"The mind's eye"/Mental Visualization - Do you have Aphantasia??

PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
edited December 4 in All Encompassing Trip
So I only just learned that apparently most people are being literal when they say they can see something in the mind's eye, and that I have Aphantasia, or "mind blindness". I had absolutely no clue that people were literally seeing visual pictures to a greater or lesser extent when they imagine something. I don't see anything. Just blackness. I can think about what something looks like, but I can't see it in my head... I am actually in near disbelief. How has nobody ever mentioned that this "mind's eye" thing isn't just a metaphorical concept?? I actually feel like I've had a profound revelation here. Like the world and everyone in it has actually changed for me all of a sudden. It's bizarre. I feel like It's akin to someone who was born blind suddenly finding out that everyone else in the world isn't blind too.

Anyone else lacking this perception?? Finding out about this is disturbing to me. Inhad never even jeard the word aphantasia before. Imagination just took on a whole new meaning to me.... and I have no idea if I'm at a disadvantage or what. It's not like I don't have an imagination, but apparently the way mine works is entirely different from the majority of humans. I read only 1 in 50 have this.... condition?? Disability?! Is that true??? I would like to know if anyone else here has aphantasia. I feel like those who don't really aren't understanding where I'm coming from.


http://www.bbc.com/news/health-34039054


With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
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  • Thoughts_ArriveThoughts_Arrive Melbourne, AustraliaPosts: 10,780
    Never heard of it until now.

    Adelaide 17/11/2009, Melbourne 20/11/2009, Sydney 22/11/2009, Melbourne (Big Day Out Festival) 24/01/2014

  • lastexitlondonlastexitlondon Posts: 1,190
    I have no imagination i know that much
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  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 4
    Never heard of it until now.

    Yeah, pretty much nobody has. That's one of the things that is so fascinating about it. I understand why most haven't - those who have Aphantasia aren't talking about it because we had no idea everyone else was thinking in a different way, and same goes for those who are "normal". Those with Aphantasia all just assumed all those terms, like "picture in your mind", "visualize this", "daydreaming", "counting sheep", "just imagine...", etc etc etc, were all just metaphorical, figurative terms. We had absolutely no clue everyone meant it literally!

    So I spent yesterday doing some research on all this, and joined an FB group for people with Aphantasia, and spoke to my mom about it in depth. As I try to get a grasp of this revelation, I am getting more and more interested, and more and more feel like this is a really significant discovery in my life. I literally feel like this changes everything for me. I now perceive people differently, I have a whole new view about how people think, human perception, about how I think and how I'm perceiving things, about how my memory is functioning, about how I am taking in information .... I mean seriously, it's like I've suddenly become aware of a whole new world. It's quite something. It's actually completely driving me to distraction. I am pretty sure this is the one and only moment I have had or will ever had where I can really say that I am experiencing a true, mind blown, experiential revelation. :tired: I feel like I have to do something about it too, lol, but of course, what's to be done??? I feel like I want to just drop everything and only focus my energies on this discovery FFS. Obviously I don't have the luxury, but I'm finding it very difficult to focus now! All I want to do is discuss this with people. I almost feel like I'm an alien who has just landed on a planet and I need to interview the inhabitants to try and understand them better.

    Here is an interesting, in depth post from someone who made the same discovery. I'm really relating to a lot of what she's saying here. I completely relate to the strange, complicated implications that she's pointing out, and certainly I feel the weight of the revelation the way she seems to have: https://www.facebook.com/notes/blake-ross/aphantasia-how-it-feels-to-be-blind-in-your-mind/10156834777480504/



    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 4
    I have no imagination i know that much
    I don't believe this has much to do with imagination per se. It's not like those with "mind blindness" don't have an imagination, and those who can visualize (normals, hahaha) aren't necessarily being imaginative when they're doing it. According to the guy who is leading the research on this, he has encountered plenty of artists and writers who have Aphantasia, so it doesn't seem like the inability to visualize impacts the existence of imagination - imagination is just largely carried out in an entirely different way. 
    So do you or don't you visualize things in your mind's eye lastexitlondon? I'm curious as to why you say you have no imagination (FWIW, I think everyone has an imagination to one degree or another!).
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • lastexitlondonlastexitlondon Posts: 1,190
    Well i struggle to see it without actually making it or seeing an end product.my trade is a bricklayer and i only really "get it" when ive started making it or even when its done.
    brixton 93
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    this song is meant to be called i got shit,itshould be called i got shit tickets-hartford 06 -
  • Thoughts_ArriveThoughts_Arrive Melbourne, AustraliaPosts: 10,780
    PJ_Soul said:
    Never heard of it until now.

