"What I'm dealing with is so vast and great that it can't be called the truth. It's above the truth." - Sun Ra

Monday, August 5, 2013

Demon Sheets: Sleep Paralysis Theories

Sleep paralysis. What is it?

When we can't move, lying in bed, can't lift our head or move or arms or speak to scream, and we sense some malevolent presence in the room, just out of sight, looming over us, that's sleep paralysis. Doctors say it's a naturally occurring symptom of deep REM sleep, our body is temporarily paralyzed to stop us from acting out in our dreams,  or whatever. Sometimes that paralysis hits when we're not quite entirely asleep or awake yet. We're conscious, 'awake' but our nervous system is already paralyzed to prepare for dreaming. The reverse of this of course being sleep walking, where the nervous system is active, motor-functions enacting dream signals, but mind fully unconscious.

BUT that doesn't explain the creepy monster/s looming over us in sleep paralysis. It doesn't seem to make 100% sense either; and when two people dream the same sight in the same room (one waking up to see the monster looming over their partner who is having the dream at that exact same moment) or receiving wounds from the creature (demonic scratches, alien punctures, or other), then the psychological underpinnings of the phenomenon fall short. Doctors can make a convincing guess how/why it occurs but never an explanation of why this apparition in the room? Is it 'the very painting of our fear'? Or something truly external? Are these dream witches always with us? Are they the parasites of our sleeping chi?

My own SP experiences are rare but each one seems profound. As I've written in earlier posts, I've seen a demonic creature in the room even after I had awaken from my nightmare, and was shouting at it to go away before it faded, laughing silently at me all the while, into a moonlight reflection. And I've been lifted out of my bed, ass first, up along the ceiling and out the window, accelerating up and up faster and faster into the sky until shooting up back into my body in the bed, as if a second, identical bed was way up in the sky. In each of these instances I wound up awaking and leaping out of bed as if from an electrical jolt.

You can dismiss these as hallucinations, waking nightmares. I won't argue with that. But you know what else are hallucinations and waking nightmares?


All that we see, hear, and touch is a nervous system illusion, a translation: matter is perceived erroneously as solid (it's just vibrating energy) and permanent (like everything in the universe, it's always in the process of disintegrating); faces are perceived as unchanging from breath to breath (they're constantly shedding skin cells and absorbing passing dirt); linear time and 3-D space are perceived as a constant (a necessary illusion for the functioning within it - i.e. you can't be on the look-out for food and bears when you're overwhelmed by the totality of the cosmos).

This is all 'shared hallucination' or collective consciousness, distinctive to humans of our current era, the way our senses process stimuli (vs. say, a dog's enhanced smell or insect's pheromone telepathy) and the way we've been trained to process, identify, and order the information we decode from these stimuli. If we look at all these pictures of sleep paralysis demons, from different artists, different centuries, how can we dismiss them as less real than normal waking perceptions? Are these hags a kind of fourth dimensional species of kundalini energy parasite or vampire? Or is it that our fear of not being able to raise our head conjures them, 'the very painting of our fear' to quote Shakespeare.

Say a man looks at a picture of the ocean. It's just pixels of color on a flat surface, and from those pixels he sees the ocean. If he's really really tired or possessed of vivid imagination (this happens to me a lot) he might actually smell salt air or hear a distant rush of waves, he might even see the waves move in the picture - even knowing they're not and he's just tired doesn't help - he literally sees the waves move. A dog looking at the same photo wouldn't see anything of interest: he would sniff it and judge it as inedible and inactive and then move on. BUT if we fold that photo into a paper airplane and throw it for him to fetch, he sees it as prey, a quarry to chase). By the same token, we walk our dog past a tree on the sidewalk and our mind says "tree - yeah yeah, keep walking" - we just perceive the tree and maybe stale dog urine if there's no wind that day. Our dog 'sees' the dogs who have been there from their urine scents, the way we see the ocean in that picture. Dogs' urine is like a bulletin board message: who is in heat? who ix marking territory? who's new in town? Are these dogs hallucinating just because we can't discern these things?

Scientists tend to forget the way our sensorially-decoded paradigm is limited to human perception of self and their myopia makes them paranoid, like fundamentalist Christians seeing blasphemers in the cobwebs of their attics. If a Christian has sleep paralysis, the being looming above him would be perceived as Satan; if he had being reading David Icke, the being would be a reptilian alien; a gnostic scholar would see an archon; a UFO scholar would see a flock of greys come for an abduction.


