Friday, February 27, 2015

Pareidolia -- More Commonly Known as Matrixing


Matrixing–or pareidolia–is the name given to the way the human brain sometimes fools the eyes into seeing things. Or as explained in scientific terms:
Pareidolia (paeri'douliə/ parr-i-DOH-lee-ə) is a psychological phenomenon involving a vague and random stimulus (often an image or sound) being perceived as significant. Common examples include seeing images of animals or faces in clouds, the man in the moon or the Moon rabbit, and hearing hidden messages on records when played in reverse.

The word comes from the Greek words para (παρά, "beside, alongside, instead [of]") in this context meaning something faulty or wrong; and the noun eidōlon (εἴδωλον "image, form, shape"), the diminutive of eidos. Pareidolia is a type of apophenia, seeing patterns in random data.

Does the image above seem to be moving? I can guarantee you it isn’t.  Believe me; I printed it out to be sure. You’re welcome to print it out as a test, too, if it makes you feel better. Frankly, it’s one of the best examples of matrixing I’ve encountered. 

In the world of paranormal investigation, however, matrixing is a double-edged sword. It is one of the debunking tools applied to possible paranormal photographs. Particularly when those images involve glass.

The paranormal is a world we at MGCParanormal love to get elbow deep into a few times a month. Using infra-red video, digital cameras, night vision video cameras, temperature change/thermal detectors, EMF detectors, audio recorders placed in numerous locations, and even wind chimes sealed in a jar; these instruments are all a means to investigate houses or buildings with suspected paranormal activity. It’s easy to get excited when we seem to have captured something authentic. Yet anyone in the field has to stay on constant guard to keep an open mind, open eyes and open ears. So we employ matrixing software and the help of professional photographers to validate or debunk our photographic finds.

We want you to look at the next image. Closely. Tell me how many figures or faces (if any) you can find in it. We’ll get back to it in just a moment. Please suffer through a little science first; it will give you a better understanding.

Examples of matrixing you may recognize are the Face on Mars, in the image below.

Or car designs. Automotive grilles are often deliberately manipulated to make a vehicle appear more ‘friendly’ or ‘aggressive’ for marketing purposes. And no one who’s ever seen a Studebaker at an antique car show will disagree: it looks like a Ford that sucked on a lemon. (Sorry about that one. I plead a strange sense of humor.)

“Holy” figures in surprising places or shapes in clouds are occasionally considered matrixing,  But, (and we love this one!) what most people don’t know is even the scientific community uses a sort of directed matrixing: Rorschach ink blot tests. Surprised you there, didn’t we? And that one’s not a joke.

The most basic explanation we can come up with for matrixing is that recognizing other humans (particularly faces of parents) is the first skill a baby learns. It’s so deeply ingrained in the psyche–and maybe our DNA–that it remains operative on an unconscious level throughout our lives. Pattern recognition of this sort is also a survival tool; it allowed earliest humans a way to spot predators in hiding.

But not everything can be explained as matrixing. Some things are truly unexplainable.  Take one more look at the window image above. It’s from a house formerly used as a Civil War hospital. After you’ve studied it take a quick look at the final image of today’s blog. I'm including a second image to show it’s a shot of a second story window, taken from the ground. There was no possible way to produce such a proportionate reflection from anyone standing near me at the time it was taken (as suggested); neither was anyone in the room. Since it’s my picture, I can guarantee there has been no photoshopping, no enhancements whatsoever. It’s exactly as it is on the digital smart card. I’ve simply enlarged it here for easier viewing.  
The picture is a shot of the window on the upper left, the one with red curtains. In the final picture (below) I took the liberty of outlining forms a number of different individuals consistently noticed in the frame. One seems to be an older gentleman sitting with forearms on his thighs (left, with upper part of his head above middle window divider, appearing to be in what resembles a medical coat), and the full face of a woman on the red cloth at the right side of the photo. If you look between the two pics again, (this face I didn’t outline) there seems to be a young child, her face looking downward, slightly right-profiled. She has a broad forehead that is part of the woman’s chin and lower face to help find her in the first, and unmarked photo. 

So, what do you think? Are we matrixing? Put on your Paranormal Investigator hat and go through the check list for photographs. I just felt a shiver....
What do your goosebumps say?

Tell you what. If we get FIFTEEN (15) COMMENTERS before midnight Wednesday March 4, 2015, one will be chosen to receive an MGCParanormal t-shirt! So please, feel free to share this post! Good luck!

 Until next week, happy Ghost Hunting!

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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Music of Rosslyn

 Rosslyn Chapel, near Edinburgh, holds many secrets. Linked to Freemasonry, the Knights Templar, legends of “hidden sacred secrets”, and even the Quest for the Grail, it draws many thousands of visitors yearly. But one of the chapel’s secrets has been revealed: The music of the cube carvings. It is one of the most hauntingly beautiful pieces I’ve ever heard. Here is the story behind that musical discovery.

For better than twenty years, Thomas Mitchell was drawn again and again to Rosslyn Chapel. Something about the carved cubes attached to its soaring arches called to him, their patterns triggering a subconscious response.

And well they should. You see, Thomas J. Mitchell was a WWII cryptographer, cracking some of the toughest enemy codes during the war. Yet it wasn’t until he reached the age of 72 that what he’d been looking at blazed clearly in his brain. The carvings on the 600 year old Rosslyn Chapel represent a coded form of a musical score, say the father-and-son team of Tommy J. Mitchell, 75, and Stuart Mitchell, 41.
In a quoted statement from his website T. Mitchell says: “Rosslyn Chapel holds a musical mystery in its architecture and design. At one end of the chapel, on the ceiling are 4 cross sections of arches containing elaborate symbolic designs on each array of cubes (in actual fact they are rectangles mostly). The ‘cubes’ are attached to the arches in a musically sequential way. And to confirm this, at the ends of each arch there is an angel playing a musical instrument of a different kind. After 27 years of study and research, we believe he has found pitches and tonality that match the symbols on each cube, revealing its melodic and harmonic progressions.”

Cube carvings along arches of Rosslyn Chapel
Stave Angel

This musical score has been ‘frozen’ in Rosslyn for 600 years. Inside the chapel, there are 13 angels Tommy Mitchell calls the “orchestra of angels”, which are carved into the chapel’s arches and who appear to be musicians. 213 geometric symbols are also found that resemble sound waves at different pitches. After decoding all the symbols to match the sound waves, they found the song researchers say is part of the “cymatics” music system. The cymatic system is also known as the “Chladni patterns”, which is the study of wave phenomena associated with the physical patterns produced through the interaction of sound waves in a medium.  Ernest Chladni’s 18th century research was later continued by musician and amateur scientist Margaret Watts Hughes, who invented a device called the Eidophone to produce these patterns.

Notes displayed overhead, as identified by Chladni Patterns.

In themselves, the patterns are simply visual representations and thus nothing out of the ordinary: what is amazing is that the Rosslyn cubes were carved 500 years BEFORE the supposed discovery of the technique.

Long associated with the Templar Knights, several other mysteries are believed hidden in the numerous, intricate carvings. One being the Apprentice Pillar, which is said to be representative of a strand of DNA. 
Intricately carved Apprentice Pillar

Raging curiosity always makes me want to take things a bit further. Is it just general DNA...... or the DNA of a particular individual?

Below is a link to a demonstration of Chladni patterns by using an Eidophone. Interesting indeed and well worth the time to watch! It's fascinating to realize the notes in the song being sung in the background match the tone produced by the Eidophone, at the point the pattern displayed matches the carvings on the cubes!

Until next week, happy paranormal!
MGCParanormal Team

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