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Half of All People Can ‘See’ Their Hand in Pitch Black Darkness (VIDEO)

Update Date: Nov 01, 2013 10:26 AM EDT
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The shadows which we see might not be a meaningless trickery but an interpretation of our own movements in the dark, a new study suggests.

The research published in journal Psychological Science, also finds that at least half of the people can see the movement of their own hand even there is no light at all.

“This research shows that our own movements transmit sensory signals that also can create real visual perceptions in the brain, even in the complete absence of optical input,” said Duje Tadin, a professor of brain and cognitive sciences at the University of Rochester who also led the investigation in a press release.

The research was carried out in five distinct experiments which included 129 individuals. In the experiment, researchers figured out how brain processed sensory information.

“Any time you willfully execute a movement—such as waving your hand in front of your face—your brain generates command signals sent to the muscles causing them to produce the movement. Having issued those motor orders, the brain also expects them to be carried out, and that expectation is signaled to other parts of the brain as a heads-up that something is about to happen,” Randolph Blake, Centennial Professor of Psychology at Vanderbilt University and co-author of the study, said in the press release.

Half of the participants were able to detect the motion of their own hand. The detection was consistent despite the expectations created with the faux holes.

However the art of seeing self-motion in darkness can be learned.

“We get such reliable exposure to the sight of our own hand moving that our brains learn to predict the expected moving image even without actual visual input,” Vanderbilt postdoctoral researcher Kevin Dieter added.

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