find out the answer.

How Magnetism Affects You

The Earth’s magnetic field is absolutely critical to maintaining life on our planet as it deflects the intense solar wind. Without it cosmic rays would harm us and power as we currently utilize it would not be possible. Furthermore, our atmosphere would dissolve away and life as we know it would cease. What you might not realize is that these magnetic fields also directly affect us through emotion, body homeostasis, and overall happiness.

Specifically there are two important fields that need to be considered. The first is the geomagnetic field that emanates from the Earth’s core. Secondly, are the fields between the Earth and the ionosphere. The ebb and flow of these fields change us both mentally and emotionally, causing spikes in us just as they happen within the planet Earth.

emf-4b64c7beaee876e8c4d6c55156a64ca5

It has been proven through multiple scientific studies that our hearts produce electromagnetic fields that are altered with the Earth’s field changes. These EMFs can be measured up close and from a distance. This phenomenon is also what allows Geiger counters to measure activity when placed close to our hearts – especially in the rare cases of demonic oppression and possession. You will notice in the diagram that the heart’s EMF field emanates in a very similar pattern as the Earth’s.

Here are some further concepts to consider:

  • The Earth’s magnetic field is a carrier of biologically relevant information that connects all living systems.
  • Every person, through collective consciousness, affects the global information field.
  • There is a feedback loop between human beings and the Earth’s energetic/magnetic systems. This simply means that humans and the Earth are dependent upon one another for balance. The output from one fuels the input for the other.

The point to be taken from all of this is that all living organisms, especially humans, are inextricably tied to the Earth’s geomagnetic field and the affecting electromagnetic fields. The discovery of cryptochromes has opened the doors for the possibility that humans can not only connect directly with these fields, but that we also may have a direct link to the spirit world through these same retinal proteins.

“These organs could also possibly sense magnetic fields, by means of Faraday’s law: as a conductor moves through a magnetic field an electric potential is generated. In this case the conductor is the animal moving through a magnetic field, and the potential induced depends on the time varying rate of flux through the conductor….”

Might Faraday’s law be perceived differently by phenomena in the paranormal realm? 

Consider This Link…

Have you ever been on ghost-hunting-emf-meters-122013zza paranormal investigation and sensed the presence of ghosts or spirits? If you have never been on a haunted site, have you watched this happen on your favorite television show? Detecting the presence of ghosts, spirits, entities or whatever you may wish to call them is very common when exploring the paranormal world. Devices like these have been used extensively to discover electromagnetic fields and even track spirits. Changes in the magnetic fields are backed up with actual witness accounts:

“In the course of investigating haunt reports at historic Hampton Court Palace in England… the magnetic field changes in areas of the palace where haunting phenomena had been reported were significantly different from the field changes in areas where no phenomena were reported. [Investigators] also found in another statistical comparison that the number of unusual experiences reported by tourists visiting the Palace was also related in some way to the magnetic field changes at the site.”³

There are some, though, who do not need these tools to determine the presence of a ghost. They simply can feel the energies coming from spirits. The information that instruments can pick up are somehow built into certain “gifted” people. How can it be possible that anyone can “sense” unseen forces?

Thus far, there really isn’t any scientific proof that can be offered to explain why people are able to do this. Many folks consider themselves “sensitives.” Others are a bit more gifted and are known as “mediums.” I have personally experienced both of these types of people and can verify their authenticity.

Is there a physiological reason why they possess these “gifts” when others do not?

Might it be possible that the presence of retinal proteins in our eyes allow “sensitives” and “mediums” the ability to connect with the spirit world? Keep in mind that ghosts themselves emit electromagnetic fields and spirit activity can be fueled with EMF pumps and also through the stored energy inside of limestone.

Therefore, is it too much of a stretch in reasoning to say that cryptochromes may have a direct relationship in helping us connect with the spirit world? Science has not figured it out yet… what do you think?

I invite you to leave a reply in the box below the Works Cited or whatever social media site you find this article, and… thank you for your feedback!!

