Warehouse F
The Spirits Among Us
The Unseen Enemy
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Do Sudden Violent Deaths Explain Ghosts?

By James Donahue

There has always been a mystery linked to the ghost stories that prevail all over the world. If the human spirit is supposed to pass on into "the light" or into an astral existence after we die, why do some spirits appear to be hanging around in the form of ghostly images that "haunt" older buildings, ships and historic places?

Melissa Van Rossum, a psychic, empathy and author, thinks she may have an answer. She addressed the issue in a recent article for Ezine, an Internet publication.

Van Rossum explained that people who die an unexpected and sudden death pass so quickly from this life into a spiritual existence that they sometimes don’t realize they are dead, or if they know it, they are in a state of shock. Thus they tend to hang around the place where they died, or go to a place that is familiar to them like their home.

Van Rossum, who sees spirits of the dead and tries to help them go to what she calls "the other side," wrote about a man who died in a bus crash. "He was still stunned from all the events of his bodily death. He hadn’t gone home earlier out of shock and disbelief of hos his body had died. I think for a while he didn’t quite realize he was dead."

How can spirits remain in a state of thinking they are still among the living? Van Rossum explained that once the spirit leaves the body, they are no longer in pain. Sometimes, however, a person who dies in a violent attack might remain stuck in the moment and relive the experience over and over again.

Fortunately, she writes that most people who die violently or tragically "move beyond those terrible last moments very quickly. The suffering for them ended as soon as they left their bodies and their emotional healing began at the same time."

That’s right. We are still ourselves after death and we experience emotions and guilt in dealing with the lives we lived while on Earth, and sometimes because of our relationships with our family and friends.

Van Rossum has written about working with the spirits of suicide victims who realize the moment they are dead that what they did was a terrible mistake. One man was afraid to face his deceased family because he had committed suicide and believed the others would be mad at him for what he had done.

From personal experiences communicating with dead relatives, I believe Van Rossum is quite right in her assessment of the spirit world. After my mother died my wife, Doris, who can communicate with the spirit world, helped me make contact with her. She had been suffering from emphysema and a failing heart before lapsing into a coma and passing on. In our first contact Mom seemed to be filled with joy to have suddenly been "healed" and talked as if she did not fully understand that she had died.

Later Mom spoke of the wonderful garden she was in, and how grand it was to be able to "fly" anywhere in the universe she wanted to go. She said she was sure that my father, a science fiction buff and scientist who was still living, would love to experience what she was able to see. After that, she said she had decided to go on into the light. We could not contact her any more after this.

So if spirits can easily move into the astral after death, why do we have so many haunted buildings in the world? Are these the spirits of people who once lived, or are they something else?

I believe many of the ghosts among us have chosen to remain here. Even though they may know they are dead, they feel comfortable staying in places that are familiar to them. My wife’s mother, Gladys, appears to be such a ghost.

Gladys lived most of her life as somewhat of a shut-in. She lived in the same house, raised her children there, saw most of her family precede her in death while living there, and never seemed to be able to leave the house more than a few hours at a time. Whenever we took her someplace, she was always anxious to return home. She died in that house.

My wife and I inherited the property. We remodeled the old house and moved into it. It was not long before we realized that Gladys was still living there with us. She spooked our dog constantly, and there were other indications that she was still hanging around.

Having never had experience with ghosts prior to this, we experimented. First we succeeded in banishing Gladys to the attic. Eventually she found her way back into the main part of the house again. This time she showed up with the spirits of a dead uncle and brother. Eventually we acquired help and had the entire crew of ghosts sent on into the light.