Thursday, September 01, 2005

Top 5 Objections to "Ghosts" (in the form of questions)

1. How can ghosts "speak"?

Discussion: Humans need vocal cords in order to speak. Moreover, humans need their special vocal cords in order to make human language possible (i.e. Dogs are physically incapable of speaking in human language). After death, the vocal cords, like the rest of the body, rot in the ground. Therefore, ghosts do not have vocal cords, and therefore, ghosts should be incapable of speech. So, back to the original question: Lacking any vocal cords at all (or any alternate vocal apparatus like birds have), how can ghosts speak?

2. How can ghosts have memories or a personality?

Discussion: Through advanced brain study, scientists have discovered that the brain corresponds directly to such things as memories and personality. Injuries to certain parts of the brain will erase memories, and injuries to certain other parts of the brain will alter one's personality. Upon death, quite obviously, the brain rots in the ground. Thus, why would a ghost retain any memories or personality whatsoever? From a scientific perspective, with the deterioration of the brain, memory/personality are irreversibly lost forever.

3. How does the immaterial interact with the material?

Discussion: There is no known method by which the immaterial (supernatural) interacts with or affects the material (natural). Indeed, there is no scientific evidence to support the existence of the immaterial at all. But, even assuming that the immaterial exists, that still begs the question how these two disparate things can somehow interact. How can a "spirit" interact with a hard-wood floor and make the boards creak? How can a "spirit" interact with the air around us to create a chilly breeze?

This same objection can be used as an argument against the existence of a "soul." What is the method by which a ghostly soul can animate material flesh yet totally escape detection through centuries of scientific research--research which has discovered impossibly small and hard-to-find things (atoms, protons, electrons, neutrons)? Before proposing that the immaterial can interact with the material, shouldn't one first devise a method by which such would even be possible? And upon devising such a method, shouldn't it first be tested in a controlled environment?

4. Why do ghosts wear clothes?

Discussion: If you believe in this "soul" nonsense, I suppose you won't have a difficult time believing that ghosts represent a disembodied human soul. But, why would that disembodied human soul appear to us living people still wearing clothes? Do clothes have an afterlife or a soul? Indeed, this objection can be extended: Why would they appear to us in their former human form? "Bodies" don't have souls--"bodies" are the machine that the soul inhabits during earthly life. Once the soul leaves that body, it makes little sense that the body, too, would ascend to the spirit realm.

5. Why do "cold spots" and "EM fields" serve as evidence for ghosts?

Discussion: Amateur "ghost hunters" often talk about ghosts creating EM fields or producing "cold spots." I've never quite understood why those two particular physical phenomona serve as evidence of the ghostly. What's the proven connection? Who has objectively tested this notion and scientifically proven that ghosts are connected to cold spots and EM fields? At present, to me, it seems like 2 random physical phenomena that ghost-enthusiasts have decided they want to adopt. They'll get around to that proven connection thing later...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

As strange as it sounds, a sci-fi author, Dan Simmons, has written a few books dealing with the possibility of our brains producing quantum wave-fronts that can theorotically create whatever world we desire. It resonates a bit with that "What the bleep do we know!?" movie, although the books are at least easier to enjoy. :P In that case, the wave also contains every memory and scrap of personality, so we could theoretically continue on after death, possibly in another dimension of our creation or in another's head.

(forgot: Sokudo Ningyou on

3:14 AM  
Blogger The Libertarian Defender said...

Thanks for the very interesting comment!

I appreciate your input!

I'm going to have to do some research into the topics you raised. Thanks for providing food for thought.

2:47 PM  

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