    Yeah, pretty much nobody has. That's one of the things that is so fascinating about it. I understand why most haven't - those who have Aphantasia aren't talking about it because we had no idea everyone else was thinking in a different way, and same goes for those who are "normal". Those with Aphantasia all just assumed all those terms, like "picture in your mind", "visualize this", "daydreaming", "counting sheep", "just imagine...", etc etc etc, were all just metaphorical, figurative terms. We had absolutely no clue everyone meant it literally!

    So I spent yesterday doing some research on all this, and joined an FB group for people with Aphantasia, and spoke to my mom about it in depth. As I try to get a grasp of this revelation, I am getting more and more interested, and more and more feel like this is a really significant discovery in my life. I literally feel like this changes everything for me. I now perceive people differently, I have a whole new view about how people think, human perception, about how I think and how I'm perceiving things, about how my memory is functioning, about how I am taking in information .... I mean seriously, it's like I've suddenly become aware of a whole new world. It's quite something. It's actually completely driving me to distraction. I am pretty sure this is the one and only moment I have had or will ever had where I can really say that I am experiencing a true, mind blown, experiential revelation. :tired: I feel like I have to do something about it too, lol, but of course, what's to be done??? I feel like I want to just drop everything and only focus my energies on this discovery FFS. Obviously I don't have the luxury, but I'm finding it very difficult to focus now! All I want to do is discuss this with people. I almost feel like I'm an alien who has just landed on a planet and I need to interview the inhabitants to try and understand them better.

    Here is an interesting, in depth post from someone who made the same discovery. I'm really relating to a lot of what she's saying here. I completely relate to the strange, complicated implications that she's pointing out, and certainly I feel the weight of the revelation the way she seems to have: https://www.facebook.com/notes/blake-ross/aphantasia-how-it-feels-to-be-blind-in-your-mind/10156834777480504/



    Fascinating condition.
    I wonder if there is a treatment?
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  • markymark550markymark550 Columbia, SCPosts: 4,065
    I had never heard of this. Interesting though. I think it applies to me as well. Every time someone says "close your eyes and think of ____" all I see is black (or that reddish hue if you're directly facing a light source). I never see the object, but rather focus on the concept of the object. I had never considered that people can actually "see" images in their mind, but I don't find this to be some profound revelation though. It just is what it is.
  • chadwickchadwick up my assPosts: 21,151
    never heard of this. i'm having a difficult time grasping this condition. for me, i'm bombarded, i've nonstop movies goin on.       
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  • WhatYouTaughtMeWhatYouTaughtMe I have no idea what's going on right now!Posts: 4,496
    chadwick said:
    never heard of this. i'm having a difficult time grasping this condition. for me, i'm bombarded, i've nonstop movies goin on.       
    Yeah, crazy right? I couldn't imagine. PJ_Soul, have you ever done mushrooms or any psychedelics? If so, I'm wondering what it was like when you closed your eyes in those situations. It's been so long, but I remember being bombarded with all kinds of beautiful imagery during a few of those experiences.
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    people see shit when they close their eyes? WTF?
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    ok, wait. I just read the article soul posted. I'm not clear what this is. I can imagine faces and places and such. I don't think I see an image, rather I remember it. But when I close my eyes and visualize something, i don't actually see something. It's black, but I'm thinking of the image I'm visualizing. I always thought that's what visualizing meant! 
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    this is freaking me out. do people actually fucking see images in front of their eyes? 
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    after doing more reading, I don't think this applies to me. I thought the way it was described, people were seeing real images on the insides of their eyelids, like a projector. that freaked me out. 
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 5
    PJ_Soul said:
    Never heard of it until now.

