What is Matrixing? Matrixing is the ability of the brain to create a familiar image or sound from a picture or audio that would otherwise be unrecognizable. Look into the sky at the passing clouds and allow yourself to imagine the billowing masses transformed into a castle, a knight riding in a joust, or just a cuddly little stuffed bear. When your mind is in this state of imagination, seeing something familiar even though it doesn’t exist is an example of matrixing. Matrixing can occur in many instances. For example, when NASA’s Viking 1 Orbiter captured its first photographs of Mars on July 25, 1976, many who observed these photos were convinced that these images contained a large human-type face carved into a mountain on Mars. Many speculated this was evidence of extraterrestrial existence. NASA scientists, in an investigation of the face that appears in the images, confirmed the face was nothing more than complex shapes formed through the photo processing, and is an example of matrixing by some who observed these pictures with foreknowledge that a face was present.
When looking at a photograph with many complex shapes and colors, it’s easy for the mind to think its seeing something that isn’t really there. The mind is taking shapes and forms and turning them patterns (The most common pattern the brain attempts to find is faces). The picture below is one example of the brain trying to interpret and make sense of what it is seeing. The picture is not actually moving and is just a picture using patterns and colors that make it appear to be moving. This is an example of Matrixing.
In the field of paranormal investigation, investigators must be mindful of instances of matrixing while reviewing hundreds of photos and listening to hours of audio. Photographic evidence acquired during investigations may contain complex images with many objects that clutter the picture. For example, a photo taken of a window that also has curtains with a intricate pattern may lead an investigator’s mind to project the false assumption that a entity exists within the picture because it appears to contain a face while in fact, it is the shape and shadows of the curtain. To guard against such matrixing, the investigator must be certain that the suspected entity is in fact separate from the surrounding clutter within the photograph. By having others inspecting the photo and using contrast and color adjustments, we can view the photo from different aspects and points of view before drawing a conclusion.
Investigators much also consider the possibility of matrixing while reviewing audio. While the investigator is listening to EVP audio, it is not uncommon for the mind to believe it hears a voice after a long period of listening to static or it could be a misinterpretation of a chair squeaking. Just as matrixing occurs visually, the mind cannot comprehend the static or other common sounds and will begin to perceive the sound as a familiar, returning a result as false evidence of paranormal activity. This is why it is important to have other members listen to the track without placing preconceived notions in their head by explaining what you think is being heard. This allows an objective set of ears to hear the clip before coming to a conclusion.
Matrixing is the brain trying to recognize a pattern in something that doesn’t have one. So, be mindful of what you present as evidence and always continue research to educate yourself. Knowledge is a great asset and with it, you are able to distinguish was is paranormal and what isn’t.