Ancestral energy lives in the stars above us, the stones beneath us. Their memory gathers in oceans, rivers and seas. It hums its silent wisdom within the body of every tree.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

What the Dead Know

The same music box.

My last year of college, I lived in a rambling old farmhouse, situated just after the sidewalk ended at the edge of campus. There were anywhere from five to eight other people living in the house, depending on the month. Strange things happened frequently, but we always chalked it up to forgetful college students or the more-easily-blamed creaky old house.
One night, we all went out to dinner together, and when we left, the house was pitch dark. When we returned, also together, three bedroom lights were on upstairs. The doors were still locked and uninjured and nothing was touched. When I was alone in the house I would hear footsteps walking around, loud enough that I would get up to make sure no one else had come home. It was spooky enough that I mostly stayed to my room in the back of the house.
In December, we decorated for the holidays, which is when the most obvious instance of haunting occurred. My friend and I were sitting on a small couch together in the living room, reading and doing homework. The only other person there was one of my housemates, in his bedroom off the kitchen. It was a lovely, quiet morning. The living room opened up to what was probably once a dining room. We had placed our Christmas tree and other decorations in that adjoining space.
 Suddenly, in the quiet, a small music box began to play in the other room. The music box was a ceramic Christmas tree, which fit tightly onto a base of presents and toys. We assumed it had gotten jostled or come askew and my friend went over to right it. When she paused I looked up, and saw that the top was lifted cleanly off the base and placed on the other end of the table. We shared a look with raised eyebrows and were appropriately weirded out, because the music starts playing as soon as you lift the lid a quarter inch off the base, much less move the top of it, and we had been alone in the room. My friend put the tree top back on the base and the music stopped.
We went back to our reading and moments later it started again. This time, we both got up and found the tree top once more sitting on the other end of the table. We assumed it was my housemate. Were we so engrossed in our homework that we didn’t notice him coming in to play tricks on us? We put the tree back on the stand and went to his room to poke him for spooking us.
My housemate was on the phone in his room and had been the whole time. He didn’t even know what we were talking about. He got off the phone and listened to our story and got spooked as well. He thought we were trying to creep him out. And then it happened a third time, and we all three witnessed it. Despite our attentiveness, we still did not see it move but there it was, off the base. This time I heard an unmistakable giggle and felt the presence of a young girl. We asked her out loud to stop creeping us out, told her that we heard her, and that we’d pay attention.
During the semester break, my housemates shifted, with only four of us from the first semester remaining. More of us began to hear and sense her around the house. Lights were turned on and off and objects were moved. When you live with so many people, it’s easy to blame it on someone else’s idea of a bad joke. We couldn’t understand yet, what she was trying to communicate with us. She was trying to warn us that we were living with a bad man.
One night, one of my housemates, and someone we thought of as a friend, attacked another housemate when he thought she was passed out. Everything changed. In the aftermath of removing him from our lives we began to uncover a lot of truths about his real personality; his lying, thieving, manipulation, peeping, and trouble with the local police. The random lights that would turn on and off were lights in rooms where things often went missing, specifically mine and one other housemate. The third room that always lit up, and the one constant, was his. Our spirit friend was literally trying to illuminate the person who was lifting a couple dollars here and a pack of cigarettes there, over the course of months. She tried to leave us bread crumbs.
Once he was removed from the house, the haunting ceased. Lights came on when they were turned on and they stayed off when they were turned off. My housemates and I took care of each other and worked through recovering from the strange and violent betrayal of a friend. And once the truth was known, the spirit world around us was again at peace. When I encounter spirit so strong it manifests, I don’t just look at it as a haunting, but I try to stay open to where it collects, and what else it might be trying to tell me. Our intuitive body is strongly linked to the spirit world, and when you can open to that energy, it allows you to see with extra senses. It allows us to see more fully.

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