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Aquila King

Spirits vs. Hallucinations

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Aquila King

One of the most common arguments against the existence of spirits and ghosts is that they're simply hallucinations caused by whatever.

Essentially the mind has the ability to draw up a 'mental image' of whatever we so choose. You can do it right now even. Close your eyes and think of the face of your best friend, or a family member. Really try and remember their face. What you'll notice is that you have the ability to actually 'see' the image of that person's face in your mind. It may be much more blurry or less defined then actually seeing them in the real world, yet you can see it nonetheless. The same is true with any of your senses really.

Now imagine that person had a big red clown nose on their face. Chances are you can imagine that also, despite possibly never having seen that person actually wearing a clown nose in real life. This is your mind's ability to imagine different scenarios that haven't happened (or possibly even couldn't happen) in the real world. In other words, your imagination.

This is what most people believe happens when you dream, however when dreaming, you simply lose a certain degree of consciousness while your subconscious mind takes over and these thoughts, memories, and imaginations, become just as real as the real world.

Hallucinations are the same as dreams, only they occur usually due to some sort of external physical cause, such as drugs or a good bonk in the head, etc.

So then the only thing left to ask is: how do we know that the spirits or ghosts that many people purportedly see aren't just simply the product of their own minds, and are not in fact externally existent at all? What's the difference between ghosts and our own imagination? And even if they do exist, is there any way to tell the difference between the two?

I ask this as a fellow believer in the existence of spirits, since this is an argument that's commonly raised against believers, and I'm looking to hear other's thoughts on the matter before expressing my own.

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papageorge1
42 minutes ago, Aquila King said:

So then the only thing left to ask is: how do we know that the spirits or ghosts that many people purportedly see aren't just simply the product of their own minds, and are not in fact externally existent at all? 

We can't know with certainty in an individual anecdotal event. We can only judge likeliness based on a combination of factors including what we can learn about this person and  anecdotal event. When multiple witnesses under  normal conditions report seeing the same spirit independently that is evidence that something more than hallucination is occurring. Some haunting cases involve physical phenomena that couldn't be created by hallucination as the effect is permanent (items being moved and manipulated by no reasonable 'normal' explanation).

Another reason for me is that I have objectively come to believe that certain psychically gifted people can perceive spirits more directly than the average person. I believe it has been statistically proven that the more gifted psychics can statistically show by tremendous odds against chance under blinded condition (eliminating the possibility of cold or hot readings) that something more than hallucination must be going on. See the interview with Dr. Julie Beischel. This is serious and good science.

 

Edited by papageorge1
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Liquid Gardens

I guess I wouldn't go so far as full-blown 'hallucination', a simple misinterpretation of our sensory input combined with the malleability of memory suffices to explain a lot of spirit/ghost sightings.  Our brains are predisposed to recognize patterns, especially faces, to such an extent that it identifies patterns that aren't actually meaningful and faces that aren't actually faces.  Even with that predisposition, the less than perfect reliability of eyewitnesses has already been established empirically, and that is concerning common things like faces and people; should we suspect then that people are better at identifying something more esoteric and most of the time less clearly visible like ghosts?

Just curious too, is the current theory that ghosts are appearing in people's minds only?  After all in pretty much just a decade the number of cameras and video recorders has exploded, but I'm unaware of the quality of the evidence for spirits/ghosts (and to be fair Bigfoot, ufo visits, etc) improving dramatically to correspond with that?  If a camera can pick it up then it appears that something about a ghost appearance is actually interacting with light which may provide some basis for being able to study them scientifically if they actually exist.

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CHILDRESS

This is my first post on this site.

In my life, I have had numerous encounters with various entities/spirits- both of human origin and that of non-human origin. Having said that, many of my encounters were in the years before cell phones had cameras. At those times, I would have had to have been holding the phone/camera in my hand at the time of the occurrence. The encounter is usually so brief, that a person wouldn't have time to grab the camera or phone, turn the phone/camera on, then open the app to take the photo, and then take the picture. These beings are usually incredibly fast, and if they linger just long enough for you just to get a clear view of it, consider a sighting alone a stroke of good fortune, in that you were able to see it at all. Many times, I was not the only one to experience the presence. Should you have an experience, you will "feel" that you aren't alone. You will know what you are experiencing is real and not a hallucination, there will be no question of it. If the current "theory" that supernatural experiences are merely in a person's mind, that "theory" can be greatly attributed to many occult writers and practitioners whose "work" involves what I consider meditation, day dreams, lucid dreaming, and imagination. On occasion, some type of drug or deprivation is involved with the ritual to command the experience.  I am not referring to psychic experience here, that is an entirely different part of the bigger picture.

