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5 Optical Illusions That Will Make You Question Everything



Reality is sometimes subjective. The following optical illusions will make you wonder if what you see in your everyday life is actually real, or just some mind trick.

The Man with Half a Face (Or Maybe He Has Two)

At first glance, this picture looks like a a left-side profile of a man looking straight ahead. Look at it again. Is half of his face breaking the fourth wall and looking directly into the camera’s lens? Maybe. This illusion is the easiest to explain. Someone with photo editing skills spliced together two pictures of the same subject and called it art. The result is a fun examination of what’s possible with one model and Photoshop.

OK. The almonds in the image below aren’t really moving, despite what you may see. Again, it’s your mind playing tricks on you. It’s just a pattern. When we look at any object, our brain makes constant adaptations so the object’s size and brightness appear to be consistent.  Alternating light and dark patterns can confuse the visual system into keeping the boundaries and color distinctions out of focus. The result looks like motion.

The mind is a strange thing, and the above illusions make me wonder what is real. Is the sky really blue? Is grass really green? Did the Cubs actually win the World Series? I hope so. Because reality does seem relative when we take our awareness of actual science into account.

We have cognitive science that studies the mind and its processes; psychology studies the mind and how it affects behavior; neuroscience which is dedicated to the brain’s structure and nervous system; and neurology, which is a medical branch dealing with nervous system disorders. Those four sciences only study brain-related topics. Welcome to reality. (Or whatever that may be to you. I don’t know your life).


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