Works Cited:

¹ http://www.inspireactachieve.com/consciousness/scientists-discover-that-humans-have-a-magnetic-6th-sense/

http://www.livescience.com/14694-humans-sixth-sense-magnetic-fields.html

² http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2011/06/21/humans-have-a-magnetic-sensor-in-our-eyes-but-can-we-see-magnetic-fields/#.WGRtN_krLIV

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=FMQQnijnhsUC&lpg=PA844&dq=robin%20baker%20new%20scientist%20magnetic&pg=PA844#v=onepage&q=robin%20baker%20new%20scientist%20magnetic&f=false

³ Williams, Bryan., Ventola, Annalisa., Wilson, Mike. “Magnetic Fields and Haunting Phenomena: A Basic Primer for Paranormal Enthusiasts.” pg. 5.

Sleep Paralysis

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Many of us are familiar with sleep paralysis and perhaps some of you have actually had the sensation of being in a semi-sleep state, trapped in your body, unable to move. If you have, then you know what a frightening and shocking phenomenon this is. If you are unfamiliar with what this is exactly – a quick definition:

“[S]leep paralysis [is] a state of consciousness occurring while falling asleep or upon awakening, lasting for several minutes or a few seconds, and characterized by a feeling of an inability to move. While experiencing this state the individual is fully aware of the condition, surroundings, and have complete recall of the episode. Vivid and terrifying hallucinations often accompany this state of consciousness and a sense of acute danger may be felt. Once the episode of paralysis passes, the individual often sits up with a start, experiences symptoms of panic (e.g. tachycardia, hyperventilation, fear) and realizes that the perceptions of danger were false.”¹

Sleep paralysis is very often attributed to paranormal activity. A few of the most common entities who are held responsible for holding people down in their beds are the incubus, the djinn, demons, and various other dark entities. This can happen only once or it may happen repeatedly over a series of nights. It is documented that about 15% of our population has fallen victim to sleep paralysis. In the United States alone, nearly 3 million people report this nightmare each year.

According to Shelley Adler, in her book Sleep Paralysis², there are certain common traits:

  • victim’s impression of wakefulness
  • inability to move or speak
  • realistic perception of the immediate environment
  • intense fear and anxiety
  • lying in a supine position
  • feeling pressure on the chest
  • difficulty breathing
  • an awareness of a ‘presence’ that is often seen or heard

The Stuff of Legends

The history of sleep paralysis has been recorded as far back as the 2nd century when the Greek physician Galen attributed it to indigestion. Since then, it has perplexed mankind so much so that it exists as legends within nearly every culture throughout the world.

One such culture is located on the most eastern province of Canada – Newfoundland. Here the stories of the “ag rog” have become a popular explanation for what happens in sleep paralysis. “The Hag,” as she is also known, is an incubus or succubus that visits in the form of hallucinations. She then sits on top of the chest of the victim, pushing the life out of the them. Sometimes the creature is a male, the gender doesn’t necessarily matter:

“He was heavy. I tried to shift my arms, but they were pinned to my sides. And I could smell him, which was the worst of it — the bitter combination of feeling a rough jaw against the skin of my neck, and the terror of being unable to breathe. I choked. He smelt like sweat and something else — something ugly.”³

After the experience is over and the victim recovers, profuse sweating and exhaustion usually ensue. Witnesses report that some victims let out a high-pitched scream or low moans. Their eyes may be closed or open. Sometimes these attacks can be fatal, as was reported during the 1980’s in Portland, Oregon and St. Paul, Minnesota. A group of healthy Laotian Hmong refugees, between the ages of 25 and 50, were suddenly dying and professionals were unable to find any medical cause. Their deaths were attributed to sleep paralysis.²

Outside of the United States, sleep paralysis is known all over the world. “In Chinese culture it is called, in pinyin, “鬼壓身/鬼压身,” guǐ yā shēn (‘ghost pressing on body’), in Turkish ‘uyku felci’ karabasan (‘the dark assailant’), and in Vietnamese ma đè means ‘held down by the ghost.’ The Hungarian term boszorkany-nyomas means ‘witches pressure’, while German has alpdrucken, or ‘elf pressing.’ ” In Japanese culture sleep paralysis is known as (金縛りkanashibari (‘bound or fastened in metal’). In Korean culture, sleep paralysis is called gawi nulim (‘Hangul: 가위눌림’). I list these terms specifically to show that sleep paralysis has been a deeply embedded issue within the human race for millenia. So why is this happening?

