• SUPPORT THE SHOW AND ENJOY A PREMIUM PARACAST EXPERIENCE! Welcome to The Paracast+! For a low subscription fee, you will receive access to an ad-free version of The Paracast, the exclusive After The Paracast podcast, featuring color commentary, exclusive interviews, plus show transcripts, the new Paracast+ Video Channel, Classic Episodes and Special Features categories! We now offer lifetime memberships! You can subscribe via this direct link:
    https://www.theparacast.com/plus/

    The Official Paracast Store is back! Check out our latest lineup of customized stuff at: The Official Paracast Store!

    Subscribe to The Paracast Newsletter!

Ghost Sickness


Polterwurst

Paranormal Adept
OK. I'd like to get you guys+gals's input on this, because I'm probably a bit biased in one direction.

What, if anything, do you think these people are suffering from and why should it be reported mainly in native american cultures? There's people all over the world who believe in the existence of spirits.

Ghost sickness - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

@Chris: as the expert, do all or most native americans grow up believing in spirits? Or are they too more or less naturally sceptical about it, like someone growing up in our "western materialist" environment? Could it be that this "ghost sickness" syndrome is triggered by an experience that convinces them that spirits are real?

EDIT: and yes, I have seen the "Supernatural" episode and it's of course totally misrepresenting the whole thing, as do the allegedly reality-based TV shows on ghosts etc. (which probably contain mostly just as much fiction)
 
Last edited:

Wade

FeralNormal master
OK. I'd like to get you guys+gals's input on this, because I'm probably a bit biased in one direction.

What, if anything, do you think these people are suffering from and why should it be reported mainly in native american cultures? There's people all over the world who believe in the existence of spirits.

Ghost sickness - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

@Chris: as the expert, do all or most native americans grow up believing in spirits? Or are they too more or less naturally sceptical about it, like someone growing up in our "western materialist" environment? Could it be that this "ghost sickness" syndrome is triggered by an experience that convinces them that spirits are real?

I think the first thing to be considered is possible cases of MPI

Mass psychogenic illness - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I have just started reading from Robert E. Bartholomew ' s "Little Green Men, Meowing Nuns and Head Hunting Panics". He has written a number of books on this issue and I think he would make a great guest in the paracast especially if we are in a sceptical mood. Although I don't know if Mr. Bartholomew has ever identified himself as a sceptical he has written for sceptical journals. @Christopher O'Brien if you read this , He also seems to have something to say on the cattle mutilation mystery but I haven't been able to find anything concrete. He has just name dropped it, I assume he doesn't deny it would exist the papers are filled with them, perhaps he thinks that is some cases is an urban legend situation, i haven't come across anything substantial other than a mention of him weighing in on Linda Moulton - Howe's book.
 

Polterwurst

Paranormal Adept
So "ghost sickness" victims are reacting to an imagined threat by spirits, like the MPI victims imagine a disease, epidemic etc.? But what's causing the bodily symptoms? Why the heck do we still know so little about the actual causes for things like the placebo effect, hysteria and this MPI, when they have been reported for decades...
Btw., do you think dancing mania still occurs or is this exclusive to historical times? That's always been totally strange and baffling to me.
 

Oakenwulf

Paranormal Maven
"The sickness is attributed to ghosts (chindi) or, occasionally, to witches or witchcraft"
- Looks like what some call " curse or hex" attirbute with MPI ( more politicaly correct)

exposed to the paranormal or occult phenomina could be similar in some cases acting like being exposed to radiation looking at types of "energy" being ommited from the entities and occurances causing the paranormal event. Being exposed to certain types of spirits or entities could have those effects. I know some field work I been on, I began to feel nauseaus with other symptoms as well as an example.. but if your refering to being exposed.. then later feeling effects away from the area, such as at home, moving shadows, objects, etc that werent there before.. I have had that and continue to have that too..( but I live with it w/o going insane)

"The sufferer may be mildly obsessed with death or a deceased person whom they believe to be the source of their affliction. Physical symptoms can include weakness and fatigue, diminished appetite, or other digestion problems. There may be dizziness or fainting, and sometimes even loss of consciousness. At times the sufferer might experience a sense of suffocation or the inability to breathe. Psychological symptoms may include nightmares or other sleep disturbances, anxiety, a sense of being in danger, hallucinations, and confusion. At some stages there can be feelings of despondency or depression."
- This never really experienced, but some clients have who are living with/ exposed to the energies while at the same home or place, not away.
 

