January 26, 2008

Teach your brain to stretch time - Biologists traditionally divide our timekeeping abilities into three domains: circadian rhythms, which control things such as sleep and wakefulness over the 24-hour period; millisecond timing, which is involved in fine motor tasks; and interval timing, which is the seconds-to-minutes range - the system through which we consciously perceive the passage of time.
  • When isn't it time-to-stretch-your-brain time?
  • In Russia, brain teaches time to stretch YOU.
  • That took forever to read.
  • I've been meaning to read Time Distortion in Hypnosis: An Experimental and Clinical Investigation but haven't gotten around to it yet.
  • Aldous Huxley wrote about this sort of stuff in a couple of novels, IIRC.
  • Expanding your consciousness =/= stretching time.
  • "=/=" ?
  • Ah, does not equal ≠. Got it. I'm thinking of Island and some stuff in Brave New World. It's been many years, though, so I might be misremembering.
  • Some more information here Milton Erickson, the father of American medical hypnosis, performed a series of fascinating experiments in 1948-1954 documented in the book Time Distortion and Hypnosis. He used a metronome with subjects imagining themselves doing various tasks under hypnosis, at a normal pace, like counting beans or picking cotton (hey, this was the 40s and 50s :-)) One subject counted 862 cotton bolls, taking her time, brushing the leaves aside to insure she hadn’t missed any, in a period of 3 seconds in external clock time. Others had similarly remarkable experiences. Erickson also worked with author Aldous Huxley who could enter into a light trance and develop writing themes; Huxley could subjectively experience 6-7 hours in the period of a few minutes, an ability he explored and further refined with Erickson.
  • And then there was that nice lady in Star Trek: First Contact.
  • I don't know if my mind has ever been expanded by any of my activities, including sitting at this computer, but I can guarantee that my butt has expanded exponentially with each hour in this chair.
  • While not specifically about just time distortion, there's an excerpt from Milton H. Erickson's book from the chapter entitled "A Special Inquiry with Aldous Huxley into the Nature and Character of Various States of Consciousness" found at http://www.geocities.com/franzbardon/erickson.html
  • Er, make that "...excerpt from Milton H Erickson's book The Collected Papers of Milton H. Erickson, Volume 1 from the chapter..." And to think I even previewed.
  • I've noticed subjective time distortion when I'm in an almost sleeplike state e.g. if I'm jetlagged and very tired but unable to get properly to sleep. I have subjectively experienced periods of 10 to 15 minutes during a period of 2 or 3 minutes.