What are ghosts?

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GailandStuart

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What are ghosts?
« on: 22/04/2009 13:30:02 »
GailandStuart asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Hello Dr Smith
 
During this morning's Naked Scientist show with Redi on 702/Cape Talk, the subject of ghosts was discussed. I was reminded of a story a colleague of mine told me years ago. She was from the Seychelles, and as a child lived quite close to a graveyard.

She said that they would notice wisps of steam coming from new graves. Seychelles is, or was, quite a poor country so most people could not afford lead lined coffins. I always wondered if this was not part of the whole ghost idea?
 
As always, many thanks for a great show.
 
Gail  

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Offline Chemistry4me

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #1 on: 22/04/2009 13:35:26 »
The thing that comes to my mind is water evaporating off the surface.

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Offline dentstudent

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #2 on: 22/04/2009 13:37:40 »
Quite - if you look at a tractor ploughing a field, there is often steam rising from the newly turned earth.

Either that or it's the ghosts of the worms.

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Offline Don_1

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #3 on: 22/04/2009 13:39:00 »
You could have a very good point there Gail.
If brains were made of dynamite, I wouldn't have enough to blow my nose.

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Offline Don_1

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #4 on: 22/04/2009 13:43:47 »
C4M & DS, have you missunderstood Gail's post?

She is suggesting that water vapor rising from fresh graves may have given rise (no pun intended) to the ghost story. People interpreting the steam for the spirit of the dead rising from the grave.
If brains were made of dynamite, I wouldn't have enough to blow my nose.

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Offline Chemistry4me

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #5 on: 22/04/2009 13:48:40 »
Ooh.
How do you know that's what she is suggesting?

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Offline dentstudent

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #6 on: 22/04/2009 13:57:46 »
No misunderstanding - I just didn't answer the question!

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Offline Don_1

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #7 on: 22/04/2009 13:58:07 »
GailandStuart asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Hello Dr Smith
 
During this morning's Naked Scientist show with Redi on 702/Cape Talk, the subject of ghosts was discussed. I was reminded of a story a colleague of mine told me years ago. She was from the Seychelles, and as a child lived quite close to a graveyard.

She said that they would notice wisps of steam coming from new graves. Seychelles is, or was, quite a poor country so most people could not afford lead lined coffins. I always wondered if this was not part of the whole ghost idea?
 
As always, many thanks for a great show.
 
Gail 

What do you think?
If brains were made of dynamite, I wouldn't have enough to blow my nose.

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Offline Chemistry4me

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #8 on: 22/04/2009 14:01:06 »
So what is she actually asking?

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Offline Don_1

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #9 on: 22/04/2009 14:09:51 »
I think she is just putting forward an idea as to where the ghost myth may have been spawned and asking for opinion on her assumption. Personally I think it has a good standing. The rising steam could have been thought to be the deceased persons ectoplasm (spirit) leaving the body.
If brains were made of dynamite, I wouldn't have enough to blow my nose.

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Offline Chemistry4me

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What are ghosts?
« Reply #10 on: 23/04/2009 01:56:31 »
Oh right.
I thought ghosts were just people with bed sheets [::)]