The debate between scientific explanations of incidents and the unseen space of the paranormal has been raging for centuries. And in India, one does grow up with a lot of stories of ghosts and demonic possessions triggering elusive questions in one’s mind.
The first episode of ScoopWhoop‘s documentary series CHASE in association with Newslaundry, tells the story of Demonic Possession through the personal quest of a journalist, which takes her on a journey to a part of India which is at a distance of a few kilometres from the the new urban India, but is still centuries behind the modern India where rationality and science have resisted superstition.
The mystery behind demonic possessions unfolds in the backdrop of Dausa, the Harsubhram temple near Bihar and Sant Sabir Shah Dargah — all destinations for those looking for a cure to demonic possessions.
Along with capturing the raw energy of a charged environment on camera, the documentary uses explanations by a software engineer moonlighting as a witch doctor, and clinical psychologists to decipher the mystery behind possessions.
While it is a standard approach to attribute beliefs in possession and outrageous modes of treatment to lack of awareness in backward regions, factors like repression of women, a health infrastructure unable to deal with psychological ailments and the lack of access to effective judicial recourse, also emerge as reasons for the desperation.
From people being chained, caned and burnt, to two witch-doctors settling a family dispute without violence through testimony of ghosts — the scenes which seem disturbing to rationalists, are normal for the locals.
That in a nutshell is the paradox we all live in.
Watch the documentary for more and let us know what you think in the comments below.