Are shadow people dangerous? Creepy facts

Have you seen a black shadow flicker by in the corner of your eye? A jet-black shadow that seems to sweep by without making a sound. Scary, oh yes, but are they dangerous?

As a general rule, shadow people do not pose a threat even if they are scary to encounter. There are very few records of shadow people causing any harm or danger to the living.

There are different types of shadow people. In most cases, the shadow persons are not dangerous, but they can be terrifying to experience. Let’s take a closer look at what dangers they might pose.

What shadow people are

Shadow people are supernatural creatures often seen in the corner of the eye or just flickering by. The exciting thing about shadow people is that they come in different shapes and forms.

Shadow people consist of very dark shadows that light can’t pass through. They are jet black, and you can’t make out details. Even though they don’t have faces, many recall them as “male” in nature. Shadow people are thought to be non-human-originated entities.

Many paranormal investigators think that shadow people are extraterrestrial beings. Some believe that shadow people might be demonic. But I find that a little hard to believe as they seldom pose any danger to humans (what we know of, at least).

Shadow people seldom interact, but they seem interested in us and what we do. They can stare at us at night. They are also known for lurking in the woods.

Shadow people vs. shadow figure

It is not uncommon to encounter a shadow person in haunted sites. It might also be that we misidentify them as well. It can be shadow figures of ghosts we are seeing – and not shadow people.

Shadow people are not as transparent as shadow figures. Shadow people lack details; they are merely an outline of a person. On the other hand, shadow figures are transparent and (often) show defined features. You can see clothing or facial features. Shadow people are not easy to identify. They are like black cut-outs.

I created a table below to make it easier to understand the difference.

Shadow peopleShadow figure
Non-human originated entityHuman originated spirit
Extraterrestial or demonicAnimal originated spirit
Jet black solid figuresA manifestation of a spirit – a sheer shadow with features

Shadow people and dangers

There are few records of shadow people attacking or lashing out. They can be terrifying to encounter as they stare or flicker in the corner of the eye. In many cases, shadow people don’t interact with us but seem to be interested in what we are doing. This can be very scary, as we can’t figure out what they are up to.

There are theories that shadow people are demonic. But as mentioned earlier, it is hard to believe as they don’t try to oppress or possess us. There are occasions when shadow people have some attachment to people. But they seldom stick around for too long.

As with poltergeist activity, shadow people seem connected to strong emotions.

Different types of shadow people

There are different kinds of shadow people. Sometimes it can be hard to distinguish between shadow people and shadow figures. This might be the vast array of types of sightings.

A shadow person is jet black without any features. They appear like a black mass with outlines. A shadow figure is more transparent and might have recognizable features. These derive from ghosts.

Bedroom lurkers

The bedroom lurker, or bedroom shadow, is seen when a person awakens during the night. The entity often stands in the corner of the room or nearby the bed. The lurker doesn’t communicate. Even if the shadow does not attack, it is creepy and scary.

The lurker is seen as a solid black mass against the darkness surrounding it. Some say they have seen it wearing a coat and fedora hat.

Moving shadows

This kind of shadow person moves quickly across a room. It dissolves into walls and is not interested in its surroundings. The moving shadows rarely try to communicate. They are busy doing their thing. They might flicker by in the corner of the eye but might also be seen as a full-body apparitionOpens in a new tab..

These sightings might be residual hauntings. It is easy to misidentify these sightings if you are not familiar with the difference between ghostly and shadow people’s apparitions. It is sometimes hard to fully grasp the situation as they move very fast. If the sighting loops repeatedly, it might be a residual haunting and not a shadow person.

Wall shadows

Wall shadows are jet-black outlines of people moving across a room. The shadow might melt into the wall, floor, or sealing. They seldom interact; they go about their day unaware of the terror they cause. Or that is what I believe.

Background shadows

These kinds of shadows are only seen in photos or videos. They often stand behind a person in the photo. They can be terrifying, as you had no idea they were there. You can also see them as shadows on the walls, grass, or alike.

In some cases, these sightings can be visual illusions. Photographs tend to create strange apparitions. When more thoroughly investigated, there was a natural cause to the phenomena – dust, shadows caused by headlights, and alike.

Imagine how strange a shadow might look if a car drives by, casting two shadows. I hope you follow me. The sun and the headlights can create very strange-looking photos. There are millions of examples of how light reflections can cause strange shadows in photos.

Intelligent shadows

Intelligent shadows are often seen on haunted sites. They appear suddenly to disappear as quickly. They are known to follow people around, as they take more interest in some than others. This type of shadow person takes the most interest in people. They are not just watching; they actively make their presence known through a creepy gut feeling followed by a sudden apparition.


Even if shadow people are scary, they are not known to be dangerous. Most of the shadow people don’t take any interest in us. There are types, called watchers or intelligent shadows, that seem to be the most interested in us by staring or following us around.

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Claudette Beaulieu

A certified paranormal investigator, accredited demonologist, and psychic stuck in the Victorian era.

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