From a paranormal perspective, spirits and other entities do visit us in our dreams. Sometimes, like a deceased relative, he or she comes to offer up a warning or perhaps to comfort in a time of need. Darker entities have an agenda of their own. Perhaps the entity has attached itself to a family member so it can execute a haunting in the home. Sometimes we involve ourselves activities that invite malevolent spirits into our lives such as using Ouija boards, performing magic rituals or any form of witchcraft. As such, these entities have been invited into your dreams and sleep paralysis may just be a “side effect” of your actions. Others claim that alien abduction is the cause.

Sometimes, though, none of these scenarios apply. So then, why do folks who may not even as much as believe in the paranormal suffer from this frightening experience?

Skeptic’s Explanation

Science has a pretty convincing explanation for why sleep paralysis occurs. When we start to fall asleep, we slowly move into REM sleep. Once there, we are locked into the dream state. These are the normal stages of sleep. Sometimes, though, stages are bypassed:

“During rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep, the muscles of the body are paralyzed, presumably to prevent the dreamer from physically acting out the dream. Researchers are not sure why this normal paralysis happens during consciousness for victims of sleep paralysis, but psychophysiological studies have confirmed that attacks are particularly likely to occur if the person enters REM sleep quickly after hitting the pillow, bypassing the stages of non-REM sleep that usually happen first.”⁴ 

Panic attacks are commonly associated with sleep paralysis and may be a possible explanation. Over the course of my research I have found that a very large percentage of the general population suffer from symptoms that qualify them for a diagnosis of panic disorder according to DSM-III critieria, even though they may not recognize themselves as having this horrible phenomenon.

Fear is yet another possible predictor for sleep paralysis. Once the victim awakens from the sleep state and the body remains in “paralysis,” the element of fear takes over immediately. The fear reaction activates the amygdaloid and temporal lobes of the brain which then leads to all of the other hallucinatory and sense experiences. To put it simply, the brain creates the unusual phenomena of sleep paralysis triggered by the surge of fear.

One final scientific explanation is sleep apnea. I personally suffer from this disorder and use a CPAP machine every night. When the body falls into its pre-dream resting state, breathing is slowed dramatically and blood pressure drops. Those of us with sleep apnea will stop breathing at points during the night which drops our oxygen below safe levels. Mine went as low as 67%. In an oxygen-deprived state the brain can go a bit haywire and create many of the symptoms that are being associated with sleep paralysis. Although I have never personally suffered from paralysis, I can see where having sleep apnea could be a possible explanation.

Final Thoughts

The four possible explanations for sleep paralysis offered here are an attempt to rule out paranormal phenomenon by using our current understanding of the human body and mind. Depending on what angle you choose to look at the subject, any one of these possibilities can debunk sleep paralysis’ supernatural claims. There is one fact that remains a common thread through all documented experiences no matter what part of the world is studied.

“Auditory experiences ranged from tapping sounds and footsteps to jabbering voices. Visual experiences ranged from shadowy outlines to vivid demonic figures. Floating experiences ranged from rising sensations to vertiginous flights through spinning tunnels.”⁵

The experiences listed above could be taken straight from the transcripts of any paranormal investigation, out-of-body-experiences or those who are sensitive to the spirit world. No matter who the victim is or in what part of the world sleep paralysis is studied, these experiences remain strangely consistent. As stated earlier, while in the dream state it is known that we can interact with certain spirits – like our deceased relatives. The spirit world, transversely, likes to interact with us. Perhaps it is the intent of certain entities that trigger the phenomenon of sleep paralysis. Darker entities love to play the role of trickster or dominate individuals and using fear is a great way for them to accomplish their devious goals.

Science has left us with a few unknowns that surpass anything it can yet explain. Scientists cannot provide clear answers why auditory, visual, and floating experiences are so consistent across the board. The study of the paranormal realm can. Until science can prove further… people who experience sleep paralysis may truly be interacting with spirits and entities – many of whom feed off of our fear of being trapped in an immobile physical body and subject to whatever the entity chooses to do to us.