The thing is, though, most humans, even non-scientists or philosophers, agree the stimuli we all perceive differently (according to our nature in this world) are 'the same' in each case.  We might see the book as a novel, a dog might see it as wood pulp and a child might see it as having no pictures, but it's still the same object. Dismissing the bedroom invader as 'mere hallucination' conjured from the semi-asleep state by our panic over being unable to move (i.e. in dreams your fear of monsters creates them) is the easy way to get around the uncanny fear it generates. Whether it's real or not, it's still the same object.

Personally, I believe that there IS a rational psychological interpretation as valid as any esoteric one for nearly any paranormal phenomena but that neither is invalidated by that. We must instead look at our need for myth, for a zone between the psychological and the paranormal, a Schrodinger's Cat approach to these things being both real and an illusion at the same time, and yet neither.

BUT it doesn't explain anything, neither from a mythic / collective unconscious standpoint, or a physical, mental, or supernatural one, which in this case I mean as a reinterpretation of the supernatural as human experience that involves a sudden surge of DMT or third eye awakening. In other words, science can describe how DNA might unpack a seed so that it becomes a tree through photosynthesis, soil and water, but it can't explain why, or where it all comes from to begin with. They have no idea which came first, the chicken or the egg, or why it bothered to come at all and from where, except to theorize the egg came first from something other than a chicken, say, an archaeopteryx and before that, a pterodactyl, a slow evolution over millions of years - MAYBE. They don't know why sleep paralysis occurs in the way it does, only how it occurs, the mind waking up before the body does. Why do we sense this evil presence in the room? We usually sense the presence before we realize we can't move, so which came first? Does the demon wait for the right situation to pounce? Do they milk our psychic fear like a farmer slapping the cow's udder?

It's inadequate to dismiss these apparitions as half-awake nightmares. We still don't quite know how third eye dreams / imaginings work. We can analyze the cones and rods of the eye, the pupil, the optical fluids, but what we sense in nightmares has no correlation to anything we can measure. How we 'see' dreams with our eyes closed is open to interpretation.

One of the common names for the being who comes for you in sleep paralysis is called--in old legends--the 'old hag' and sleep paralysis is then  'old hag syndrome'  So is this creature always female?

I've felt in the past that these beings are aliens from alternate dimensions testing our individual frequencies to see if we're suitable harvesting candidates for abduction and psychic harvesting, i.e. when we sleep our psychic energy might be up for grabs, the psychic equivalent of stealing your neighbor's WiFi.

If you're an easy mark they may abduct you wholesale, either physically or psionically.  No UFO over your house is needed, just a good strong wireless router. they steal your astral brain and return it by dawn, usually. But there is no clear line between the astral and physical body according to my theory, therefore the physical being might be moved as well, particularly if, say, the astral body is wedged into the physical form (i.e. you don't have WiFi so they steal your whole modem).

I think if you can fight them off successfully, wake up from the sleep paralysis through sheer act of will, then they move on -- you're not worth it. You're the one that got away. More power to ya. Plenty of fish in the sea.

Another theory is that there are always demons, ever-present just outside our worldly perceptions. I got the feeling from that demon that stayed in my room (see link in 3rd paragraph) that he wasn't from some other place on our planet, but was always around, waiting for a chance to do harm in the tangible world, visible only occasionally to psychics, schizophrenics, and people burning up from fever.

Another theory is that they are homunculus time travelers from a Possible Earth's future wherein increased gravity has made us squat and a little transparent. What are time travelers if not ghosts? From the past or future they loom up, still dealing from the bottom of the old wounds deck, still clanging their spurs in Jacob Marleyian vengeance, their ætheric tendrils reaching deep into the future to spook later generations, the "living" equivalent of historical memoirs, or old time cinematic images and photos.

I also like the idea that demons can be called into this world either accidentally via Ouija boards, or intentionally via snot-nosed punks trying to anger their parents and impress their bad influence peers. If these summoning amateurs don't know they have to dismiss the demons when they're done, send them back to Hell, then the demons get to stay forever or until some angel, exorcist or psychic kicks them out. The spirit world conjured by the Rosicrucian mystics, for example, was left masterless when the Jesuits slaughtered them; the dark shadow demons conjured and then never sent back have been surly and hacking their way through underbrush of Protestantism to find the worthy Catholics and reincarnations of Catholics to torture in kind, for they are not grateful to be without the only humans who understood them, and modern society still sneers and ostracizes--the civilized man's version of burning at the stake--anyone who admits to seeing or hearing these beings. Even the peasants and uneducated who wouldn't be unseated by a radical new paradigm dutifully throw their rocks of scorn in an unconscious effort to please their conservative masters! The uneducated shun the educated man who won't talk down to them. They mistrust the man who won't take advantage of their ignorance to rob them in clouds of sanctified incense or finger-pointing. Throwing rocks at a problem is easier than 'hearing' it out like open-minded beings insist. This means that so much of the God's work has to be hidden from 'the faithful' for whom no miracle not centuries old can occur, lest its vessel be burnt at the stake.

