The Instigator
squarepeg
Pro (for)
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The Contender
NOTRANSENXD
Con (against)
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Hauntings are objectively real, but ghosts are not!

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/2/2016 Category: Science
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 495 times Debate No: 87518
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (12)
Votes (0)

 

squarepeg

Pro

We assert:
The trigger and mechanism that result in the subjective experience (traditionally labeled "ghosts and haunting phenomenon") are objectively real, require only three elements to produce the target phenomenon (a haunting), and will affect specific genotypes (MAOA gene variants) diversely and according to types. Con-specific markers, resulting from human biological contamination of the environment, activate "high affinity" (TAAR) receptors, long before conscious awareness occurs, if ever. This triggers an innate survival / anti"predator adaptation, which manifests as a physiological, psychological, perceptual, and behavioral cascade, that results in the pre-conditioned subjective experience for a suitably sensitive individual. In groups, this predictably results in "contagion," which through language, chemical broadcasting, imprinting, re-imprinting, mirror-neural processes, and behavioral cues, "infects" others in a group, who fail to detect the trigger or lack the ability, thus providing a group-survival benefit.
NOTRANSENXD

Con

Ghosts are real because Einstein's law as of energy says that matter can not be destroyed nor created. Ghosts are basically the astral body that was once inside a physical body which the ghost (the astral projection of the astral body) does not occupy his physical body anymore. Plus Robert Lanza theory of Biocentrism says death doesn't exist in any real scenario! According to ghost hunters, ghosts stay around for "unfinished business." Obviously they stay in clothes for a sense of mortality and not feel so forlorn or the sense of feeling like an anachronism. Crossing over is a term used for when they go in the world where everyone else that's not a ghost goes, and the idea of lingering energy is an absolute FACT! The same amount of energy has been on this earth ever since it existed. Once someone dies their energy goes somewhere and that's when ghosts are created. I personally believe if the dead thing doesn't create a ghost, the energy will go into another being not born. And the picture thing, I understand that there is technology now and we are capable of doing those things but how do you explain the pictures taken before computers? Streaks? Maybe some, but the ones that resemble a human face EXACTLY? And 1 more point that needs to be argued, so let's say you just got married and are looking for a place to live in 1897, you find a house and love it. It seems to have something odd about it, strange things are happening. You see something: a shadow, you swear it was human figure. How are you going to tell the people in your small town?
Debate Round No. 1
squarepeg

Pro

I have challenged you with an assertion, but you have failed to address even a single point of that assertion. Furthermore, both science and the skeptics have already destroyed all of these arguments. So, while you are trying to find something to which you can respond...

I will continue... While researching The Haunted Vaults of Edinburgh, Scotland, Robert Wiseman (et. al.) clearly demonstrated that his own hypothesis (regarding ambient light, room size, etc.) was not supported, but that individuals without prior knowledge were indeed able to correctly determine (beyond chance), which vaults were historically considered haunted. This clearly demonstrated that an environmental element, undetected by the researchers, was present and being sensed by some individuals. Furthermore, Wiseman, and many skeptics before him, completely ruled out four of the five primary external sensory modalities as likely mechanisms, as well as any detectable pattern of energy. All that remains is matter.

The only sense that was not, and had never been, ruled out was chemo-detection. This particular modality had been the most probable because it is our most ancient sense (cranial nerve one), was once (before we evolved into primates) its own brain (rine encephalon), is the only sensory organ/apparatus that comes in direct contact with the thing it senses, works both near and far, through apparently solid objects, and has incredible longevity, and is always on. It also works primarily below conscious awareness, and it (chemo-detection) remains the primary form of communication in nature, and particularly with those creature with which we share a common ancestor dating back over 300,000,000 years (C. Elegance). However, what was most compelling to us was that it represents the largest single gene group in the human genome (345 active) dwarfing the amount needed for neurotransmitter function (15).

However, there was a problem. According to a century of scientific dogma, a human beings entire olfactory pallet was thought to be in the area of around 10,000 scents (Neither we nor anyone else have been able to find the research to support this assertion). After going over countless research papers, believers stories, skeptics arguments, etc., we predicted that the 10,000-scent assertion, was not only incorrect, it was wrong by orders of magnitude. It turned out that we were correct.

Shepherd GM (2004) The Human Sense of Smell: Are We Better Than We Think? PLoS Biol 2(5): e146. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0020146

Bushdid, et. al., 2014 - "Humans Can Discriminate More than 1 Trillion Olfactory Stimuli" http://www.sciencemag.org...

