Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Phantom Limb Syndrome: Phantom Body Syndrome
Humor me. I enjoy giving ya’all something to think about in the field of ghost hunting. I don’t think any knowledge is ever irrelevant and in the scheme of things, the more knowledge, the wider variety, the more it fits together. Here’s today’s point to ponder (and don’t be surprised if I leave you up in the air to think about it):
There’s a condition called “phantom limb syndrome” in which an amputee still feels the limb as if it were there, feels as if it’s moving, feels pain in it. This is believed to be the brain still receiving messages from the nerves that would carry impulses from the missing limb. If a person’s body still believes it extends beyond where it actually extends following surgery, it is because the mind and the nerves have not had time to catch up with this change. We use the term “phantom limb” in lots of ways in conversations and the concept is understood even to those who are not amputees. Mothers often report something similar following giving birth. People even report it after having an eye eviscerated or a breast removed in a mastectomy.
Next, imagine your day as it plays out right now. You’re half here, half in the future. You’re considering tomorrow and the next day, shoes laid out for the morning, vitamin container on the counter to remind you to stick to your new health regimen. You’re daydreaming about taking time off work to go fishing in two weeks, you’re considering how you’ll answer your boss when he approaches you tomorrow about a new task. There is a phantom part of you, your intention. It extends beyond you and into the next few minutes, the next hour, the next week, the next year. When a person’s life is cut short, where does that intention go, that forward thrust that has nothing to do with the physical limitations of your body and a lot to do with your purpose?
So, what does phantom limb syndrome have to do with phantom bodies?
Many people in the ghost hunting industry repeat the mantra “he haunts the place because he doesn’t know he’s dead.” Putting aside the concept of whether heaven would allow stragglers, let’s look at that concept more closely. Are they actually saying that this person died but their consciousness believes they still possess body?
Do they have a phantom body syndrome?
at 6:09 PM