Burnt State

Paranormal Adept
So "ghost sickness" victims are reacting to an imagined threat by spirits, like the MPI victims imagine a disease, epidemic etc.? But what's causing the bodily symptoms? Why the heck do we still know so little about the actual causes for things like the placebo effect, hysteria and this MPI, when they have been reported for decades...
Btw., do you think dancing mania still occurs or is this exclusive to historical times? That's always been totally strange and baffling to me.
By dancing mania do you mean St. Vitus' dance where consuming ergot gone bad in the rye produced some wild hallucinatory and physically related ailments?
 

Polterwurst

Paranormal Adept
By dancing mania do you mean St. Vitus' dance...
Mainly that and tarantism Dancing mania - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

...where consuming ergot gone bad in the rye produced some wild hallucinatory and physically related ailments?
The ergot poisoning explanation is not nearly as proven as your statement seems to imply. It doesn't really explain why these illnesses would spread like infectious diseases. If a handful of people ate the ergot, the others (often many dozens, sometimes hundreds of people) would have to have got their symptoms by mimicking the victims. I guess mass hysteria or MPI is a better way to explain them.

From my own experiences, I was feeling some specific physical symptoms when I was having my own unusual experiences in New Mexico.
I might have read them, but I'm afraid you'll have to refresh my memory. Did you describe them on the forums?

Julie Beischel of the Windbridge Institute says that the one thing psychic mediums have in common is a high probability of having psychosomatic illnesses. The percentage is considerably higher than in people who don't claim such a gift. So maybe you've got some abilty of your own? The question to me is, though, do they really inflict these on themselves?
 
Last edited:

Burnt State

Paranormal Adept
Mainly that and tarantism Dancing mania - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The ergot poisoning explanation is not nearly as proven as your statement seems to imply. It doesn't really explain why these illnesses would spread like infectious diseases. If a handful of people ate the ergot, the others (often many dozens, sometimes hundreds of people) would have to have got their symptoms by mimicking the victims. I guess mass hysteria or MPI is a better way to explain them.
Well, i was thinking that if Rye is in the bread, or better, in the Beer - the better standard than water of the times - then the spread of symptoms could be vast, and even make it from town to town, if booze travels, and it does.

But if you are looking for an infection than what about Sydenham Chorea as that seems to fit the bill for involuntary jerking? What's interesting about this is it has a higher rate of infection among younger girls and that fits some of the stories.

Still, i think the more interesting element is the history of tarantism, and the strange things we put in our heads about how to cure ourselves. The impact of mind to mind communal beliefs should never be underestimated.
 

Polterwurst

Paranormal Adept
Someone probably should open a thread about dancing mania and stuff, but I'd like to get back to the topic of Ghost Sickness, which probably has nothing to do whith ergot poisoning or bacteria. At least there are no muscular spasms and involuntary movements involved.

To be honest, I'm wondering if I might have something like that myself.

I've been having a chronic condition for about ten years, which is exactly the time span I've been seriously researching stuff like ghosts etc. because I think I've had proof for the "survival of consciousness".

It's nothing to worry about, just very unpleasant at times. After having had surgery twice, the doctors can't say why it doesn't heal. One of them has resorted to the possibility that it's psychosomatic, in other words, I myself am (or rather my body is) not allowing it to do so, because of psychological stress.

To compare my own with the "ghost sickness" symptoms in the wikipedia article above:

The sufferer may be mildly obsessed with death or a deceased person (yes) whom they believe to be the source of their affliction (no). Physical symptoms can include weakness and fatigue, diminished appetite, or other digestion problems (yes to all three). There may be dizziness (yes) or fainting, (no) and sometimes even loss of consciousness . (no) At times the sufferer might experience a sense of suffocation or the inability to breathe (no) . Psychological symptoms may include nightmares or other sleep disturbances, anxiety, a sense of being in danger (yes to all) , hallucinations, and confusion. (no) At some stages there can be feelings of despondency or depression. (no)
Of course, these are all very general symptoms, which may also turn up with burnouts etc. So, not conclusive.

More "interesting" is the very physical and not at all imagined chronic condition. Years ago, I read a book by the self-proclaimed psychic Mary-Anne Witkowski, who - from cases she has experienced herself - thinks that ghosts can't do much harm, but seem to be able to prolongue infections and turn them chronic. I thought then and still think now that it's probably the patients own psyche, distressed by haunting-type phenomena and the implications thereof, that disturbs or stops the healing process in such a case, not some ghostly outside agent.