I'm off topic.

 I received this from my friend Sean Kelly (author of various books on saints and strange humors), they are snippets about sleep monsters from his "unfinish-able fairy dictionary":

Alps: They are rarely described, since they work in the dark and can shape-shift, but they are invariably said to wear a hat. An Alp is typically male, its prey usually a sleeping female. Alp attacks are called Alpdrücke, or Alpdrücken. The creature sits astride the sleeper’s chest and becomes increasingly heavy, until the crushing weight awakens the terrified victim. An Alp will drink blood from the nipples of men and children, but prefers the milk of women. If you say to an Alp that is pressing upon you, "Come tomorrow, and I will lend you something!" he will immediately vanish and come the next day in the form of a human wishing to borrow something. They can also be repelled with horse heads. The word, in High German, is etymologically related to Elf. The entity itself is known by many names: Crusher, Drude, Hag, Mara, Mare, Mart, Mallt y Nos, Night-Fiend, Night-Elve, Night Hag, Night-Mare, Polunocnica, Trud, Waalridder, etc.

Mare, Mahrt, Märt, Martes: The female Alp, who rides on sleeping men at night, pressing against them until they can no longer breath. The mare in the English word ‘nightmare’ is mara, the Anglo-Saxon term for that female preternatural entity that sits on sleepers' chests. (A bad dream is called a martröð in Icelandic, mareridt in Danish and mareritt in Norwegian.) In Poland, the sleep-disturbing märt is a girl with a misshapen foot. Martes is a type of French fee, dark complexioned and hairy, with pendulous breasts. The approaching being sounds like the gnawing of a mouse or the quiet creeping of a cat. The mårt can be captured by grasping it with an inherited glove or by closing up all of the room's openings as soon as the sleeping person begins to groan. A mårt-ride can be prevented by crossing one's arms and legs before falling asleep. See Murraue.

Murraue: Similar to the Alp or Mare, but she creeps up a sleeping person's body from below. First you feel her weight on your feet, next on your stomach, and finally on your chest, until you cannot move a muscle. However, if you think that you know who she is, call her by name and she will vanish. In certain parts of Germany, a person born on Sunday, whose eyebrows grow together, is called a murraue.

Polunocnica: The Russian “Lady of Midnight” is a fierce Hag who lives in a swamp and torments sleeping children with nightmares. (She is the sister of the Poludnitsa.)

Trud: Another name for Alp. The female form is trude. There are witches who can send one to those they hate merely by their thoughts. He comes out of their eyebrows, looks like a small white butterfly, and sits on the breast of a sleeping person. If you say to one that is pressing upon you, "Trud, come tomorrow, and I will lend you something!" then he will immediately retreat and come the next day in the form of a human, in order to borrow something. 

Waalridder: A name by which the nightmare-causing Alp is known in the Netherlands.

So keep your horseheads and inherited glove handy, and remember to tell the demons "come tomorrow and I will lend you something" - apparently it always works.


Anonymous said...

I'm glad I found this post. I have for sure experienced this,and I can remember clearly sensing an evil presence. I remember not being able to move,and I recall thinking later that day that it was just my mind awaking before my body, but I really like this take on it. It really does make me wonder.... Very creepy.
And those mysterious scratches? That's got to mean something too...

Anonymous said...

I had the same experience a handful of times when I was in my early twenties. I had never heard of sleep paralysis or anything like it (the internet did not exist then). The feeling of helpless panic and fear is so very real it almost feel wrong to use the word sleep. What really strikes me is as odd is the feeling of a truly evil presence in the room accompanying the event.. truly awful :-) ....

Anonymous said...

Just found and read. Had it for now two decades. Just had a 3 rounder a few nights ago. Never felt a preseence early on. Just the ringing and the really good vision and hearing. Only lately have I senced something. Not scared or worried. Just impatient to find out. Don't have that virtue yet. I like knowing. I asked for a book? Odd.


Anonymous said...

