I received two separate e-mail messages from readers concerning strange phenomena related to spirits of the dead.
One came from Winnie (not her real name) with the following story:
“My mom died Dec. 21, 2013. In the first 60 days after her death, my dad had three hospital confinements for no known cause.
“I asked my mom not to take my dad. On the sixth month after my mom’s death, I was talking with my dad on Skype when suddenly, I saw my mom beside him. It was really my mom. Please see attached Skype image and photo of my mom.
“When I visited my sick uncle, I saw a big brown butterfly next to me as I entered his house. According to my aunt, my sick uncle saw and talked to my mom, who was inviting him to come with her. He was talking to her in Kapampangan the night he died.
“I often see faces of dead people right in front of me. Once I saw the ghost of a boy watching me doing laundry. I also saw one in a hospital.
“I dreamt of my mom’s death one month before she died. When we were mourning her death, I felt the same feeling I had in my dream before. It was like a déjà vu experience.”
Although Winnie did not ask me any specific question, but only wanted to share her unusual experiences with the death of loved ones, I would like to offer the following possible explanations based on my years of research about spirits of the dead and the spiritual world.
When people die, especially if it is a sudden or unexpected death, spirits can usually be seen or felt by their close relatives or friends because they are still very much around. Their consciousness or awareness is still with the earth plane and the people they left behind.
Many times, people who die a sudden death are still in a state of shock. They are not aware that they are already dead. And that’s why they can be seen in places where they lived, worked or played.
Based on countless documented stories from around the world since the beginning of man’s history, the dead do not get catapulted either to heaven or hell at once. They are still around for a while. This is nothing new. But people still have a hard time accepting it. I don’t know when they will finally realize that the dead are not dead. They remain alive but on a different plane of existence, the spiritual plane.
Spirits of the newly departed often appear to close relatives in the form of a butterfly, or more rarely, in the form of a bird, to show they are still around. It is also a way of saying goodbye to the living.
The dead also appear to close relatives who are on the brink of death to fetch and guide them in transition to the spirit world.
The fact that you see faces or spirits of dead people means that you are clairvoyant. We see spirits with our spiritual eyes and not with our physical eyes. One can still see spirits while his or her eyes are closed. This has happened to me several times.
Animals and spirits
Reader Miguel, on the other hand, has a different experience with the dead.
“My grandfather has been dead for 40 days but up to now his pet dog still keeps on crying. It has become a problem not only to us, but also to our neighbors who hear the dog cry between 1 to 3 a.m. Why do you think this happens?”
Animals like dogs, cats and even horses can sense the presence of spirits of the dead. This means your grandfather is still earthbound. His presence could be felt by his pet dog, which probably misses him. Try to talk to your grandfather when you hear the dog make a noise or behave strangely. Tell him he is already in the spirit world and should not be concerned anymore with the living.
The belief that the spirits of the dead stay on the earth plane for only 40 days is not true. This belief originated in ancient Egypt. The Egyptians believed that when a person dies, his spirit goes to the underworld called Hades, where a boatman waits to bring the spirit to the other side of the River Styx, and it takes 40 days for the boatman to cross the river. The Christians adopted this pagan belief.
The “Hypnosis, Healing and Joyful Living” seminar by American spiritual seeker and teacher Dan McKee is on Dec. 6 and 7, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Rm. 308 Prince Plaza I, Legaspi St., Makati; tel. nos. 810-7245 and 0908-3537885.