Do you believe in children's imaginary playmates (spook warning) I am having a serious goosebumps outbreak as I write this message. I just got off the phone with a cousin of mine who lives in a mountainous southern region in the Philippines. She has apparently found out from my mother that I am doing Zen meditation now and I regularly visit a Buddhist temple. For some weird reason she thought I could help her with a problem she has with her daughter. Just a brief background, my cousin is very religious catholic and isn't particulary fond of non-angelic paranormal beings. She claims that her daughter (age 4) is playing with "real" invisible friends of an alternate dimension. Even during day time her daughter would be talking with these invisible friends and the experiences seem so real. When asked to draw how these friends looked like, they resembled the dwarves in Snow White's life. There are apparently three of such dwarves who are friends with my cousin's daughter. The "imaginary" friends apparently mean no harm, but the spooky part is, after the child was brought to have a brain scan when they had gone to the main city last year (to see if there were any defects in the brain), all tests proved normal. The family had sought a spiritual counselor from their local parish church but even after blessing the house, the "entities" whom their daughter played with still wouldn't leave. They consulted a local psychic and the psychic said that there has had a very strong paranormal energy level. My cousin asked me if there was anything in Buddhism that dealt with these types of spiritual encounters, and all I could tell her was not to be afraid and let her child just play along until she reaches the age of reason and then let her decide if she wants to keep those friends. (I don't think it will be a good idea to start a quarrel with supernatural folks don't you think?) Demonic possession, anyone? I know I talk a lot about aliens and robots -- but holy crap -- ghosts??? I'd rather see an alien anytime than a freaking ghost. Unless of course the ghost is a ghost of a hot chick, but then again, how could a ghost be hot?