Real Ghosts from Around the World: Japan’s Yūrei

Meaning faint spirit or dim soul, yūrei (幽霊) is the Japanese word for ghosts. Though yurei can be male or female, Westerners are most familiar with female yureis as they star in a number of well-known horror flicks including The Ring (right) and The Grudge.

Like their Western counterparts, yurei have difficulty moving on after death. Some are bound by feelings of a love or hate, while others are troubled by the violent nature of their death, be it accident, murder, or suicide. Many yurei are motivated by vengeance. Yureis will continue to haunt the Earth until they’re able to accept their fate or complete the unfinished business that binds them to this plane of existence.

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