Why (Evil) Ghosts Can’t Exist

I like scary movies at least as much as the next person, and like most people, I too get a little creeped out and unsettled when going to bed in the dark after watching a horror movie. One fly in the ointment of horror however is the logical fact that evil spirits simply cannot exist.

There are two basic, low-level scenarios:

  • Ghosts do not exist at all (i.e., there is no after-life)
  • Ghosts can/do exist (i.e., there is indeed an after-life)

If the first scenario is correct, then there is no reason to fear ghosts because they just don’t exist under any circumstances, period.

What if the second scenario is correct and ghosts can or do exist? If ghosts can or do in fact exist, then there is indeed an after-life. If there is an after-life, then we have to examine the kind of ghost in question.

If the ghost (or the person who died) is/was good, then either they have already already ascended to Heaven, or they are only sticking around to take care of some unfinished business like getting their killer caught or looking after their loved ones. Either way, there is no reason to fear them (unless you killed them).

If the ghost (or the person who died) is/was bad, then why would they be allowed to stick around Earth and harass people? Shouldn’t they be forcibly pulled into Hell? Why would reporting to Hell for punishment be optional? Go straight to Hell, do not pass Go, do not haunt people or collect $200.

The only scenario that lets evil ghosts work is if you believe that there is an after-life and ghosts, but not believe in Heaven or Hell. There are not many cultures that believe in an after-life that does not include some sort of Heaven/Hell concept, but if you are one of those kinds of people, then you can still fear evil ghosts haunting you; otherwise, there’s no need to fear them.

Existance of After-Life Unprovable

A few years ago I got fed up with the lack of knowledge about an after-life and existence of ghosts. In an effort to once and for all clear up this mystery, I made the decision that when I die, I would come back and unlike other “ghosts”, I would make it absolutely clear. That is, instead of moving an object when nobody is around or appearing to a single crazy person in the dark, or other such traditional manifestations, I would appear in say, Times Square among thousands of people and make a damn-big show. I would remove all doubt once and for all.

Of course, if there is no after-life after all, then I would not be able to show up. That part did not seem like a problem. I figured that it would just be the other half of the proof. If I do not show up, it means there is no after-life, if there is, then I would show up and make it clear that I have come back.

Unfortunately, in less than a minute of forming my plan, I realized that I would not be able to prove it after all. What happens if there is an after-life, but I am not able to immediately come back? What if what seems like a minute to me is 100 years in the living world? I would show up, but I had “disproved” the after-life 100 years ago. What if there is an after-life, but I am unable to come back and show myself? What if there is an after-life, but I am not allowed to come back and show myseld?

It dawned on me, that even if there is an after-life, there may be other forces at work that prevent me from proving it once and for all. In other words, the only way to determine whether or not there is an after-life once and for all is if I can come back, which would prove that there is. Not coming back proves nothing (not a surprise to scientists and logicians). The lack of proof is not proof in and of itself.

In summary, one of two things will happen when a person dies, either they do come back or they don’t, and only comeing back proves anything, but even then, their manifestation may be limited by various factors. Therefore, there really is no way to prove the existence of an after-life or ghosts, or rather, there is no way to disprove them.

Here is another article on the same subject that had occurred to me at another time , but with a different spin.