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Monster of the Week: ‘Shadow People’

Shadow people have been around for a very long time. They have been explained through religion, parapsychology, demonology, and even metaphysics. Although some explanations state that such creatures a merely ghost manifestations, there are many who believe that shadow people are distinct entities that are malicious or evil spirits. Even though there have been full-view sightings of these creatures, most encounters cite that these creatures are most often seen through the peripheral vision.

A shadow person commonly referred to as the "hat man."
Wikipedia Commons

Shadow people are true silhouettes. Thus, they have no discernible facial features. However, some witnesses claim that these creatures’ eyes in fact are colored globes that glow and at times even change color. With respect to bodies, some are shapeless, appearing at little more than black blobs or distorted shadows, whereas others appear to be dressed in period clothing that ranges from the primitive to the modern. Shadow people also vary in size and sex.

There have been various explanations for these creatures throughout the years. Early beliefs indicated that these creatures may have been summoned entities designed to carry out a purpose for the magician or shaman. Once said task was carried out, the shadow person was “trapped” in human reality. Such “helpers” are discussed today, particularly among those who practice one form of magic or other.

Another explanation is that the shadow person is a ghost who when human suffered some extraordinary stress or trauma and that that person “relives” such events as a shadow. One modern view of the shadow people is that they are supernatural beings that could have evil intent on the living.

Medical science explains shadow people as a result of various ailments, such as sleeping disorders (sleep paralysis and sleep deprivation among them), as well as hallucinations caused by physiological (for example, side effects of medication or drug use) or psychological means.

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