2017: Your Brain Has What Amounts to a “Spirit Eject” Button 

If someone zaps a certain area in your brain, you will experience floating out of your body. A similar effect can be obtained by transferring your self awareness into another person or object by hijacking your brain’s “this is me” body cues such as visual perception, breathing and heartbeat.  Olaf Blanke, a neurosurgeon at University Hospitals of Geneva and Lausanne, wasn’t trying to set off the sensations in his patient but was using electrical stimulation to map the activity of her brain in preparation for surgical treatment. But by recording the patient’s reactions and matching them with specific electrodes, Blanke was able to pinpoint the region where out-of-body experiences seem to originate. “We wanted [and needed] to be sure that what the patient experienced and told us was related to the actual stimulation,” says Blanke. When Blanke and colleagues activated electrodes placed just above the patient’s right ear — […] Read More

2015: ‘Ghosts’ Most Likely to Be Males Who’ve Died Violently

Dr. Erlendur Haraldsson, a psychologist at the University of Iceland,  has a new study on the reported cases of those who have had an encounter with the undead. Out of 337 cases observed and investigated, the study finds that most of the ghostly apparitions are from males who had died in a violent manner. Dr. Erlendur Haraldsson investigated the cases in the 1980s by conducting interviews with the people who reported the encounters, as well as any other witnesses. He also checked official records to verify the details of death for the apparitions. The cases he studied were all from Iceland, but he cites other research in his study that shows encounters with the dead are reported by as many as 25 percent of Western Europeans and 30 percent of Americans. Dr. Haraldsson wrote: “Unexpectedly, the apparitions were predominantly male (67 percent). This surprising dominance of males is remarkably […] Read More