Nehama (med_cat) wrote in 1word1day,
Nehama
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1word1day

Friday word: Pareidolia

Pareidolia (/pærɨˈdoʊliə/ parr-i-DOH-lee-ə) is a psychological phenomenon involving a stimulus (an image or a sound) wherein the mind perceives a familiar pattern of something where none actually exists.

Common examples are perceived images of animals, faces, or objects in cloud formations, the "man in the moon", the "moon rabbit", and hidden messages within recorded music played in reverse or at higher- or lower-than-normal speeds.

Pareidolia is the visual or auditory form of apophenia, which is the perception of patterns within random data. Combined with apophenia and hierophany (manifestation of the sacred), pareidolia may have helped ancient societies organize chaos and make the world intelligible.[1][2]


Etymology

The word is derived from the Greek words para (παρά, "beside, alongside, instead [of]", in this context meaning something faulty or wrong) and the noun eidōlon (εἴδωλον "image, form, shape", the diminutive of eidos).

Read further and view the illustrations in this Wikipedia article

And see Alien UFO hunters spot a mouse on Mars, from Huffington Post, for another example
Tags: greek, noun, p, wordsmith: med_cat
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