The point everyone had missed all along was that we did not evolve into our current species (homo sapiens) in the civilized world, but in the natural world. This was a major revelation, as we realized that the confusion over hauntings (and many other things) was likely a contextual issue, and could only be understood in terms of its original context. As soon as we changed the context to the natural world, and the background to a cave, things instantly began to become clear.
NOTRANSENXD

Con

The premise that the dead remain with us on some plane has been in existence since man has been in on earth. Depending on culture and religion, explanations for ghost are many; unresolved issues, failure to accept death, revenge, and it's even seen as a purgatory for an imperfect life, to name a few. What is really is occurring with ghosts can be explained if we look at people that are/were dependant on nature, animal behavior and physics.It is true ghostly presence is not felt by everyone. It's often attributed to some sort of sensitivity. Some claim ESP, others hypothesize individuals have hypersensitive limbic systems; or are environmentally sensitive [1]. But take a look at the animal kingdom. Animals are intuitively are aware of impending natural disasters, tsunamis, earth quakes and the like. Animals escape to safety before a disaster occurs; their sensitivity cannot be detected by laboratory instruments. Evolution has made them super sensitive which has allowed them to survive [2, 3]. We are animals as well who once lived in the wild as hunter gatherers, also in tune with nature. Since we have become civilized we dismiss or ignore our natural intuition. Shamans across cultures have had an understanding of this natural sensitivity and have used it for their peoples' benefit.Has the hair on the back of your neck ever suddenly raised, or a chill come across you in a warm room? Einstein's theory states energy cannot be created nor destroyed. Yes, when buried we revert to chemical energy for soil and plant life; but what about the electromagnetic energy we emit? Dr Jack Sarfatti has a quantifiable mathematical theory that man is in connection with the environment and can send and receive energy signals. His Super string theory states that electrons, neutron and protons are composed of vibrating strings that resonate. It bundles with, and interconnects to our surroundings. It moves freely through objects and does not adhere to the laws of gravity. It creates an interpsychic dimension. People who share similar vibratory resonance (same energy wave link so to speak) are likely to be our friends, those who don't a foe or something in-between [4]. It explains how sometimes a normally friendly dog will turn on an individual for no apparent reason. Take this theory and apply it to how animals behave with impending natural dangers. Everything around us has resonance, even the Earth itself. Once it is emitted it, it is out of our body but remains as energy. Ghosts are resonant energy. Only those who match their resonant frequency can see or feel their presence. All the ghosts of people and animals who have ever lived are here, it's a matter of matching resonances or how a ghost"s resonance has bundled with other things that emit similar electromagnetic energy in the environment.

http://disinfo.com......

http://www.washingtonpost.com......

http://news.nationalgeographic.com......

http://www.journaloftheoretics.com......

http://www.particleadventure.org......

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu......

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu......

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu......
Debate Round No. 2
squarepeg

Pro

Yes, and that sensitivity is in the area of chemo-detection, as is evident in the following excerpts: "That Which Remains," (Linder, McGill, et. al., 2014)

"In his book "Are You Getting Enlightened or Losing Your Mind" (Gersten, 1997), Dennis Gersten, M.D., recounts a story told by a friend, and "psychic," Shama Smith, who has been a "psychic consultant" for the FBI, and various California Law Enforcement Agencies. Here is a perfect example of how "The Mythological Box" skews the perspective of a highly educated individual with an advanced degree in Psychiatric Medicine, resulting in a completely illogical conclusion. Below, we have two brief excerpts from the book in which, Smith is relating some bad news about her new residence to her husband. Pay particular attention to how she unknowingly describes our trigger and the mechanism.

"When my husband, Cass, and I moved into a house in Southern California, I was standing in the kitchen the first day and said to him, 'Honey, the house is haunted.' He said, 'Oh no, please don't tell me that.' I replied, 'It is and I know it is.' 'Well how do you know it is?' he asked. 'Well, number one, I can smell it and number two I can feel a presence around me here." Dennis Gersten: " " According to her, sometimes if there's been a grotesque death on the premises, the house will smell, no matter how much cleaning you do. She knew she was smelling or perceiving an odor from another realm, something that would definitely be called "crazy" by most psychiatrists."

The Other Realm

Our somewhat mundane explanation of Dr. Gersten"s conclusion is that "the other realm," of which he speaks is the microscopic realm of conspecific volatile organic compounds, trapped on and within the material substrate and cellulose matrix of the building materials, wafting out under favorable conditions and being detected by a sensitive individual, who then through contagion spreads the information. Otherwise, we could not agree more with their assertions. Here all three elements are present and working just as they should, and just as they always have. We also have a good example of how contagion works as she uses her heightened sensitivity to receive the alarm trigger, and then notifies her husband, who is clearly unable to consciously detect it.