    Yeah, pretty much nobody has. That's one of the things that is so fascinating about it. I understand why most haven't - those who have Aphantasia aren't talking about it because we had no idea everyone else was thinking in a different way, and same goes for those who are "normal". Those with Aphantasia all just assumed all those terms, like "picture in your mind", "visualize this", "daydreaming", "counting sheep", "just imagine...", etc etc etc, were all just metaphorical, figurative terms. We had absolutely no clue everyone meant it literally!

    So I spent yesterday doing some research on all this, and joined an FB group for people with Aphantasia, and spoke to my mom about it in depth. As I try to get a grasp of this revelation, I am getting more and more interested, and more and more feel like this is a really significant discovery in my life. I literally feel like this changes everything for me. I now perceive people differently, I have a whole new view about how people think, human perception, about how I think and how I'm perceiving things, about how my memory is functioning, about how I am taking in information .... I mean seriously, it's like I've suddenly become aware of a whole new world. It's quite something. It's actually completely driving me to distraction. I am pretty sure this is the one and only moment I have had or will ever had where I can really say that I am experiencing a true, mind blown, experiential revelation. :tired: I feel like I have to do something about it too, lol, but of course, what's to be done??? I feel like I want to just drop everything and only focus my energies on this discovery FFS. Obviously I don't have the luxury, but I'm finding it very difficult to focus now! All I want to do is discuss this with people. I almost feel like I'm an alien who has just landed on a planet and I need to interview the inhabitants to try and understand them better.

    Here is an interesting, in depth post from someone who made the same discovery. I'm really relating to a lot of what she's saying here. I completely relate to the strange, complicated implications that she's pointing out, and certainly I feel the weight of the revelation the way she seems to have: https://www.facebook.com/notes/blake-ross/aphantasia-how-it-feels-to-be-blind-in-your-mind/10156834777480504/



    Fascinating condition.
    I wonder if there is a treatment?
    Treatment? No, there isn't. They term for the condition is only 2 years old. But is treatment necessary?? My god, if I was suddenly bombarded by mental images after living my whole life a different way, I am not sure I'd be able to function, and it would certainly change everything for me.
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    I had never heard of this. Interesting though. I think it applies to me as well. Every time someone says "close your eyes and think of ____" all I see is black (or that reddish hue if you're directly facing a light source). I never see the object, but rather focus on the concept of the object. I had never considered that people can actually "see" images in their mind, but I don't find this to be some profound revelation though. It just is what it is.
    Wow, really? Yeah, I'm finding it to be the most profound discovery of my entire life. It affects absolutely everything about me. How I process info, how I remember things, how I learn, memorize, recognize, read, write, speak, listen... fucking everything. Yes, it is what it is... which is everything! ;)
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 5
    chadwick said:
    never heard of this. i'm having a difficult time grasping this condition. for me, i'm bombarded, i've nonstop movies goin on.       
    Yeah, crazy right? I couldn't imagine. PJ_Soul, have you ever done mushrooms or any psychedelics? If so, I'm wondering what it was like when you closed your eyes in those situations. It's been so long, but I remember being bombarded with all kinds of beautiful imagery during a few of those experiences.
    Yes, I have done psychedelics, and yes, then I was able to hallucinate behind closed eyes, but that isn't the same thing. But I do dream visually though. A lot of people with aphantasia apparently can't even do that.
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 5
    after doing more reading, I don't think this applies to me. I thought the way it was described, people were seeing real images on the insides of their eyelids, like a projector. that freaked me out. 
      @HughFreakingDillon , I guess go back to being freaked out then, because yes, that is exactly what's going on (EDIT: no, not on the insides of their eyelids - I misunderstood HFD there - in the mind's eye only). Most people LITERALLY see images, many more dimly and vaguely, and many so vividly that it's almost the same as the real thing. The way it is described is accurate, and yeah, that is why I and many others who make this discovery do indeed freak out when they make this discovery. I am reeling because of this new discovery. So dude, you know when people talk about counting sheep to fall asleep? Yes, they are LITERALLY closing their eyes and seeing sheep jumping over a fence. It's not a metaphorical term. Neither is "the mind's eye", "visualization", "picture if you will...", "go to your happy place", "close your eyes and imagine you're in a dewy meadow", "I close my eyes and I can picture my dead mom's face." This are all literal terms dude. I had NO clue and I'm flipping out to the point where I can't even think about anything else. The implications of having aphantasia are vast. It impacts learning, memory, education, READING. Dude, did you realize that most people actually SEE what they're reading, some as clearly as a movie?! It's true, I've talked to many people about this now, and they all attest to that. They have expressed surprise that I don't - many are saying they don't even understand how I'm able to think, lol. Like, they've asked me "imagine an apple. You see the apple, right??" Ummm, FUCK NO! I know what an apple looks like. I can put that into words. I just know it. But most people literally can see it, at least to some extent. For me, and apparently you, it's just blackness. That is why it's also called "mind blindness".

