Our fascination with the idea of optical illusions dates back further than most people realize, with the first evidence pointing to the 5th century B.C. Through history, the understanding of how these illusions work has been largely unknown, with a number of interesting theories.
The Greek philosopher Epicharmus believed that we were being deceived by our senses, influencing what we saw. Protagoras, another Greek philosopher, stated that it wasn’t the senses, but rather the environment that was influencing us.
Today, we look instead at the perception that the individual viewing the illusion has about the world around us, believing that perception alters how we see the image presented. This could be formed by our experiences in life, the way we were raised, or a biological component, but they all come together to determine how we view challenges in the world and our relationships with others. These mental biases carry though, causing us to be more likely to view one result or another.
Interested in what optical illusions reveal about your mind and personality? Try these 8 illusions:
What do you see when looking at this image? If the first thing that you notice is a series of pillars, then you are someone who trusts others easily, willing to take the world at face value and always assuming the best intentions in everyone that you meet. You believe that everyone is as good and kind as you are, and struggle to accept that there is an evil side to mankind. If, however, you see a row of women facing one another then you a skilled in your ability to see beyond the obvious. Always the one to read between the lines, you understand that the world isn’t black and white, and are always looking for the next layer of grey in a situation. This allows you to see through the lies and deceit, well aware that not everyone is who they appear to be.
This image may look like a simple picture of a cat on the stairs but look a little closer. Do you see the cat climbing up the stairs or down the stairs? If you see this cat as moving up the stairs, then you view the world around you in an optimist life. Always recognizing the potential in every situation that you encounter, you see life as a continuous opportunity for personal growth. If, however, you see the cat moving down the stairs, then your outlook on life is far more pessimistic. Highly skeptical and reluctant to trust the people around you, you take the time to consider all the possible options, especially the potential bad outcomes, before committing to any decision.
Just how dirty is your mind? This image can provide you with a little insight. If, when looking at this image, you first see the pubic area of a woman (or women) then you have a healthy sexual appetite. Like much of the population, you have a tendency to see the sexual side to everything, showing that you are still looking for a little fun in your life. If, instead, you see grass moving in the wind then you are a rare individual. Viewing this image from this perspective shows your ability to step back when viewing something, looking past the obvious to see the ‘real picture’ as it were.
When you look at this picture what do you see first? An old man, or a young woman? Your first impression reveals interesting information about your mental age. If you first see the old man, then you are mature for your age, viewing the world around you with wisdom and experience. If, however, you see a young woman then you are still a kid at heart. Viewing the world from a place of innocence and naivety, you see the best in everything and everyone around you.
If, when looking at this image, you first see two faces, this is a sign that you pay careful attention to the details around you when assessing a situation or a problem. You don’t shy away from life’s challenges – instead, you jump right in, facing them head on and quickly putting them behind you. If what you see is a candlestick in the middle of the image, then you approach situations with a ‘big picture’ way of thinking. Before making any moves in life you try to first understand the whole situation inside and out, comfortable that you are fully aware of what’s happening.
If you see two hands when you first look at this image, then you view the world with reason and logic. Calm and rational, you influence everyone that you meet, encouraging them to slow down and view the world for ‘what it really is.’ You are rarely distracted by anything around you, always focused on the task at hand. If what you see first is a tree, you are often lost in the details of the world around you. You are the person who stops to smell the roses, always the first to notice if someone cut their hair or did something different with their makeup. You are also highly in tune with the moods of those around you. Finally, if you saw a mushroom cloud explosion then you have a highly active imagination. You’re often creating elaborate stories in your mind of what could happen or where your life is going rather than just accepting the facts before you. This imagination and creativity allow you to be a skilled artist, expressing these elaborate scenarios in your mind through mediums like song, dance, and painting.
Do you view the small details in the world around you, or is your attention on the bigger pictures? Take a look at this optical illusion to find out. If the first thing you see is an older couple facing one another, then you view the bigger picture when looking at the world around you. This helps you to be more adept at planning and organizing your life, and the lives of those around you. If, however, you saw the 3 other people in the picture – 2 sitting in the foreground, and another woman in the background, then you have an eye for detail. You pay attention to the more subtle nuances in life, so nothing escapes your well-trained eye.
When looking at this image you may see one of two animals. The animal that you see first reveals the overall way that you think. If the first animal that you see is a rabbit, then you are a quick thinking, always on your feet and on top of any possible situation. You are an incredible problem solver due to the fact that your quick thinking allows you to find a solution almost instantaneously. This quick wit can also be seen in your sense of humor and your habit of using sarcasm regularly. On the other hand, if the first animal you see is a duck them you approach situations with a calm and rational mind. You are a deep thinker, so while your thinking process is calm that doesn’t mean it isn’t also highly active, thinking through every last detail. Often living life caught up in your own mind, you never speak without carefully thinking through your words first.