When you hear hoof-beats, think horses first, not zebra! So far, nothing you have said has directly addressed any new points that we have made in a very old argument. Unfortunately, none of those hypotheses (including so-called string theory) are testable, and consequently represent a path that leads nowhere."

Allow me to continue: "That Which Remains," (Linder, McGill, et. al., 2014)

"In our own area of expertise, "air sniffing," Leavers, perform at least as well as a dog, and better than a rat (Shepherd, 2004). Human beings also have unprecedented polymorphic diversity in our olfactory sensory ability, and research suggests a minimum divergence of 14% between any two individual"s olfactory palettes (Zhang, 2007). As human beings evolved in social groups, this affords us with an enormous spectrum of odors that we can collectively detect. (> 1,000,000,000)

According to declassified CIA documents, the amount of aerosolized material required for human detection of specific compounds (not associated with high affinity receptors) is minuscule, and on-the-order-of a millionth-of-a-millionth of a gram in a liter of air, which is comparable to a dog"s air sniffing ability (Tebrich, 1993). Isoamyl mercaptan, in extremely low concentrations, has a garlic/green onion scent and flavor, can be detected in at levels as low as .77 parts per trillion. Other research focused on unconscious detection thresholds, suggest they are significantly lower still. One study (Nagata, Takeuchi, 1990) found that the concentration required for shifting our attention to one compound, ethyl mercaptan (used as an odorant for propane gas), requires concentration levels 57,000 times greater than needed for detection.

Now let's see what the subjective feeling of being in a haunted place looks like in a cave:

"About an hour before sunset, your scouting team finds a large cave, but the hunters know, in their world, nothing goes to waste and unoccupied caves are rare, and at best short-lived. The team cautiously enters with only the flickering glow from a single torch to light their way, but the cavern is deep, and the dim light fades beyond view into darkness. As you continue into the depths, a general sense of uneasiness overtakes you, as if the cave itself does not want you there.

The further you go the warmer and more humid it becomes, making the air feel thick and heavy. As if on cue, the hunters stop, sniff, look at each other knowingly, and all begin listening intently. However, the faint echo of dripping water, and the mournful whispers of the wind, which sound like voices murmuring in the distance, are all you can hear. As you continue, you realize the air has become foul, and you make eye contact with your youngest companion. He sniffs the air again, furrows his brow, and he raises both hands with fingers hooked like claws, creating a distinctly ferocious, cat-like appearance. However, completely undaunted, he turns and continues following his mentors deeper into the predator"s lair.

Against all better judgment, you continue following, and eventually the team works their way into a large chamber, where you become aware of a very faint, almost sickeningly sweet odor, different from the obvious animal stench. Not unlike the scent of rotting flowers, you think. Suddenly, and for no apparent reason, the cave seems to take on a sinister aspect, and an ominous sense of dread and foreboding overtakes you. You begin to feel nauseous, as a cold chill runs down your spine, and all the hairs on your body stand on end.

The dank stench hovering in the chamber finally registers, and though you have never been in one before, you inexplicably whisper to yourself, "This is a crypt." You try to dismiss it as your imagination, but the growing, ominous sense of presence all around you is so real, so overwhelming, that you are on the verge of running for your life, and stopping only when you cannot go on. Your pulse and respiration have tripled, and with each step, a sense of imminent, mortal danger grows inside you. Your hands shake from the adrenaline coursing through your veins, and cold sweat now covers your entire body and drips from your brow. Still, you hesitate to alert your companions, who seem completely oblivious to your travail and might consider you a coward or fool.

You strain to peer beyond the torchlight, and you are certain that you see malevolent shadow-figures lurking in the darkness just beyond sight, watching and waiting for you. The moaning wind has faded to silence; your heart is pounding beneath your breast like a bass drum, and every sound in the chamber echoes off the limestone walls like thunder.

From out of the darkness, something screeches in your ear as it flies by your head. Startled, you gasp and reflexively duck and cover, as it passes and flutters out of sight. Finally, with one hand on your chest to prevent your heart from bursting through your rib cage, your courage finally fails, and after taking several long slow breaths ending in a deep resigned sigh, you stand and reluctantly draw the attention of the hunters to inform them of your plight..."

Don't you think it odd that everything we find in a haunted house, that is, things that are innately frieghtening to us (corpses, skeletons, bats, black cats, spiders, etc.) came from a cave? Below, please find the one thing that no other competing theory has that meets all the criteria to be considered the true trigger for a haunting, the evidence of it's validity!

