Tuesday, 18 October 2016

"That's Weird": Explanations Behind Curious Phenomena You May Have Experienced

Life is full of mysterious moments - and it could even be argued that is the point. If we knew everything, we would be denied surprises, and things would become mundane. A little bit of change once in awhile is inherently good for us.
So when those things happen that we can't explain, we have two choices.
1) We choose not to explain them, and revel in their absurdity
2) We seek an explanation so as to better understand ourselves
None of the things we're going to talk about below are dangerous - but they are unique human experiences. If you have ever had one, it will stand out, and you will finally know what happened to you. Some are medical in basis; others are spiritual. Revealing a few mysteries can give you a whole new perspective, so let's play "have you ever"...
Have You Ever... woken up in the middle of the night, unable to move?
You can add into this waking up and seeing things. It might be a ghostly presence at the foot of your bed, or lights dancing outside a window when no one is there. Even if you wanted to check, you can't, as you just can't move. In most cases, you eventually go right back to sleep, and wake up the next morning wondering what had happened.
So What Did Happen?
The above is a textbook description of a phenomenon known as sleep paralysis. We all wake on average every 45 minutes, but we forget about it the next morning. Sleep paralysis occurs when we are aware of these sleep disturbances. It's not dangerous, but it is a weird experience.
Have You Ever... known something was going to happen before it did?
The phone rings, and you know who it is before you pick up, and without the presence of caller ID. The doorbell rings and you know who it is, even if it's an unexpected guest you haven't spoken to for years.
So What Happened?
There are two things this could point towards. The first is a kind of brain conditioning: we remember the positives before the negatives. So we remember when it happened, and we were correct, but forget the times we were wrong. The second is more spiritual; many with a psychic gift describe such experiences as being their pathway to becoming a psychic.
Have You Ever... felt scared when in a building that echoes?
Whether it is a building you are visiting or somewhere you live, the feeling of being in an echo is a notable one. You can even begin to feel there is someone else in the room with you or that you are being watched.
So What Happened?
Sound can play tricks on our minds. Many buildings thought to be haunted have a unique sound frequency, which makes us feel uneasy. It can even lead to us seeing things. There is always the chance it's a real window into the afterlife, but if the building is particularly cavernous, rule this out first.
Have You Ever... been on the verge of falling asleep, and heard a loud noise?
People describe thuds, bangs, and squeaking noises when they are on the brink of falling asleep. More esoteric experiences include the sound of a zipper, like their scalp is being opened. Or even the feel of rats running across their head. The sensation is usually auditory, but you can also feel something strange as well. It doesn't have to happen often and most of us forget about it, but if it happens repeatedly, then something more might be going on.
What's Actually Happening?
It's unlikely that the cause is something paranormal, and we certainly hope no one is unzipping your scalp. What's going on is a quirk of brain chemistry. As you relax, your body begins to drift into sleep, yet your senses are still alert. They remain searching for something that is potentially a threat and will overreact to the merest stimulation.
Sometimes it's in something you can hear or just a feeling on your body. So a squeak from a nearby floorboard is amplified, or a hair across your forehead becomes a plague of rats. It is known, rather fantastically, as Exploding Head Syndrome.
The good news is that it's not dangerous, and is nothing more than something of an oddity. It's more likely to occur if you have problems with anxiety, so you may wish to look for medical help for the underlying issue. However, the syndrome itself is not a problem besides being a little freaky.

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