10 Dizzyingly Weird Illusions You Can Try Yourself… #4 Is My New Party Trick.
There are plenty of ways to mess with your brain - unfortunately, many of them are illegal in most states. If you'd like to avoid both illegal and/or legal drug use - let's face it, you're too old for that - then why not try some of these tricks? These brain twisters will challenge your mind and alter your perception of what's happening around you, without having to be under the influence. Your brain cells will thank you for it.
#1. Make your nose grow like Pinocchio's.
You can confuse your mind and create an illusion about what you're touching with a simple trick. Here's how.
For this mind-bender, you'll need:
1. Two chairs.
2. A blindfold.
The person wearing the blindfold should sit in the rear chair, staring at the back of the other. That person then reaches around and place his hand on the nose of the other person. At the same time he should place his other hand on his own nose and begin gently stroking both noses.
Incredibly, after about 60 seconds, at least half of the people who engaged in this activity said that their noses felt insanely long.
Unsurprisingly, this is called Pinocchio's Effect.
#2. Make your pain go away.
Recently, a researcher at Oxford University discovered a new kind of painkiller in the form of invverted binoculars. They observed that subjects who viewed their wounds this way - ultimately making the wound look smaller - felt less pain.
#3. Trip up the two sides of your brain.
Lift your right foot a few inches from the floor and then begin to move it in a clockwise direction. While you’re doing this, use a finger your right index finger to draw a number 6 in the air. Your foot will turn in an anti-clockwise direction - no matter what you do.
So, why does this happen?
The left side of your brain, controls the right side of your body, and is responsible for timing and rhythm. The left side of your brain cannot deal with operating two opposite movements at the same time. The result? A combined single motion.
#4. Confuse your hearing.
To do this trick, you need three people. Ask one person to sit on a chair between yourself and the other person. Now each one of you hold the pipes from the headset on the corresponding sides and one by one speak into the pipes. The subject will rightly tell the direction of the sound. Now exchange the pipes and repeat voicing into the pipes. The subject’s brain will get confused and he’ll point in the opposite direction of sound.
Sound localization is a listener’s ability to identify the location or origin of a detected sound in direction and distance or the methods in acoustical engineering to simulate the placement of an auditory cue in a virtual 3D space. The human auditory system has only limited possibilities to determine the distance of a sound source, mainly based on inter-aural time differences, exchanging the pipes would cause perception by the opposite sided neurons in the brain only and thus the subject will not be able to localize the sound.
#5. Confuse your cognition.
Take a look at the spinning girl. Do you see it spinning clockwise or counter-clockwise? I see it spinning counter-clockwise, but i was able to switch it in the other direction, its hard for many people. Give it a try.
The spinning girl is a form of the more general spinning silhouette illusion. The image is not objectively “spinning” in one direction or the other. It is a two-dimensional image that is simply shifting back and forth. But our brains did not evolve to interpret two-dimensional representations of the world but the actual three-dimensional world. So our visual processing assumes we are looking at a 3-D image and is uses clues to interpret it as such. Or, without adequate clues it may just arbitrarily decide a best fit – spinning clockwise or counterclockwise. And once this fit is chosen, the illusion is complete – we see a 3-D spinning image.
By looking around the image, focusing on the shadow or some other part, you may force your visual system to reconstruct the image and it may choose the opposite direction, and suddenly the image will spin in the opposite direction.
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