Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me

TOPIC: What is our goal?

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #985

  • Aquc
  • Aquc's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 18
  • Thank you received: 28
  • Karma: 2
We've come together as a community, and for the first time we actually have a voice, and we can determine where we go from here, so I have to ask; what is it we really want from this? I know its a bit of a strange question but there are many reasons I can think of, and moving forward we might be better off using this crucial time of publicity to push a few key objectives. So what do we want?
Awareness?
Changes to education?
Further studies?
A 'cure'?
People to accept we exist?
A community of our own?
Or most likely something else entirely. Please anyone reading this post your view on it, as the more of us voice our opinion on this, the truer the result will be.

Personally, I just want people to accept that I simply don't know how things look when they're not right in front of me.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: angela_99

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #986

  • Nathan Buzby
  • Nathan Buzby's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Senior Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 348
  • Thank you received: 98
  • Karma: 5
I am biased towards neurodivesity in general. By educating and teaching about difference, we have a chance to increase a healthy sense of self-identity and increase self-determination. Understanding inherent neurological difference, such as aphantasia, allows for new pedagogical approaches in education, it allows for new therapeutic practices, and in essence can increase the quality of life for the percent of the population that is effected by this particular neurology.

The more we can explain and show difference, the more we can increase tolerance and understanding, and move forward and progress as a society without getting hung up on the judgment many pass on difference that cannot have a moral connotation at all. Our difference is the engine that drives us forward, or else we would stagnate. This applies to physical disabilities, autism spectrum, mental illness, the socio-economic class people are born into, race, sex, sexual preference, etc. The tendency to pigeon-hole people based on our socio-cultural biases and "belief" contributes to greater inequity, increased mental illness, some aspects of criminality, etc. So any topic, any condition that is different from the dominant neurotype and paradigm, is worthy of discussion, the more we understand each other, the less likely we are to fall prey to human attribution error, dehumanization, and conflict.
Tone Disclaimer: If you read something I write and feel I am trolling, please read it again and imagine instead you are talking to a teacher or professor. I do not write from a place of self-superiority or ego, I favor dialectical conversations that seek to find underlying causation and truth.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc, Maddy

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #988

  • phoenixmoon
  • phoenixmoon's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Junior Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 167
  • Thank you received: 45
  • Karma: 6
change in attitude to people who don't visualise and an awareness that we aren't stupid or thick etc. Also and i think most importantly is to make schools aware and find out if the children can visualise or not and if not then give different learning strategies. even simple things like learning to read and write what books you expect a non visualiser to read etc.

i would also love to be involved in further research to find out why we are like we are and to raise awareness.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc, monkeymaiden

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1007

Raise Awareness!

Be helpful with further studies! And what we do now - collect informations from each other.

I would like to now why this is! Also what is really is like to not have aphantasia. Just because I still find it hard to understand it.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1012

  • Thomas
  • Thomas's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Administrator
  • Non Visualiser
  • Posts: 267
  • Thank you received: 90
  • Karma: 3
phoenixmoon wrote:
Also and i think most importantly is to make schools aware and find out if the children can visualise or not and if not then give different learning strategies.

Support people who feel isolated and depressed by the realisation the have aphantasia
Then Education
Then Awareness
Then research
and everything else :woohoo:
If you need anything just Send me a Private Message

Please don't be afraid, Make a Suggestion to Improve Our Community
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc, monkeymaiden, phoenixmoon

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1030

  • Linden
  • Linden's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 33
  • Thank you received: 9
  • Karma: 1
Hi all,
main thing i want initially is to work out which of my/our behaviours/skills can be explained by my aphantasia and which has nothing to do with it.
This needs proper research but the anecdotal stuff from us all sharing is interesting and useful.
Regards,
Linden
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1112

  • evk
  • evk's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 59
  • Thank you received: 22
  • Karma: 2
phoenixmoon wrote:
change in attitude to people who don't visualise and an awareness that we aren't stupid or thick etc. Also and i think most importantly is to make schools aware and find out if the children can visualise or not and if not then give different learning strategies. even simple things like learning to read and write what books you expect a non visualiser to read etc.
If this is an issue and something can be done. I'd say it's very important.

