Light anomalies you see with your own eyes

5th January 2020. Reading Time: 8 minutes General, Stuff paranormal investigators need to know. 2184 page views. 0 comments.

There is a big debate in the paranormal field when it comes to orbs. We cannot trust what we capture on film or video if we didn't see it with our own eyes. So what about light anomalies that people do see with their own eyes? Let's explore the different reasons why we may see balls of lights with our own eyes.

Orbs.  I probably don't need to say anything more.  It is a word that divides and angers the paranormal field all in one.  I have already written about the different ways that orbs can show up in your videos and photos: Understanding the different causes of orbs

So we don't need to revisit that again.  The question of course remains once we put that to bed, what about the accounts of orbs or light anomalies that we see with our own two eyes?  In fact, a lot of paranormal investigators will tell you to only take notice of an orb if you see it with your own eyes.  These are not the ones we have caught on camera, we have seen them with our own two eyes.  It means that it is not dust reflecting off a flash or light bouncing off a mirror.  It is something we are physically seeing.  Are these orbs of light paranormal, or are they something else?  Let's explore the different reasons why we may see balls of light with our own eyes.  But first

My one and only experience with a light anomaly

I am a pretty rational investigator if you didn't already know, so for me to come forward with this story (that I have spoken about before), you can be pretty sure I have tried to explain it in many ways.  I was investigating J Ward with some friends.  It was late at night.  There were some people inside on the second floor.  I was outside with another investigator heading down into the underground kitchen (which also sits underneath the outside kitchen).  We heard noises like shuffling coming from inside the kitchen.  There was no one in there and after inspection, it confirmed there was no one in there.  It was then I saw what I could describe as a flickering white light slowly fall past the window and disappear.  My words were 'look at the light, look at the light' to point it out to the other people so I would know if I was seeing things or not.  They saw it too.  What I found interesting after this was that the people from upstairs on the second floor inside came running down.  They had been near the window and they had seen a light that disappeared.  It was a mere second or two later that they then heard me say "look at the light".  So you have a group of 5 people that have seen this light all in different areas.  The question for me of course remains, what was it?    

Let's look at some of the explanations for seeing different light anomalies with our own eyes.

Floaters, Flashers & Auras

A common explanation is given by optometrists as to why we may see streaks or specks of light.  It is explained by what are called Floaters and Flashers.


A floater is a small speck or a cloud that is moving within your field of vision.  

Floaters are actually tiny clumps of gel or cells inside the vitreous, the clear jelly-like fluid that fills the inside of your eye. Floaters can have different shapes, such as little dots, circles, lines, clouds, or cobwebs.

Though these objects look like they are in front of your eye, they are actually floating inside of it. What you see are the shadows they cast on the retina, the nerve layer at the back of the eye that senses light and allows you to see.

Floaters are generally more noticeable against a blank background - such as looking at the sky.  As they are moving, you couldn't be blamed for thinking something extraterrestrial is going on as it looks like they are floating in the sky when they are actually inside your eyeball.  It is not a hallucination, it is something you are really seeing.

Example of floaters Image Source:


Sometimes you may see what looks like a flashing light of a streak.  This is known as a flasher.

When the vitreous gel inside your eye rubs or pulls on the retina, you may see what looks like flashing lights or lightening streaks. You may have experienced this sensation if you have ever been hit in the eye and see "stars."

These flashes of light can appear off and on for several weeks or months. As we grow older, it is more common to experience flashes. 

Migraine Aura

Bright light, lines, spots or streaks that stay in place for a much longer time are more common with Migraine Aura.  You don't need to have physical pain to get an Aura.  You may experience a loss in vision and see these abnormalities with no other symptoms, or you may feel nausea, dizziness, confusion, and physical pain.  I myself get quite a lot of Aura but not so much the physical pain.  I tend to get blurred vision, black dots floating, and sometimes flashes of light.  There is even an element of confusion that comes with it as well.  I think it is safe to say that most people that experience a migraine aura are familiar with what it is and are not mistaking it as a paranormal experience.  If it is something you are experiencing for the first time - especially if you don't get the headache pain usually associated with it, it would be very easy to think it was something else.  

Example of Migraine Aura Image Source:

What about lights a group of people is seeing?

The above explanations cover some individual experiences.  What if it is something that a group of people has all witnessed together like in my experience above?


There are over 2000 different types of species of fireflies.  They emit their own light.

That is the result of a chemical reaction that takes place inside a special organ, we call it a light organ or a lantern, and there's a special cocktail of chemicals that they use to produce light, one that's called luciferase, one that's called luciferin, they mix these 2 together with a little bit of energy, some oxygen, and then it produces a photon of light. And this is one of the most efficient light reactions that we know of. All of the energy is going to produce light. None of it is heat, so it's a cold light.

Ball lightning

Ball lightning is described as glowing, electric orbs.  Sound familiar?  This often occurs during thunderstorms as a floating-like sphere that can range in colour from blue to orange.  It seems to manifest for only a second before disappearing.  Sometimes it is accompanied by a hissing sound and a terrible odour (bad smells are often mistaken for 'negative spirits'). It is not just present during Thunderstorms, however.  It is also suggested that atmospheric ions can build up on the surface of a window to generate a discharge.  Scientists also consider that maybe even certain rocks can release electrical charges in the right conditions.  There is a lot about this phenomenon they do not understand, however many Scientists admit that it seems to exist.  This 'ball lightning' also seems consistent with many sightings that people have (even my own).

Ball lightning comes in most colors of the rainbow and ranges in size—from a typical toy marble, to those extra large exercise balls some people sit on instead of office chairs. It can form inside closed spaces and move down chimneys and horizontally through closed windows. In addition to producing light, ball lightning can give off sparks and is associated with hissing or buzzing noises and a strong, irritating odor. It typically lasts for only seconds, glowing with the intensity of a bright household light bulb. The unpredictable and variable nature of ball lightning has made it difficult to develop a conclusive theory explaining how it works, but accounts of its strangeness are numerous and have been published for centuries.

Ghost light phenomena

Regardless of the cause, it doesn't take away the fact that for centuries, there have been tales all over the world talking about 'Ghost Lights'.  I have written about this previously and the different 'legends' around the word associated with them: Ghostly Lights

Lights that you are seeing with your own eyes are much rarer yet equally intriguing phenomena.  It is not as easily explained away as a photo or video is.  When other possible phenomena are happening at the same time, is it an indication that we are not alone? If you do happen to have an experience seeing a light, rule out the above first and then see where you sit with things.  Most importantly, the first question is 'Did anyone else see it?'.  If the answer is yes, then it becomes all the more intriguing!  What we do know is that seems to be a very real phenomenon.  The question of course is - what is it?  That still remains to be answered with certainty.

Have you had any experiences seeing a light anomaly with your own eyes?  Tell me about it in the comments!

If you enjoy LLIFS, consider buying me a book (otherwise known as buy me a coffee but I don't drink coffee and I LOVE books). Your donation helps to fund the LLIFS website so everyone can continue to access great paranormal content and resources for FREE!

Follow LLIFS on Facebook

Don't forget to follow the Facebook page for regular updates 

Mailing List

Join the mailing list to receive weekly updates of NEW articles.  Never miss an article again!

Haunted Magazine

Buy the latest and past issues Haunted Magazine

Books by LLIFS

Check out the books written by LLIFS