Monday

[science] Sleep Paralysis

I happened to suffer from sleep paralysis this past Friday night...

"The disorder known as 'sleep paralysis' occurs when the brain is awakened from a REM state into essentially a normal fully awake state, but with the bodily paralysis still occurring. This causes the person to be fully aware, but unable to move. In addition, this state is usually accompanied by certain specific kinds of hallucinations."

I felt like I was just drifting off to sleep when an invisible 500 lb. blanket was put over me, I became lucid and saw a face like this looking down at me from the foot of the bed. I can't remember if I screamed or not, but I forced myself to move and become fully awake. It happened again (to a lesser extent) when I tried to go back to sleep, I woke myself up, and then I went to sleep for real.

Reading through the hallucinations, I did feel fear (which is a mild way of putting it; it was more like terror), sensing a malevolent presence, pressure/weight on the body and impending sense of doom. I think if I had any of the visual, auditory or tactile hallucinations, I'd go mad and never return back to sanity.

I have to say that I was so scared because one of the things I'm most afraid of is an incubus. Wikipedia leads one to believe that it's "legend" or "myth" but I know better...

2 comments:

Bill said...

Well sleep paralyisis is the leading contender for the origin of the incubus "legend." The evil deeds of this nasty demaon are just too suspiciously related to the symptoms of sleep paralysis. And modern alien abduction stories often involve these symptoms as well. Carl Sagan writes about all of this in his excellent skeptical treatise, The Demon Haunted World. So relax. Try imagining the incubus in his underwear, that ought to take the piss right out of him.

amy said...

Or, try imagining the incubus as Henry Rollins... Is this conversation getting too sketchy?