For my own part I'm mostly curious. I'm interest in how things work and that include myself. As far as I know I don't suffer from my aphantasia in any way. I do have my problems, but I don't think that they are related to aphantasia.
- We are all aphantastic!
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1121

  • scotty
  • scotty's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 53
  • Thank you received: 28
  • Karma: 2
For me I'd like the key traits to be identified so we can work out how it affects our day to day lives.

I know we've all managed to work our own ways of doing things but to have the ignorant trial and error taken away, I feel we could identify the stumbling blocks and work around them.
I know many are reluctant to label Aphantasia as a learning disability but I know it has affected mine and I don't want the same for my son.
I find it almost impossible to read a novel for instance and the affected me taking my English Language course work.
I also found a teacher/tutors words turning into "bla-bla-bla" on certain topics, no matter how hard I listened.
Absorbing and understanding information that requires me to use mental imaging is a no-goer as we all know.

My son has been diagnosed with dyslexia of which I show traits of but I'm not entirely sure how correct that diagnosis is.
Are the two connected in some way? I dunno.

I spoke to his teacher about his non-imaging about two years ago and she was very interested about it but she couldn't find anything about it or how it affects learning so she couldn't do anything to help.
One of the very few references I found on the internet to non-imaging a few years back was on teaching forum where a teacher recounted an event where she told her class to close their eyes and imagine a scene. One of the kids struggled with the task and she asked them why.
The child told her that "I just can't see anything".
Last Edit: 3 years 9 months ago by scotty.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1122

  • evk
  • evk's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 59
  • Thank you received: 22
  • Karma: 2
scotty wrote:
One of the very few references I found on the internet to non-imaging a few years back was on teaching forum where a teacher recounted an event where she told her class to close their eyes and imagine a scene. One of the kids struggled with the task and she asked them why.
The child told her that "I just can't see anything".
I've heard several first and second hand accounts that're very close to this. Usually everyone just assumes that the kid is beeing difficult.
- We are all aphantastic!
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: scotty

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1144

  • scotty
  • scotty's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 53
  • Thank you received: 28
  • Karma: 2
evk wrote:
scotty wrote:
One of the very few references I found on the internet to non-imaging a few years back was on teaching forum where a teacher recounted an event where she told her class to close their eyes and imagine a scene. One of the kids struggled with the task and she asked them why.
The child told her that "I just can't see anything".
I've heard several first and second hand accounts that're very close to this. Usually everyone just assumes that the kid is beeing difficult.

Exactly my point @evk.

The assessor that rubber stamped my sons dyslexia told my wife (a teaching professional) that "he's the most dyslexic child he's seen in all his years".

Many of the tasks involved things like remembering strings of numbers and such and I'm sure these are some of the things we'd struggle with.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1220

  • Nathan Buzby
  • Nathan Buzby's Avatar
  • Offline
  • Senior Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 348
  • Thank you received: 98
  • Karma: 5
A lot of these issues are less related to ability to learn but how we teach, so a great deal of labeling, judgment, and even trauma results from failing to teach to the difference. No one is the master of it all, even those of exceptionally high intelligence,( which may lead to mastery of all subject matter as tested in schools and universities) are never going to be masters of all disciplines, most polymaths are still limited in their understanding of reality writ large.

So when you look at learning disability, the first thing that must be done is to identify the systemic bias (so think the Social Model for Disability here), identify the variety of different ways individuals learn, and then instead of sorting children, often at a very young age into a biased system of perceived value, we promote an identity first approach and teach to the difference, to ensure every child is aware of their strengths, weaknesses, and that difference is taught and understood by the population writ large instead of labeling everything outside the mean as either deficit or gifted. Mentally healthy people with a healthy sense of self-identity are then freed up to endeavor in ways that are not just fulfilling to them, but beneficial to society, even if it cannot be easily quantified and simplified into data sets that are often used because it is hard to take in the vast array of human difference and account for it, our minds are just not capable of understanding completely object reality.

