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Question about Time and how it's percieved.

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posted on Sep, 1 2004 @ 09:18 AM
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I'm sure most people have had experiences where they have felt in danger, and time as they percieved it seemed to slow down (things happen in extreme slow motion) or the opposite and things seem to speed up. What causes this effect? Is there a scientific explanation for this? Does it relate to the increased levels of adrenalin or some other chemical which allows us to react faster therefore making it seem like time has slowed, or our own panic & confusion which makes time seem to have dramatically sped up?.

The best example of this happening to me (time seeming to slow down) is when while driving on the highway an oncoming truck jack-knifed. Things seemed to just happen in slow motion. It seriously felt like an eternity as I watched the trailer of this huge semi sloooowly slide sideways, reach the point where it was literally running across the road, watching the truck slooooowly start to roll towards me.

Another good example is "back in the day" when I used to skate. I tried to "boardwalk" a handrail, one of the types with a bar about 15cm off the ground, assumingly to reinforce the handrail. Anyway, the moment I went to jump onto it I knew I was in for trouble, and again, I swear it felt like everything was moving in slow motion as I went through the air, landed on the handrail, one foot slipped off and my leg got wedged between the top and bottom bars. Basically as soon as this happened, I experienced the opposite effect, and i felt like i zoomed to the end of the rail at 100mph whereupon I met with a very sudden stop courtesy of my leg wedged between the two bars...still don't know how I didn't break it


There's also been times where I've looked at my watch (analogue and digital watches) and it's felt like an eternity for the second hand / display to tick over. I'm sure there's a scientific explanation just wondering if anyone can explain it to me in idiots terms




posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 06:09 PM
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I have two ideas.

One. When in danger your brain works at an incredably fast or slow pace. This changes your perception of time because you are used to thinking at a certain rate. In other words: You measure "time" by your thought process and when it changes so does your measurments.

Two. You have put yourself in a different "time frame" using a low key psychic ability.

I personally lean towards the first idea.



posted on Sep, 2 2004 @ 06:22 PM
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Here check out my thread on time.

www.abovetopsecret.com...

You make some good points i understand exactly what your saying, I aint no scientist or anything however i have a big interest in all concepts of time its an amazing yet mind bending subject.



posted on Sep, 3 2004 @ 09:43 AM
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heh yes let's leave supernatural causes out of this for the moment
I'm pretty sure there is a perfectly boring, ordinary reason to do with increases or decreases of chemicals in your brain or something.



posted on Sep, 3 2004 @ 01:46 PM
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My comment from another thread - not worth linking too.

I have had episodes where I found my perception of time has changed speeds momentarily. I believe just like the automated perception change during a life or death scenario which allows you to make choices to maintain life, great athletes access this ability to slow down time perception which gives them an advantage over their opponents. I believe this is what's referred to by many as the zone, where you seemingly can do no wrong until you lose concentration.

Sort of like a guy with a faster computer and bandwidth playing against someone with slower cpu is able to see more frames before his opponent and thus has more time to make the right choice that results in beating his opponent.



posted on Sep, 3 2004 @ 08:49 PM
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i watched one of those chris ryan shows on television the other day, about how to survive different kinds of situations such as blackouts and nuclear explosions in britain. :_)

well basically, in one of them he mentioned something to do with adrenaline and how people react differently... some experience a slow motion incident, whilst overs experience a fast motion incident.

i have _no_ idea about the science behind this though!



posted on Sep, 3 2004 @ 10:47 PM
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The Answer

Time is still the same, the rate at which your brain runs changes.

As soon as your body identifies a serious threat the brain floods with adrenaline causing all chemical processes to speed up signifigantly. This is NOT a consious thing. The Autonomic portion of your body takes over and acts without conscious thought. Yours conscious mind, also flooded with adrenaline collects and stores information faster than normal.

So as you uncontrolably react your brain observers more.

This causes a sense of time dialation because you have more memories for that short amount of time than the same amount of time in normal conditions.

Some people go into shock after these types of event, regardless of physical injury, because the brain used up too many chemical while in overdrive. This is also why you can remember the event rather well. The high level of chemical 'hammering' of the event into memory makes the memories stick better. This is the same reason traumatic events and emotional event stay with us so well.

People witnessing an event may feel a slightly less amount of time dialation as their body respond only slightly to other's danger. See a video of the event look like regular time because your body knows there is not actual danger happening at that moment.

Scary movies and thrill events like sky diving can slightly trigger the autonomic nervousystem as well.



posted on Sep, 4 2004 @ 01:07 PM
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There was a similar topic discussed in this thread. www.abovetopsecret.com...

It talked about the speed of thought and such, but kinda fizzled out with no real conclusion from anyone.



posted on Sep, 4 2004 @ 02:34 PM
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I'm sure most people have had experiences where they have felt in danger, and time as they percieved it seemed to slow down (things happen in extreme slow motion) or the opposite and things seem to speed up. What causes this effect? Is there a scientific explanation for this? Does it relate to the increased levels of adrenalin or some other chemical which allows us to react faster therefore making it seem like time has slowed, or our own panic & confusion which makes time seem to have dramatically sped up?.


You can thank your brain's limbic system for the "fight or flight" reflex. It is a natural stress reaction- it can occur for no reason at all (this is called a panic attack) or it can occur as a result of a real perceived threat. Some people can even have this occur as a response to dreams (very frightening when you wake up in the middle of one, but a normal response).

Essentially upon processing a potential threat to the human body, your brain's limbic system signals the body to prepare for defense. There are associated cognitive, physiological, and behavioral changes. Heart rate increases as your blood vessels constrict (your heart starts to race while the majority of your blood is diverted to the brain and muscles). People often become pale by this point. At the same time, your rate of respiration increases and your breathing becomes more shallow (you take fewer deep breaths). This is very important because the brain requires oxygen to function and process properly. You begin to sweat as your body prepares to cool you down during the run or during the fight.

While all of this is going on, your body is releasing a host of chemicals to provide that extra energy that it thinks you need. This is what alot of people describe as "the rush". Catecholamines, epinephrine, norepinephrine, and glucocorticoids (Cortisol) are all released from the adrenal glands as well as parts of the brain. The pupils become dilated (they expand) as the brain is attempting to process as much information as possible. Blood sugar levels rise as the brain signals the muscles to react. You're either going to run or fight, and you are as prepared as you possibly can be by this point.

So many things are happening that your perception is altered. Remember, your body has primed you to focus COMPLETELY on the moment. This is so different than the way we are used to functioning every day, so it feels extra strange when it actually happens. Certain types of meditation actually enable one to achieve this state of mindfulness of the immediate moment WITHOUT the associated physical changes (it is difficult to do at first, but everyone can do it). Anyways, this rapid flood of chemicals, combined with the rapid onset of changes in your body will cause you to perceive time very differently.

When there is no threat that is actually occuring, many people interpret the reflex & associated change in perception as "I'm going to die, I'm going to have a heart attack or lose control, or pass out". The important thing to do when feeling this onset of symptoms (in the absence of a REAL threat) is to keep your breathing EVEN. Take nice deep breaths and reduce the number of stimuli in your environment (as your brain is processing more stimuli it can cause the response to persist for a little while longer).

Hope this helps!
MK

[edit on 4-9-2004 by MKULTRA]



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