Saturday, December 16

The Nightmare Within

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What is sleep paralysis.

Sleep paralysis is a momentary inability to move ones body despite being fully conscious. This may occur when someone is either drifting off or, more rarely, waking up. During REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, the muscles of the body are paralysed.

Researchers are not sure why this normal paralysis happens during consciousness for victims of sleep paralysis, but studies have confirmed the attacks are particular likely to occur if the person enters REM sleep quickly after making a sudden involuntary movement, bypassing the stages of non-REM sleep that usually happens first.

What happens in sleep paralysis.

Sometimes in the middle of the night, a person can wake up, with a feeling of pure dread and fear. They may experience the feeling of being unable to breath, also feel a crushing weight on their chest giving the feeling of pressing down pressure. They may see things shadows that appear to come closer leading them to panic and not being able to move a muscle, would leave the person in a terrifying state.

Sleep paralysis is described as a sleep disorder, with the vividness of the hallucinations, and the element of complete fear, of no escape, this sleep disorder is known in many parts of the world, and gained some folklore tales that add to this terrifying disorder.

In Hmong culture.

Sleep paralysis is an experience, called “dob tsog” or crushing, demons. Often the suffer claims to be able to see a tiny figure no larger than a child, sitting on the suffers chest.

In African culture.

Isolated sleep paralysis is commonly known as “the witch riding you’re back.

In Muslim culture of south Asia.

Sleep paralysis is considered an encounter with, jinns and demons, it is also assumed, it is caused by black magic.

In Greece and Cyprus.

Sleep paralysis is believed it occurs when a ghost like creature or demon, named Mora, that tries to steel her victims speech or sitting on their chest, causing asphyxiation.

In the southern United States.

The phenomenon is known as hag and the event is said to be a sign, of an approaching tragedy or accident.

The artist Henry Fuseli 1781 painted a picture depicting a sleep paralysis, demonic visitation, called the nightmare.

Image via Wikipedia

An experience of sleep paralysis.

It usually starts the same way, she falls asleep and hears a buzzing sound, soft sirens, the room seems to expand, she can feel a menacing thing in the room, that enters her body. She can now feel a pressure and a tugging, she wrestles with it, she is scared, and to anyone that looks at her she looks like she is in a peaceful sleep. She is screaming inside, this goes on for a few minuets, but feels like a life time for her. The woman manages to move her toes and it releases its grip on her.


Sleep paralysis has been blamed on demons and alien abductions, there is a lot more we do not know about, this disorder research has found to be caused by stress. Unless we keep on trying to look for the answers to this terrifying disorder we will never know how to help the people that are living this nightmare.


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