Paranormal Phenomena: Unexplained and Spooky Mysteries

Paranormal phenomena.

Does it even exist… for real?

Well, nobody can tell for sure if the paranormal exists or not, but what does it matter?

We can always talk about it, fill our hearts with awe and wonder, and feel goosebumps all over our bodies, right?

So, let’s talk about it.

But, let me make one thing clear:

I don’t intend to make you believe in the paranormal phenomena because believing is irrational and stupid—it’s like accepting something true without experiencing it yourself.

So, never believe something just because somebody you respected said it (me included). 🙂

Now, what could be better to explore the paranormal than to dive right into Bharatiya folklore?

Because, you see, Hindu folk culture has many paranormal phenomena stories—tales of wonder, fear, horror, and utter eeriness passed on from one generation to another—stories you might never have heard before.

In this article, I have documented a few such stories.

So, are you ready?

Let’s do this.

Paranormal Phenomena

Ghaal (घाल)

“Ghaal” or “Ghaal Totka” is a black magic term, an occult phenomenon. It’s kind of a flying light primarily seen on Diwali.

Some call it “Flying-Matka,” “Flying-Handi,” or “Flying-Diya.”

So, what is this Ghaal, exactly?

Do you remember the missiles in Hollywood movies—locked onto the target to destroy it?

There you have it.

Ghaal is just like that—a kind of otherworldly weapon, programmed to destroy enemies, and its existence is debatable. Some say it exists, while others label it as horseshit. But yes, many people claim that Ghaal is one of the deadliest weapons of black magic ever devised.

Here’s how it works:

The black magician places a lit earthen lamp inside an earthen pitcher (with small holes), mainly on a Diwali night. Diwali falls on Amavasya, and according to Hindu Tantra, Amavasya is the perfect occasion to perform black magic.

Many people claim to have seen Ghaal, not only on Diwali but also on no-moon nights. It lands at the home of the target and calls his name thrice.

(Thrice! That’s important to note.)

And you know what’s even scarier? It uses a familiar voice. So, the victim has a very slim chance of surviving.

Ghaal can imitate anyone’s voice—a family member, a relative, a friend, or a neighbor. It calls the person by his name, and if that person replies with a yes, he gets killed.

But if that individual keeps silent, the Ghaal returns and kills the person who launched it. Pretty risky, huh?

Chhalawa (छलावा): A Mystical Supernatural Entity

“Chhal”—the Hindi word for Deceit.

That’s where the term “Chhalawa” comes from.

It’s a supernatural entity that can transform itself. It can take any shape or size—an old man, a woman, a beautiful girl, a rabbit, a goat, or a snake—anything!  Hence the name Chhalawa—the deceitful entity.

Chhalawa is an unexplainable phenomenon that can confuse and disorient you like anything. But there’s something weird about it—I have never heard anybody claiming that a Chhalawa killed somebody. Never.

It seems that it scares people just for fun.

Marriage of Ghosts (भूतों का ब्याह): An Otherworldy, Spooky Affair

Sound fascinating?

It is.

Western Uttar Pradesh folks call this ghostly phenomenon Bhooton ka Byah.

This eerie “marriage” happens during the nighttime, far away from the human dwellings.

And you know the exciting part?

Many people claim to have witnessed this spooky love affair—most of them were farmers working in their fields.

In Western Uttar Pradesh (and many parts of Bharat), it’s pretty standard for the farmers to work at night. Generally for two reasons: irrigating their crops with the canal water supply or transferring hay from fields to home (during the harvesting season).

So, this marriage of ghosts goes like any other human celebration:

The spirits gather in an open field. They dance, sing, and make merry. And once the celebrations are over, these otherworldly people distribute sweets among themselves and anyone nearby (humans included).

While offering sweets, they warn (in a nasal tone) that the person must eat the sweets immediately; otherwise, they’ll turn into shit with the first light.

Once a farmer, who was lucky enough to be working his fields in the vicinity of one such ‘marriage function venue’ was approached by ghosts.

The ghosts offered the farmer some sweets. Out of which, he ate some and kept the rest for his kids. But, when he looked into his pocket in the morning, there was dust and pig poop. (Oh! I see, highly perishable food items, huh? 😀 )

The Power of Your Word: Think Before You Speak

Your home is your turf, and anybody wanting to enter needs your permission, right?

Did you know that it’s true not just for humans but also for certain types of spirits and diseases?

Such anomalies need your permission to enter your home. And the way they ask for it is pretty interesting:

They call your name thrice while you’re asleep. Then, if you replied immediately, they consider it “permission granted.” And if you didn’t answer, they go away.

That’s why experienced people advise that you shouldn’t wake up in an instant to answer anybody calling your name.

Wait until your name is called at least three times.

Now, if the person waking you up is for real, he will also call you the 4th time (and may also shout at you for not replying).

The Wrath of “Jhaar Deewan”long (झार दीवान—वीर जाहर गोगा दीवान): My Story

It was 1996.

In my hometown, Muzaffarnagar (GT road, Khatuali), a yearly carnival is organized approximately 20 days before Janmashtami (Bhagwan Shri Krishna’s birthday).

Sweets. Toys. Fancy dresses.  Decorative items. And temporary eateries. These are some of the attractions of this carnival.

Now, it’s customary to offer prasad to “Shri Jahar Veer Goga”—a supernatural being, a fatherly figure of the snakes—popularly known as ‘Jhaar Deewan,’ before you enjoy the fair. Once you are offered the Prasad, you’re free to do as you wish.

