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Pareidolia - Not a Scientifically Studied Phenomenon
Topic Started: Feb 11 2018, 04:53 AM (33 Views)
Shecoda
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This is excerpted off Mike Bara's (Ancient Aliens) Blog:

In fact, the depth of the lie that is "pareidolia" can easily be found by simply tracing the word's origins. It is nothing but a phony, pseudo-scientific term invented in 1994 by a UFO debunker named Steven Goldstein in the June 22nd, 1994 edition of Skeptical Inquirer magazine. This alone should tell you all you need to know about its credibility in the realm of ideas. Despite a complete lack of any valid scientific studies on the supposed "phenomenon," it is still commonly cited by debunkers like James Oberg and Phil "Dr. Phil" Plait to give an academic air to their knee-jerk dismissal of the Cydonia anomalies. Some of these debunkers even resort to claiming that articles written about "pareidolia" by other debunkers are some sort of paper trail proving the phenomenon has a publishing pedigree. But the simple fact is no such human tendency exists.

At all.

There is however another very real human tendency that unlike the mythical "pareidolia," is actually an extremely well-documented and medically established disorder - *Prosopagnosia. Simply put, Prosopagnosia is a brain disorder that renders the poor souls that have it completely unable to recognize faces when they see them. According to some medical studies, as much as 2.5% of the human population may suffer from this disorder, and apparently a disproportionate number of those afflicted have found jobs in the NASA planetary science community.

TV personality Mike Bara is the star of TVs Ancient Aliens and Uncovering Aliens, rogue science advocate, 9/11 "truther" debunker, Global Warming skeptic.

LINK

*It was noted in one of Bara's YouTube videos on Mars that while Prosopagnosia disorder may be suffered by about 2.5% of the human population there have been approximately 700 medical papers written on the condition. There are those that would have all of our brains suffering from Pareidolia, a condition which, if it is real would simply mean that we could never, under any circumstances trust our brain's ability to decipher what we see no matter how ordinary, mundane or exotic. Simply put, we could not trust what we see. This condition, Pareidolia, is not medically or psychologically recognized and has not been studied by the medical or psychological communities. It is the terminology that is problematic here, not our brains. Perhaps what we see is really what is there. Sometimes rocks or cliffs look like human faces. If we recognize that it doesn't mean we are medically or psychologically unsound or a victim of an unfounded human condition.
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Skookum
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Quote:
 
............
..Seeing recognizable objects or patterns in otherwise random or unrelated objects or patterns is called pareidolia. Itís a form of apophenia, which is a more general term for the human tendency to seek patterns in random information. Everyone experiences it from time to time. Seeing the famous man in the moon is a classic example from astronomy. The ability to experience pareidolia is more developed in some people and less in others. Look at the photos below to learn more and test your own ability to see things that arenít there.


LINK - (earthsky.org)
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Shecoda
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This is exactly the type of recognition that Bara was talking about. The article cited in Earth and Sky already assumes that pareidolia has been studied and is recognized by the scientific community. It is coming from the place of an already accepted scientific term.

Here is the thing. I can look in the clouds and see shapes and forms but I still know I am looking at a cloud. The way the term is bandied about it means that something we are looking at probably isn't what we are looking at because our brain is too busy trying to make the observed object into something we already recognize by experience.

For instance, say I am looking at a flywheel for a machine. I don't know what it is. If pareidolia is really true, that our brain organizes even the slightest concaves, convexes, pieces of metal inserted into a larger piece of metal, spokes, curved metal, etc, into a pattern we already recognize then nothing we look at can be what it really is. It can only be something that we already recognize.

In other words, because of pareidolia, I can no longer trust your perception of whatever you are looking at and describing. Afterall, I can only assume your brain is just making hash out of mashed potatoes. This makes no sense. The truth is that if the brain only looks for already recognized patterns there can be no further learning because it only decodes objects into already recognized objects.
Definition:
Pareidolia (par-i-DOH-lee-a): The new term for swamp gas
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Skookum
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To put it in an over-simple manner, though; arguments like "The Face On Mars" can & will go on indefinitely until we get there (to Mars) & have actual evidence or proof. Not just conjecture & "therefores" based on (among other things) one's personal definition of a word.
On the other hand, we can physically prove that "Mary on a Piece of Toast" is not, in reality, the actual Mary; or an actual picture of Mary ..... no matter how pleasant or significant the idea might be to some.
There seem to be several definitions of -Pareidolia- as well as -Sex-; who's to say which one is correct?

The world needs more dreamers! :yeehaw: :magiccarpet: (IMO)
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Shecoda
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This is the thought. If I and several other, or even most people agree that a rock formation looks like a face then it is just that - a bunch of rocks that are also a representation of a face, just as a portrait painting is also a representation of a face. It is not pareidolia, it is fact. Lately, whenever an authority figure doesnít like somebodyís or several or more peopleís observation or interpretation of an object it is immediately dismissed as pareidolia just as swamp gas was the explanation for unexplained aerial phenomena for so many years.

Not only is this dismissal very close minded, but it also means that we canít trust what we see because if we see something we canít explain, oh, well, donít worry it is just your mind playing tricks on you, itís not really there.

Pareidolia is the tendency of the brain to make something out of nothing, or to see patterns and try to make something out of them. Baraís point was that it hasnít been studied to even see if it is a human tendency to make something out of nothing.
Definition:
Pareidolia (par-i-DOH-lee-a): The new term for swamp gas
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