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Athiests and the Paranormal

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posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:35 PM
I was thinking the other day about ghosts and related phenomena and the evidence for such and whatnot and it occurred to me that if a person was an athiest they probably wouldn't believe in ghosts, because ghosts are spirits and that is really what religion is all about and what happens to our spirits "when we shuffle off this mortal coil."

So, I know that there are many athiests here, perhaps a majority, so do athiests believe in ghosts?

For the record, I'm not an athiest and I don't believe in the ghosts of popular culture.

[edit on 2006/9/18 by GradyPhilpott]

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:41 PM
Well, I don't believe in a deity, or any of the mysticy magic stuff
of religion, does that qualify me as an Atheist?

Honestly I don't think about it, I've seen so many apparent real
pictures/videos that have turned out to be fake, that I sorta just
assume next to every case is fake.

However that's not to say I think all our fake, I think that ghosts
are just a projection created by part of the subconscious.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 09:56 PM

Originally posted by iori_komei
Well, I don't believe in a deity, or any of the mysticy magic stuff
of religion, does that qualify me as an Atheist?

I'm pretty sure that makes you an athiest.

However that's not to say I think all our fake, I think that ghosts
are just a projection created by part of the subconscious.

I think that means you don't believe in ghosts.

[edit on 2006/9/18 by GradyPhilpott]

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 10:45 PM
There are non-religious theories about what can cause a haunting.
One theory in particular that comes to mind is called a residual haunting.

posted on Sep, 18 2006 @ 11:38 PM

I think that means you don't believe in ghosts.

What it means is that I odn't believe ghosts are spirits.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 12:30 AM

Originally posted by iori_komei

What it means is that I odn't believe ghosts are spirits.

What are they then? Are they Residual Hauntings?

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 12:40 AM
I believe they are psychokinetic/psionic projections created by
the mind. And I mean something like a hologram, not a delusion.

Of course I do realise that's not an accepted scientific view,
but I consider it as such.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 12:55 AM
I believe in ghosts. And I am an atheist.

My mum told me once that when I was younger I had had a long conversation with my recently deceased grandma.
Also, once I was at my cousins house (he was about 4 at the time and never met our shared gran) and he had a cold. He was picking his nose and sniffing for ages then suddenly looked at something, got up and went into the kitchen. He then said to his mum (my aunt) "Nana said to blow my nose."

I don't claim to know what a ghost is or anything but my family has quite a few good experiences with the ghosts of our family. Grandma is mainly the one that keeps cropping up though!

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 01:43 AM
Remember, this is humanity.

Humans have been able to believe in diametircally opposed views at the same time and not even flinch.

The defining line for Athiest belief is there is no God/god. It says nothing about those who believe in spirits. If you believe in spirits, but you also believe that no spirit could be your creator, then you're an athiest...jsut a diffrent branch of the belief.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 03:27 AM
Peoples ideas of God and Ghosts are all different also. The Holy Ghost is God. So people might meet the Holy Ghost and believe in it in different ways. Some might say it is a ghost while some feel it is God.

So you might have an atheist who doesn't believe in God actually following or believing in a ghost which is actually God anyway.

It's all relative. One person sees God's hand working in everything that is while another person sees God only in his religion. I met a man who found God in a puddle of water.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 06:16 AM
Im an atheist and i do believe in ghosts bt not in the same way as films and stories make out.
I believe in the absolute power of the human mind and im sure there is a way that the brain could leave behind electromagnetic fields in places that it has inhabited or visited often.
Or if someone died at a point of high stress or fear i think it would be possible for the brain to release a large ammount of energy which could then replay what happened in the last few moments of life, in a magnetic field. but i deffinately dont believe that ghosts have the will to think for themselves or talk to people because that would imply that they have come back to life.

posted on Sep, 19 2006 @ 03:46 PM
I am not an atheist because there are things like ghosts. I understand there are a million things that can make the human mind hallucinate but what gets me is say when two tourists visit a national trust house (without knowing a particular area is haunted) and see exactly the same thing. I know the military (particularly the Soviet Union) did a lot of serious research into just about all things paranormal and their findings (regarding ghosts and telepathy) were awesome.

Neither do I believe residual hauntings are the be all and end of paranormal. If that was the case why can people record ghosts answering direct questions? This is something an enormous number of people worldwide do as a hobby; are they all part of one huge paranormal conspiracy?
Of course till we have more concrete answers about the paranormal (something that in may view can only be credibly achieved by government funded research) it might be that we are just talking to ourselves. But if so how do you get real knowledge about things you can’t possibly know about? How can it be for instance if you are talking to a ghost called Tracey that it turns out there was such a person of such a name without you knowing? If its just chance why can more personalised details other than name be obtained?

