Staring into someone’s eyes for 10 minutes induces an altered state of consciousness - ScienceAlert
It was a bit odd this week to read about an experiment indicating that staring into someone's eyes can induce hallucinations, when earlier in the year the big story was how staring into your partner's eyes could be a key part of falling in love, if you do it right.
As I wrote at the time "what is it about the eyes?". Since then, I have wondered if it is to do with bonding with babies. Seems as good an explanation as any.
Anyhow, the link at the top notes that the same Italian psychologist who did this recent experiment also wrote back in 2010 about how staring at your own face in the mirror in a dimly lit room is a good way for a lot of people to have some weird, face changing, hallucinations. This discussed in detail at the time at the Mind Hacks blog, and the very long thread that follows indicates that anyone with a susceptibility to mental illness is well advised not to try it.
Given my brain's dogged reluctance to experience weirdness, even though I find the paranormal and unusual perceptions very interesting topics, I pretty much expect my face would not morph a bit if I tried it. Perhaps I should give it a go and report back. (If the blog ends abruptly, someone send around the men in white coats, please.)