Would you agree with this assessment? Do your personal experiences dictate that sleep paralysis may actually be something else?

Drop me a line in the comment box below or wherever you find this article on social media. I’d love to hear from you and thank you!!

Works Cited:

¹ Bell, Carl C., et. al. “Further Studies on the Prevalence of Isolated Sleep Paralysis in Black Subjects.” Journal of the National Medical Association. Vol. 78, no. 7: 1986. pp. 649-659.

http://www.epicadamwildlife.com/2015/10/23/10-creatures-associated-with-sleep-paralysis/

² Adler, Shelley R. Sleep Paralysis: Night-mares, Nocebos, and the Mind-Body Connection. 2011.

³ https://thehairpin.com/ridden-by-the-hag-my-sleep-paralysis-visitors-1db68980dc65#.i1bu7akqb

https://japanesemythology.wordpress.com/2013/01/13/kanashibari-%E9%87%91%E7%B8%9B%E3%82%8A-sleep-demons/

http://yokai.com/kanashibari/

⁴ https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/ask-the-brains-sleep-paralysis/

⁵ Cheyne, J. Allen, et. al., “Relations among hypnagogic and hypnopompic experiences associated with sleep paralysis.” <em>J. Sleep Res.</em> (1999) 8: 313-317.

http://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/article/1300682/sleep-paralysis-can-be-indicator-neurodegenerative-disease

The Paranormal Therapy of Spirit Attachment

 

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“The demon’s target is not the possessed; it is us the observers…everyone in this house. I think the point is to make us despair…to reject our humanity: to see ourselves as ultimately bestial, vile and putrescent; without dignity; ugly; unworthy.”
William Peter Blatty, The Exorcist

On my sister site, Paranormal Insights, I decided for the month of December to bring you, the reader, home to my neck of the woods for the Christmas holiday. And so, by keeping in tune with this theme, I want to do the same with this site.

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The above quote is taken from the movie “The Exorcist.” Most paranormal enthusiasts are very familiar with this possession that took place here in St. Louis in 1949. Robbie Doe was a young boy from the East Coast area who was held responsible for what may have been considered Recurrent Spontaneous Psychokinesis (RSPK). His extreme activity confounded the professionals and forced a focused discipline from priests never seen before in current history. The lines drawn around this exorcism are so blurred between the field of parapsychology and paranormal demonic activity that it is difficult to tell if his possession was derived from this physical world, the spiritual one or both.

“In what is perhaps one of the most remarkable experiences of its kind in recent religious history, a 14 year-old Mount Rainier boy has been freed by a Catholic priest of possession by the devil…. the boy broke into a violent tantrum screaming, cursing, and voicing of Latin phrases – a language he had never studied – whenever the priest reached those climactic points of the 27-page ritual in which he commanded the demons to depart from the boy.”   – Washington Post, August 20, 1949

Geographically, if you search Google Maps, you’ll find the house of this notorious supernatural event located at 8435 Roanoke Drive in Bel-Nor, Missouri. A photo is pictured above and has been the source of many books and investigations.

Local writ51xvcn-ensl-_sx331_bo1204203200_ers like Troy Taylor and Steven LaChance offer up their versions of the story, which are quite different from the movie. The real stories are based on the actual people and priests involved in this historically controversial event. Troy has personally interviewed one of the priests before he died. I invite you to check him out at this link:

https://www.amazon.com/Devil-Came-St-Louis/dp/1892523469/ref=sr_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1480118976&sr=1-8&keywords=troy+taylor

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Steven’s perspective on this incident brings it into the broader spectrum of how it affected the city of St. Louis in general. You can find him here:

https://www.amazon.com/Confrontation-Evil-Depth-Possession-Inspired/dp/0738747998/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1480119238&sr=1-3&keywords=steven+lachance

 

I Always Feel Like Somebody’s Watching Me

When we think of a spirit releasing from or attaching to a human body, we tend to think of two things: the rising of the soul out of the body at the point of death and exorcisms. Death is a process that we have little to no control over – when your ticket is pulled, it’s time to go. Exorcisms are, in reality, an extreme form of spirit attachment that is not as common as folks might be apt to believe. Although there are numerous claims that exorcisms are on the steady rise worldwide, these phenomena are not necessarily a concern for most of us. There are spirits, though, who do affect our daily lives – and we do not even realize it. Here is where the gentle practice of spirit release therapy is called into action.

What exactly is this discipline? Before this question is answered, keep in mind that today’s science was yesterday’s myth. Many of the things that were once considered as coming from some mysterious realm of magic can now be tested and explained by science. With spiritual matters, this too will only be a matter of time.

“There is a tension between what the physical sciences can accept and what people experience in their subjective reality. This is not helpful for the person who suffers distress that has its origin in a spiritual domain. It is therefore necessary for medical science to be able to expand its frames of reference and accommodate real subjective experiences in order that they can be treated effectively.”

In Spirit Release Therapy (SRT) it is understood that certain spirits are able to affect each one of us at any given time. Sometimes this is done in a good way, but with SRT, entities that negatively affect people are the main concern. These entities may be spirits who have died and have not yet passed on through the Light or they may be mischievous or malevolent spirits who seek out potential victims. The spirits do not necessarily enter into the human host, although sometimes they do.

Snippets in History

The medical professional who is credited with pioneering SRT is Dr. William Baldwin, a man who left the field of dentistry and decided to pursue a passion. In his doctoral dissertation in psychology he put forth the first serious effort in considering spirit release therapy. His approaches and techniques may be a bit controversial, but the basis of his work does hold merit. Here is an example of a case study by one of his advocates, Dr. T.J. Palmer:

“The schoolgirl who could not walk. This was a fifteen-year-old girl who had progressively lost the use of her legs until she had to be taken to school in a wheelchair. There was no medical explanation for her condition and when I [Dr. Palmer] visited her home she was seen to be crawling on her elbows from room to room as she dragged her legs behind her. On investigation, it was discovered that when she was eight years-old [she had fallen victim to abuse]. The fear generated by this experience attracted a discarnate entity that used the fear to attach itself and incapacitate her. This case is representative of how…emotions emit an energetic frequency that acts as a beacon to attract negative spirit entities.”

This example relates how certain spirits are able to influence, sometimes even completely alter, our lives. If this case study seems a little far-fetched, the let’s revisit a story that is closer to the hearts of those of us who love the paranormal.

Aaron Goodwin, as most of us already know, is an paranormal investigator and many times “ghost bait” for the hit show Ghost Adventures. He has documented his encounters from their lockdown at Bobby Mackey’s Music World in Wilder, Kentucky. He relates what happened as a result of a spirit attachment on his website Aaron Goodwin Collections:

“I wanted to just talk about what happened with my ex wife and I and of course Mackey’s. After I came home from Mackey’s the 1st time hunting there, everything changed for me. Right away we could notice something had followed me home from there. My ex-wife and I would share the same nightmares at night and went threw some crazy paranormal stuff. My nightmares had to do with this white bearded old guy that was always trying to get her and I. We would wake up at the same time at night. She would wake up screaming or out of breath. She would wake and talk about things that had to do with places I hunted. We would share the same dreams and the stuff that happened around the house was indescribable.”

This spirit attachment disrupted Aaron’s life so much that his marriage ended in divorce. The entity created an environment that drove a wedge between them. It interacted physically by performing different poltergeist activities. Then it made its way into the dream state and did not allow them to have peaceful nights. Any tensions that may have existed between Aaron and his wife would be exacerbated to a whole new and conflicting level. They may have constantly fought. Every little trigger that could be pushed, would have been initiated by the shadow entity. These are just a few of the things that can occur with spirit attachments.

Never Throw Caution into the Paranormal Wind

How is it possible that a spirit can influence us, many times without us even realizing it? The answer is simple: energy.

