People unconsciously attribute to the human glance a force equal to about 0.01 Newton

People unconsciously attribute to the human glance a force equal to about 0.01 Newton

In experiments with a total sample of more than 200 people psychologists have statistically significant evidence that we attributed to the opinion of others a little pressure.

Psychologists from Princeton University have found that people feel a barely noticeable “pressure” of someone else’s opinion on the subject. Physically it is of course impossible, so the researchers believe, is a mechanism of social cognition.

The faith of the people in that person’s eyes emit a kind of invisible beam that “hits” the surrounding objects that reflect the ancient concept of view: the theory of “flow” in one form or another, attributed to Empedocles, atomists, Euclid, and many other ancient Greeks. By the same intuition, apparently, relies on superstition and the “evil eye”.

Today, however, we know that the eye does not radiate, but rather perceives light waves reflected from an object. However, the idea of the pressure of someone else’s opinion, according to the new study, psychologists have some reasons — but those are not in the physical structure of the surrounding world, and the structure of our perception.

To do this, scientists conducted a series of experiments in which participated more than a hundred people. They tested remotely, using the platform of Amazon Mechanical Turk, which allows to register and for little money to perform tasks that need companies or scientists, for example, test data or take a test.

People were shown a screen on which was depicted a light paper tube under the tilt, and portrait of a young man, which in different experiments the eye was closed, covered with a bandage, then opened and looked at the tube, opened it and looked in the direction of the tubes. Along the tubes on the monitor screen appeared a line. Using the keyboard, subjects had to tilt the lines to the tube tilted in the direction of portrait of a young man as much as possible, but did not fall.

Scientists assumed that if the subjects feel “pressure” of the portrait view, they will tilt the line with the tubes harder, as if overcoming a counter-pressure. After the test the subjects filled in a special questionnaire, explaining how, in their opinion, constituted visual perception. They were also asked whether they understood the experiment and whether they felt any impact on the tube other than their own. Only 5% of the sample expressed the idea of visual perception as a kind of energy that comes from the eyes. The views of the rest was agreed with the scientific views.

The essence of the experiment and its connection with the study of the concept of extremisim no one understood. Also people expressed a clear understanding of why the on-screen portrait of a young man and how it affects what is happening, only 9% said it prevented them or distracted from the job.

However, in all experiments, scientists have obtained a statistically significant effect: subjects regardless of their faith in the pressure of opinion has tipped tube on average 2/3 of a degree further, if portrait of a young man “looked” at these tubes. That is as if they sought to overcome a counter-pressure. This effect was not observed, if he did not look at them.