The Goopy Ghost at St. Patrick's Day
August 2017 by V. R. Duin


The thieves thought the guard was quite brash
For shopping with bright golden cash.
So they took tight hold
Of all of his gold
Then dashed from his grove to their stash!
(“The Goopy Ghost at Saint Patrick's Day”)

Spirit possession is not just about possessed people and scary ghosts.

Ghosts are not likely to float over to someone and take spirit possession of that person. Ghosts are separate and residual entities that happen to be visible and audible to people in the present time. Scary ghosts are unusual. Ghosts tend to be playful, curious and mischievous.

Ghosts are in a continuous loop of learning and searching. Their goal is generally not one of spirit possession. Few ghosts are scary ghosts. The Goopy Ghost is perpetually on the move to find his pumpkin home and to celebrate his connection with it. This good ghost is tied to the pumpkin and to the spirit of the holiday season, not to making possessed people.

Ghosts tend to be repetitive and uncomplicated in their connections with this world. Ghosts may challenge their hosts with a bit of mischief, rather than spirit possession. Ghosts prefer to be perceived as entertaining presences in search of attention rather than as scary ghosts. Ghosts reside in the present, not within possessed people.

Scary ghosts are generally not referred to as ghosts. Instead, the paranormal world gives the name poltergeists to “scary ghosts”. This article will not discuss these horrific entities other than to mention that poltergeists may have been left behind to curse the world for some traumatic event from which they are unwilling or unable to disconnect.

Spirit possession is more complex than haunting ghosts, be these continually good or rarely seen scary ghosts, called poltergeists. For there to be spirit possession, there must be possessed people. Spirits are conscious forms of energy that exist in the present and in the afterlife.

Spirits can influence the will, mind and emotions of a person. A spirit can be good or evil, much like human feelings or a moods. Spirits can provide guidance, healing, encouragement, love and enlightenment. However, spirit possession generally is recognized in cultures throughout the world as unwelcome control or unwilling manipulation of possessed people, things or places.

Signs of spirit possession may be a loss of energy or appetite and a radical change in temperament. If thieves take someone's gold, that person or leprechaun loses a physical possession. Spirit possession may not be physical. It may manifest as a mental or an emotional loss of control. It should not automatically be attributed to scary ghosts.

True spirit possession is rare. Ghosts typically are not possessive spirits. Mediums, psychics and spiritual leaders can communicate with spirits in their past and present levels of consciousness. Scary ghosts, called poltergeists, may live in a dimension that can be perceived, but not controlled by invocation or exorcism. They do not live within possessed people.

Some churches practice exorcism in some instances and for some types of spirit possession. These include Catholic, Charismatic, Pentecostal and Evangelical churches. V. R. Duin attends Vision Church International, which Pentecostal church works to expel or transform a bad spirit and replace it with good faith.

Exorcism also is a respected healing practice for perceived spirit possession in Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Taoism and some African cultures. There also are individuals and organizations, including some Christian denominations, by whom spirits may be called or invoked, but not sent away. This facilitates communication, which may relieve some distress for those with concerns about scary ghosts and possessed people, things or places.

V. R. Duin worked as a mental health and substance abuse intervention attorney for fifteen years. The effects of such mental illnesses and disorders as hysteria, mania, psychosis and schizophrenia can be perceived as spirit possession by some witnesses. The different types of cognition among people are professionally recognized as different ways of thinking, not as possessed people haunted by scary ghosts.

Medications may be prescribed to control cognitive behaviors. However, these prescriptions may come with side effects, such as lethargy or weight gain. These effects may seem demonic to the sufferers. The behaviors caused by substance addiction also can mimic those attributed to spirit possession. Spiritual and mental or physical health guidance and treatments can ease withdrawal symptoms and lead to recovery.

Individuals who start adhering to a strict weight-loss or allergy restricted diet or who begin a rigid schedule of relaxation techniques, may be considered “possessed people” by those around them. These new directions, despite the level of passion, should receive respect and encouragement from loved ones. Spirit possession can be a good thing. Scary ghosts are unlikely to be involved in such changes.

When change is for the worse and obsessive-compulsive behaviors totally disrupt life and work functions, conventional medical and psychiatric intervention may result in a firm diagnosis and effective treatment. When no improvement is noted from conventional treatments, and spirit possession is suspected, consultation with a spiritual leader or other counsel may be advised. Scary ghosts are unlikely to be the cause.

It is equally unlikely that fun, mischievous or scary ghosts can provide professional solutions for disruptive human behaviors. However, all ghosts can provide great distraction and mind-altering experience. The Goopy Ghost is a pumpkin ghost, created for the children in all of us. Because he keeps readers and viewers in celebration mode, the Goopy Ghost is a fun spirit for anyone and everyone to possess.

The Goopy Ghost keeps young readers interested in holiday books throughout the year. Goopy's wants his focus on reading and on the goodness of holidays, every day of the year, to be considered a form of “spirit possession”. Goopy hopes to change his “possessed people” for the better. Goopy is not a scary ghost.

Beyond Spirit Possession

  • spirit possession admin says:

    The Goopy Ghost does not support spirit possession, and does not participate in spirit possession.

  • scary ghosts admin says:

    This ghost has never witnessed spirit possession, and does not know of any scary ghosts who are involved in spirit possession.

    • possessed peopleadmin says:

      This Holiday Ghost does not know any possessed people and does not take the loss of any possession or ability lightly.