Wisman A, Shrira I. The smell of death: evidence that putrescine elicits threat management mechanisms. Frontiers in Psychology. 2015;6:1274. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01274.
NOTRANSENXD

Con

u stink none of your arguments are real, they all have fake addresses u stink!!!!!JK.Ghost are real! A. For the argument that ghost shouldn't wear clothes? That's bologna. According to ghost hunters, ghosts stay around for "unfinished business." Obviously they stay in clothes for a sense of mortality and not feel so forlorn or the sense of feeling like an anachronism. Crossing over is a term used for when they go in the world where everyone else that's not a ghost goes, and the idea of lingering energy is an absolute FACT! The same amount of energy has been on this earth ever since it existed. Once someone dies their energy goes somewhere and that's when ghosts are created. I personally believe if the dead thing doesn't create a ghost, the energy will go into another being not born. And the picture thing, I understand that there is technology now and we are capable of doing those things but how do you explain the pictures taken before computers? Streaks? Maybe some, but the ones that resemble a human face EXACTLY? And 1 more point that needs to be argued, so let's say you just got married and are looking for a place to live in 1897, you find a house and love it. It seems to have something odd about it, strange things are happening. You see something: a shadow, you swear it was human figure. How are you going to tell the people in your small town? How is this news going to spread WORLD WIDE without any technology? Tell me how this idea spread through THROUGH THE WHOLE WORLD?! There, those are my points. There are so many people in the world who have claimed to have otherworldly encounters. True, some of them may just be claiming so to receive attention, but the majority of these people should not be overlooked. There are so many things in the world that we do not understand or cannot explain, we should not say that ghosts are not real.I heard from my cousins that lived in Texas say that there was the story about some kids on a bus getting hit by a train. They told me that if you drove over the tracks and turn your vehicle off the car would be pushed off the tracks. Forgot where at but they closed the place from entrance now. But for some people they have to see it to believe it which isn't bad but it's good to keep an open mind to things for we aren't the only living thing in this universe or world. Besides how can you prove you seen something if no one believes you whether recorded or takened photos. Some people wanna see it with their eyes but to me that would be bad if I ended up dead or if alive thought as crazy if told someone. So we really shouldn't scratch anything off even if seen as fake. Anything seems possible for this world seems like or as the saying goes "Ignorance is bliss"
Debate Round No. 3
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by squarepeg 1 year ago
squarepeg
Infrasound has the same characteristics of audible bass, which means it is Omni-directional, propagates through solid objects, and is almost impossible to isolate. Infrasound won't follow you out of the haunted environment and into another one, but chemical contamination will. Infrasound will also not produce a foul odor, or the scent of flowers or roses, as is often described as a recurrent feature of a haunting, but putrescine, skatole, cadaverine, etc. will, in dilute concentrations. Also, the infrasound would have to be caused by both natural and man-made sources at a very specific frequency to work, which seems very unlikely to account for all but very few hauntings. Nope, it's just too general in effect/affect and too specific in requirements. All we require is a death event, human artifacts, or remains, a sensitive observer, and a place for them to interact, to make this work. All three are almost invariably present in all independently verified hauntings (haunting detected without prior knowledge). Oh, it is also known that exposure to some of the over 400 compounds produce during human decomposition results in the brain producing either or both amphetamine and hallucinogenic analogs, depending on genotype. We never got to this point in the debate, but cover it in our book.

I have enjoyed our interactions and would be interested in debating you on this subject if you are interested. It would be good to test our metal against someone who is capable of more than parroting.
Posted by zookdook1 1 year ago
zookdook1
Unfortunately I am unable to vote. However, I would award all points to Pro in this case due to con copy-pasting his second argument (The same argument, word for word, LINK FOR LINK, has been used against me before) and failing to maintain good grammar and conduct. He also failed to make any refutements.

