|Image Copyright: Jeanne Nelson|
If you have, you may have glimpsed one of the Shadow People~ dark humanoid figures that lack distinctive features who appear and disappear in the blink of an eye. The most frequently sighted is the Hat Man, a tall dark man wearing a hat and often a cloak. Some reports suggest that the Shadow People aren't malicious in nature, but rather observers of our world. Others insist that they are soul-stealers. No one knows why they come or how long they've been around but the phenomenon is world-wide.
Jason Offutt, author of Darkness Walks: The Shadow People Among Us, states in an interview with Stephen Wagner: "The oldest mention of entities like this in literature I've found was in the late 1800s, although shadow people have been reported in various religions throughout history."
Scientific explanations attempting to debunk these paranormal experiences claim the manifestations are a result of optical illusions or hallucinations.
"When a specific region of the brain called the left temporoparietal junction is stimulated, it can create the illusion of a shadow person. Images seen in peripheral areas of vision can be caused by pareidolia, a condition in which the brain incorrectly interprets random patterns of light/shadow or texture as being familiar patterns such as faces and human forms." ~ Wikipedia
|Photo: Disney's Peter Pan|
The notion of a sentient shadow can be found in J.M. Barrie's beloved Peter Pan. And a modern variation of the Shadow People was showcased by the appearance of "The Observer" in the FOX television series FRINGE.
Whether it's a supernatural visitation or a figment of imagination, I've experienced this phenomenon many times. Always accompanied by a rush of adrenaline, a wave of nausea and a stomach-dropping dread.
Have you encountered the Shadow People? What was your experience like?