The ability to manipulate energy may single-handedly explain a great deal of paranormal activity. Ghosts are able to use and transform electromagnetic fields into energy that allows them to perform tasks such as speech, scratches, knocks, object movement, and many of the familiar interactions. This manipulation can be performed with a variety of other sources like lithium batteries and low-level radiation. Activity can also be utilized from humans themselves through their emotions.

As was stated earlier, our emotions can act as a beacon to attract unwanted spirits, and, as such, these same spirits can alter our mental states. Another physician, Dr. Parisetti has this to say:

“We have patients showing exceedingly weird symptoms and/or a variety of disruptive behaviours whom are reportedly cured by therapists by basically asking a ‘possessing spirit’ to leave their body.”

So we have observations in both the paranormal and scientific realms that warn us of the potential of spirit attachments and the consequences when this happens. Sometimes a priest must show up with his book of the Rite of Exorcisms or the patient may see a therapist for relief.

Why This Article?

My purpose in bringing out all of this information is to reveal the fact that everyone needs to be cautious when they dive into the field of paranormal investigation. Our field has been in the pioneer stage for over a couple decades and we have amassed an incredible amount of knowledge from our technological efforts. But always keep in mind that we are dealing with an unseen realm that, fundamentally, we do not understand.

We do not know exactly how spirits can do what they do or how far they can take a spirit attachment. We cannot specifically define the Natural Laws that govern the world on the other side of the veil and we certainly can never know the true intent of any spirit or entity. Ghosts can not only affect us emotionally, but they can physically alter us as well. Slowly the stories of para-enthusiasts suffering from heart palpitations, abrupt organ disruptions, and other medical conditions are being whispered among themselves. Could they simply be coincidences?

I certainly encourage further exploration, as I will continue to do so from the research end. But please, when you’re investigating that reportedly haunted site… never throw caution into the paranormal wind.

 

 

Works Cited

Research

http://www.stltoday.com/entertainment/television/gail-pennington/exorcism-live-is-coming-for-demons-at-a-famous-bel/article_43173e3a-1ad7-5882-8071-1ec0b5acc0b6.html

Flickr – Photo taken from the archive of Alice Popkorn

Spirit Release Therapy (II)

 

The Science of Paranormal Sounds: Explaining Ghostly Footsteps

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There are certain phenomena in the paranormal realm that nearly defy any possible explanations. With a residual or intelligent haunting we know that a ghost or entity is either continuously replaying life’s events or they are genuinely interacting with the environment. When EMF detectors spike up from their baseline, we know that a spirit’s energy is manipulating the device. If divining rods move in a specific manner, we know that an entity is pulling them in their direction. Some activity; however, is not so easily explained.

How it is possible for spirits to make knocks or create the sound of footsteps are two phenomena that, so far, have eluded explanation.

This article will offer up a couple possibilities as to how exactly ghosts can create audible footsteps or knock on physical objects. This approach will be taken from a point of view which is as scientific as possible, while still bridging the experiences of the paranormal.

But before we can begin to establish any possible explanations for that sound of soldier boots tramping on the wooden floor over your head, we first should gain an understanding of exactly how the phenomenon of sound works.

Can You Hear Me Now?

In order for an object to make a sound it must either come in contact with another object (such as banging a tuning fork) or be able to create sound from itself (like the vibration of our vocal chords as air passes through them). This sound travels in waves just like water or, in paranormal terms, like electromagnetic fields. Sound is described with the same terms as water waves or EMFs – those being, frequency and amplitude.

Frequency is “the number of times a periodic phenomenon occurs over a unit of time.”¹ When we hear a frequency, the brain interprets the sound as either high or low pitch. The figure below will help you visualize its meaning:

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Amplitude is the fluctuation or displacement of a wave from its mean value. With sound waves, it is the extent to which air particles are displaced, and this…sound amplitude is experienced as the loudness of sound.”² The greater the amplitude, the louder the sound will be. The figure below shows that amplitude is the distance between the crest and the median level. The key word with amplitude is loudness.

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In order for the human ear to pick up on a sound, it must fall between the frequency range of 20 – 20,000 cycles per second – also known as the unit termed Hertz (Hz). Anything falling below or above this range cannot be detected by our hearing.

