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My old friend from Berkeley, Charles M. (I must leave his name out until he approves of this post) sent me an email about how frogs can’t see a fly unless the fly moves. The corollary that interests both of us is that we humans can’t perceive static thoughts, that thoughts must be moving in some perceptible mental dimension for us to perceive them.

I have several posts on similar ideas on camouflageunknownsperceptions, searching, but I don’t think I explored the idea that movement is necessary for perception to take place. In those posts, there are examples using cuttlefish, who can mimic the surfaces they are lying upon to the point of near invisibility, when still. I don’t know if when they move slowly how nearly they can maintain their invisibility, and perhaps there is a video of one moving over a varied surface. They do become visible when they are moving quickly.

That idea has potential human relevance for looking at paintings and at static but visually complex symmetrical patterns. It may be that when we stare at a complex pattern without moving our eyes, the pattern disappears. I did some similar cross-eye experiments and blog posts on that subject. Some things do disappear in a few seconds when patterns that are identical, but colored in complementary colors, are presented to the opposite eyes. In those examples, my vision can flow thru many different renditions to my brain’s perception of the same static images, including some having complex patterns, simply vanishing. If I shift my eyes a small amount, the images reappear, only to develop a halo of iridescent coloring for a few seconds before they disappear again. It is a fun thing to do, but fatiguing to the brain.

The idea needs some critical experiments, something that is similar to what meditators attempt to do, such as remove all thoughts from the consciousness, or to think about a single thing for a couple of minutes. The mind rebels at those kinds of activities, but some people claim they can do it, and even enjoy it.

Let us watch for examples of static versus moving thoughts disappearing.