Your Hidden Superpower

Cassidy Stolarek, Staff Reporter

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Yes, you read that correctly. After years of childlike dreaming about possessing superhuman mind powers, biology has answered the call. Everyone has experienced that weird sense at some time or another, the sense that someone else is looking at you or attempting to make eye contact with you. Most students claim this occurs most often when sitting at their desk, with the attention coming from somewhere behind or beside them. With the recent influx of movies and television regarding superpowers and extraterrestrial capabilities, it’s easy to feel extremely ordinary on this powerless planet. I’m a Potterhead/Stranger Things fan myself, and my desire to transform into a modern day “Eleven” and attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry motivated me to do some digging.
It turns out there is a “gaze detection” system within all of us. Your body can subconsciously detect when the gaze of another falls upon you for a significant period of time. Certain cells fire off when someone stares directly at you. When someone’s head or body is turned towards you in an unnatural manner, you subconsciously keep tabs on their gaze. All those times you got a weird sensation in the back of your mind and felt paranoia that someone was watching you take notes on Gatsby, you were probably right. This explains why eye contact is key to executing a genuine conversation. Where you look shows someone else what you desire or what you feel (that’s why a wolf stares down its prey before pouncing, or why babies stare deeply into the eyes of their parents). If you really want to get technical, our ability to detect the desires of those around us subsequently means that we can read minds. I realize this hidden ability may not seem like much, but it’s the closest thing we have to magic.

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