By: Paul S. Cilwa Viewed: 1/26/2021
Occurred: 7/15/1970
Posted: 2/15/2006
Topics/Keywords: #Metaphysics Page Views: 1327
Ghosts are real. Here's one I met.

My daughter, Karen, loves to watch these "reality" shows about ghost-hunting. In case you haven't seen one, they mostly take place in England, where a group of odd, but supposedly professional ghost hunters enters a haunted mansion with scientific-looking equipment and say things like, "A young girl died here of starvation," or "I sense a deranged man!" before degenerating into a series of screams as they run for the exits.

I suppose for people who are "afraid of ghosts" such shows help desensitize them to the subject. But as far as "reality" goes, I am afraid they are far removed—and not just because they carry "equipment" apparently picked up from the local Ghostbusters.

There are several levels of ghostliness if you will. The shallowest level is merely a shadow of a tragic event, imposed upon space-time. Such a ghost is a loop, running over and over, like the apparitions you hear about of a woman falling downstairs. There is no intelligence to that kind of ghost, same as there's no intelligence in one's shadow.

At deeper levels, some ghosts really are the spirits of people who don't understand their own condition—they may not understand they have died, or may have refused to "go to the light" for whatever reason; may even have insisted on staying for revenge or devotion or babysitting or whatever. These entities do have intelligence, but are confused; and we can help them if we will.

Here's a true story.

My friend Bill worked at a funeral home about two hours' drive from St. Augustine, Florida, where I lived. I had met Bill at Marguerite's "psychic lessons" at the Spiritualist camp in Cassadaga, Florida. We became friends and he invited me to come visit him some time at his home in Lake Mary.

When I did, he took me to work with him. The place wasn't officially open so early; only he and I and Bill's boss were there, and Bill's boss needed to have a meeting with Bill. So they closed the office door, leaving me to wander the funeral parlor by myself.

I walked the halls, and when I came to a dead end (yes, the hall ended abruptly, like in one of those "ghost houses" you read about) and had the "feeling" someone besides me was there, instead of ignoring it I decided to go with it. I couldn't see anyone there. But I could imagine what the person might have looked like, if I had been able to see him. And it was just a game I was playing with myself, right? So, no harm in playing…

"Hi," I said. "I'm Paul. How's it going?" Since I was alone, I didn't have to worry about making a fool of myself, which, at 19 years of age, was an overriding concern of mine.

"I'm Larry," I imagined the invisible person to say. He also gave a last name, and added, "I'm not sure—but I think I might be, well, dead." There was no sadness in his words, but there was puzzlement.

"What was your first hint?" I asked, lightly. "The coffins, the flowers, or the fact you haven't needed to eat since you got here?"

He ignored my sarcasm—in my imagination, remember—and continued, "I thought God was supposed to come and judge me when I died. I don't know how long I have to wait for that."

"Maybe you should let go of whatever you thought was supposed to happen," I advised, "and just experience whatever does happen."

In that instance, I sensed his willingness to try, and two flashes of visible light came down from (or through) the ceiling, one on either side of him, then guided him back up and away. I had been imagining him, I thought, but I had not imagined the lights. They had cast shadows.

Were they angels? Or something that would pass as such?

I hurried back to the office. The door was now open, so I asked Bill's boss if they had by any chance buried someone in the past few days with Larry's name. My heart pounded as the boss looked in a Rolodex and gave me the answer: Yes, three days before. Why?

I described my experience. Neither Bill nor his boss seemed surprised. But they'd spent a lot more time in funeral parlors than I.

I think we encounter "ghosts" far more often than we suppose. Because the experiences are less dramatic than in the movies or TV, we tend to ignore them. But real-life people trapped in ghost-hood need help. And sometimes a well-timed word or two is all it takes to help them free themselves.

Even if you think you're imagining it.