Two Old Codgers

How the World strikes us

We have little ‘control’ over our unconscious mind – the mental processes that happen without our explicit awareness; we take in information all the time without thinking and this informs our decisions and behaviours in unexpected ways.

Researchers even suggests you’re more likely to associate someone with emotional warmth if they hand you a hot coffee
rather than a cold one. Much of our decision-making takes place unconsciously, whether it’s riding a bike, or how it’s somehow easier to play a tune on the piano when you actually don’t think about it too much.

Optical illusions are common, stare at the four dots in this image for about 60 seconds, close your eyes and quickly open them again, whilst looking at a plain light coloured background.

Illusion 1

Now look at this image and see a white triangle where there isn’t one.

Illusion 2

Just one more. Squares A & B on this board are the same shade.

Illusion 3

Don’t believe it? Then look at the bottom of this page.

Our perception is always going to be subjective – we’re never really seeing reality, just our own interpretations of it but people with psychosis who experience hallucinations are often stigmatised as ‘mad’.

Of course, lots of people believe in something spiritual that goes further; I don’t know what to think about the soul, but I do have thoughts about the brain. It’s a weird idea – that, along with everything you’ve ever experienced, your wants, your dreams, your nightmares, your memories, your skills, your identity, your choices, can all be contained in a warm, greyish, fleshy wet mass attached to your eyeballs. Even as you read these words you are using multiple skills involving visual processing, recognition, memory, comprehension, and judgement.

Illusion 3a

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