What Is Pareidolia?: An Explanation & Eerie Examples

Have you ever looked up at the clouds and noticed one in particular that looks exactly like an animal or shape? Or how about when you’re just about to rest your head on your pillow, but jump up when you think the the sweater in your closet is a person hiding in the dark? These are both cases of Pareidolia.

Pareidolia? You may be wondering what exactly the term means so let me enlighten you. Pareidolia is when your brain perceives an image or pattern on something that simply isn’t there. Now, for a little more insight into this concept, I will show you a simple example below:

Image via Image Think

What do you notice when you look at house? Anything? Maybe a face? This is a classic example of Pareidolia. Noticing things such as faces in inanimate objects is a very common way of the brain showcasing this phenomenon.

You may now be wondering, why exactly am I bringing this up during 31 Days of Halloween? Well, lets take this concept, and give it a bit of an eerie twist shall we?


Many times when things go bump in the night, your mind will automatically start to play tricks on you. Suddenly you see things in the darkness that can be easily explained away once the lights are turned on. So what about with those who believe they’ve had a real paranormal experience? This is where pareidolia really comes into fruition. Did they actually witness the unexplainable? Or are their brains simply playing tricks on them? Let’s dive into some rather eerie examples that will have everyone wonder, is it real or my mind?

Ghostly Face Making Their Presence Known or Simply A Weathered Tombstone?

Angelic Visitation or Lighting?


Ghostly Woman or an Empty Doorway?

Image via BirminghamLive

Fire or the Ghost of A Young Girl?

If this concept interests you, check back to my website for additional posts surrounding this concept throughout my 31 Days of Halloween!


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