Thursday, 14 December 2017

Reading and phantom speech - a connection?

 FrequenciesReading in an empty quiet room recently MA (my acquaintance who gets microsleep with REM - MWR) suddenly heard a choir singing! MA didn't recognise the song. However, the experience prompted MA to realize something! ALL the 'voice MWRs' MA has ever heard, whether speech or singing, occurred when MA was reading! The connection is presumably that MA's brain was processing words when the 'voice MWRs' occurred. All the music MWRs that MA has heard involved singing, so there was a word element there too.

When a person hears human speech their brain responds to certain frequencies in the sound. Specific neurons respond only to particular frequencies. The combination of these frequencies is then interpreted as words by the brain. This same process also happens without sound when a person is reading words. This is how we hear an 'inner voice' in our heads as we read.

The other main type of MWR that MA has are immersive visual experiences. In such experiences MA either sees the real surroundings but with additional unreal additions (like the train ghost) or is simply 'transported' to a completely different location. Neither of these type of experiences are preceded by MA reading. It appears that reading is required to specifically trigger the word/singing type MWRs.

There is a parallel here with formant noise. This phenomenon occurs when someone's brain responds to particular frequency combinations in noise by hearing words that are not actually there. This can cause cases of apparent EVP. Hearing certain frequency combinations in sound turns the brain into 'speech mode' so that subsequent formant noise is heard as words (listen to examples here). It seems likely that MA's brain is turned on to 'speech mode' by reading and interprets dream content in a subsequent MWR as words, either spoken or sung.

For someone who gets MWRs but doesn't realize their true explanation, they might well interpret MWRs as paranormal. experiences. They, too, may hear voices from nowhere if they are reading just prior to an MWR incident. It would be worth knowing what witnesses are doing just prior to hearing anomalous voices.

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