Loyola professor shares tales of spirits and ghosts
Posted by bpriddis on October 25, 2012
A crowd of around 80 Loyola students, faculty, and staff packed Piper Hall, located at Loyola’s Lake Shore Campus in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood for Dickinson’s presentation on if there really are ghosts or not and connecting everything back to the theological views of different cultures today.
“We live in a time where a lot of people are drawn to spiritual matters, no so much organized faith,” Dickinson said. “I have a belief [about ghosts], but it’s not connected to a structured faith.”
Dickinson went on to talk about cultures and how some cultures actually engage in the spirits around them, others have a great reverence for the spirits, and then there are the cultures that fear them.
“White people like to lay their space for themselves and fight for it,” said Dickinson. “Just take a look at American history and manifest destiny.”
He explained that to have a happy memory, you have to forget some stuff. You have to let it go and focus on what’s in front of you. Dickinson went further into this then, bringing into light the idea that the problem with ghosts is concerned with things that have been put out of memory.
“I visited a couple WWII concentration camps in Europe, surprisingly, I had no feeling of ghosts or being spooked,” Dickinson said. “Is it because the space has become somewhere that is imperative to remember, not to forget?”
Aspen Sprague, a 20-year-old Loyola junior majoring in anthropology and political science, was kind of spooked by some of the ideas brought up by Dickinson.
“The idea that every place we inhabit is already inhabited, how everything we see including fantasies are not our own, is kind of crazy to think about,” Sprague said. “This makes me question what is even my own now.”
The presentation is part of the Theology Department’s Fall 2012 series of Intellectual Life Events for Majors and Minors.