The Haunting of Bly Manor is a Netflix series where the basic premise of the ghost is someone who has trapped herself in a desire for leaving her material possession zealously to her child and when unable to do so continues in that quest after her death. And that quest continues to an extent that even though with passage of time, the identity of that person is being completely lost (her face) to her and everyone and the reason / drive for the desire is being lost to her… she continues to act as the ghost – like a programmed robot…
And it had me thinking – many of us program ourselves like this – directing our lives for some purpose – be it for a relationship, materialistic goal or a social role recognition. The journey to that finishing line is invariably far away enough that with time we really forget the aspirational feelings that we actually yearned for when we began. Through the journey we change so much that we really may not need that thing. But because we have defined our existence with that thing – we are unable to rationalize and let go. We perceive & analyze constantly our satisfaction in that pursuit… telling ourselves, reinforcing the need without reason.
And god forbid if we do not get it, we become trapped in depression & mental disorder’s. As a ghost of the identity we really are. A ghost because we turn ourselves into something we did not fathom being at the beginning. Forgetting really why we wanted what we are wanting and the people in our own little world not recognizing the entity we have become. All the while we trap ourselves in that desire for no conscious reason!
And by the way, if we were to get it – than instead of the exhilarating joys we may have imagined, the best we could possibly get is relief from a job completed. But most likely no feelings at all will be felt and in fact an utter sense of void and meaningless-ness comes through at that point.
In the Pixar movie – Soul – there is a small story narrated where the main protagonist does not feel the delight on achieving his desire. The lady who has already reached there tells him that there was once a fish who swims through lakes and rivers in desire to experience the vast ocean. When the fish actually reaches the ocean, it asks another fish where he ocean is. On being told that the fish is already in the ocean, the fish cannot understand. For to the fish, it is still water… the ocean to it was supposed to feel something else, something different – which now the fish cannot explain or understand or imagine any more.
The Hindi movie Bhul Bulaiyaa shows how a person who is supposedly possessed by a ghost – is nothing but someone taking up a heard story as an alter ego to such a sub-conscious level that she starts believing it to be herself – because of a childhood trauma. Again, how we can trap ourselves in to believing something we want to for our own desires (even if unconscious ones).
Science does not believe in ghost’s. There is no scientific evidence of ghosts being real. In Science they are a product of one’s imagination; a figment of creativity of our sub-conscious mind. A progeny of the darkest fears in our mind made up of materials we have gathered unknowingly or knowingly through our lives. Even the rituals to get rid of them hence are not based in science at all – but in faith. Animistic traditions or tantric rituals or religious totems are used to exorcise ghosts.
Basically – anything to do with ghosts is unscientific and reeks of some weakness and depravity of the intellectual mind – and rational mind is the hall mark definition of our species. To believe in ghosts is hence to be a lesser human. Devoid of reality!
And I too do not believe in ghosts as a paranormal entity. But they are real – because anything we want to believe in, is a reality. All of us live in our own make believe world. All of us can create our own ghosts within ourselves! And many of us do.
We all can kill the essence of the person of who we are. And whilst our bodies can continue to represent the pale version of our earlier being that can appear to other people as if we are the same person alive – but once we are possessed by our desires, we become ghosts. Cambridge dictionary defines ghosts as the spirit of a dead person, sometimes represented as a pale, almost transparent image of that person that some people believe appears to people who are alive…