Types of paranormal beliefs and why people believe in it Essay
Types of paranormal beliefs and why people believe in it
There is always a part of us who believes in something that is outside the field of science even though it has been proven scientifically by some to be untrue. This is because nobody has ever given any conclusive evidence that paranormal beliefs such as ghost and aliens exists. While many sightings have been reported throughout the years, there is still no solid proof that these sightings were real. Why are paranormal beliefs still so popular when it lacks solid evidence?
One reason is that countless photographs and videos of these so called ‘sightings’ have been recorded and with the help of the internet, spreads like wildfire. The media also plays an important role in why people believe in the paranormal. This is because many horror movies nowadays claim that it is based on true events which further fuels people’s curiosity. According to Britt (2008), people believe in the paranormal simply because they want to and wanting to find an answer to a mystery is like an addiction to them.
Britt (2008) also claims that the human brain is constantly trying to figure something out and when it is not able to do so, the brain comes up with bizarre explanation. Furthermore, some people believe in the paranormal simply because they think they have actually encountered it but many expert claims that it is the mind playing tricks on them. Think about it, if you have not watched a horror movie then how would you know if what you have seen is something paranormal? In some extreme cases where some people want to know the truth really badly, they would actually provoke or even perform rituals to summon ghosts and demons.
Paranormal belief such as the belief in astrology, UFOs, monsters and ghosts are very common as many people claimed to have ‘sighted’ them and there are many research and investigation to either prove that their beliefs are real or fake. A very common paranormal belief nowadays is astrology. What is astrology and what is the purpose of astrology? Astrology simply means “the Science of Stars” and it is where position of planets and stars in the sky gives us information and tells about an individual’s past, present and future within the universe (Crane, n. d. ). Some people are still confused between astrology and astronomy.
Astronomy is the scientific study of celestial phenomena. All objects in space are studied in terms of their history, constitution and position and because it is scientifically proven, no one questions its validity (Brumfiel, 2012). Astrology has been studied for many years and according to Astrology. com (2010), the earliest known existence of astrology dates back to Babylon, 1645 BC. Those who practice astrology are known as astronomers and it is a discipline that still exists today. Have you ever thought about where horoscope originates? Watson (2012), claims that it was the Chinese who initiated this kind of astrology reading.
The most common forms of horoscopes are the Zodiac horoscope and Chinese horoscope among many others. The zodiac horoscope is divided into 12 signs; Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pieces. Astrology is considered as a paranormal belief because no one has conclusive evidence on how astrology functions. While there are many different opinions on how or why astrology might work, there is still no conclusive answer that satisfies all astrologers. The reason astrology is still very popular nowadays is due to the fact that it may be able to predict a person’s future.
To be able to predict the future is a dream come true for many people and some people think that astrology is able to somehow provide them with a glimpse of the future. Furthermore, they believe that astrology will be able to guide them through difficult times. To get a glimpse of what your horoscope tells you, just grab a copy of your local newspaper and it will be there. Astrology is a paranormal belief that has existed through ancient times and it will remain in the future. We all know that the universe is a limitless place and that it has no boundaries. The diameter of the Milky Way itself is more than hundred million light years.
For those who are unfamiliar with the term light year, it simply means the distance light travels in a year and we all know that light travels at a rate of three hundred thousand kilometres per second. Therefore scientifically speaking, the probability that there is another planet with inhabitants is very likely. With many people around the globe claiming that they have been abducted by aliens and some claim that they saw something flying in the sky that looks like a saucepan which is commonly known as UFOs it is no wonder why the people are constantly questioning the existence of aliens.
Recently Cheng and Abdullah (2012), reported that residents in Muar reportedly saw a bright fiery spherical object in the sky and many assume that it was an UFO and many people started snapping away with their cameras. Huge crop circles on cornfields that appear overnight which seems impossible for humans to create also play an important role in why belief in aliens is so popular. With so many sightings being reported globally, have you ever wondered if aliens do exists? Is the government trying to hide the truth from us? Does the infamous Area 51 exist? Firstly, there is currently no rock solid evidence that aliens does or does not exist.
