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Does she turn clockwise or counter-clockwise? 

I see her by default turning clockwise, but I can change her at will! What's interesting about this to me is how much our perceptions can (a) change and (b) impose a certain reality.

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  1. …is she a dancer, or is she human?

  2. I knew you, or someone, would say that. Probably you.

  3. I think the whole left brain/right brain argument no longer holds up, so I don't think it really says anything about which "brain" we are. But it is an interesting optical illusion. When I first saw it, it was counter clockwise. Then I saw it as clockwise and couldn't get it to go counter clockwise again. I guess it's just going back and forth rather than round and round?I used to have this bizarre experience of getting in a very still place and seeing light. It used to happen frequently, sometimes more dramatically than others. The last time it happened was at a silent retreat at a Jesuit center. The priest was offering up the host and there was light associated with the offering. I can't really explain it. I talked to him afterward about what had happened because he happened to sit at my table at lunch on the last day of the retreat when we were allowed to talk again. He said he wasn't surprised at all – that I was experiencing a more direct form of communication. It used to happen to me all the time but as soon as it had been explained, it never happened again. Probably because I was wanting it to happen. The desire blocked the experience. Or maybe it's just because that was pre-kids. 🙂

  4. it was just so easy…

  5. What do you mean by "the whole left brain/right brain argument no longer holds up?" That we make it a bigger deal than we should? What specifically is the argument you think doesn't hold up?And you're definitely right about how desire blocks the experience. Even with this thing, when I tried to will her to go the other way, it was much harder. But as soon as I relaxed, I could get her to switch directions easily. 🙂

  6. I learned this at a Ripley's Believe It or Not. 🙂 Our brain gets tricked because the dancer is 2D, but our brain can't process it as a 2D image so the visual cortex has to reconstruct it as 3D so our brain can make sense of it. The visual cortex arbitrarily assigns a direction to make it seem 3D. If you focus on one part of the picture and then shift your focus, the visual cortex has to reconstruct the image and may arbirarily assign an different direction to complete the 3D construction. It's just an optical illusion that plays tricks on our brain because . Which direction it is spinning doesn't have anything to do with whether we are right brained or left brained. Also, I think neurologists have dismissed the notion of characteristics being assigned to a dominance in the right or the left brain because the two are so incredibly interconnected that they work as a whole even though they can function independently.

  7. My computer is so danged glitchy….. because… our brain didn't evolve to process 2D images. We see things in 3D.

  8. 'hold me closer, tiny dancer. count the headli…..' ahem.

  9. That makes sense. Although, there are definitely differences in the way right and left process things. Did you ever watch that TED video with the neuro-scientist who had the stroke? Interesting stuff.

  10. I loved Taylor's talk although it's been several months since I saw it. There are definitely differences in right and left processes and we do have right brain/left brain dominance. But attributing personality/ability to being more left brained or right brained, I think, has been dismissed by neurologists. Could easily be proven wrong, however.

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