It takes an incredible amount of energy for a spirit to appear, even in the form of a small orb. It takes double that energy to make a vocalization or touch/move something. When an apparition occurs, know that the entity meant or desired to be observed, it was not just happenstance you wandered into. They want you to know that they are aware that you are there, and they are reciprocating.

There have been many times I have caught orbs with a digital camera that were merely dust particles, and there have been times where I have photographed orbs that were a spirit of some sort. The difference is usually the light that emanates from the orb, not just a circular blob hanging in the air. If you are looking at the orb with your eyes, you can see it shine- but as I said, they are very quick and do not remain stationary for long.

If, or when, you have an encounter with something supernatural- without provoking or using chemicals to become more inclusive to the experience, you will know that it is real or if you are just imagining things. It is truly amazing when it occurs, be grateful you have had the experience. What I find odd, is the number of television shows where the "researchers" are caught on camera screaming and running away from where they "saw" something. IF these "paranormal researchers" had a history of experiences and worthy of being in command of their own television show, they would know that it is pointless to run away screaming and crying like a child when something occurs. Another thing I find incredibly stupid, is when they walk around asking "Hello, is anyone there?" If you are in an area where spirits are known to be present, they will make their intent clear without making a lot of noise. A true scientific researcher would remain as silent as possible while the cameras and recorders were on.        

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Lumpino
On 12. 2. 2018 at 6:01 PM, Aquila King said:

One of the most common arguments against the existence of spirits and ghosts is that they're simply hallucinations caused by whatever. .........

 

Try an evocation according old magical texts and will see if spirits exist or not. :rolleyes:

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XenoFish
21 minutes ago, Lumpino said:

Try an evocation according old magical texts and will see if spirits exist or not. :rolleyes:

They don't. Its just a head trip.

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trevor borocz johnson
On 2/12/2018 at 0:01 PM, Aquila King said:

So then the only thing left to ask is: how do we know that the spirits or ghosts that many people purportedly see aren't just simply the product of their own minds, and are not in fact externally existent at all? What's the difference between ghosts and our own imagination? And even if they do exist, is there any way to tell the difference between the two?

I'm working on a gyroscope microphone to mimic the human balance system which is where I believe hallucinations take place. You can summon spirits or voices in several different ways. One is to adjust the muscles in your inner ear to cause any tinnitus you have in your ear to change. Another is to put on headphones with loud amplified silence and create songs in the noise. Voices are unique from acting like humans in that you can't get knew information from them. You could blame them for planting the thoughts you have in your head and that your just being a voice onto those thoughts. But it is generally impossible to gather new information from others thoughts by way of voices.

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XenoFish

human-body-composition-59021b3c5f9b5810d

I do not see 'spirit' listed.

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Not A Rockstar
On ‎2‎/‎13‎/‎2018 at 10:39 AM, CHILDRESS said:

 you will know that it is real or if you are just imagining things. It is truly amazing when it occurs, be grateful you have had the experience. What I find odd, is the number of television shows where the "researchers" are caught on camera screaming and running away from where they "saw" something. IF these "paranormal researchers" had a history of experiences and worthy of being in command of their own television show, they would know that it is pointless to run away screaming and crying like a child when something occurs. Another thing I find incredibly stupid, is when they walk around asking "Hello, is anyone there?" If you are in an area where spirits are known to be present, they will make their intent clear without making a lot of noise. A true scientific researcher would remain as silent as possible while the cameras and recorders were on.        

I laughed aloud when I got to the above section of your post Childress. I so agree and am rather disgusted when they scream or run away. This is supposedly their JOB to find and investigate phenomenon, after all. I also wonder about the "Is anyone there" crap. Or the aggressive insulting approach. Just shut up and listen and feel and find out, IMO. Welcome to UM :)

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