Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Blindsight

Dr. Anthony Marcel, a psychologist at Cambridge University, has done a lot of research on the phenomenon of "blindsight."

In his experiments, he discovered extraordinary feats that certain people blinded by brain injury or stroke are able to perform. If asked to reach for an object in front of them, they can find it without hesitation.

Dr. Marcel calls it "blindsight." He said part of their brain that is damaged governs, not physical seeing itself, but "awareness of what is seen." Their visual capacity, though blind, is still intact. Dr. Marcel's study, along with other research, has led cognitive psychologists to a startling conclusion - much of the activity of the mind goes on outside of awareness.

Applying to normal people, it appears to show that the mind has the capacity to know without awareness of what is known. I want to call it "unconscious knowing and choosing." That is, we can make real choices in life outside of our own awareness ... that we can know without consciously knowing that we know!

It a puzzle.

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