Healing Hands MIRAGEs and illusions

Helen Gilpin

Around this time last year, our research at The University of Nottingham unexpectedly stumbled into the media spotlight: “Mind tricks may help arthritic pain; Illusions can halve the pain of osteoarthritis” the headlines read. See the original BBC news article complete with video here. They were referring to our MIRAGE multisensory illusions … [Read more...]

The illusion of external agency – part 1

So I was reading through some papers and found an oldie but a goody by Gilbert et al[1] that I’d like to share. This paper aimed to experimentally test what the authors call ‘The illusion of external agency’, or in simple terms, the idea that a greater being looks out for your well-being. Now before this turns into a punch-throwing, ninja-kicking … [Read more...]

The cortical body matrix. Reloaded.

People with chronic pain have some pretty odd perceptual disturbances – the affected area might feel swollen when it is not,[1] it might be difficult to ‘find’  in the mind’s eye,[2] it might feel foreign, displaced, stuck, full, hot, thin, floating or heavy,[3].  People with chronic pain also have proprioceptive difficulties, blood flow changes, … [Read more...]