The Science of Ghosts
People have been reporting encounters with ghosts since there have been, well, people. Going back to time immemorial, our ancestors have reported spectral encounters with their ancestors.
Clearly something is going on – one need only look at the thousands of years of anecdotal evidence – countless ghost stories from the distant past. But you don’t even need to look back that far. I guarantee you that you know someone right now who believes they’ve encountered a ghost.
So what exactly is going on? Whether ghosts are real manifestations, or represent some unknown condition of the human mind – a psychological phenomenon — their very persistence throughout recorded human history make them a fertile and fascinating topic for research.
And here’s the question that I get excited about – if ghosts are real, what exactly are they and how do they work? What are the physics of ghosts?
That’s why I can’t wait to see American Paranormal: Haunted Prison (SUN Jan 24 9P et/pt) – in this show our ghost hunters are real scientists – open minded skeptics who are honestly looking for answers. Check out this clip in which theoretical astrophysicist Dan Hooper explains a possible physics of ghosts:
VIDEO: What Are Ghosts Made Of?
They also look for environmental factors that may lead to the “sensation” of encountering the supernatural – cue the extreme-low-frequency sound generator. Studies have shown that sound in the 19 hertz range can create strange physical and psychological effects in anyone exposed. Take a look at the experiment our ghost hunters did with a group of volunteers:
VIDEO: The Sound of Ghosts
The Haunted Prison
Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary is reputed to be one of the most haunted places in America. Take a behind-the-scenes photo-tour with our ghost-hunting scientists and production crew:
PHOTOS: Haunted-Prision Behind-the-Scenes
The prison itself has some amazing history – infamous Chicago mob boss Al Capone spent some time there in 1929. Today, the prison hosts a museum and historical tours. You can find out more at the prison’s website:
What Do You Think?
Do you believe in ghosts? Take the poll in our “Mysterious Science” forum and share your ghost stories:
MYSTERIOUS SCIENCE: Ghost Message Board