    It sounds to me like you definitely have aphantasia. Read this (not all applies to me, especially not the part about reading and descriptive language, but the discovery of what's going on with most people is very relatable: https://www.facebook.com/notes/blake-ross/aphantasia-how-it-feels-to-be-blind-in-your-mind/10156834777480504/

    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • rgambsrgambs Posts: 9,535
    I'm slightly suspicious of the prevalence of this.
    It's such a strange idea that it seems hard to believe that it would go undetected so long and be so common as 1 in 50, seems like a wild guess to me.
    There are so many areas of thought, particularly in relation to facial/pattern recognition and memory that would be heavily impacted.
    It's hard to even grasp, the implications in the use of symbols like written language and the way we remember things.

    Very strange.
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  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    no, I can visualize things. I see things in my mind, just not with my eyes literally. I guess I'm not accurately explaining myself. I can close my eyes and see images of memories and such. I can picture anything I want. Just not on the backs of my eyelids, which is what I thought that meant. and yes, when I read something I visualize it. 
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    I tried it. i can close my eyes and imagine sheep jumping over a fence. 
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    I tried it. i can close my eyes and imagine sheep jumping over a fence. 
    Oh. :( I want to find people like me.... who realize what a big deal this is to us, lol.
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    like I said in our pm's, I guess I'm not sure what exactly this entails. you said it's like a projector on the back of your eyelids. My eyelids are always dark. no images there. But I "see" things in memory. I can visualize myself in mexico, on the beach, even with my eyes open. Maybe that's different? I don't know. how the fuck do people fall asleep if they constantly have a movie playing in front of their eyes?
  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    I had never heard of this. Interesting though. I think it applies to me as well. Every time someone says "close your eyes and think of ____" all I see is black (or that reddish hue if you're directly facing a light source). I never see the object, but rather focus on the concept of the object. I had never considered that people can actually "see" images in their mind, but I don't find this to be some profound revelation though. It just is what it is.
    well I don't "see" anything either. as I said to soul, I don't know if I'm understanding this correctly. the image is in my mind, not on the backs of my eyelids. 
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 5
    rgambs said:
    I'm slightly suspicious of the prevalence of this.
    It's such a strange idea that it seems hard to believe that it would go undetected so long and be so common as 1 in 50, seems like a wild guess to me.
    There are so many areas of thought, particularly in relation to facial/pattern recognition and memory that would be heavily impacted.
    It's hard to even grasp, the implications in the use of symbols like written language and the way we remember things.

    Very strange.
    Well I have found dozens upon dozens of people with it so far who had no idea, or, at best, had a vague sense they were different but didn't know exactly why, so I'm not suspicious of the prevalence at all. I had literally no idea people weren't being figurative about visualization and I'm 41. I told me mom about it and she said she is visualizing constantly, and she could hardly believe I can't do this at all, and was even more surprised that I didn't know this was normal. I asked her why in the hell she never mentioned this, and she laughed. She said "why would I tell you about something that is just the normal way people think??" :tired_face: Yeah, well, good question. You wouldn't. And that is why so many aphantasiacs don't know that this is what's going on with people. I thought every single term that refers to this was just metaphorical (in retrospect I realize some things though... I mean, meditation for one. And going to your happy place. And yes, counting sheep. I never understood why in the hell people acted like any of these thing did them any good... Frankly, I thought people who talked about how these things were helpful were perhaps full of shit or overestimating the power of their minds... or maybe that I was just missing something... Haha, turns out that I was!! I just didn't know what until now!).

    Still hoping to find people here with the same condition, besides MarkyMark550, who seems not to care, lol. ;) Sorry MarkyMark550 - I find the knowledge that you aren't blown away by this a little confusing, but hey, obviously people just absorb this discovery in different ways. Most others with aphanasia who I've connected with online have shared my profound amazement.