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When we analyze how it is possible to interpret sounds in our physical world, it’s pretty straightforward. (You might remember this from grade or high school.) The sine waves enter the auditory canal, vibrate the ear drum, and then our brains interpret the sound as it travels through the inner ear. All sounds follow this pattern and with paranormal footsteps or spirit knocks, the process is the same. There are, though, a few things that must be considered.

Could it be possible that the “footsteps” one thinks he or she is hearing might actually be something else? In other words – plumbing pipes rattle,  HVAC systems expand and contract, house lumber creaks, and loose window panes move with the wind. All of these types of noises must be ruled out or debunked. Once all of these factors have been fully considered, only then can we ask the big question:

How in the world can an invisible entity make physical sounds?

As has already been mentioned, there are two types of hauntings – residual and intelligent. In considering how to answer this “big question,” we must treat each one separately. Let’s create a scenario:

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Basic Geophone

You are a paranormal investigator and you enter into an old Victorian home. The owners have given you the history of the house and in their narrative they say that a woman in white has been seen on many occasions going down the spiral staircase in the center of the home. She continuously suffered from sleepwalking and nearly every night could be found wandering the confines of the home a couple hours after midnight. You set up a DVR camera at the base of the steps and place a geophone halfway up as well. At 2:18 a.m. the LED lights and sounds on the geophone go off and the DVR camera does capture this mysterious woman coming down the stairs.

How is she able set off your equipment by being only in a spiritual body? The answer may lie in the realm of quantum physics.

The Quirky World of Entanglement

It’s been some time since I have referred back to the second concept that this website was established – entanglement. As a brief reminder of what this term means:

“In short, quantum entanglement means that multiple particles are linked together in a way such that the measurement of one particle’s quantum state determines the possible quantum states of the other particles. This connection isn’t depending on the location of the particles in space. Even if you separate entangled particles by billions of miles, changing one particle will induce a change in the other! Even though quantum entanglement appears to transmit information instantaneously, it doesn’t actually violate the classical speed of light because there’s no “movement” through space.” ³

In our example the lady in white is a spirit that, when alive physically in this world, always walked down the steps at 2 a.m. The owners have informed you that this was a nighttime habit she developed. Because of her repetitious behavior the house itself became physically altered from her consistent energy. The sounds of her footsteps, when she was alive, literally became embedded in the woodwork. Now, in death, her spirit is able to trigger the entangled energy that still lies dormant in the staircase. Simply by walking over the same spots, as she did in life, the lady is able to create the footstep sounds that can in real time now be picked up with a geophone.

2418898852_294e3c38c8_zAnother example, more familiar with paranormal enthusiasts, is that her repetitious behavior left an imprint on the atmosphere. Each night this event is able to play over and over again because her energies have been recorded and play back much like a cassette tape. Perhaps through what might only be explained as possible other dimensions crossing over with ours, can we understand how the footstep sounds can be made. This is simply saying that when another dimension manifests itself in our dimension, the interaction is both visual and auditory. Also what I have found in my research is that the residual energy will eventually run out and the activity will cease at some point.

These possible explanations tackle residual hauntings and may help to explain them. The greater challenge lies in intelligent hauntings, where an entity purposely interacts with paranormal investigators or a homeowner through footsteps or knockings on walls or doors. This type of activity is not residual and may not be fully be explained simply with our theories in quantum entanglement or the crossing of dimensions.

The Mind Is Stronger Than the Body

With an intelligent haunting, a spirit may use a very different approach when the entity wants to execute some sort of a sound. Let’s first consider the Natural Laws of our physical world. Some of these entail the Laws of Thermodynamics or Newton’s Laws of Motion. They may also include Einstein’s theory of light speed or the phenomenon of gravity. There are also basic principles that govern how sound works. No matter which natural law you choose, all of us must abide by them. We have no other choice. Unless, of course, you are a spirit.

There are hundreds of hours of film footage that show spirits can and do pass through physical objects – such as walls, furniture, even people themselves (ever get a sudden unexplained chill down your spine?). Thus it would seem that the physical natural laws do not necessarily apply in the spirit world. And yet, they have to be able to abide by the same physical laws in order for a ghost to make the sound of footsteps or knock on a wall. What may be happening here?

