Monday, February 05, 2007

Synesthesia

A strange new phenomenon came into my conscience when I reached my bed after the usual army patrol I have to endure for the 64th time, especially the most annoying ones between 3 and 6 o clock a.m. I like to stay there in bed while closing my eyes and listening to some feelingful tunes in my MP3 player. I was so sleepy today in the morning and listening to some of my favorite VNV Nation songs (An ebm/futurepop group I recently met and was instantly converted into their absolute fan!) like Further, Beloved, Kingdom and others. For some strange reasons, I let my conscience to try to pick out and separate the little electronic sounds of it, in a mid-sleepy sense, subconsciounsly concentrating into that activity and then something weird happened that when I became aware of, it felt so psychedelic that I got so focused into trying to figure out what actually happened and couldn't listen to the song anymore. Wow is what I whispered. Twice.

The sounds were separated. As a visual mathematician and insane pattern matcher, I could first feel the curves and shapes and roughness the sounds looked like. Ok for me, till this point (am I weird or not? ;). Then things moved on to a higher level but there I was half sleepy and wasn't aware of the point where things went from shapes to something colorful and how it felt like the separated pieces of sound formed things that really looked to me like green(dark), purple (blueish) and orange (redish). The green was rough and big, the others came on it's surface. It was in 3d space. And it felt to me so natural that those sounds should be matching these colors. And then I wowed and couldn't concentrate on it anymore. I was listening to the song Saviour by VNV Nation at the time and I couldn't listen to music anymore because I had to make a hard pause and actually think of what the hell I was just perceiving!

The way it happened kinda reminds me of lucid dreaming. That one happens to several people and most of them might not be aware of it when it happens. When you suddenly perceive that you are actually dreaming, inside your dream, there is a high possibility that you might wake up out of astonishment or other reasons I am not aware of. But when it (first?) happens, it is such an uninvited surprise and it's like for a tiny second your subconscious is revealed to your awareness and you perceive something that you weren't supposed to feel.

Such feelingful things happens to me when I am half asleep. It has happened to listen to some music (I think it was a ballad from Hammerfall) that my brother put on the CD player, while waking up in the morning, still not reviving full conscience from my last dream, to get such a great feeling during that morning, making this song one of my favorites for a long while I recently heared it again and thought it's not a big deal. It happened that I had such a different perception of things and such relaxed and clear were my thoughts when I woke up at times. And after having nice dreams of special things and then waking up and still being half asleep, that feeling goes along for the rest of the day and makes it up for me. It happened that I got some solutions to some problems while waking up in such a state. And it never felt the same when I was later fully awaken. But the event I describe above was unique and it was my first time to feel such a great thing!


With the title above and the story below, I don't want to claim that I am a synesthetic. Most probably I am not and I think that there are more strange things into those people that feels quite different than my temporary half-sleepy experience. It just happened that what I felt kinda reminded me of what people mean by the term synesthesia and that astonished me so much that I wanted to write about. And I thought it is a good title because I also wanted to find the opportunity to talk further about it. I don't think I have something to do with what those people are living through. Afteralls, being self ironic I later pointed out that green are my army clothes and the mix of dark purple and orange/redish is that of my sleeping bag!!! Hahaha, I fell out on the floor laughing when I understood that fact! ;)

Though, there was really something into it that I lived and liked and maybe I'll try to do that again with more feelingful or psychedelic songs in order to investigate further into that feeling. At least this is something I can more easilly/frequently experiment with, unlike lucid dreaming (Pissed off having to wake up the 16th time after I get aware that I am actually dreaming!!! :P)

Neat! And VNV rulez =)

Synesthesia sounds like one of the most interesting conditions of the human perception to me and I'd like to read more articles about it in the future. Maybe have the opportunity to actually meet/talk with some true synesthetics?

When it happens, I wake up with the most great mood ever. To feel something that cannot be felt..

2 comments:

Pixie said...

I think that strange experiences happen to you not because they only happen to few people but because you are aware of your inner soul and thoughts.I liked your article very much as it was a term that I never heard before.I haven't heard from you since some time so I hope that you are ok!

p.s I love VNV NATION and have seen them live!

Optimus said...

Don't worry, in the greek army these days I can go out after 1-2 days in a week. So, I am not too active now..

Great to see that you like VNV Nation (It's a new fav group for me and I haven't seen them live ever. I am wondering if Futurepop/EBM groups have played in Greece yet?). In which gig have you seen them? Was it in UK?

About synesthesia, it's rather interesting to me (I am glad that you read about it now) and there are more interesting things to it. I remember reading an article written by a synesthetic guy and there was something quite interesting that I wanted to write in the end of this blog but didn't got the time before.

He said that even between two synesthetics the experiences differ quite much. E.g. when he could "see" red while listening to a sound, his synesthetic friend would "see" yellow, smell/taste something or having a quite different experience. Even between synesthetics there is no universal connection between the same sounds/colors/tastes/smells/etc. It's unique for each one! I found this conclusion quite important because it shows us for another time that experience someone perceives can be very unique and quite diferrent for each of them regardless if they both live through a very similar experience/disorder/mental situation..

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