Are Ghosts Real?

By Rick Heflin

The short answer is, we just don’t know. We do know that there are places in the world where unusual occurrences are the norm, not the exception. Places where people experience extraordinary things and our current level of scientific knowledge is unable to provide satisfactory explanations. There are almost as many theories about ghosts as there are ghost hunters. One theory is that ghosts are the spirits of human beings that have died, but have not yet left the earthly realm. Throughout history there are accounts of people communicating with dead loved ones and family members. Almost every culture on the planet has legends of those who have passed on returning and appearing in one form or another. Another theory is that we are observing beings from another reality. A trans-dimensional rift, if you will. This theory has been popularized on the Art Bell radio program. It has come up several times in discussions of the “Shadow People”. “Shadow people” is the name given to a phenomenon that seems to have become more prevalent in the last few years. People are reporting seeing shadowy figures, human in shape, no discernable facial features, with glowing red eyes. A common element in these sightings is that they Shadow People seem surprised that they are being observed. Currently, there has been no body of evidence gathered concerning the Shadow People and given the random nature of the sightings; it would be very difficult to do so.

Hauntings, however, seem localized in specific areas such as homes, cemeteries, and places where traumatic loss of life happened in the past. This makes scientific observation much more likely. One thing is for sure, Hollywood has it all wrong. Paranormal investigations are not like they are in the movies or on the X-Files. We, at the FPR are attempting to develop scientific protocols for investigations that will lend credibility and help to build a comprehensive database for haunting activity. “Occam’s Razor” is a scientific principal that says that the simplest explanation is most likely the correct one. However, we are finding that the simplest explanation does not always fit the facts. Therefore we must keep an open mind and try to document occurrences to the best of our ability. We must develop our powers of observation and not insert opinion or conjecture into the collected data. Thomas Jefferson once wrote to his nephew discussing education. He said, “Put reason firmly in her seat and ask all questions.” We have questions. It is the questions that drive us. The questions send us into deserted buildings and remote cemeteries late at night. The questions send us to the tops of mountains and into swamps. Perhaps, with determination and diligence, one day we will find answers.