What is a Ghost?

Taken with SM-G925T, Android 5.1.1
Photo taken by Patrick during our investigation of the Willard Library

What Is a Ghost?

I think this question has to be the single most asked question I get, followed closely by “how do I know it isn’t a demon?” or “Isn’t it a demon since it isn’t in heaven or because it’s away from God?”  All are great questions and are actually more similar than you would think at first. But, to start this explanation let me establish a really simple ground rule.  A ghost is a ghost and a demon is a demon.  Demons never were human or even “alive” and by alive I refer to life as we know it as living beings on this earth.  Demons started off in whatever state we call the “afterlife” and were never born to this world. But this is a topic for another post.  I am also not going to get into Heaven and Hell, and judgement in this post because here I am addressing the Ghost, not where it goes after dying, depending on how it lived it’s life.

So, What is a ghost?

Ghosts are simply you and me, our fathers and mothers, sons, daughters and grandparents.  They are people that for whatever reason haven’t quite moved on yet.  In my belief I know that they will, at some point, move on to heaven.  I believe that for the vast majority of us the transition takes place quickly if not instantaneously. I think we are off to join loved ones without much thought and probably little choice. But, for some the process doesn’t happen like it does for most of us and for whatever reason when they die it isn’t automatic.  They may see the “light” or whatever conduit is there to help us move on but now, faced with a choice, they aren’t quite ready to go through it.  Maybe, for some, they are afraid to go through it because in their eyes, it shouldn’t be here and through it means judgement or the God that shouldn’t exist.

Some may be hesitant to leave because of love. Think for a minute about that little old couple we’ve all seen walking down the sidewalk or through the mall.  They walk hand in hand as they have for 70 years until one day, he passes away.  Now, remember that sometimes it isn’t automatic and he finds himself standing there knowing he should go on to heaven but he wants to wait on her so they can go through together.  In terms of eternity time isn’t time like we know it and years flash by in the blink of an eye.  He still waits for his wife to join him unaware that she passed years ago and she’s now waiting on him in heaven.  Hundreds of years go by as people talk about seeing the ghost of an old man in a now haunted house.  Does this make him evil or a demon or simply a sweet old man looking for his wife?

What about freewill?  As awful a thought of a child dying is, let’s consider another scenario where I can touch base on both free will and another frequently asked question. When I am talking to people it’s about now that I get asked “what about children?” and “how can God leave behind a child?”.  The answer is simple…  He Doesn’t!  Take the ghost of a little boy that passed and again, like above, he doesn’t move on to heaven right away.  He sees the light and maybe even sees his “Nanna” standing in it calling him to come and go with her to heaven.  But… there’s that apple tree he always wanted to play on but was never allowed.  He’s a kid after all and just like when he was alive he still has freewill, so off he runs to the tree.  He plays for just a little bit but he leaves us talking for years about the haunted, creepy giggles of a child out by the old gnarled apple tree. Is this ghost something scary?

You can argue that both of these people or ghosts are away from God, but I would have to ask “Are they really?” and if they are “How long are they away from God?”.   A blink of an eye?  Hundreds of years may be a long time here but I’m not about to think I understand God’s timeframe.  In these cases, I believe God simply tells those waiting on them in heaven, “Don’t worry… They’ll be here in a second.”.

I have to think that the saddest part to these ghost stories would be when we as investigators forget who they are and burst into the home or storm the apple tree calling them names or taunting them in ways we would never do to their faces were they alive.

So, What is a ghost?
Simply put, a ghost is someone that hasn’t moved on yet.   Let’s make sure we aren’t forgetting the “someone” part.

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