Space Images & Exploration / Ghosts & Animal Spirits

Hosted byGeorge Noory

Space Images & Exploration / Ghosts & Animal Spirits

About the show

Jim Bell is one of the foremost experts on space photography and a professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University. In the first half, he discussed stunning photographs of the cosmos, as well as updates on the many NASA robotic space exploration missions, including the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) and the Mars rovers. Space telescopes like Hubble and the new James Webb can provide incredible details, as they don't have to deal with pollution and effects from the Earth's atmosphere, he noted, while space probes have the advantage of getting really close to other worlds. One of his favorite photos is of the tracks formed by the Opportunity rover on the surface of Mars in 2004. The way the tracks move out into the distance seemed symbolic of new frontiers and exploration, he remarked. 

He finds that Mars has very intriguing and unusual geologic structures, but artifacts like the Face on Mars, when imaged in higher resolution, appear to be just a natural formation, he indicated. The Hubble has been returning spectacular pictures from space for 32 years, and its images have led to astronomy and science textbooks being rewritten to reflect its discoveries. Currently, there are more than 75 space agencies around the world, including in such nations as Paraguay, Rwanda, and Poland, who "want to be part of the future and develop their science and technology," he detailed. Bell is particularly excited about the Mars sample return mission. The Perseverance rover, which landed on Mars in 2021, has been collecting core samples at an ancient river delta for eventual laboratory testing on Earth. A NASA lander will launch later this decade to rendezvous with the rover, and retrieve the samples, he explained. 


Rob Gutro is an author, paranormal investigator, and medium with Inspired Ghost Tracking of Maryland. In the latter half, he spoke about his communications with pets and animals once they cross over, as well as his personal investigations and research into haunted locations. As a meteorologist, he's explored the science behind these phenomena, and concluded that "energy is the foundation for the paranormal." The physical energy within us combines with our memories, knowledge, and personality to form a soul, he outlined. After death, if the soul chooses to stay earthbound at a fixed location of their choosing, they become a ghost, whereas if the soul crosses over into the light or the energy of the cosmos, they become a spirit, he continued.

Ghosts and spirits both use physical energy like heat, light, water, and electricity in order to communicate, he said, adding that many haunted locations are near a body of water. Ghosts also use the living's negative emotions, such as fear and anxiety, as a kind of fuel, while spirits are empowered by things like love, faith, and hope, he stated. Gutro shared his experiences at the haunted Bird Cage Theatre in Tombstone, Arizona, where he captured the faces of two ghosts in photographs. Pets may return as gentle spirits-- "they can appear as a shadow...or physical image. You can feel, for instance, your cat walk across the end of your bed," even after they've passed, he revealed. Further, he suggested that dogs and cats can see spirits, akin to their ability to hear sounds beyond our auditory range.

News segment guests: Lauren Weinstein, Steve Kates

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