The human brain is one of the most complex and intricate things in existence as it is responsible for pretty much everything we use in our daily lives - from our toothbrushes to our cars. In fact, more than a 100 billion neurons are present in this 3-gram organ. Hence, we haven't been able to uncover all of its mysteries even in this day and age but hopefully, this article will provide you with some clarity on phenomena you might consider to be otherworldly but are really your mind playing tricks on you. So, let us begin.
The mind conjures up some strange delusions which are nothing short of nutty in my opinion. There is a phenomenon known as "Fregoli Delusion" wherein the person holds the belief that different people are, in fact, the same person in a variety of disguises. It is often associated with paranoia and the belief that the person in disguise is trying to persecute them or worse. There is another phenomenon by the name of "Capgras Delusion" in which the person believes that a close friend or family member has been replaced by an identical looking impostor. There have been cases where people have accused their own fathers and brothers of being replaced by aliens.
The one that hits the closest to home, though, is “L'esprit de l'escalier” (stairway wit), the sense of thinking of a clever comeback when it is too late. The phrase can be used to describe a riposte to an insult or any witty, clever remark that comes to mind, too late to be useful when one is on the "staircase" leaving the scene. Déjà Vu and Precognition are more common mental mysteries and affect a large percentage of the population.
Déjà vu is a French word meaning ‘already seen’. It is the experience of being certain that you have experienced or seen a new situation previously, where you feel as though the event has already happened or is repeating itself. The experience is usually accompanied by a strong sense of familiarity and a sense of eeriness, strangeness, or weirdness. The "previous" experience is usually attributed to a dream but sometimes, there is a firm sense that it has truly occurred in the past. Déjà Vécu, a French word meaning already experienced or precognition, is more like a premonition. It is a feeling that purportedly predicts some future event. Speaking from experience, this is a very eerie and almost supernatural sensation.
Science, however, seems to be sure that it isn't. To think of it, I thought that the movie - The Matrix had clearly explained déjà vu. According to the latest research, déjà vu isn't just a glitch in the Matrix - it is your brain developing.
A 2010 study found those who both frequently remember their dreams and have a higher socioeconomic status have more déjà vu experiences. There's even a term for dream déjà vu: déjà reve, French for "dreamed before." About 86% of college students surveyed for the study reported reliving events they remember from dreams. Colorado State University's déjà vu researcher and cognitive psychologist Anne Cleary believe this might happen when you dream about something you've experienced but later only remember the dream, not the event itself. And now I'm left wondering if I really did kill that guy or if I just dreamed it (just kidding - or am I?).
"Memory is far from perfect. We simply fail to recall everything that we encounter in the day-to-day life. However, just because something fails to be recalled doesn't mean that the memory isn't still ‘in there’ somewhere; often it is and it is just failing to be accessed. These types of memories might be what drive the sense of familiarity that presumably underlies déjà vu", cognitive psychologist Anne Cleary believes. "It's conceivable that a previous experience that exists in memory but that fails to be retrieved might not only produce a sensation of déjà vu upon encountering a highly similar situation, but also produce a sense of how the current event is supposed to unfold, such as which direction to turn next within the scene" which is what we call precognition.
There are more than 40 theories as to what déjà vu is and what causes it, and they range from reincarnation to glitches in our memory processes. I know some of you might even be strong believers of these theories, so for them, I have a theory.
Ever wondered why babies cry when they are born? Maybe, just maybe, they recall a somewhat scattered memory of the previous life they left behind when dying and while they can't seem to remember it fully, they have that sad and lonely feeling of dying; the feeling of a life being left behind and another starting.