(The Jahar Veer Goga temple is not on the Khatauli bypass. It’s in Khatauli.)

Once, I went to the carnival along with my younger brother and uncle. My brother offered prasad at the temple and asked me to do the same.

“I am wearing shoes, don’t make me untie the laces. You go ahead and offer the prasad for me, will you?” I asked.

He did.

We enjoyed the carnival and went back home the following day. And I returned to Delhi after a couple of days.

Help! There’s a Snake in My Room

One evening, I was busy with my studies.

Suddenly, I noticed a large black snake entering and hiding under my bed.

Terrified, I jumped out of the door and went straightaway to my uncle’s place. I returned the next day and checked under my bed. Nothing!

But as soon as the night approached, there he was.

Again, I went to my uncle’s place. Hearing about what happened, my grandmother got curious. “Have you ever offered prasad to Jhaar Deewan?” she inquired.


I recalled the incident when I had the opportunity, but I didn’t. So I told her what had happened.

“That’s okay; there’s no need to panic. You just go home, hold 5 rupees in your hands, and close your eyes. Then, focus on Jhaar Deewan, and ask for his forgiveness. Also, promise him that you’ll offer prasad the next time you visit Khatauli,” she suggested.

I did as told. And never saw that snake again.

After two months, I went to my village and offered prasad at Jhaar Deewan temple.

Flavors and Fragrances: Demons, Ghosts, and Anomalies Love Them

Spirits love sweets, especially those made with milk, sugar, and ghee (clarified butter).

They love sweets and can satisfy their desire to eat sweets by possessing a person eating such delicacies.

That’s why it’s advisable not to go outside immediately after eating sweets, particularly in the afternoons and nights. Because spirits are most active at these times, and the flavor of the sweets might attract them.

If you must go, clean your mouth thoroughly and eat some pickle or a pinch of salt or a little bit of ash (if you happen to be in a village).

And here comes an interesting thing:

When a married girl gives birth to a child, her mother sends the girl “Meetha” (the word for sweet in Hindi).

Meetha is a mixture of dried fruits (almonds, raisins, dried dates, muskmelon seeds, and Kani (dried fluid derived from a tree)).

This recipe is prepared with Ghee (clarified butter) and Boora (powdered white sugar) as its main ingredients. Sometimes people also refer to it as “Saanda.”

It is traditional for the girl’s brother or father to carry the mixture from her mother’s place to her husband’s home. A small onion or a clove of garlic is kept with the mix (wrapped in several layers of paper or plastic) to keep away the evil spirits.

The same is true about fragrances—perfumes and scents.

And, when it comes to wearing perfumes or scents, remember:

Do not wear fragrances if you’re supposed to pass through a deserted area or a water source like a well, river, lake, pond, etc., because spirits, ghosts, and many other paranormal beings hang out around water sources.

Kuldevtas (कुलदेवता): Protectors of the Household

Kuldevtas: Small Temple in Yahiyapur, Western Uttar Pradesh


Popularly known as Detās or Devtās, they are the deceased forefathers of a household. They protect the children of that particular house from diseases, failures, and setbacks. Keeping the Kuldevtas happy is key to a healthy and happy life.

Now, here’s the thing:

Most families in villages build small temples for their Kuldevtas, but such temples inside the house are considered inauspicious. And so, these tiny structures are maintained far away from homes—built with five bricks. (See the picture above. It’s the temple of our Kuldevtas).

Sunday is considered Kuldevtas’ day. And to honor them, some households prepare “Kheer” (खीर) (a sweet pudding made with rice, milk, sugar, and dried fruits).

First, the house lady offers it to the Kuldevtas and distributes the rest of it among the family and neighbors as Prasad.

Here’s another interesting thing.

It’s customary for the new brides of the home to light a Diya in the Kuldevta temple. Then, they pour water, milk, and sugar over the temple and bow their head to receive Kuldevatas’ blessings.

This process is known as “Jot Jalaana” (ज़ोत जलाना या ज़ोत बाळणा).

(Also, the newly married couple is forbidden to make love unless this ritual is performed.)

During the Wedding

Spirits love not only sweets but also new clothes and jewelry.

And a house with a wedding procession going on in full swing may attract such spirits.

So, to protect the house from evil influences, Kuldevtas are called upon.  The house lady creates a temporary structure with a heap of wheat or rice with a Diya lighting 24 hours a day.

Once the processions are over, they are thanked and requested to return to their abode.

The would-be bride and bridegroom are not supposed to step outside their homes three days before marriage. People say it’s crucial because a spirit(s) may be looking for an opportunity to possess the boy or the girl.

Now, it is said that if a spirit(s) gets to stay with the bride or the bridegroom during the Phere (the ritual when the girl and boy circle the fire seven times), it becomes impossible to ward off the spirit(s).

That spirit may create numerous problems in the married couple’s life, including, but not limited to…

Constant conflict in the house. The bride’s inability to conceive. Misery and suffering in some form or the other.

Dāb ka Banda (दाब का बन्दा): An Interesting Supernatural Phenomenon

Dab Ka Banda.

It is the root of a mysterious plant that attracts prosperity and good luck, irrespective of the outer circumstances.

A household in my village is said to have one, though they never admit it.

My grandmother had once told me that they do possess “Daab ka banda.” And that’s the reason they are one of the wealthiest households in our village.

So, there you have it—untold, unheard-of paranormal phenomena, otherworldly stories and occult experiences.

I hope this article filled your heart with awe and wonder.

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