- Religion and Philosophy»
- Paranormal Beliefs & Experiences
Shadow People Series: Old Hag
Depiction of The Old Hag
This Shadow Person Explained Away
The Old Woman or Old Hag shadow person is typically explained away by both paranormal enthusiasts and experts and by Scientists. The thing most people say is the cause of someone seeing the Shadow Person known as the Old Hag is: SLEEP PARALYSIS.
The alternate name for "Sleep Paralysis" is "Old Hag Syndrome," because this phenomenon has been reported by so many people, and experts from many fields have actually been able to study this phenomenon. Another fairly common term used to account for Shadow People described as the Old Hag is the term "Hypnagogia," which stands for the time span when you're no longer fast asleep but your body hasn't "awakened" as quickly as your conscious mind has.
Typically, people who are in sleep paralysis are still paralyzed by the natural and normal body physiological process which keeps us safe during sleeping hours. If our brains didn't have a sort of 'lock down' mechanism working when we sleep, we'd thrash about and act out our many dreams. In a state of sleep paralysis, a person becomes conscious or thinks they've fully awakened, but their body has lagged behind and not been brought to a state where it can physically react in the world yet. This state, indeed, is terrifying for most people, and those who suffer in sleep paralysis may end up experiencing this half-awake but immobilized state a number of times on many different awakening occasions before they are actually aware that they may be experiencing sleep paralysis.
Well, if you're not convinced that the medical/scientific and psychological explanation above is what the Old Hag Shadow People are about when people see such things and report them, you're definitely not alone.
The Old Woman or Old Hag Shadow entity is basically described as a black silhouette in the shape of a person but the shadow has no facial features - no visible nose, eyes, mouth, etc. This shadow is described consistently as two-dimensional in appearance and blocks out visible things between the viewer and things located behind the area where the shadow person or Old Hag is in the room. Sometimes there is a sort of distorted, vapourous three-dimensional effect, visually, and according to the movements of the shadow entity.
Try to try as I might here, I cannot make the Old Hag seem MORE menacing or more supernatural here, because...
Well, although more people THINK the Old Hag has a supernatural source, she's just a Shadow Person phenomenon that seems to have a very good explanation through medicine, psychology and science.
All I'll be doing if I continue on is start writing fiction about an Old Hag shadow in a made-up story. I'd rather not continue on because this series on the topic of Shadow People is created to look at the different explanations for all sorts of shadows reported by both 'believers' and 'non-believers' in the paranormal experiences of these Shadow entities.
Fortunately, according to my viewpoint, the Old Hag Shadow entity seems to have hit up against some fine concluding explanations - all involving physiological sources but with reasonably natural human body effects.
I don't recall ever having had an episode of Sleep Paralysis myself. I'm not looking forward to ever having such effects going on in the middle of the night between my half-awake body and rapidly awakening mind, but if something like this DOES OCCUR in my life, I'm pretty darned sure
I WILL FREAK RIGHT OUT!!!! In all accounts I've read about, the hallucination - or the mind-body mixed up effect of sleep paralysis allows for a very terrifying experience in those who suffer it. I'm sure, again looking back on the accounts of sleep paralysis I've already read, that if I were to encounter one of the still unexplained benign shadow people, that experience probably wouldn't hold a candle to the effects of experiencing The Old Woman via sleep paralysis.
I'm sure I'll wonder about all of this and still have no control on whether or not an episode of sleep paralysis will ever happen to me. If it does, I'm sure I'll feel the presence of the Old Hag and experience derogatory effects in my body and mind which compel me to believe I just saw a real, existing paranormal object in my room. Hopefully, all the things I've already studied about Shadow People and other paranormal topics will serve me well in a state of semi-consciousness, but who knows?
Sleep Paralysis Documentary - Trailer
Hub Challenge Hub #15
This lens is part of a March 2010 Hub Challenge I'm doing. I started March 1 and have a personal goal to publish at least 60 hubs over the month of March.
To check out how I'm doing, see my challenge hub, link below:
This Hub is part of a Shadow People Series set of articles. The matching Shadow People article links are below: