Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Science: Science or Ghost? Sleep Paralysis Or Incubus?


Incubus, 1870
Image from Wikipedia
Have you ever experienced the horrible feeling during your sleep that your whole body wasn't able to move at all except your eyes but you were totally awake and conscious?

I haven't, but I've heard stories from my aunt and my mum about being Gui Ya (literally means "ghost pressure" in Chinese).

Chinese people believes this is because a ghost is lying on top of you. Why the ghost wanted to do that has never been explained, but incubus is a pretty famous talking point of the Chinese "sleep" culture.

Image from DNews
Now science seems to have found a good explanation for such paranormal phenomenon, and the culprit is -- sleep paralysis.

Check out the videos below.


Does Gui Ya or incubus freak you out now that it's all to do with Glycine and GABA trying to protect your own body from moving around and getting injured during sleeps? Let's hope not, but it's still possible if you still believe in ghost, but that's another question, do ghosts even exist?


Wow, stimulating the Angular Gyrus with a controlled current creates angels, demons and God! How cool is that? Then God will talk to us!


Oh ya, sorry Dr. House, I forgot that.

A couple of weeks ago, I heard a story from one student that she's got a female friend who believes in the beforelife and afterlife. She seems to have been inspired by this belief and she is living a better life now than she used to.

How? Well, by knowing that her relatives were in fact non-humans in the previous life thus explaining why they are so annoyingly unreasonable in this current life.

I never used to think this makes any sense, since I'm so scientific. I need a reason to believe in things. Then suddenly, a thought flashed through my mind, and I immediately agreed with this beforelife and afterlife theory.

We all know that "ashes to ashes, dust to dust", after living things died, they become nutrients for other living things, like trees, vegetables, fish, cattles, pigs, etc. These are then consumed by humans such as our parents and are turned into all the elements of life such as proteins and DNA which make up the sperms and egg, and of course, become you and me. So, in short, we were, I dare say, a kind of food in our beforelife, and most likely, beforelives! We could also be an iron bar, a piece of wood from a chair, or even a dinosaur!

Whether this makes us understand our annoyingly unreasonable relatives better is... well, no, it doesn't work for me, sorry!


Vocabulary:
incubus -- (n) (nominal form constructed from the Latin verb, incubo, incubare, or "to lie upon") is a demon in male form who, according to a number of mythological and legendary traditions, lies upon sleepers, especially women, in order to have sexual intercourse with them.
paranormal -- (adj) impossible to explain by known natural forces or by science:
culprit -- (n) [C]  fact or situation that is the reason for something bad happening:
sleep paralysis -- (n) a phenomenon in which people, either when falling asleep or wakening, temporarily experience an inability to move.
flash through the mind -- Fig. [for an idea or image] to move quickly through one's mind. 
ashes to ashes, dust to dust -- a phrase from the Anglican burial service, used sometimes to denote total finality. It is based on scriptural texts such as "Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return" (Genesis 3:19), and "I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee" (Ezekiel 28:18)




Resources:
Do Ghosts Exist? Exploring the Paranormal @ YouTube
http://youtu.be/KAjw3WFgVa4

Taking the Fear Out of Sleep Paralysis @ YouTube
http://youtu.be/3wx4B03UJ1U

Incubus @ Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incubus

Sleep paralysis @ Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_paralysis

House MD - God talks to you @ YouTube
http://youtu.be/2UyE7Y1XV8M

http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/paranormal_1?q=paranormal
http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/culprit?q=culprit
http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/flash+through+mind
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashes_to_Ashes

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