Ghosts and the belief in and sightings of ghosts have been happening since the beginning of time.
A ghost is the spirit (some say “soul”) of a deceased person (or animal) that appears to living humans in a recognizable form. These “visions” usually occur in places that were familiar to and frequented by the deceased; their place of birth, death, or where they lived most of their earthly life. Sometimes ghosts are also associated with the deceased person’s earthly possessions.
Today the entity that is known to Christians as the “Holy Spirit” was referred to as the “Holy Ghost” in earlier times. About 32% of all Americans believe in the existence of ghosts.
Some cultures have depicted ghosts of the departed returning in a symbolic form or an animal or a bird. But generally most cultures believe that the ghost of the departed is an exact duplication of the person as they appeared in life.
Ghosts are usually believed to be composed of an airy or misty substance. It’s believed that this conception of how a ghost looks comes from ancient cultures who believed that ghosts were actually a person within a person and that the ghost existed in the breath of the host human. The word “breath” has also come to mean “soul” in many cultures.
Ghosts are deeply rooted in the history of all cultures. Some believe that ghosts are looking for vengeance for wrongs done to them during their lifetimes. Others believe that ghosts are spirits that are imprisoned on earth because of bad things that they did during their human lifetime. Still others believe that ghosts are “good” spirits and have returned to earth to guard and protect their ancestors.
Stories of ghosts date back to ancient times and are rooted in mythology.