Ghosts: The Most Depressing Belief One Can Possibly Maintain

Indisputably, nearly all human societies throughout history have demonstrated a fascination with the idea that, subsequent to the death of a given individual’s body, the spirit or ethereal essence of that individual might somehow linger on Earth. That this fascination persists among denizens of the contemporary west is attested by the existence of that Patrick Swayze movie, paramountly stupid reality television franchise Ghost Hunters, the supernatural docudramas that dominate the comprise the bulk of the Biography channel’s programing, and Casper The Friendly Ghost; the purpose of this entry is to inquire as to the reason for which this is true. I caution you, readers, to not expect this dissertation to end in a resolution of this curiosity, as treatises that begin with a question often do, as I genuinely have no idea why any human being would feel delighted by the prospect that ghosts exist.  

I understand entirely the allure of a belief in heaven, for the idea that life possesses some inherent objective is naturally alluring to human beings. I can even grasp from where proceeds the concept of hell, as once the foresaid objective has been accepted, the question regarding what happens when it is unfulfilled must naturally be addressed; also, organized religious movements have, over the course of centuries, come to realize that the instillment of mortal fear is the most effective conversion technique. The appeal of faith in ghosts, however, consistently eludes me, for even if the existence of such spirits was supported by a wealth of incontrovertible evidence, I’d imagine it to be a vulgar subject unmentionable in polite company.

We enact, throughout our lives, petty, asinine behaviors, to the primary end of distracting ourselves from the brevity of our tenures on this planet and the reality of our irrelevance in the scope of all time, and are, in turn, subjected to the petty, asinine behaviors that others enact to the primary end of distracting themselves from the brevity of their tenures on this planet and the reality of their irrelevance in the scope of all time. That human life is even peripherally bearable is accountable to the prospect of vast wealth, the possibility of fame, and sex, all of which are essentially denied to the ghost by its very nature, and thus the notion that, upon death, one might become a ghost can be extrapolated to the conclusion that one might be made victim of the petty, asinine behaviors of one’s fellow man long after one has lost all reason to react to these behaviors in any manner but to say “fuck this shit”. If the motivation of those phantoms who throw knives and scrawl “GET OUT” on the walls of homes in ectoplasmic blood is still a mystery, I submit that I may possess some valuable insight. 

There exist, to my knowledge, no standardized criteria by which whether a deceased person will live on as a ghost can be determined. The widely held premise seems to be that anyone could, virtually at random, be condemned to a pale mockery of life devoid of those few contingencies that occasionally render our time in this world to be marginally pleasant. Nevertheless, bewilderingly, a considerable number of people exhibit a desire see this proposition validated as truth– if anyone among my readership is able to put forth an answer as to why, consider this my attempt to elicit it. 

– Gothicus Maximus


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