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15 Optical Illusions That Looked Way Scarier Than They Were

Photo Credits: Your Singing Nurse/Reddit

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Have you ever noticed a cloud that looked a lot like someone you know? Or have you ever thought you spotted an intruder, only for it to be a harmless coat rack? Or maybe you’ve gone to bite a grilled cheese sandwich, only to discover the Virgin Mary staring back at you, like a woman in Hollywood, Florida did? If so, you’re not crazy. (At least not in this instance.) There’s actually a name for this phenomenon: pareidolia.

Pareidolia is a name for our brain’s tendency to interpret random stimuli as something familiar, like a human face. Like many of our behaviors, pareidolia probably comes from evolution. As the theory goes, being able to recognize familiar things, particularly threats, allowed our ancestors to react to danger better.

But today, our pareodolia merely tricks us into thinking things are present when they aren’t. Here are 15 people whose brains played tricks on them. We should all thank our brains for trying to protect us, even if it was a false alarm. (via Bored Panda.)

 

1. The coatrack of doom.

Photo Credit: Reddit

2. “Had a mini heart attack when I looked up and saw this. The trampoline had developed a hole. My daughter thought it was hilarious.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

3. When you think you found a dead body, but it’s just a mannequin. (pt. 1)

Photo Credit: Reddit

4. “I thought my friend was hanging out of her 11th floor window. She was just drying her boots.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

5. “I thought my packet of walnuts had an uninvited guest.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

6. The Handmaid’s Tale tale.

7. These peppers were not happy about being chopped.

Photo Credit: Imgur

8. “I hung my hip waders up to dry and freaked out my wife.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

9. If you didn’t have arachnophobia before, you do now.

10. “This shadow from a tree.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

11. “I thought someone was sleeping in my bed. Nope, just the sheets.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

12. “I left my boots outside. When I walked by later I almost had a heart attack.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

13. “How my wife hung a comforter on a chair to dry.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

14. “My lamp made me think we had a giant spider infestation.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

15. “Either my mom hung my Snuggie up to dry, or it’s been possessed by the devil.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

 

 

h/t: Bored Panda