There is serious evidence that you can interact with ghosts, that some do have an intelligence. This is particularly the case with “demons” and other non-human spiritual entities.

I believe that evolution probably gave us an afterlife so that the dead could help the living. This would make as much (if not more) sense for animals as it would with humans. I believe with us the help is probably about 99% on a subconscious level (say when you are crossing a road and would otherwise have forgotten to look and get killed). We may even (subconsciously) communicate with the deceased when we are asleep (all very Darwinian).
Of course just because we have an afterlife so that the dead can help the living does not mean they always do; and (as a general rule) this is probably even less true for non human entities.

Subconscious Interaction…
If you film someone using the pendulum, or even an Ouija board it would appear that the user is moving the thing subconsciously. Potentially this could disprove any true nature to the thing; but why can it give true answers outside of any normal measurements of probability? Why do we have other evidence like Victorian photos, CCTV film; and even ghost tape recordings answering direct questions-responding to specific situations?
With that in mind I think the fact “we” move a pendulum or an Ouija board merely builds on the idea that a lot (if not all) of our communication with the supernatural begins on a subconscious level. And until CCTV footage from high secure buildings (like bits of Hampton Court) (it’s open to the public but it was recently used for an EU summit-not all of it is a museum) is proven to be explainable, then the chances are that ghosts are real, that just because the subconscious is the major route through which we sense these things does not mean it is the major cause.

Evidence Verses Religion…
1. We do not know that there is a single god; or that there is a single chief God or chief devil.
2. We do not know that god(s) like us (much or even possibly at all).
3. We do not know the sole is immortal.
4. We do not know that there is a single heaven and hell; many, or non at all.

1. However it would appear (through reincarnation) that we can come back to this world again.
2. That there are spiritual beings both hostile and helping towards humanity. That some may sponsor good whilst others sponsor “evil”.
3. That some spiritual beings appear more powerful than others; that some appear non human in origin.
4. That many people record near death experiences; that this is potentially just a hallucination (or given the recovery of real information like the position of a old shoe on top of a hospital roof which could not be seen by neither ground or windows) that there be more to it.

5. We know (through recorded history) that many of the world’s major religions seem to be manmade.
This is the annoying thing even if there were no ghosts and no afterlife there would still be religion. Most religions seem to give only indoctrination as a solution to the unanswered questions.
However with proper research and funding (and it is inevitable that sooner or later from nation of the other this will come) mankind will be able to find answers and once more make them public. Till then if your truly open to the evidence then your probably also ahead of your time.

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 12:18 AM
I was an athiest my entire life
I was never afraid in the dark or anything because I 'knew' that ghost didn't exist and that I had nothing to be scared of. I didn't believe in spirits, souls, or heaven. My whole life I felt this way ...

Then a few months ago things started happening that turned my whole world upside down. My friends think I'm crazy to go from talking about how God doesn't exist one day, to talking about things that scare me at night the next. I don't see how one can believe that spirits exists without at least accepting the possiblity that God does. I still don't know if God exists, and I don't think I will for a long time, not while I'm still living.

But I never in a MILLION years thought I would question his existance. Funny how things change

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 09:46 AM
You don't have to be atheist to believe in an afterlife. All that means is that God didn't create you, your soul, or anything else. The soul, if it exists, can be a natural, scientifically acceptable thing. If a whole universe came into being by accident and we somehow evolved into awesome creatures that can create an internet and forums, surely there is a chance that our conciousness was also created in such a way to not disappear when we die.

The idea of death scares me, that's the only reason I'm still alive. I hope HOPE HOPE there is an afterlife, because I don't want to just not exist. If there was proof of no afterlife, I wouldn't bother living as it would all be in vain anyway. I'd just go out and have sex with 100 people, have the biggest most lavish meal ever, spend all of my earthly money on everything I want (take out a giant loan if necessary), and then kill myself, as I would have experienced everything the universe has to offer.

You don't have to believe in God to believe in ghosts. Nor do you need to believe in God to believe in inherant good and evil, aliens, bigfoot, etc. Ruling out a micromanaging schizophrenic creator god does not necessarily rule out all other paranormal activity in the process.

