See the world. With no eyes. With no brain.

Glance out the window and then close your eyes. What did you see? Maybe you noticed it’s raining and there was a man carrying an umbrella. What color was it? What shape was its handle? Did you catch those details? Probably not. Some neuroscientists would say that, even though you perceived very few specifics from the window scene, your eyes still captured everything in front of you. But there are flaws to this logic, MIT researchers argue in an Opinion published April 19, 2016 in Trends in Cognitive Sciences. It may be that our vision only reflects the gist of what we see. (1)

Another research suggests that just like a movie appears continuous even though it’s made up of a series of separate images, our brains might use a two-stage model of visual processing to perceive the world in short blips, or “time slices”. “We can see the time difference when two bars are presented with a delay of 3 milliseconds,” Dr. Frank Scharnowski, a cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Zurich, said. “In contrast, conscious perception is much slower and can be delayed for several hundred milliseconds”. This time lag is a good thing for perception, according to study co-author Dr. Michael Herzog, a professor at the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne’s Brain Mind Institute in Switzerland. “The brain wants to give you the best, clearest information it can, and this demands a substantial amount of time”, he said in a statement. “There is no advantage in making you aware of its unconscious processing, because that would be immensely confusing”. (2)

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Hasty senses. Seeing the world without any analysis. Prejudiced consciousness. Seeing the world only after analysis of what we see. Stupid people. Trusting their senses or their brain. Instead of just trusting their heart.

There is magic in this world. And neither the eyes not the brain can make this magic visible to anyone. Only a kid sees the cosmos as it should: through an honest smile. With no analysis. With no eyes.

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