What really got me thinking, though, was when I researched the german "Rosenheim Poltergeist" case from the 1960s to post it on the forums. The case is IMO quite interesting and was never proven to be a hoax. A detail, which I had missed before, got my attention: During the time when the unexplained events were happening, the alleged focus person, a 19-year-old girl complained of pressure in her ears. The doctors could not find anything conclusive, just something that looked like an infection leading from her left ear down into the throat. But it wasn't really caused by any bacteria or virus (which could be detected back then). And, you guessed right, the physician thought that it was psychosomatic.

Needless to say, that's exactly (down to the left ear) where my problem is situated. And it started with a feeling of pressure in my ears.

So I guess I'm hoping that it's all just me. After nearly ten years and not much help from modern medicine, I've had quite enough. I'm thinking about turning to less conventional healers, but afraid of getting ripped off. But I guess, if I look at it as a kind of experiment, the money wouldn't be totally wasted.
 
Last edited:

Christopher O'Brien

Back in the Saddle Aginn
Staff member
@Polterwurst: There is no one-size-fits all answer to your question. Native-American beliefs vary from tribe to tribe and the particular individual. Based on my limited knowledge on the subject, I would venture an educated guess and say that most (if not all?) Native American traditions include the concept of ghosts and spirits. Most also include traditions of "little people" and "thunderbirds" FWIW. It would stand to reason that the more traditional your upbringing, chances are the more likely you'd factor in the possible presence and/or influence of ghosts/spirits in your reality. Obviously, personal experience and familial history would also influence your personal belief systems in this regard.

As for ghost sickness, I don't know for sure, but I must say that I personally experienced symptoms of extreme fatigue, headache, irritability and lethargy after what appeared to be a nasty close encounter w/ whatever-it-is that lurks beneath the "Sallie House" in Atcheson, KS. I've mentioned this on the show a few times... Two of the five of us that shared the experience were sick for almost two weeks, and Amy Allen (the psychic) was impacted for almost a month. Michael Esposito and I were only affected for about 20 to 30 minutes, but I'll never forget the sensation of what I can only describe as a cold hand slowly squeezing my heart! Out of all the investigations and real-time events I have experienced out in the field—20 years worth, this one was stand alone and the only time I actually experienced momentary fear for my personal safety.
 

mike

Paranormal Adept
Well, i was thinking that if Rye is in the bread, or better, in the Beer - the better standard than water of the times - then the spread of symptoms could be vast, and even make it from town to town, if booze travels, and it does.

But if you are looking for an infection than what about Sydenham Chorea as that seems to fit the bill for involuntary jerking? What's interesting about this is it has a higher rate of infection among younger girls and that fits some of the stories.

Still, i think the more interesting element is the history of tarantism, and the strange things we put in our heads about how to cure ourselves. The impact of mind to mind communal beliefs should never be underestimated.
Thats my understanding of the instances of ergot poisoning. The infected grain was used to make bread and it being a staple in the diet infected lots of people. The point about beer is good too.

Beer was drunk rather than water because it killed the nasties, They would often run a second batch with the same grain to make "small beer" which was more for breakfast or feeding to the children.
 

RenaissanceLady

Paranormal Adept
Polterwurst, I've discussed my story on this forum. This link should take you directly there: Do You Believe in Ghosts? | Page 8 | The Paracast Community Forums

One thing I'll add which Chris had touched upon: I've had problems with chronic illness for much of my life. Scarlet Fever when I was 3, followed by a rheumatic fever, took its toll and may have been the trigger for other problems. A diagnosis of lupus in my 20s may have been related to that fever. When the strange things would happen to me in New Mexico (or other places where there would "odd" events), my lupus would go into a significant flare. When the activity would settle down, the lupus would become more manageable. If you add that to other symptoms, such as headaches, dizziness, extreme fatigue, and nausea, I'm left with the conclusion that those of us who witness paranormal activity may be left with some solidly physical symptoms.

Since my return to Colorado, I've had absolutely no ghostly experiences -- and my lupus has been in full remission for over a year. This is provable: All of my lab work related to the lupus has been completely normal. I'm feeling better than I've felt in my entire adult life. There has only been one exception. Last week, for two consecutive nights, I had two different dreams which ended up being precognitive. For each of those days, I felt sickly, dizzy, nauseous, and exhausted. This leads me to believe that it isn't just problems with ghosts, but other forms of psychic phenomenon that can cause truly physical symptoms -- though ghostly events make those symptoms that much worse.

