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Ghost Stories Told by Children May Be TrueBernard Powell Salem-News.com CROSSROADS
"Are children more open to ghostly encounters than adults, or are they intentionally targeted by other worldly beings?" ~question via email
(SALEM, Ore.) - It seems to be a fairly common belief that children are more open or receptive to experiencing paranormal encounters than grown ups are.
Could this be because children see the world differently than the rest of us?
Who hasn’t seen an infant lying in his or her crib looking playfully at the air and giggling in delight at something that the rest of us cannot see? Many times reports of paranormal occurrences do indeed surround young children and teen-agers, such as in reported cases of poltergeist activity.
Is there a known reason for this? Is it that children are more in tune with the spirit world? Are they able to see beyond what we know as reality?
Part of the reason may be that children have not yet developed the filters or prejudices that most of us have in place as adults. Years of being told what is and is not possible, and what is and is not real can have a way of callusing the perception.
Studies have shown that the adult brain can develop the ability to altogether block out or fail to “see” something that does not register as being normal or in the right place, especially if we are not looking for it specifically.
I’ve seen psychological experiments of a phenomena called Inattentive Blindness where the subject simply does not see something completely conspicuous shown in a video sequence (such as a gorilla on a basketball court) because it is out of place and the subject has been distracted by being given directions to observe other details in the video. The mind seems to ignore or even disregard the presence of a thing altogether because its being in the scene defies reason...
Most parents unwittingly (for the most part) begin defining reality to their children at a very early age, especially in the vital years, where the imagination is being developed. Could your child’s imaginary friend be a ghost?
Is there a chance that there could be more to his or her imaginary friend than imagination? Is there a possibility that a spirit may be trying to communicate something to the only person perceptive enough to notice within the family?
In presenting our children a closed-minded view of the world we may be subconsciously sending them a message that they cannot trust what they see and experience, ultimately they train themselves to block out or ignore what they think cannot be real or is not acceptable.
On the other hand it is possible that in admitting that we do not have all the answers and that there are many things that still need to be explored and discovered, some parents (like mine) could actually nurture a healthy sense of curiosity in their children. As may be the case with those who desire to objectively study parapsychology or the paranormal through a deep sense of longing to seek out understanding despite the closed-mindedness of others.
Through the growing interest and exploration in this field, researchers have come to define poltergeist activity. For years, it has been observed that poltergeists were always active, or seemed to focus around an adolescent child (now called the ‘agent’), usually in their mid to late teens.
Among Parapsychologists, typical poltergeist phenomena are now known as "Recurrent Spontaneous Psycho-Kinesis," or RSPK. This term is used to describe the outward physical expression of intense emotion from a human agent through inexplicable force or action imposed on the immediate or surrounding environment through psychological means.
The agent is usually oblivious to the fact the he or she caused the disturbance because it is the subconscious mind, which is releasing repressed or unexpressed emotion through psychokinesis. In addition, poltergeist activity without the presence of an agent is attributed to the remnants of intense emotions in a particular location, a psychological imprint if you will.
In either case, poltergeist activity is believed to be an outward manifestation of human emotion. Whether these assumptions are accurate or not is disputable, yet it is evidence that progress has been made on a subject that otherwise would be left misunderstood and unexplored had it not been for open-minded research and for people who were not willing to have someone else define to them what reality is.
Are children born with an inexplicable sense for the unknown?
No one can say for sure, but as parents, we should not be willing to dismiss everything our children have to say. We should listen and discern if what they are telling us is simply child’s play or if there is something more...
Ask questions and play along; don’t you remember what it was like to be a kid? You could learn something, you’ll never know, unless you take off the blinders and look around you.
Bernard Powell is a local author and independent publisher; a devout student of religion, mysticism and the language of occult symbolism. He has had a life-long interest in all branches of the paranormal; and is also the founding member of a Salem-based paranormal research society called OPHIR (Occult & Paranormal House of Investigational Research).
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