Several of times I've had these experiences before too. Some of the times I did see them, other times I didn't. Even if I woke up from normal sleep from the night before, and woke up in the morning sometimes it would still happen, but I never saw any of the sleep paralysis demons at this time. And whether it's morning or night, it's still horrifying no matter what, because you have to know about the fact that there's multiple dimensions in the same place. During the nighttime in my room, even when it was pitch black, this demonic figure was so dark that I was still able to see it, while it was pitch black. The next thing I'm going to say right now might seem crazy, but then think about it, other people who don't believe in this stuff might think you're crazy too. But anyways, I know so far comment wise on this subject there was still one more thing that I've experienced that hasn't been explained. And maybe some of you have been through this next thing that I'm going to talk about that has happened to me. One of the last times that this had happened, things went further than usual. First I was floating and I saw my body just as the other person mentioned on one of the first comments near the top of the page. But then something else happened, after what I believed was my soul getting to a certain point in the air all of a sudden everything blacked out. Then it's like my soul wound up in a different place, and I heard this high pitched ringing sound, just like the ringing sound that you hear once you've been hit in the ear real hard. It's really weird though because in that place I saw this bright orb right in front of me. Even though it was bright it's as if the light was contained because I didn't see any of the light shining everywhere else. But everything else around was pitch black, and then all of a sudden I started drifting away from the bright orb, and at the same time when I was drifting away, I started seeing multiple visions of people that I've known in my life, family and friends. And when I started drifting even further away from the light, leading into even more true pitch blackness the visions started getting blurry, as if my very existence was going to end, not just for my body but also for my soul. I had an incredibly strong connection to that orb, because I somehow believe that that orb was my soul, a source of life, the only source of life that seemed to be there in that dark place. And I just drifted further and further away, and just started thinking that if I lose that light then I would feel like the demonic entities there would truly have me. I know that I've explained a lot about what I was thinking, but all of what I was thinking was only thought in a few seconds during that situation. It just felt incredibly scary and uncomfortable in that place, it felt as if every bit of life in me was being pulled out, and that is probably what the demonic entities were trying to do. I had to get to the light as fast as I could and I tried as hard as I could and it felt like they were pulling me back, then I finally went into the light and then my soul went back into my body.

Unknown said...

I have had 4 "experiences" to date, over a 30 year period. The first was when I was 10, living near Toronto. I woke up on my back and couldn't move; this dark fog materialised coming from the bottom of the bed and, what I can only describe as "Pure Evil" was looking at me, inches from my face. The second time, I was at a Christian youth camp on the top bunk. I was 16 when this happened. Exactly the same thing (I will never forget that face). When I was finally able to move, I scooted up against the wall and it was gone... This was witnessed by the person in the bunk across from me, who told me to pray for my soul.
The third time, I was about 19 or 20. I was lifted out of my bed at home, floated out over the floor and rotated 180* so that my head was where my feet should be. I was lowered to the carpet, and I could FEEL the carpet on my face. Again, I couldn't move, started panicking and it was like I blinked and was back in bed.
The last time (I hope) it occurred, I was 24, asleep in my bedroom and all of a sudden I awoke but couldn't move again. I was looking at my alarm clock and the sheets slowly started getting pulled off the bed. FULL PANICK. I was moaning but couldn't get words out, it was like I was trapped in my body. I suddenly leapt up and turned around (think of me like a coiled spring) My comforter and sheets were on the floor. I looked at the clock and almost a whole hour had passed.
I've told very few ppl about this, the general consensus is that I "was having a nightmare" I don't know what the hell happened, but it wasn't a bloody nightmare. That face, it was dark like a shadow....the sense of doom; like I was going to die...

Erich Kuersten said...

Where was this camp? What state? I was just writing about a Christian youth camp and want to see if it's the same one

Anonymous said...

My only experience with sleep paralysis was last year. I woke up and was laying on my back with my head to the left. I knew where I was, alone in my bed, in my bedroom. I couldn't move my body or turn my head. Felt a presence standing to the right of my bedside, heard voices talking (couldn't make out what was said, but caught some repeating numbers), felt pressure on my chest, but also a sort of magnetic pull, like it was trying to pull my body upwards. Seen flashes of light, like a glow from static on the tv. I remember being more terrified of not being able to move my body or being able to turn toward what was happening more than whatever presence was there. I wasn't afraid of it or find it evil. I can't really explain it. When I was finally able to move, the room was pitch black and normal, nothing out of the ordinary. I couldnt shake that feeling, it stayed with me for a long time. I don't know if it had anything to do with the sleep paralysis or is purely coincidental, but shortly following I've had a growing interest in spiritual awakening, synchronicity, chakras, astral projection, universal energy, crystals, etc. Which is normal for some, but is completely out of character for me. Like I had little to zero interest in that stuff(wasn't even familiar with some of it) and now I can't get enough. Didn't even really realize until my husband brought it to my attention, which by the way he totally thinks I'm crazy now. Just wanted to share my story since I don't really have anyone to share with and was curious if anyone else had any unusual interests afterwards.