Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Why Are Lighthouses Haunted?
As a kid, our summer home was on a quiet inlet of the Chesapeake Bay. My favorite place to visit was a tiny rock island where an abandoned lighthouse sat. There, I heard footsteps, saw shadows blocking out light, and heard a muffled chuckling voice and smelled pipe tobacco. It began me wondering about haunted lighthouses, but it wasn't until I was older and studying ghostly phenomena that it came to me, the set of circumstances that seemed to contribute to the large ratio of haunted lighthouses.
Location: Lighthouses are located beside moving water. There is something about this element that seems to be present in a lot of haunted locales.
Construction: These circular stone fortresses were built to handle strong winds and the elements and remain standing to shed light for passing ships. The spiral staircases and rounded walls seem to create an interesting vortex of energy, spinning, and not dissipating.
Power: The power used to run a lighthouse in a narrow spiral building might be helping to "imprint" residual memories into a building.
Routine: A lighthouse keeper would have to regularly daily climb the stairs, monitor the light,and complete a repetitive routine that might make it possible to lay down a residual "footsteps" memory in the structure.
Isolation: As someone who studies the paranormal, I have found that noisy downtown city locations are nearly impossible to discern hauntings within, but give me a building that is isolated from others and I can hear, see, and notice changes that are not excused by outside influences. Perhaps it isn't that lighthouses are more haunted, but by virtue of their isolation, they are easier to notice a haunting within.
History: Lighthouses are not without their tragedy, either to the lighthouse keeper and his family or those who have crashed upon the shores and sank. Sometimes, even the loneliness of attending a lighthouse could make one a bit "off" emotionally and create a tragic personality that might remain residing within, attempting to continue a duty that was the major focus of the person's existence.
There are romantic elements about lighthouses that make them seem as if they should be haunted. The concept of a lone lighthouse keeper inside the isolated building, shedding light for sailors on the dark seas makes for a scenario we would assume should result in a haunting.
What are your thoughts on why so many lighthouses are haunted?