Friday, July 27, 2007

The Ambidextrous Mind




The mind is a remarkable thing, perhaps more remarkable than we dare imagine. Take, for example, this image. Which way is it turning? Clockwise or anti-clockwise? “Why, don't be silly,” I hear you saying, “Of course it's turning clockwise.” Ah... you must be right-handed.

You see it's actually not turning clockwise or anti-clockwise. It's an illusion. It will turn which ever way you want it to turn. Don't believe me, give it a try. As you're reading, slowly become aware of the shadow at the bottom of the image. Try to ignore the legs and just let your eye settle on the shadow and, presto, you'll see she begins to turn anti-clockwise.

Ah... the ambidextrous mind. Now, are you ready for a real challenge? Can you make her turn either way at will? That's a real test of mental strength. You can do it, the trick is in training your mind to recognise which leg she has extended. If her right leg is raised, she'd be turning clockwise. If her left leg is raised, she'll be turning anti-clockwise. It helps if you focus on the shadow again.

The funny thing is, it is harder to unlearn. Getting her to turn clockwise again is harder than getting her to turn anti-clockwise the first time. The mind loves a rut :)

Isn't it bizarre how you can literally talk your mind into seeing whatever you want to see? There's a lesson in there somewhere...

14 comments:

Crushed by Ingsoc said...

I really can't get to go anti-clockwise.
It slows down, but that's it.

But I am useless with my left hand.

Shades said...

I can get it to go both ways at a whim now, but it took some concentration.

Onyx Stone said...

Ok, having come back for a third attempt, I've finally seen her swinging anti-clockwise.

I had a weird in-between stage where she was swaying left and right with her outstretched leg always pointing away.

Lord Nazh© said...

I'm right-handed, it turns counter-clockwise for me :(

jmb said...

I couldn't get this to work either and I am actually ambidextrous in many things, can even write with both hands, not well but clear enough.

Wolfie said...

I only see anti-clockwise, can't see anything else. Are you sure this illusion works?

ThunderDragon said...

I'm right handed, but I can only see it turning anti-clockwise! Though my eyes are funny and can never get these sort of eye things to work!

carol said...

I immediately saw anti clockwise movement, and 1 sec. later it was clockwise.
I can now make it quickly go both ways at will just by looking at the lower legs. Kewl!!

Midnight said...

I'm like ingsoc I couldn't see it the first time i saw this but reading the authors comments and scrolling down so I could only see the legs showed me the way.

I was always good at 3d posters and stuff I can make it work at will now and it's crazy because I used to swear the hips couldn't change but they do

Anonymous said...

I can see it both ways at will, right from the start. It takes me a sec to adjust. But I am convinced it is turning counter clockwise and that the shadow proves it.

Anonymous said...

hello just call me idee for short....i can actually control it where it moves counter clockwise or clocwise....i've been ambidextrous since i could remember(since a child).they say that when your ambidextrous your brain hemisphere will fight each other but it works to well for me.sometimes the call me weirdo because i not only can right with both hands but simutaneously even if the words are different in each hand for example my name in left and your name in right....it is sure an advantage but the hands release different writing style

Anonymous said...

Oh man that was fun. At first I saw it counter clockwise then clockwise and I was like, um..."what" and after reading I focused on the head and go it to go both ways, then focused on the legs and was able to go both ways, didn't even register the shadow until I read the whole thing. I also covered the top half of the person and focused on the legs which looked like it wasn't going in a circle at all just back and forth from one side to the next. Also it seemed to do this flicker thing or it was me when it changed. I liked this. ^^

Anonymous said...

I can write with my both hands (so I'm abidextrous, right?) and first I saw turining anti-clockwise.

Buy Viagra said...

I think you are right, the mind is something special. You should add something else about this mental topic, I am interested and it would be nice if you can share it with us.