Just food for thought.
 

manxman

Paranormal Adept
Do you cough alot aswell, your symptoms sound like an auto-immune reaction, similar to allegy.
But if you cough abit at times, or especially wake up with what appears to be asthma, and it totally drains you,
if so its your lucky day RL, ive had something for years i was mistaking for hay fever, all year round hay fever.

With me its inhaling stomach acid, that leaks back thru the valve at the top of your belly, you feel like you have done 10 rounds of boxing, sore all over, especially back and ribs, you would never guess a few specs of gastric acid in your lungs and win pipe could cause so many symptoms, runny nose sore eyes, all kinds.

Any of that fit you RL.

GERD.

What Is GERD? Pain, Symptoms, Causes, Remedies, and More
 
Last edited:

RenaissanceLady

Paranormal Adept
Something I forgot to mention: I had initially written my account regarding New Mexico on the night of October 27th-28th, 2009, due to the repeated requests of a very dear friend.

That friend died the night of October 27th-28th, 2009. This is entirely 100% true.

I wish I had kept the original written version, which was done on Open Salon, because it gave the exact time it was published. (It was later on the 28th that I copied that account over onto my own personal blog.) I've since wondered if, whatever I was writing during that night I couldn't sleep, echoed his final thoughts. I've been very open about how much these events have shaped my life and completely derailed many of my previously-held notions. If you were to draw a timeline of my life, the night of October 27th-28th marks the instant that timeline was fractured.

I have some radical thoughts about much of this:
1. Good friends aren't supposed to die at the age of 46 with no apparent cause.
2. Sometimes when we stare into the face of death, death stares back.
3. Don't study things you don't want to have studying you.
4. I also think that we may see something entirely by accident, that we were never meant to see. Maybe, at certain times, the conditions are right?

The more I learn about where I was living, the more I realize it was a place that had considerable evil. No one stays in that casita for any length of time. Some places are just wrong.

There are other ways this has completely affected my life, which are too personal for me to discuss on a forum. I'll simply conclude that much of my life has been defined by what happened that one night and during my stay in that casita.
 

RenaissanceLady

Paranormal Adept
Do you cough alot aswell, your symptoms sound like an auto-immune reaction, similar to allegy.
But if you cough abit at times, or especially wake up with what appears to be asthma, and it totally drains you,
if so its your lucky day RL, ive had something for years i was mistaking for hay fever, all year round hey fever.

headaches, dizziness, extreme fatigue, and nausea,
Lupus is an auto-immune disorder -- and one that nearly cost me my life when I was in my 20s. (I was told I might not make it to 30.) It wasn't that long ago that lupus was considered to be a terminal illness. I consider myself to be extremely fortunate that it's now in remission.

I have allergies, but those are successfully treated. I don't have asthma, but I have had problems with pleurisy in the past. Those of us with auto-immune disorders seem to be a bit more prone to developing pleurisy and/or other problems with inflammation in and around the internal organs.
 

manxman

Paranormal Adept
I had Temporal Arteritis another auto immune Giant Cell disorder myself 40 mg of prednisolone a day for around 2yrs, had it when i joined here.
5 months to wean me of it, and no life time daily maintenance dose required, i felt it coming back once a few weeks after i was off the steriods but i blitzed it straightaway with 200mg over 5 days no sign since, just this gerd, my immune system went wonky half a lifetime ago.
 

RenaissanceLady

Paranormal Adept
Prednisone isn't a fun drug though it is often a necessary drug.

Getting back to the topic: I think many kinds of paranormal activity can create a very strong physical response, which in turn leads to an immunological response. I don't think it's coincidental that I'm in a remission now that I'm away from all of the strangeness from Nambé. If ghosts need energy in order to manifest (and think about how often ghost sightings coincide with feelings of coldness or sudden temperature drops), it makes sense that our bodies can recover when removed from that physical stress.
 

Burnt State

Paranormal Adept
What i'm hearing described is the idea of being touched by evil. Our emotions are certainly all connected to the rest of our body and so intense experiences must have an impact on us as stress hormones can wreak havoc on the body in an actual biological manner. They inhibit how sugars are processed in the body, and severe stress that is relived in PTSD will create all manner of physical consequences from ulcers to heart attacks.
If you were to draw a timeline of my life, the night of October 27th-28th marks the instant that timeline was fractured.

