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What Is a Ghost, Anyway?

But just what is a ghost? Are ghosts more than someone covered in a white sheet at Halloween?

 What Is a Ghost, Anyway?

By Sherry Bowen, Cricket Media

Before people could even read and write, they believed in ghosts. Many thousands of years ago, early humans painted pictures inside caves. The pictures showed shadowy figures in the form of people and animals that interacted with daily life. We know from ancient times that spirits of the dead were worshiped in religious ceremonies.

But just what is a ghost? Are ghosts more than someone covered in a white sheet at Halloween?

One definition says that a ghost is the energy of a person or animal caught between this life and the next. Usually, the person or animal had a traumatic “departure” from life. Perhaps he or she was killed or had a terrible accident. Because the end of life was sudden, the ghost is confused or not quite ready to leave.

People who say that they have experienced ghosts describe it in many ways. Some people say they have seen an apparition—almost like a dream. Some people say they hear ghostly voices or knocking sounds. Sometimes, a ghost is associated with certain smells. Some people say they have been physically touched by a ghost. There are even times when ghosts are just “sensed.”

If you believe in ghosts, you’re not alone. If you mention the word ghost to people, you’ll get many different responses: excitement, laughter, anger, disbelief, and sometimes embarrassment. It all depends.

What do you think?


Poltergeists are “noisy ghosts.” When you hear mysterious knockings, or a fire starts for no reason, or a glass on a table moves on its own, people say there’s a poltergeist around.

A spirit is a nasty being that is usually bodiless but can become visible. Spirits can take over, or possess, a human being.

A shade is the spirit or ghost of someone who is dead.

An apparition is a ghostly figure.

A haunting is an event that happens over and over again. In a haunted house, for example, you might think you hear the same footsteps every night at midnight.




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Kids Magazine: What Is a Ghost, Anyway?
What Is a Ghost, Anyway?
But just what is a ghost? Are ghosts more than someone covered in a white sheet at Halloween?
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Kids Magazine
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