I assume we all know the feeling and wonder if we can sense someone looking at us. There’s that unexplainable sensation that someone is looking at us and, just as we look up, a person is quickly trying to divert their eyes because they were looking and don’t want to be caught. Of course, we assume that this is just a coincidence.
The typical situation for me is when I’m a passenger in a car and we’re going past a slightly slower car in a different lane. Maybe I’m daydreaming and I begin to look at a person in the other car and consider what they look like, what their hair is like, or what they are up to that day. Then, all of a sudden, they look across at me. Coincidence? I assume so, but it does seem to happen a bit too regularly and have always wondered if there could be more to it.
Research – sense someone looking
When I was reading Supernormal by Dean Radin I was intrigued to find a section that talks about experiments to try and test for this ability to sense someone looking at us. This is not an easy thing to design an experiment for, as you’d imagine. Radin sites two experiments that both achieved results supporting that we can actually sense someone looking at us. Yet it very easy for people to argue over the validity of these experiments.
Research into the sense of someone looking is not a new thing. People have been designing experiments to test this for over 100 years (see this page – Psychic Staring Effect). Doing any sort of search on the internet on this topic yields a vast number of pages.
It’s not easy to experiment for this because it’s not a binary thing. If we always knew we were being looked at, 100% of the time, then we’d know this is true and we wouldn’t need an experiment. However, what we observe is some sort of weak feeling that we might get when someone is looking at us. Researchers need to conduct a large array of trials and see whether the results can be explained by chance or not. They also have to be very careful not to allow any sort of experimental bias into the process.
From what I’ve seen, there have been plenty of studies that either show no result, or a small effect that can’t be explained by chance. One experiment by Rupert Sheldrake showed that the participants could correctly sense someone looking over 53% of the time, which could not be explained by chance. However, for every positive study there seems to be many more opinions and explanations of why the results should not be trusted.
Rupert Sheldrake is still very vocal on this topic and believes we can sense someone looking at us. Recently he has even appeared on Morgan Freeman’s program “Through the Wormhole” and you can view the short video here;
Notice how, in experiments like these, there is another variable – the ability of the researcher to focus his/her attention.
To sense someone looking – how could it work?
As suggested by Rupert Sheldrake in the video above, to have a sense of someone looking at us all we’d need some sort of field that connects us. This would have to be a field that we’re not aware of, but that wouldn’t be so strange – if we didn’t have any magnetic or metallic objects, we’d be completely unaware of a magnetic field, for example. It would also be necessary that this field would have to be affected by our minds. Again, this isn’t such a strange notion as conventional medicine commonly measures the electric activity of the brain and brain waves. We know that our bodies continuously create electromagnetic energy. It’s not a big stretch to think that our minds could have an effect on a field and that other people could sense changes in that field. By focussing our mind on another person we could be perturbing the field in such a way that the other person could sense.
If this actually is the case, it’s also clear that the nature of the experimenter and the subject could have a significant effect on the outcomes. It’s reasonable to think that some people might be able to perturb the field with their thoughts more strongly than others and, likewise, some people might be able to sense perturbations more easily than others.
Why does this matter?
In some ways, I’d have to agree it doesn’t matter really. If we can sense someone looking at us, big deal. It doesn’t really change much does it? But if it’s true that there is a field (that we’re not really aware of) that connects us all and that we can manipulate with our minds, then that’s huge. (There’s a video of Gregg Braden that I saw a while ago that discusses things like this)
Overall, I just find all this fascinating and interesting. Also, it adds weight to the idea that’s growing in my mind that the world really doesn’t really operate in the way that we think it does. My mind is now open to all possibilities and I think that’s a good thing. As I try and keep my life going in the right direction, I’m not going to put up barriers based on beliefs we’ve built up in the recent past. I’m going to consider everything and form my own opinions.