Conspiracies have been rising as well claiming that governments are hiding information about aliens from the public which causes more curiosity. Area 51 is a place located less than 100 miles from Las Vegas, Nevada and it is believed to be an area where the United States government hides alien technologies (Strickland, n. d. ). Even if aliens do exist, there is no proof that aliens are humanoid looking like what the movies claim. However, a stunning conclusion by NASA claims that we are not alone in this universe and that there were signs of bacteria on a meteorite from outer space (Tenney, 2011).
Therefore, the likelihood that human race will one day discover the existence of aliens is very high but at the moment, it seems that the closest thing that proof of aliens exist is bacteria on a meteorite. Everyone will one day die. That is the cold hard truth and no matter how rich or powerful you are in this world, you will not be able to escape to cruel grip of death. However, is death the end or the beginning of something new? No one actually knows, because the only way to know for sure is through death itself and communicating with the dead is believe to be hokum by many.
However, people who came extremely close to death claimed that their whole life flashed in front of them and a spiritual being telling them that it is not their time to die. The death of a friend of family is a very hard thing to bear and some believe that their spirit still wanders the earth in a form which is most commonly known as ghosts. Ghost is believed to be the residual energy of an animal, a person or inanimate object with no “life force” in it (Neal, 2010). Many people believe that the deceased’s spirit is still lingering on this earth because the spirit has unfinished business to attend to before they are ready and can move on.
Secondly, many people believe that the spirit of the deceased just want to say goodbye before moving onto the afterlife and usually happens moments after the person’s passing. Finally, a spirit may want to stay with us because the spirit believes that loved ones still need its guidance (Juliano, n. d. ). Why is the belief in ghost so common? Some people just refuse to believe that their loved ones have left them and just cannot accept the fact that they are gone, so much so that ordinary events such as
a sudden cold breeze of air is enough to convince them that the deceased is still spiritually here. I personally came across a story that made me want to believe in ghosts. An uncle of mine who does not gamble just won the lottery and everyone kept asking what made him bought the number? He claims that he had a dream where his deceased mother kept yelling at him the winning numbers. Stories like this make people want to believe and it somewhat gives them comfort in knowing that death is not the end even though it is not proven to be true.
Furthermore, horror movies nowadays claim that it is based on a true story. The movie would appear scarier if it is based on true events hence some directors use this as leverage to create a scarier movie. Movies such as Paranormal Activity franchise, Exorcism of Emily Rose, and The Exorcist all claim to be from true events. Therefore, belief in ghost may just be a way to comfort yourself that the decease still remains with you or just your brain playing tricks on you due to your emotional state but nobody will ever know the truth, not at the moment at least.
Another popular paranormal belief is the belief in fortune telling and tarot reading. Fortune telling is usually done by what is commonly known as a psychic. Tarot reading is an initiatory and divinatory game, a kind of language that helps us reach out to our inner self and make reality clearer to us. Psychics are people who claim to be able to communicate with the dead, see the future, and make someone do something out of their will. The most famous fortune teller was Nostradamus.
According to Cruz (2012), Nostradamus was acknowledged as the greatest fortune teller in history because he predicted many apocalyptic and it came true. An example of his prediction was the infamous 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center. Why do people believe in fortune telling? They believe in fortune telling simply because they are able to obtain an answer that science could not provide them (Yin, 2011). Furthermore it gives comfort to know what your future holds and not to mention that a desperate person would do anything just to get out of their lowest point of life.
The truth behind fortune telling is that psychics are actually masters in reading body language. According to Pelham (2012) they use a series of trial and error to gain your trust and often start by asking you a very general question. It is said that the human body is able to emit 700 000 different non-verbal signs that are recognized by people. Fortune telling is morally wrong because sometimes, psychics takes your lowest point of your life and use it to earn your money. As by how Nostradamus was able to predict the future, it will remain a mystery.
Therefore, what people claim to see or experience that is outside the field of reasoning may just be coincidence or even the mind playing tricks on you. However the universe is full with mysteries, mysteries that we may never comprehend. Moreover, it is said that our brain only functions at 5 percent of its capability. Maybe one day we will be able to unlock some of these mysteries and prove that what is known as paranormal beliefs now, someday be facts. As for now, there is no conclusive evidence that ghost, aliens, astrology, and fortune telling are not paranormal beliefs.