A Ghost is often attributed to an event that is unexplainable. This is known as a paranormal event which can be as simple as an auditory noise, or as complex as encountering an unknown physical force.
Spirit ghosts might 'playback' something they experienced in life. They may appear in front of a person or people, either doing nothing, or causing a paranormal event. There is also contact through spirit communication. Aggressive spirits may also communicate, hear, and possibly touch you; interacting with people in the here-and-now.
Spectral ghosts are something widely feared as possibly unpleasant or a dangerous occurrence. They may appear in any form, as apparitions, a mist, the full appearance of a human, or a human with missing body parts.
Creatures that are often classified as cryptozoological are given the notion that they are flesh-and-blood animals, unclassified by science. But upon careful study, the lack of evidence for eating habits and activities suggest they are actually nothing of the sort. Given their elusiveness, they seem rather more spectral, ethereal, and phantom-like in nature.
Ghosts of the woods in folklore, considered cryptids in the modern age, are supernatural shadow beings with humanoid characteristics. They may appear as half human, half animal (see also Chimeras) spoken of as early as ancient mythologies. These are the Windigo, the Goatman, Mothman, Wild Man (See also Bigfoot), and Dogmen to name a few. They exist in the various folklores of ancient peoples and natives, in every part of the World, from the Americas to Asia; viewing them as supernatural forces.
At the advent of Christianity, ghosts are primarily considered demonized spirits. Western culture has painted ghosts as demons for 2,000 plus years. The demonization of ghosts is added to the psyche of Western culture through Hollywood movies. The subject of ghosts is nominally categorized as demonology amongst many “ghost hunters” and “Christian activists”.
The notion of spirits has been with mankind, before Jesus Christ, since the beginning of recorded human history. Mankind’s understanding of the Spirit World is extremly limited especially in the Age of Technology. Aboriginals, tribals, and natives had more of a relationship with the Spirit World until Colonialism and Westernization had demonized virtually all indigenous cultures.
- Written by Jay123458
Many indigenous peoples throughout history have had some beliefs about spirits and people believed to have power through herbs or spirits—these were not called 'witches' until contact with western ideas. Neither did they always have negative connotations.
Traditionally, the word ‘witch’ was used to accuse someone of bewitching someone, or casting a spell on them to gain control over them by magic. It is now also used by some to refer to those who practice various wise crafts such as Hedge witch. During Christianization, many “pagans” were labelled as witches and were accused of practicing witchcraft or magic.
In Europe, the panic over witchcraft was supported by the Malleus Maleficarum, published in 1487 by Heinrich Kramer, a German Catholic clergyman. It taught the prosecution of witches and was greatly promoted by the new technology of the printing press. It saw 29 printings before 1669, second only to the Bible. The book says that three elements are necessary for witchcraft. These are the evil intentions of the witch, the help of the Devil, and the permission of God.
Many women in South America and throughout Europe were killed by witch hunts. The exact number is hotly debated because of a lack of record keeping and different opinions on the time frames and regions that ought to be included. Since the entire persecuting legal system, "judges, ministers, priests, constables, jailers, judges, doctors, prickers, torturers, jurors, executioners" were nearly all male and the victims were overwhelmingly female, the witch hunts are considered by many to be a "gynocide". In the documentary The Burning Times, Thea Jensen calls this period in history a "Women's Holocaust".