A lot of the time I spent there with my family was a cultural study. Something to be said about areas like where we weree (Zarqa Jordan if you want to be exact), is that the people there are very attached to their ways of life. Their hoomes might havve modern conveniances, but the traditions their ancestors have given them are still the same as they were hundreds of years ago. You might thi k Im straying off topic, Im not. In a summarized version of whats in my head, have you ever heard the story of how satan became Satan? In a rounded version of what I know, before god created mankind, he had created angels and a race called Jinn. Jinn had the same free will humans have. Which means the inclination towards good or evil. These beings exist on earth, though on a different "plain" I guess you would call it. They can see us, and while we can't see them it is possible to interact with them. You probably think Im full of it, but its true in my humble opinion. A common misconception is that Jinns are demons, but they aren't. The easiest and most common way to explain it is "smokeless fire formed into thinking living beings". Oddly enough, the accounts and stories for lack of better words even explain things like "haunted" houses. Because by divine rule Jinns are not allowed to live where people do. Though less religious ones (or more malicious) tend to ignore this. So the law abiding ones tend to take up residence in unoccupied houses or even old caves and forests. Another thing is that they are not "spirits" or ghosts, but living breathing beings that work and love andhave children and die like people do. Again you probably think I am full of it, but maybee your GF would be more open to the idead of a paralel yet intertwineing world rather than a spirit world. I hope this helps and if you or anyone else has a question Ill be happy to answer them as well as i can. Also please forgive any misspellings/spacings. Im typing this on my phone.
I am quite familiar with that tale, as I am a christian. However, she is agnostic ranging on atheistic, so she would be less accepting of this. She Might buy into the parallel plane thing, but barely, and because it cannot be scientifically proven or evidenced to exist, she will not give it any more than credit than a folk tale. I think that this explains it quite well, and do think that in most cases it isn't what we consider a 'spirit' but rather some other entity, whether that be angelic, demonic, or otherwise. Thanks for the input!