It’s very probable you’ve heard fascinating stories about or come across or even visited haunted buildings or places. But have you heard of phones that are haunted? There are cases too of phantom cars and buses. Of deadly ghostly knives that can be seen dripping with the blood of the victim. There have been cases of ghostly guns causing death, of machines operated by invisible hands and other ghostly objects.

For instance, Brij Pal  died in an accident involving a lathe machine. After his death, the lathe machine would start off on its own, even if a power cut was on and would continue even when the power was deliberately switched off. There have been several instances of “ghost calls” as well where a person in a crisis situation tried calling a family member, loved one or friend before dying but nobody picked up the phone at that crucial time. The calls continued on the called number long after death. Somebody who was trapped in the Taj during the Mumbai attacks and was later found dead had tried calling home frantically.

The calls from the dead person’s phone number which was no longer operational continued to come on the living family member’s phone number for many months till several special “shaanti” ceremonies were performed. What, people, often ask, is the supernatural / rational explanation for such happenings?

Just as there is a natural procedure for taking birth, so is there a natural procedure for a soul to leave a body. It is when this natural procedure is aborted that a supernatural phenomenon is created. In life, every single thing one does is ceaselessly recorded on the incessantly moving wheel of time. I have seen such replays many times, both of other people’s lives and my own. The same thing happens at the time of death in the normal course of events— that is, a natural death.

In fact, when a person dies, there is a crucial transition from “life” to “life after death”. The dead person’s soul is freed from physical and earthly bonds. It is when this doesn’t happen because of abnormal circumstances that the hauntings begin. These not only include “replays’, but a “spirit” continuation in which a spirit or ghost continues to interact with or influence living beings.

Moreover, whenever there are very high levels of feeling, whenever there are unfulfilled desires combined with negativity of any kind, such as violence just before or at the time of death, the imprinting or recording on time – can be of both visuals and sounds or just one of them — is exceptionally strong and keeps getting replayed resulting in what we call a “haunting’. When a sudden or violent death gets combined with unfulfilled desires, the disembodied spirit, now doubly driven by anger and revenge, continues his/her life’s story in a diabolical spirit form.

Can hauntings be prevented or “capped”? And will this also render haunted objects immobile? The answer to both is “yes”.

Sudden deaths involving high intensity feelings, especially, those in which a metallic or electronic or metallic cum electronic “instrument”such as a gun or knife or a phone have played a part almost invariably create very powerful hauntings with severe consequences for living people who come in contact with the haunting. For instance, if someone is stabbed with a knife and dies, or dies clutching a phone in the hand and that phone remains with the body for even a short period of time, they are situations tailor made for supernatural problems. In the case of the unfortunate death at the Taj Hotel, for example, it resulted in a haunted phone.

Incidentally, it is said that there should be no “bandhan” on a person at the time of death as it impedes progressive movement of the soul. That is why, even in the case of pets, caring owners will always make sure if they know, for instance, that a pet dog is going to die that its chain or collar should be removed and it should be allowed to die free of any “bandhan”.

Just last week, a man who died from a suppurating growth on the midriff was brought home from hospital with bandages still swathed around the affected area. Relatives did not want to remove the bandages because of the ugly sight that would be revealed. But before the customary bath for the dead body, the priest, pointing to the bandages, directed “Sab bandhan khol do. High up in the mountains of Garwhal in Uttarakhand, beyond Silyara, well known as the home of the famed environmentalist Sunderlal Bahuguna, in a village close to the Chinese border, a madman was kept chained for decades. I was shocked to see how heavy those chains were but the villagers told me they had no alternative as he was so strong he broke anything lighter, twisted iron bars, pulled down the walls of a room in which they’d imprisoned him. After the madman’s death, his spirit wreaked havoc, almost flattening the entire village. But his spirit’s fury was directed first at all the chains in the village— so strong was his link and obviously, antipathy, to those objects which had kept him confined. Had the chains — the “bandhans” —been removed before his death, perhaps the village could have escaped his wrath and more important, perhaps his soul would not have been so tortured.

Can hauntings be prevented or “capped”? And will this also render haunted objects immobile? The answer to both is “yes’. For example, it is vital to ensure proper, respectful disposal of a dead body. If the prescribed rituals are not followed, it has been seen time and again that the soul remains trapped on earth and gives rise to supernatural happenings, particularly when the person died holding something in his/her hand or died because the death was caused by some object. Often, that object then provides the “connectivity’, the link, the channel for supernatural phenomena and this aspect has to be kept in mind when performing a series of  rituals. The “capping” or resolution is always brought about by freeing the “prêt” or “atma” from earthly bonds and this can only be done through understanding the problem of the atma, what exactly is trapping it and applying a compassionate approach, regardless of whether it is a good or an evil spirit. Once a spirit is at peace, its links with earthly objects, earthly events will weaken and snap, bringing about a happy outcome for all involved.

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