Frankly the idea that there are ghosts messed with the notion of God. According to religious texts, you either go to hell or heaven or purgatory, not wandering the Earth. A true Christian wouldn't believe ghosts exist, as there is no reason for them to be stuck on Earth.

[edit on 20-9-2006 by Yarcofin]

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 09:59 AM

The idea of death scares me, that's the only reason I'm still alive. I hope HOPE HOPE there is an afterlife, because I don't want to just not exist.

i believe the reason why people believe in religions is because of the amazing fear that people have of the unknown, and what can be more unknown than death?
you say the idea of death scares you and you dont want to just not exist.
But as an atheist and im sure others would back me up on this

"Why fear death when death is the end of fear itself."

[edit on 20-9-2006 by JBourne]

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 10:23 AM
I am an athiest and do not believe in ghosts/paranormal/aliens etc.

Those that do IMHO are either a) desperate for attention or b) mentally ill.

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 11:12 AM
IMHO, to think that one can stop ghostly experiences from happening simply by being 'godless' is quite bizzare. For instance, by saying I don't believe in sasquatch won't make him vanish before my eyes if I was ever to encounter such a being...(if such a being actually exists..but that's not the question here..)
You can all think what you want, but I'll tell you this; GHOSTS DO EXIST. Atheism doesn't make you 'ghost proof', it simply gives the athiest the 'safe haven' and the vocabulary to rationalize any 'event' away from being such.
In my life so far, I've had four significant 'ghostly' experiences. (..some more significant than others.. ) During each event, if I were a skeptic or prone to easily rationalize things...i would probably say.."they were obiously hallucinations"...or simply keep the experience to myself.
The athiests I know seem to enjoy telling people that they are 'athiests', but when the 'Reaper' comes knocking at their death-bed door, I'm almost positive that they'd grasp on to some sort of 'Higher power'....just in case.
Athieism is not a philosophy, its a temporary ideal which suits the individual at that particular time in their life...providing an 'easy out' to any discussion involving a 'god' that NO ONE really knows about.

If I were you AriesUK, I wouldn't paint myself into the proverbial corner, because if anything paranormal would ever happen to you,(which one day it might..) you'd have to face the fact that either you're desperate for attention or mentally ill. Then what do you do?.....

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 01:52 PM

Originally posted by AriesUK
I am an athiest and do not believe in ghosts/paranormal/aliens etc.

Those that do IMHO are either a) desperate for attention or b) mentally ill.

You do of course realise that can be easily construed as an insult?
And you are not permitted to insult people here.

I am actually offended, true I don't believe in the majority of ghost
sightings, but to say thatt the phenomenon never happens is in itself
an igrnorant thing to say.

As I've said above, I believe that the real sightings are mere projections
of the subconcsious mind(s).

Does that make me desperate for attention?
Certainly not, I personally hate attention.

Does that make me mentally ill?
Again, of course not, I'm one of the most mentally stable people there are.

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 03:16 PM
I am in fact deeply offended by that statement.

Who gave you the authority to make that statement? I know here on ATS you are allowed to express your views but you aren't allowed to insult others views.

I am not mentally ill, nor could I give a damn about how much attention I get (which btw is quite high anyway).

PULVERIZER, I can assure you that atheism for me is the complete opposite of what you posted. For me it is a fact. I do not 'believe' in atheism because you cannot believe in a word. Atheism is a state of mind. I do not believe in a god, so I don't worry about anything I do adding to his 'naughty list'.

In fact, the only times I have ever subscribed to an actual religious belief, is during times of shock. When my dad died I believed that he went to Heaven and was happy. Since then, I have again assumed my atheism and believe my dad has gone onto the next stage of life whatever that may be.
This seems to clarify for me that religion is in fact the temporary ideal. When I die I won't suddenly, hope there is heaven and repent everything I've ever done, I will think that I have had a good life and that my death is the logical conclusion to that life. Unlike some, I am very aware of the fact that one day I will die. And I don't believe anything I do in life will alter the destined day of my doom.

posted on Sep, 20 2006 @ 03:48 PM
i've been called insane by millions of posters over the years on every site i've been on. All webmasters allow it unless it is aimed at their favourite pets. It is a deeply insulting thing that nazis and other murderers use to kill or silence those they hate.

There is a God. Not one atom can move without following God's plan. God does not serve you and do things to please you. He has unlimited other beings serving him who do all the works of God. Some folks believe there is one god doing everything but i think it's many beings who are more or less one with God who are doing it all.

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