What are Orbs?

What are Orbs?

Of all of the hotly debated evidence of paranormal activity, orbs are one of the most contested. I have seen hundreds of photos in which people are either claiming to have caught orbs are asking the paranormal research community whether they have in fact captured an orb on film. I myself have photographed multiple different types of orbs and I am going to offer my take on this phenomenon.

What is an orb?

Firstly, spirits are energy. People are made up of energy, energy itself cannot be destroyed. Energy is in essence our life force. Since little is known (scientifically) regarding what happens to us after death, I (and many others) suggest that perhaps released from our human bodies, spirits can take a variety of forms. Most commonly, orbs are circular in shape. A circle is the simplest of shapes; it is also symbolic representing the ‘circle of life’. Travel and time likely differ in the spirit world, nevertheless a circle is likely the simplest way for a spirit to contain its energy and to travel from place to place.

This is not to suggest that all anomalies in photos are in fact spirits. Sometimes these can be identified as dust particles or moisture in the air. I myself have taken photos inside a castle whilst it was raining outside; multiple anomalies appeared in the photo, but I could see dozens of moisture particles in the flash as I took the photo, therefore I dismissed them as not paranormal in nature.

Another factor for consideration – what if orbs are not spirits or dust or moisture particles, but something else. The paranormal field is relatively underdeveloped and largely ignored by the scientific community. What if orbs are a phenomenon we are yet to discover, investigate and explore?

A true orb

Until further investigation has been conducted, for the most part, paranormal investigators take true orbs to be an indication of a spiritual presence, so what is a true orb? Opinions differ and most of this is open to interpretation and opinion. Here are some things to look out for:

  • Quite often they are balls of light.
  • They sometimes leave a trail behind them – almost like a comet.
  • Dust and moisture particles usually appear in multiples, whereas orbs tend to be alone in the shot.
  • Sometimes you may ‘feel’ a spiritual presence once you have caught a true orb on film, others times this sensation may not be there.
  • Orbs can sometimes be seen with the naked eye, they might pulsate or you may see them travelling.

Orb Colours

In their book entitled ‘Ghost Hunting: the Scientific and Metaphysical Approach’ Tommy Golden and Julia Coale explore Orb colour theory. This suggests that orbs or spirits are able to demonstrate their feelings through the colour orb they produce. This is still a relatively new concept and there is still much research to be done on this theory. There is no consensus among researchers as to what these colours indicate, I have provided a chart below based on my research on this topic:

White/clear: white is usually associated with purity, thus indicating that a white orb represents a positive spirit

Red: Positive energies, sometimes guardians/protectors. Yet red can also represent anger, pain and an inflated ego

Oranges: comforting spirits, healing energy

Gold: a free-flowing energy, wise, protecting

Greens: healing, perhaps a teacher, or angelic

Blues: strong physical ability, protection, tranquillity

Purples: at peace, forgiveness

Brown: Connection to the earth

I personally have only seen orbs orange, yellow and white in colour. I think more research and understanding of orbs is required before we can suggest what these colours actually indicate.

The photo below was taken on an investigation at a known haunted location. The bright light you can see at the bottom of the photo I could see with my own eyes which is why I started taking pictures.



The light appeared again on a number of occasions throughout the night.




Please let me know what you think – a spirit, or something else?



  1. November 3, 2018 / 11:16 pm

    This debate is always very interesting. My mother is into things that are paranormal in nature. She has caught several “orb” like objects on her videos over the years. We sometimes chalk it up to dust particles falling in front of the camera, but sometimes the movement doesn’t add up. I enjoyed your post. Thanks for sharing!

    • November 8, 2018 / 4:40 pm

      Thank you so much for reading! You’re right, sometimes the particles are simply a mystery.

  2. Francesca
    March 25, 2019 / 5:12 pm

    I would love to see orbs and take photos! I didn’t know about the colours and what they mean. It’s so interesting. It just makes me want to research more and more. Thanks so much for sharing! I love posts about the paranormal! 🙂

    • Lellalee
      March 26, 2019 / 10:41 pm

      I need to devote more time to this category, I’m like you, I love it too xxx

  3. Jen
    February 19, 2020 / 1:50 pm

    I’ve heard of these but have never seen one! I would love to though! I’d love to thing there is “something else out there.”

    • Lellalee
      February 25, 2020 / 9:57 am

      Thank you for reading Jen xxx

  4. Jen
    February 19, 2020 / 1:50 pm

    *think lol

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