I have some radical thoughts about much of this:
1. Good friends aren't supposed to die at the age of 46 with no apparent cause.
2. Sometimes when we stare into the face of death, death stares back.
3. Don't study things you don't want to have studying you.
4. I also think that we may see something entirely by accident, that we were never meant to see. Maybe, at certain times, the conditions are right?
There's a lot of critical wisdom here that only comes out of lived experiences. Having been with my dad during the moment of his tragic death i understand what you are talking about in terms of fracturing the personal timeline, how radical thoughts can develop, and how trauma can affect the body and the mind in very powerful manners. I think we can also derail ourselves as we obsess about these events as trauma has no answers. Looking for answers only induces more trauma, stress and some pretty interesting cycles ensue if there has been no completion or acceptance of events.

Staring death in the face: during the moment of the accident, when there is no time to think and you are looking right at death, depending on how your amygdala is wired, the response and effect is also really time fracturing. Those intense experiences have no real reward attached to them, nothing to learn, and if anything, they seem to drain us completely.

Terror is not something that sits well with our minds. To feel haunted or to live in spaces of dread is incapacitating and debilitates our sense of reason and willingness. When such personal control is lost, the gates are open for anything we can possibly conjure up to enter in. I think evil uninvited has to be the worst of the psychological stresses.

Regarding seeing things we were not meant to see: when i was in a video collective for a period of time we all made these flicks that were about formative moments. One friend told the story of her mom who found her father's decapitated body in the barn. He had rigged a farm contraption to take off his own head, knowing a family member would find it. It was his youngest daughter that did. The video my friend made described a kind of eternal haunting behind the eyes of her mom, a trauma passed from one generation to the next, one that she had to process herself over the course of her own life. These things, these evils, are images that create a poison in the body politic, and we all suffer then because of it. When it gets too much, as in the case of spontaneous blindness in those Cambodian women who witnessed the Khmer Rouge's devastation and slaughter of family members, or how seeing your children tortured to death can make people forget how to talk, you know that these things all have degrees of physical & psychological effects that last across time.

The more I learn about where I was living, the more I realize it was a place that had considerable evil. No one stays in that casita for any length of time. Some places are just wrong.
A few blocks away from my childhood home there was a man that once decided in the middle of the night that everyone in his family had to die. He shot the cat, then one of his kids, then his wife and the other child ran out onto the lawn where he shot them, then he shot at a city bus going by (our school bus went by an hour later - he shot the passenger side window, right where my friend and i sat every morning - we saw the aftermath as we drove by - bodies gone but we saw all the police tape and knew something terrible had occurred) and then he went into the house and killed himself. For years no one bought the 'murder house' and it stood mostly empty and was only rented every now and then. No one ever stayed there for long. A few years later, friends of our family bought the house - the husband never told his wife or kids why they got such a great deal on it. As soon as she found out she made her husband sell it immediately. I never went over to their place when they lived there. They had no problem with the house. I could not enter it.

The line between what's in our mind and what's evil in the world is a fine one i think sometimes. Both make you sick.
 

Wade

FeralNormal master
So "ghost sickness" victims are reacting to an imagined threat by spirits, like the MPI victims imagine a disease, epidemic etc.? But what's causing the bodily symptoms? Why the heck do we still know so little about the actual causes for things like the placebo effect, hysteria and this MPI, when they have been reported for decades...
Btw., do you think dancing mania still occurs or is this exclusive to historical times? That's always been totally strange and baffling to me.
from Dancing mania «

"...Dancing mania was confined to a specific period, but some have identified modern-day activities that display some of its characteristics. Raving features characteristics of dancing mania. For example, raves may involve activities that onlookers consider odd (such as partying all night), the use of drugs to bring on hallucinations, and participants who are part of a subculture. If we do accept the psychological distress explanation, then viewed from this distance perhaps dancing mania’s main message to us now is that symptoms of psychological distress and mental illness may not be fixed but can heavily influenced by the cultural environment and prevailing belief structures...."

Robert Bartholomew poses as much in the above book i mentioned. Seems a bit of a stretch to me but maybe worth considering
 

Polterwurst

Paranormal Adept
Thank you all so much for your replies. Much appreciated. This goes to show once more what a great forum this is.

(...) I think many kinds of paranormal activity can create a very strong physical response, which in turn leads to an immunological response.

3. Don't study things you don't want to have studying you.
If nothing else, I hope people who read this thread will take this home as a warning.
Thank you for sharing your story. I think you are very sensitive and that has taken its toll.
 
Last edited:

Top