TL;DR I can't vote but if I could I would award allpoints to Pro.
Posted by zookdook1 1 year ago
zookdook1
Infrasound has been known to cause auditory and visual hallucinations and can usually adequately explain the majority of ghost 'Sightings'. Well, that's what I've found, anyway.
Posted by squarepeg 1 year ago
squarepeg
On infrasound: It has long been known that certain sounds can trigger an emotional response for some individuals. A beautiful, or whimsical melody can lighten your heart, while some flat or low notes can elicit fear and even the feeling of an ominous presence. This certainly might explain some small fraction of so-called haunting phenomena, where infrasound is present and the location is general (Wiseman, Tandy, etc.). However, the problem with infrasound (sound from (.001Hz - 20Hz)) is that it readily passes right through solid objects, can cause those objects to resonate in audible frequencies, and will travel great distances. There is simply no way to contain infrasound with sufficient energy to cause the psycho-physiological affect, to a single object, room, or even a single structure. In the final analysis, although infrasound may certainly be related to some cases, it cannot explain the majority of hauntings, which tend to be rather specific.
Posted by squarepeg 1 year ago
squarepeg
Thanks to Zoodook 1 for sparing us the effort of having to refute the same tired old arguments, which have not and cannot go anywhere as they are all framed within the same perceptual and cognitive box. The only thing that we would add, is in the area of photography. Virtually all "ghost photos" fall into only categories, fraud, and operator error. There is not a single ghost photo in existence that I could not easily reproduce using exactly the same equipment originally used. When I started out as an aspiring photographer some decades ago, I was undoubtedly the most prolific ghost photographer ever, as I always shot in low light and with long exposures. Of course, in the event that I needed a well-lit shot, I would use a flash, and when anything reflective is in frame you get orbs and lens flare. If people could only understand that every pro photographer has literally taken thousand of these useless shots, they would understand how silly such assertions are. In any case, thanks.
Posted by zookdook1 1 year ago
zookdook1
I would be happy to debate Con on the existence of ghosts.
Posted by zookdook1 1 year ago
zookdook1
"Crossing over is a term used for when they go in the world where everyone else that's not a ghost goes, and the idea of lingering energy is an absolute FACT!"

Lingering energy is in no way 'FACT!'. Mostly because energy is just transferred, eg chemical energy is transferred to heat energy and, amusingly, more chemical energy in bacteria.

"The same amount of energy has been on this earth ever since it existed.

This is instantaneously false. The Earth is an open system, it receives energy from the sun and loses it through radiation. It gains matter through comets and loses it through outgassing.

" Once someone dies their energy goes somewhere and that's when ghosts are created."

Let me amend that for you: 'Once someone dies their energy goes somewhere and that's what decomposition is'.

" I personally believe if the dead thing doesn't create a ghost, the energy will go into another being not born."

Awesome, believe that. Unfortunately, there's no evidence for your belief and as such it can be dismissed.

" And the picture thing, I understand that there is technology now and we are capable of doing those things but how do you explain the pictures taken before computers?"

Damaged film.

" Streaks? Maybe some, but the ones that resemble a human face EXACTLY?"

Damaged film. And filming over already-used-film.

" And 1 more point that needs to be argued, so let's say you just got married and are looking for a place to live in 1897, you find a house and love it. It seems to have something odd about it, strange things are happening. You see something: a shadow, you swear it was human figure. How are you going to tell the people in your small town?"

Irrelevant. It's not a ghost, either you're high, insane, drunk, or a combination of all three. Also infrasound.
Posted by zookdook1 1 year ago
zookdook1
Con is using a few common and easily refutable arguments.

"Ghosts are real because Einstein's law as of energy says that matter can not be destroyed nor created."

Correct, however, the energy of the body is only stored as chemical energy which is broken down in the form of decomposition.

" Ghosts are basically the astral body that was once inside a physical body which the ghost (the astral projection of the astral body) does not occupy his physical body anymore."

No evidence for 'astral bodies'.

"Plus Robert Lanza theory of Biocentrism says death doesn't exist in any real scenario!"

That's not a theory it's a hypothesis and appears to be entirely unsupported.

" According to ghost hunters, ghosts stay around for "unfinished business.""

Ghost hunters are not scientists.

Cont in next comment. Crossing over is a term used for when they go in the world where everyone else that's not a ghost goes, and the idea of lingering energy is an absolute FACT! The same amount of energy has been on this earth ever since it existed. Once someone dies their energy goes somewhere and that's when ghosts are created. I personally believe if the dead thing doesn't create a ghost, the energy will go into another being not born. And the picture thing, I understand that there is technology now and we are capable of doing those things but how do you explain the pictures taken before computers? Streaks? Maybe some, but the ones that resemble a human face EXACTLY? And 1 more point that needs to be argued, so let's say you just got married and are looking for a place to live in 1897, you find a house and love it. It seems to have something odd about it, strange things are happening. You see something: a shadow, you swear it was human figure. How are you going to tell the people in your small town?
Posted by squarepeg 1 year ago
squarepeg
We did not say ghosts are real! Please read the title again.
Posted by squarepeg 1 year ago
squarepeg
We (Square-Peg Think-Tank ) are the source of this theory, and to our knowledge, we are the only group currently promoting it. However, the evidence of the essential points (trigger, mechanism, etc.) comes from a vast number of peer-reviewed research articles. The rest is either common knowledge, or easily verified. For which point do you require evidence of validity?
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