March 16, 2014 by Geek Goddess
Pareidolia is a psychological phenomenon involving a vague and random stimulus (often an image or sound) being perceived as significant. Common examples include seeing images of animals or faces in clouds, the man in the moon or the Moon rabbit, and hearing hidden messages on records when played in reverse. (from Wikipedia).
I remember reading a few years ago about a spot under a highway in Chicago becoming a sort of shrine to people who believed Mary, mother of Jesus in the New Testament, was appearing to the faithful. There was a stain in the concrete left by leaking seals. I kept looking at the photo, and think to myself, really? People really believe this is a sign? That some sort of supernatural entity is making itself manifest to people by appearing on a moldy, dirty, graffiti-strewn concrete underpass in urban America?
Six years later, after the stain was painted over, people still brought tributes to the site, to a photo of the water mark.
And if the Virgin Mary wanted to speak to people, why would she only appear to Catholics? Would not the appearance be more meaningful if she appeared to Buddhists in Thailand, or over Mecca during the hajj? And I’ve never heard of Krishna appearing to a Baptist. We see what we have been primed to see.
So, it should come as no surprise to me or anyone who knows me, that when I came into my office one muggy morning, I opened my office door to find the Dark Side of the Force had sent me a warning.
Repent of your ways, or face the wrath of Darth. Prove to me it’s not!