    For the record, as far as how common this is... I have now asked about 40 people I know in real life about this, and not a single one of them has aphantasia (and every single one of them are confused by the fact that I can't visualize in my mind's eye). So just going off of that, and from reading accounts from many other aphantasic people, yeah, I think 1 in 50 may be a pretty reasonable estimate. I am still really looking forward to finding someone else I know like me. While I'm super interested in all this, I'm actually suddenly feeling a new sensation that can perhaps be described as isolation. I feel I really need to speak with someone who truly understands what I'm going through here.
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 21,351
    I wonder if this is more like a continuum than merely you can or can't picture things in your head?  I can think of things and then see them in my head, mostly still images but to some degree, movement, like maybe a particularly great excerpt from live musical footage or a scene in a movie.  I don't see these things with my eyes (be they open or closed), but I can see them in my head. 

    But some people can see much more.  Temple Grandin, for example, who has a difficult time with abstract subjects, can look at a page in a book about something abstract (say, philosophy) and then walk around all day looking at that page in her head and studying it until it makes more sense. 
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  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 5
    brianlux said:
    I wonder if this is more like a continuum than merely you can or can't picture things in your head?  I can think of things and then see them in my head, mostly still images but to some degree, movement, like maybe a particularly great excerpt from live musical footage or a scene in a movie.  I don't see these things with my eyes (be they open or closed), but I can see them in my head. 

    But some people can see much more.  Temple Grandin, for example, who has a difficult time with abstract subjects, can look at a page in a book about something abstract (say, philosophy) and then walk around all day looking at that page in her head and studying it until it makes more sense. 
    Yes Brian, it comes in degrees. Some, like me, can literally not visualize anything at all. Others report it is more vague, or fuzzy, or even cartoonish in some way, while others say they can visualize everything as clearly as if it were real and in front of them (be it true representation or not - it's not like visualizations are always accurate... clearly they are not, and people's memories are not always accurate), and they are seeing in their mind's eye all the time like a running movie.People like that are classified as "hyperphantasic". Sounds like chadwick may be one of those. My mother is too I think. And yeah, I understand this is not seeing with the eyes. It is seeing in the "mind's eye". I think I only understand the difference because I thankfully still dream visually, so I get the different between seeing with your eyes and seeing in your head.... I just can't see in my head while I'm conscious. It's just blackness. I replace this visualization with language I guess - an inner monologue only, describing everything I guess, and then by just... knowing it without seeing it. I thought this was normal.
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
  • markymark550markymark550 Columbia, SCPosts: 4,065
    I had never heard of this. Interesting though. I think it applies to me as well. Every time someone says "close your eyes and think of ____" all I see is black (or that reddish hue if you're directly facing a light source). I never see the object, but rather focus on the concept of the object. I had never considered that people can actually "see" images in their mind, but I don't find this to be some profound revelation though. It just is what it is.
    well I don't "see" anything either. as I said to soul, I don't know if I'm understanding this correctly. the image is in my mind, not on the backs of my eyelids. 
    I don't get an image in my mind though. The dark/light through the eyelids just permeates through what I'm guessing is other people's mind eye.

    PJ_Soul said:
    I had never heard of this. Interesting though. I think it applies to me as well. Every time someone says "close your eyes and think of ____" all I see is black (or that reddish hue if you're directly facing a light source). I never see the object, but rather focus on the concept of the object. I had never considered that people can actually "see" images in their mind, but I don't find this to be some profound revelation though. It just is what it is.
    Wow, really? Yeah, I'm finding it to be the most profound discovery of my entire life. It affects absolutely everything about me. How I process info, how I remember things, how I learn, memorize, recognize, read, write, speak, listen... fucking everything. Yes, it is what it is... which is everything! ;)
    Sorry I'm not more excited about it, but I tend to be pretty even keel over most things. Sure it has probably affected those things you mention, but at this point in my life I'm not looking for strategies to learn/memorize for school.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 21,351
    PJ_Soul said:
    brianlux said:
    I wonder if this is more like a continuum than merely you can or can't picture things in your head?  I can think of things and then see them in my head, mostly still images but to some degree, movement, like maybe a particularly great excerpt from live musical footage or a scene in a movie.  I don't see these things with my eyes (be they open or closed), but I can see them in my head. 