Something often missed in economics for example is how difficult it is to calculate an individuals contribution to the economy when they are not actively generating wealth and value, and yet, a simple nurturer who may not work a job, but tends to the emotional needs of another increases the productivity of those they do nurturer, and thus is a benefit to society as a whole, even though they are not perceived as contributing to the economy. Ugh, just annoys me that folks think they are seeing things clearly with numbers and statistics, and yes everything can be quantified at some point, but we are not remotely close to that and thus we continue to devalue individual contributions and endeavor based on a biased set of societal assumptions. And this is important to understand, because the economic sorting begins in grade school.
Tone Disclaimer: If you read something I write and feel I am trolling, please read it again and imagine instead you are talking to a teacher or professor. I do not write from a place of self-superiority or ego, I favor dialectical conversations that seek to find underlying causation and truth.
Last Edit: 3 years 9 months ago by Nathan Buzby.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Blackstage

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1245

  • Aquc
  • Aquc's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 18
  • Thank you received: 28
  • Karma: 2
So far it would appear to me that there are two main routes that people want us to go down.
Firstly people want to understand what aphantasia really is, what effects is has on us, how these might be circumvented.
Secondly people want awareness and understand from others, particularly in the education and mental health sectors, of what aphantasia causes.

Obviously the success of the first point feeds back nicely into the second, and together they have the effect of increasing awareness and providing research.
Thomas, I accept your point about helping those who have just made the discovery, however I think that is something we will need to handle ourselves, and the best thing we can really do with the publicity is to guide people to this wonderful forum you've provided us with, which hopefully will propagate along side the awareness.

As such would it be fair to sum up the presented opinions with this kind of statement?
We want further research into the effects of aphantasia, as well as awareness particularly in schools and mental health institutions as reliance on visualisation techniques has proved harmful to some of us in the past. We would also encourage anyone interested in aphantasia to visit aphant.asia, especially if they are concerned by the recent discovery of their own aphantasia.

Please voice any opinions on this, whether you agree, disagree, want something reworded (my strength is is numbers, not words and I'm aware I said 'aphantasia' waaaay too much) or something else entirely. I want this to be something that stands for all of us so please speak out.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Mrdamerv

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1254

I would agree that the main "goal" is awareness, mainly from the point of view of learning, especially in children. There were times during my student life when I was confused about exactly why "imagining" something would be helpful and an acknowledgement by scientists, therapists, teachers etc that this ability is not universal can only be a good thing.

I have enjoyed reading some the anecdotal evidence and stories people have posted about the effects Aphantasia on their lives but the only consistent factor I have "seen" emerge is that none of us can visualise in our "mind's eye". Other than that we seem to be as disparate in temperament, strengths and weaknesses as any other random group of people!

I personally don't feel that my life has been affected by the inability to visualise in any meaningful way, like everyone I am not good at everything but I don't expect to be. Having never known any different I can't deeply mourn for its absence. My sympathy is largely reserved for any individuals who have lost their ability to visualise later in life due to a medical complication.
Carla
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: julia_11, Aquc, Nathan Buzby, evk, rvgringo

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1277

  • julia_11
  • julia_11's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 44
  • Thank you received: 13
  • Karma: 2
Awareness

I don't think of my aphantasia as a disability, it is just the way I am.
I think that more attention should be paid to the different neurological ways that exist in different people and then how we make sure that people use their strengths rather than trying to take the same path as everyone else. On this forum I see ways in which we are very diverse.
I think that those involved in education at whatever age, as well as those in counselling need to be made aware. There are a number of people recounting incidences where they have found that people just do not believe in aphantasia. The IEP (individual education plan) should be able to take this into account. Although I have found with my children that only those with Special Educational Needs actually seem to have an IEP.
Those counsellors who predominantly use visualisation techniques should make sure that their patients understand this before starting to see them as going to see someone different might be much more useful.
I am also interested in the neurophysiology going on behind it and am interested in the research that could take place. I have emailed the Exeter study.
"In business, as in sport, the more vivid your imagination, the better the results will be" I would also like to see an end to quotes like this, this was in an article about sports visualisation in The Telegraph
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1278

  • lisa_3
  • lisa_3's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 1
  • Thank you received: 1
  • Karma: 0
I would like to see promotion of this different way of experiencing the world, especially to educators and therapists. A set of 'alternative' activities or prompts for primary school teachers would be great - at that age we are most vulnerable and least self-aware.

