Synchronized virtual reality heartbeat triggers out-of-body experiences
2013-08-26 0:00

By Lakshmi Sandhana | GizMag



New research demonstrates that triggering an out-of-body experience (OBE) could be as simple as getting a person to watch a video of themselves with their heartbeat projected onto it.

According to the study, itís easy to trick the mind into thinking it belongs to an external body and manipulate a personís self-consciousness by externalizing the bodyís internal rhythms. The findings could lead to new treatments for people with perceptual disorders such as anorexia and could also help dieters too.

In a typical out-of-body experience a person either experiences a feeling of floating outside of their body or of viewing it from outside of themselves. Most of us donít experience OBEís because our brains are constantly filtering information from all our senses to help us identify what we are and what we arenít.

For instance we know that our reflection isnít actually part of us. However the processes that give us the feeling of being in our bodies can be disrupted either naturally (seizures) or artificially (feeding the brain conflicting sensory inputs). For example, in the well known "rubber hand" illusion, a person begins to identify more with a rubber hand when someone strokes it in front of them, while stroking their real hand out of sight.

Itís possible to expand this feeling to include the whole body as demonstrated in experiments that get a person to identify more with a virtual double than their own body by using virtual reality goggles. However, all of these experiments rely on manipulating external senses such as vision and touch.

Not much is known about how information from our internal organs contributes to bodily self-consciousness and whether they can be manipulated to induce an OBE. Thatís the question Dr Jane Aspell, Senior Lecturer in Psychology, Anglia Ruskin University, UK and Lukas Heydrich, Phd Student, Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience, Ecole Polytechnique Fťdťrale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland, set out to answer.

"If you think about your body, you have several sources of information about it: you can see your hands and legs, you can feel the seat youíre sitting on via vision, you know you are standing upright thanks to your sense of balance etc," Aspell tells Gizmag. "There is also a vast number of signals being sent to your brain from inside of your body every second that you are alive: about your heartbeat, your blood pressure, how full your stomach is, what electrolytes are in your blood, how fast you are breathing.

"There is a huge amount of diverse information being sent to your brain about your body and yet what you perceive is not these medley of signals but just you Ė a single body, a single self. These pieces of information about the external and internal states of your body must be integrated or merged to generate this unity. This is what we are now beginning to study for the first time."

Aspell and Heydrich decided to find out whether a personís bodily self-consciousness could be influenced by visually representing one of its vital inner rhythms Ė the pulsing heartbeat. They attached 17 participants to electrocardiogram sensors and had them view videos of their bodies through virtual reality goggles so that their body appeared to be two meters (6.5 ft) in front of them.

Participants saw their own heartbeats visually imposed on their virtual doubles in the form of a flashing outline around the body that pulsed in sync. After a couple of minutes, many of the participants reported sensations of being in an entirely different part of the room rather than their physical body and feeling that their "selves" were closer to their virtual doubles.

[...]

Read the full article at: gizmag.com

Footage from the experiment:




Tune into Red Ice Radio:

Carol de la Herran - Hour 1 - Robert Monroe & Altered States of Consciousness

Scott Onstott - Hour 1 - Explorations in Number, Architecture & Consciousness

Penney Peirce - Hour 1 - Leap of Perception

Gary Schwartz - Communication With the Deceased & Life After Death

Bob Frissell - Hour 1 - Transitioning Into The 4th Dimension

Nassim Haramein - The Schwarzschild Proton

Peter Russell - The Primacy of Consciousness

Anthony Peake - Hour 1 - The Nature of Reality & Twilight Zones of Consciousness

Anthony Peake & Tom Campbell - Consciousness Creates Reality

Jim Elvidge - Are we Living in a Simulation, a Programmed Reality?

Penney Peirce - Frequency, Intuition, Time & Dreams

Anthony Peake - Mystery of the Brain, Precognition, Time Dilation & Dťjŗ vu





Related Articles
TED: Non-locality of consciousness is forbidden territory?
The Primacy of Consciousness - Peter Russell
New tool peeks into brain to measure consciousness
Tom Campbell: Consciousness Is The Computer, Reality Is Information
Leading OBE researcher: Is inducing Out-of-Body Experiences for Real?
Do Religion and Culture Affect a Near Death Experience?
The Famous íTennis Shoeí Near Death Experience
Meditation Allows Brain To Control Body Temperature, Say Scientists


Latest News from our Front Page

Professor: Reason Itself Is A White Male Construct
2015-07-04 3:55
A philosophy and religion professor at Syracuse University gave an interview to The New York Times Thursday in which he critiqued the notion of pure reason as simply being a “white male Euro-Christian construction.” Prof. John Caputo was being interviewed by fellow philosophy professor George Yancy for the 13th installment of an interview series Yancy conducts with philosophers regarding racial topics. Given its emphasis on first principles ...
The Broken Window Fallacy
2015-07-04 3:48
Youtube description: This short video explains one of the most persistent economic fallacies of our day. Source: youtube.com
Jenji Kohan and the Jewish Hyper-Sexualization of Western Culture
2015-07-04 3:33
As detailed in The Culture of Critique, Freud and his followers regarded anti-Semitism was a universal pathology which had its roots in sexual repression. The theoretical basis for this can be found in Freud’s Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality where he linked aggression to the frustration of human drives — especially the sex drive. Kevin MacDonald notes that: ...
Confederate History - Dispelling the Myths
2015-07-03 3:28
History books, the media, the school systems, etc abound in falsehoods and inaccuracies of Confederate and Southern history. This fact sheet will help to clarify and dispell some of these rampant inaccuracies. MYTH - The War of 1861 - 1865 was fought over slavery. FACT - Terribly untrue. The North fought the war over money. Plain ...
Gays Rights May Open Door for Pedophile Rights
2015-07-03 3:31
Democrats have attempted to normalize pedophilia as a sexual orientation. A recent Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage may soon allow pedophiles to argue they are suffering discrimination. ‚ÄúUsing the same tactics used by ‚Äėgay‚Äô rights activists, pedophiles have begun to seek similar status arguing their desire for children is a sexual orientation no different than heterosexual or homosexuals,‚ÄĚ writes Jack Minor ...
More News »