    But some people can see much more.  Temple Grandin, for example, who has a difficult time with abstract subjects, can look at a page in a book about something abstract (say, philosophy) and then walk around all day looking at that page in her head and studying it until it makes more sense. 
    Yes Brian, it comes in degrees. Some, like me, can literally not visualize anything at all. Others report it is more vague, or fuzzy, or even cartoonish in some way, while others say they can visualize everything as clearly as if it were real and in front of them (be it true representation or not - it's not like visualizations are always accurate... clearly they are not, and people's memories are not always accurate), and they are seeing in their mind's eye all the time like a running movie.People like that are classified as "hyperphantasic". Sounds like chadwick may be one of those. My mother is too I think. And yeah, I understand this is not seeing with the eyes. It is seeing in the "mind's eye". I think I only understand the difference because I thankfully still dream visually, so I get the different between seeing with your eyes and seeing in your head.... I just can't see in my head while I'm conscious. It's just blackness. I replace this visualization with language I guess - an inner monologue only, describing everything I guess, and then by just... knowing it without seeing it. I thought this was normal.
    It's a fascinating subject.  Going back to Temple Grandin, she talks about this in her book, Thinking in Pictures.  Some people think in words, some in pictures, some both to a greater or lesser extent.  I think it's cool that we are probably all different that way.  But, as much as I love that movie, I would not want to be like "Being John Malcovich"!
    We're living on the edge of something big. It's a fantastic time in history to be alive.
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    ***********
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  • HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon WinnipegPosts: 12,120
    PJ_Soul said:
    brianlux said:
    I wonder if this is more like a continuum than merely you can or can't picture things in your head?  I can think of things and then see them in my head, mostly still images but to some degree, movement, like maybe a particularly great excerpt from live musical footage or a scene in a movie.  I don't see these things with my eyes (be they open or closed), but I can see them in my head. 

    But some people can see much more.  Temple Grandin, for example, who has a difficult time with abstract subjects, can look at a page in a book about something abstract (say, philosophy) and then walk around all day looking at that page in her head and studying it until it makes more sense. 
    Yes Brian, it comes in degrees. Some, like me, can literally not visualize anything at all. Others report it is more vague, or fuzzy, or even cartoonish in some way, while others say they can visualize everything as clearly as if it were real and in front of them (be it true representation or not - it's not like visualizations are always accurate... clearly they are not, and people's memories are not always accurate), and they are seeing in their mind's eye all the time like a running movie.People like that are classified as "hyperphantasic". Sounds like chadwick may be one of those. My mother is too I think. And yeah, I understand this is not seeing with the eyes. It is seeing in the "mind's eye". I think I only understand the difference because I thankfully still dream visually, so I get the different between seeing with your eyes and seeing in your head.... I just can't see in my head while I'm conscious. It's just blackness. I replace this visualization with language I guess - an inner monologue only, describing everything I guess, and then by just... knowing it without seeing it. I thought this was normal.
    maybe it is normal. maybe no one could really quantify it until now. maybe it's like being blind, where in the absence of one sense,  your other senses are heightened. maybe you are a superhero! (sorry, not trying to make light of it, but it honestly could be more normal than you think, or an evolutionary thing-I think people discount the latter way too often when things like this are discovered). 
  • PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BCPosts: 37,930
    edited December 5
    The implications are massive... I mean, shouldn't this concept be considered by educators?? If the vast majority of people visualize to one extent or another, but some don't at all and some do so strongly they're different too, shouldn't learning be designed to accommodate those who aren't in the majority?? Since I work at a university and with instructional designers and those who specialize in educational psychology, this is something that immediately came to their mind when I talked to them about this. And not a single one of them were aware that there are people who can't use their mind's eye.

    Anyway... I'm clearly overwhelmed by all this, but I still keep going back to.... You all can fucking actually SEE shit in your head?!? You actually SEE what you read and shit?! WHAT THE FUCK?!?!?! I am stunned by this fact, and by the fact that I'm just finding this out... Imagine how this one person I talked to on facebook - she is 74 years old and just learned about this.
    Post edited by PJ_Soul on
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
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