by Karen Frazier

There's a common belief about ghosts and hauntings I feel is a total misconception. Many people believe any spirit haunting a location must be a trapped soul. I disagree. 

If ghosts are merely a continuation of the soul energy that inhabits our body during physical life, then surely the same principles we experienced in life carry on after our death. Specifically, I'm talking about free will. As humans, we have free will throughout our lives, and our experiences as living entities are always directed by the choices we make. Even when events occur that don't seem like free will (natural disasters, choices made by another, etc.), we can control our experience by choosing how we respond mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. I absolutely believe it is the same for spirit energy that remains after we die.

If souls have free will, why would they stick around? I can think of a number of reasons just off the top of my head. In truth, there are probably as many reasons as their are spirits that remain earthbound. Here are just a few:
  • Attachment to loved ones
  • Attachment to objects or property 
  • The desire to remain and protect loved ones or property
  • The feeling there is unfinished business
  • The fear that something they did in life was so awful that Hell awaits
  • Fear of the unknown
This is, of course, speculation. We can't know what happens after we die until we die. Since nobody survives physical death, it's pretty difficult to gather data. 

Research into phenomena such as near-death experiences, medium-based spirit communication, past life regression, and life between lives regression, however, seems to point to what I am saying. To wit - our souls continue after we die. These souls retain memory of the lives they have lived and use the experiences in those lives to progress spiritually. To a great extent, souls retain personality traits and an overarching progression along a specific path. Sometimes, remaining in the earthly plane as a "ghost" or spirit is part of that path, but free will always exists.

Results from the types of research I mentioned above have implications for anyone experiencing the paranormal. For instance, nobody can force a spirit to move on - it has to be that spirit's choice. However, communicating a spirit's options clearly to them may help them make the choice to move on when it is in the best interests of the soul to do so.

This is why no paranormal group can ever guarantee they can force a spirit out of a location. At SSPR, we may be able to help by communicating with the spirit and providing options that help him or her move on. Likewise, we can help home and business owners find ways to peacefully co-exist with any entities that may choose to remain.

If you'd like to view some of the research I've mentioned above, you may be interested in some of the following works.
  • Journey of Souls by Michael Newton, Ph.D.
  • Destiny of Souls by Michael Newton, Ph.D.
  • Many Lives, Many Masters by Dr. Brian Weiss
  • Life After Life: The Investigation of a Phenomenon - Survival of Bodily Death by Raymond Moody
  • Near-Death Experiences - The Rest of the Story by P.M.H. Atwater
  • Proof of Heaven - A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife by Eben Alexander, M.D.
  • Science and Near-Death Experience: How Consciousness Survives Death by Chris Carter
  • The Afterlife Experiments by Gary E. Schwartz