What happens to the electrical energy in a human body when we die?

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by Monsieur Baggy Trousers:

As a staunch skeptic, I find the notion of anything supernatural, from God to crystal healing to the existence of the human soul, likely to be based on human whim, rather than actually existing. Recently a friend of mine (who is definitely skeptical of the existence of a god but believes fully in ghosts) posited this question to me: given that the human body operates by electrical impulses, and as per the laws of thermodynamics energy can’t be created or destroyed; thus, the electrical energy must “live on” as a ghost.
I see this particular argument being offered all the time for the existence of ghosts; how does one refute this? What does happen to the electrical energy, anyway?

Answer by ear person
it’s all gone – really – all gone1

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It destroys the ozone layer. Al Gore had better find a cure for death real soon.


It dissipates, like the electricity in lightning. It still exists, but in what sense would it still be “you”?

Soulful Kris

It dissipates.

Jim M

It goes back into the wild blue yonder


That argument is complete nonsense. The body PRODUCES electrical impulses, it is not a repository of them. When you die, you stop producing them. To the extent there is any unspent charge built up, it eventually converts to heat.

Agnostic Front

It dies with you, hippy.


Same as turning off a lamp. Energy ceases to flow in the body. No ghosts.

Veni, Vidi, Monki

The Minions of the Energizer Bunny collect the energy (they do the same with dead batteries) and use it to charge him up.


Ultimately any electric potential energy in the cells end up as heat, raising the body temperature a tiny fraction ( probably less than one hundredth ) of a degree warmer than it otherwise would be. Eventually that slight excess of heat radiates to the surrounding environment.

Don H

What happens to the electrical energy that was lighting the light when you turn the light off?
I don’t see what this has to do with God or ghosts.
Love and blessings Don


Electricity is ALWAYS ( emphasis only) looking for a path to ground.

Damn ReligiousNut

(Hey, folks! Our “consciousness” is “complexly organized energy…and it takes a “complex organ (the human brain matter and central nervous system) to generate that consciouness…so sure…our energy is not created or destroyed…but when we die…that energy is no longer “complexly organized by complex brain matter,” so…
We die…because WE are “complex energy,” not “simple unorganized energy…”
Your “self-awareness” and “personality” do not survive the body’s death…so who cares…because without those two things…there’s nothing of any “conscious” value anymore…)
That “electrical energy” you are referring to is generated from the conversion of “food” and “oxygen” to energy…
That “electrical field” generated by our brains only works as long as the “generator” works…
Like in your car…take out the battery…and the car won’t work anymore…
Simple…(and your “corpse” still contains enormous amounts of “quantum matter potential” energy…which is “electrical,” too…but…our awareness and consciouness “ceases to be…”
Our consciousness is “the car…”
Our “bodies” are like the battery…only our “battery” will never hold a charge again or be hooked up to anything else that would be able to “recharge”our consciousness…
We ARE our bodies…and our bodies are us…and it is always…
Right now…until it suddenly is…
NOT right now anymore…(sorry to be the one to give you a “refresher course” in…
“Harsh Reality 101…”


After you die, the energy that was stored up in your body gets transferred into the bacteria and insects who need the nutrients it provides to survive. And some also gets transferred into the Earth as heat energy. In other words, your energy goes toward decomposing your body.
Remember, almost all of the energy on Earth at one point came from the sun. And all the energy on Earth eventually will either escape to the vastness of space or be stored deep under Earth’s surface (think “fossil fuels).

Glitter Girl

It is scientifically proven you cannot destroy energy.
it is scientifically proven we are energy.
Do you disagree at this point?
How can our energy be destroyed?
It can’t, we go on forever.
It is where do we go that is the $ 64,000 question.


Energy dissipates into the surrounding environment. It is somewhat similar to the way a pot of boiling water will slowly cool to room temperature when removed from a heat source. For a time the pot may actually heat up the surrounding area (if sat on table for example), but eventually the electrons will move toward an equilibrium with the surrounding environment and cool.

secret user

I think that your friends right. I do believe that our bodies are made up of a great electrical system and I also think that it goes on to live even after the flesh is dead. I think this is the life force that exist in us. I’m not sure how this is but when the flesh dies then the spirit or the electrical system goes back to God for which it came.Thank you and God Bless you,


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