I propose that the answer is simple: intent.

Gamma Brain Waves

shutterstock_134103404“Gamma rays are the most energetic waves in the electromagnetic spectrum. On Earth, nuclear explosions and lightning produce gamma rays.”⁴ These types of rays are not the same as the ones your brain emits, but they are just as amazing. The only similarity they have is that gamma rays in general have an extremely fast frequency with a small amplitude. Their frequency range is from 25 and 100 Hz, with the human brain functioning around 40 Hz.

“They are associated with the ‘feeling of blessings’ reported by experienced meditators such as monks and nuns, and with peak and extremely high levels of cognitive functioning…. Gamma is the brainwave state of being ‘in the Zone,’ that feeling that you can do anything.”⁵

Although gamma brainwaves are a relatively new discovery, scientists have been able to discover that these rays are responsible for neural communication throughout the brain. “[T]he gamma ray originates in the thalamus and moves from the back of the brain to the front and back again 40 times per second!”⁵ They are quickly discovering that these rays may play a very important role in unraveling the mysteries of the brain.

From a paranormal perspective, this phenomenon is deeply fascinating. This function of the brain will still be a consideration because the mind does live on after death. If not, how else would most paranormal activity even occur? That said, the key phrase to ponder here is that gamma rays will give you the feeling that you can do anything. Here is where the “intent” explanation comes into play.

Perhaps a spirit is able to walk through walls, make audible footsteps, knock on doors or even throw objects simply by accessing the gamma rays of the mind. It is an act of sheer will combined with an understanding of all the natural laws, both physical and spiritual. Through the use of gamma brainwaves a spirit is able to initiate any of the natural laws and make ghostly footsteps as they wish. I further support this evidence with the fact that ghosts in general move silently and so something has to be different for the footsteps to be audible. Once again: intent.

Final Thoughts

Presented in this article are a few ideas of how paranormal phenomena like ghostly footsteps and knocks on walls or doors might be explained through the lens of scientific reasoning.

multiverseAs has already been mentioned, there are different dimensions that may cross over with ours. As an example, there have been reports in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania that in the basement of the Pennsylvania Hall a surgical scene was caught when two administrators accidentally took the elevator down one level too far:

“The women were terrified watching the doctors at work, performing meatball surgery on their patients – and watching the growing pile of amputated limbs stacked up in the corner. The scene was completely silent, but when one of the blood-soaked doctors approached them, they hit every button on the elevator and escaped.”

(You can read my entire article here: http://ghosttracker423.blogspot.com/2015/07/time-warps-and-pennsylvania-hall-in.html)

Here is where the concept of the multiverse manifests itself, as it has been presented by the quantum theory pioneer Erwin Schrödinger in 1952. In a multiverse there are layers of existence which overlap one another, each layer representing in a different time plane. Events in the past may cross over with present-moment events, creating a kind of multi-layered environment. Perhaps the footsteps created in one time period can become manifested in another time period through the multiverse theory.

With an intelligent haunting, the explanations become a little more complex. Gamma brainwave activity may have some promise in the possibility of explaining how ghosts do what they do. Here in our more scientific world we know that one “of the most remarkable properties of the gamma state is the processing speed: the brain is able to process incredible amounts of information very quickly, remember it, and retrieve that memory later.” There is a fantastic power with this brain function which might also help us better understand the spirit world that lies just on the other side….

 

Works Cited:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/alicepopkorn/

¹ Source: Boundless. “Frequency of Sound Waves.” Boundless Physics. Boundless, 12 Sep. 2016. Retrieved 19 Oct. 2016 from https://www.boundless.com/physics/textbooks/boundless-physics-textbook/sound-16/introduction-128/frequency-of-sound-waves-454-11189/

² http://www.sengpielaudio.com/calculator-amplitude.htm

³ http://physics.about.com/od/quantumphysics/f/QuantumEntanglement.htm

http://www.omharmonics.com/blog/gamma-brain-waves/

http://www.finerminds.com/mind-power/brain-waves/