I don't want to think of it as a 'condition', just a way of being. As an INFJ I find the modern, busy, social world very challenging, but that and aphantasia have never really held me back from doing what I want to do. They do however allow me to have a different perspective, and allow me to see things many others don't, especially when developing long term integrated strategies. I see that as an advantage :-)
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1292

  • holodude
  • holodude's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 2
  • Thank you received: 2
  • Karma: 1
For me the goals are:

1) Understand what affect aphantasia is having on us, so we can find methods to avoid any future negative impacts it is having on our lives.
2) Make others aware of what aphantasia is, so that further research can be done and create a society that is more friendly to those who cannot visualize.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc, phoenixmoon

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1330

  • Maddy
  • Maddy's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 5
  • Thank you received: 3
  • Karma: 0
I would like to be able to do this. I don't want it so much that I would be willing to have brain surgery or take corrective drugs. I don't think I would anyway; guess I'd have to reassess if they come up with a way to "cure" it.

I am a constant reader and like descriptions, but do not visualize those scenes. I understand them verbally.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Aquc, Blackstage

What is our goal? 3 years 9 months ago #1331

  • Maddy
  • Maddy's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 5
  • Thank you received: 3
  • Karma: 0
AND is there anyway to change it. Relearn. Reprogram.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

What is our goal? 3 years 8 months ago #1809

  • aphantastic
  • aphantastic's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 1
  • Karma: 0
I want to talk about achieving our goals! Does anyone know of researchers studying aphantasia and education? I have been thinking about going to graduate school to study something in the realm of education for a while, and I think this may be it. I'm trying to identify professors who might be good advisers. Any thoughts?
The administrator has disabled public write access.

What is our goal? 3 years 8 months ago #1812

  • Linden
  • Linden's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 33
  • Thank you received: 9
  • Karma: 1
Hi aphantastic (got a real name??!!), all,
I'll be talking to Brighton Science Festival about having an Aphantasia event. I use to work for them and they're interested but we're yet to chat about it. The festival runs through february. I'll likely be looking for people to get involved but obviously that will depend on where people live. I'll post more here soon.
Meanwhile I suggest you get in touch direct with the Exeter research group.
I also worked briefly in marketing and communications for Brighton Uni Education department and I know they do a lot of research there in the Teacher Training dept but I imagine many universities do this.
All the best,
Linden
Last Edit: 3 years 8 months ago by Linden.
The administrator has disabled public write access.

What is our goal? 3 years 8 months ago #1815

  • Mike_M
  • Mike_M's Avatar
  • Offline
  • New Aphantasiac
  • Posts: 44
  • Thank you received: 18
  • Karma: 3
aphantastic wrote:
I want to talk about achieving our goals! Does anyone know of researchers studying aphantasia and education? I have been thinking about going to graduate school to study something in the realm of education for a while, and I think this may be it. I'm trying to identify professors who might be good advisers. Any thoughts?

I think that's an excellent goal, Aphantastic!

I believe that raising awareness of aphantasia as it affects the way our children are educated is the most important goal we have. I don't think that neuroscience will be able to offer us any insight into the physiology of aphantasia for many years to come - we just don't know enough about how the brain works yet, and our tools are very crude - but at least we should try to change our educational systems so that non-imagers are not penalised. We don't need to know how or why aphantasia happens (although obviously it would be great if we did), we just need to make sure everybody in the educational system knows that it does happen, and that they learn to recognise it.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
Time to create page: 0.215 seconds