Every Halloween, children dress up and walk around their neighborhoods asking for candies. Some choose to pretend to be skeletons walking the night. Others dress up as favorite cartoon characters. Others still opt for a classic costume and drape a white sheet over their head and haunt the 'hood as a ghost.
But, while most people would laugh off the idea of cartoon characters and bare skeletons walking around in the real world, the same cannot be said about ghosts. Many people believe that ghosts are a real phenomenon.
Plenty of people claim they’ve seen a ghost or experienced them in some way or another. Since at least the first century A.D., people across the world from the Roman Empire to the early days of the United States have written and talked about their experiences with the afterlife and ghosts. It can make for exciting debates. For instance, a considerable portion of this reporter’s family claims to have seen a ghost. They say they’ve seen them watching television late at night or roaming around the halls of the house.
If you asked a reputable scientist, however, they would likely be quick to point out that nobody has found any scientific indicator to believe that ghosts haunt our old hotels or the dark woods you’re telling ghost stories in.
Ghost believers tend to point to Albert Einstein, who once said there may be scientific evidence of some form of a ghost, noting that the law of conservation of energy states that energy is never created or destroyed and instead takes different forms. So, the reasoning goes, something would theoretically have to happen to your body’s energy once you die. But — sorry to be a buzzkill — the energy doesn’t likely turn into ghosts: If our bodies are cremated, the energy is released in the form of heat or, if the body remains in-tact, it decomposes at the hands of bacteria or other living creatures, transferring the energy to them.
It's true that popular television shows like to make it seem like you can scientifically find ghosts in the creepy basement your five-year-old nephew is afraid of. In shows like “Ghost Hunters,” show hosts wander around with gadgets like Geiger counters, electromagnetic field detectors, ion detectors, infrared cameras and sensitive microphones, none of which have scientifically yielded evidence of ghosts to date.