Hyperphantasia to Aphantasia - Self Test


Hyperphantasia to Aphantasia - Self Test

Larry Neal Gowdy - Copyright ©2024 - January 04, 2024

(The following is a condensed and lightly edited version of the original article at Hyperphantasia to Aphantasia - Self Test.)


From the Hyperphantasia Versus Aphantasia - Which Is Better? article, there are four quick questions that help to verify whether 'hypophantasia', 'phantasia', 'hyperphantasia', or 'aphantasia' aids or detracts from an individual's mental-construct (the mental act of recalling and reforming the memories of what was previously seen and sensed).

Self Test #1 - Paper

Hold a piece of paper in your hands. Any size or shape is okay. Now, describe the paper.

Self Test #2 - Lunch

Describe what you had for lunch yesterday.

Self Test #3 - Seven Sensory Perceptions

Intricately describe the firsthand experience of no fewer than seven different sensory perceptions. Intricately describe sight, hearing, smelling, tasting, feeling, and at least two more.

Test #4 - Describe An Analog Wave

Intricately describe an analog wave.

That is all that is asked. Merely describe an analog wave.


It is very rare for anyone to be able to usefully describe any of the four items. The descriptions rely upon the mental ability to consciously reason what was consciously observed. Neither IQ nor college degree aids an individual's ability to describe what they perceive.

The paper question is useful because the answer very quickly illustrates whether or not the individual might be capable of answering other questions. When individuals cannot describe a piece of paper, then there is no value in asking further questions.

On the topic of the seven sensory perceptions, throughout history when individuals gave notice to a sensory perception that was not one of the common five, it was very common for the individuals to believe that the sensory perception was magical, mystical, psychic, and/or supernatural. It would appear highly reasonable that individuals with high IQs, college degrees, and occupations as scientists would immediately know of no fewer than seven senses, but, it does not occur. The normal state of the normal human mind is simply incapable of accurately assembling different facts into one logical conclusion. As has been verified countless times over the past twenty years, most people are unable to assemble two or more concepts into a mental frame that enables the cognition of a third thing. Surely most all individuals with high IQs and college degrees already know of two concepts that explain 7+ sensory perceptions, but, the individuals are mentally unable to assemble the two concepts into one.

A symptom of autism is currently being claimed (while simultaneously being revised upon the whims of sciencians') that autistic individuals have difficulty understanding what metaphors mean. An example is of an article in which I wrote "carved in stone", which was (or at least used to be) a common inference to the Biblical verses of Moses' stone tablets with the ten commandments. A fellow wrote to me and complained that "carved in stone" did not make sense. The fellow did not grasp the metaphor, nor the analogy, nor the historical references.

Literally millions of other examples illustrate that most people cannot assemble two or more concepts. A very easy example is the Chinese word . The word's bottom portion loosely infers 'heart'. The top portion is the descriptor. No known academician is mentally able to discern what the top portion's 'Red Cross'-like symbol implies. Interestingly, by how an individual interprets a word, so does the interpretation reflect that which the person has knowledge of, and that of which is the person's own inner nature. All known academicians interpret the 'Red Cross'-like symbol to mean "hate, evil, wickedness", and a few other similarly strong negativities. The academicians unknowingly described themselves.

Robots and other forms of artificial intelligence (AI) are only able to recite what humans tell the robots and AI to recite. The normal human is only able to recite the words that their schoolmarms told them to recite; no thinking occurs. If the normal human is not given the sensory words to recite, then the normal human will never know of any sensory perceptions beyond the five of which were memorized for reciting.

The analog wave question is a fun question. Throughout all of man's history, never has any known publicly-available literature ever approached close to describing an analog wave. No religion, philosophy, science, nor ideology has ever spoken of the analog wave. Taoism does not do it, Buddhism does not do it, Confucianism does not do it, Zen does not do it, Science does not do it, and Yin-Yang does not do it. Countless people have claimed of themselves to be enlightened, and yet not so much as one of them ever commented on analog waves. The inability to describe an analog wave, is a permanent marker of the person's inability of mental-construct.


The inability to grasp metaphors, analogies, and literalness as all three concepts exist simultaneously, is symptomatic of autism. Autism is normal for the human specie, but people tend to only claim that someone is 'autistic' when the 'autistic' person is more 'autistic' than the normal human.

Regardless of whether a person is 'hyperphantasia', 'aphantasia' or anything in-between, if the person is unable to describe what the person perceives with their sensory perceptions, then the person is not superior nor inferior to any other normal person.

"The 10,000 hours of practice required for an individual to become highly skilled is a good general ballpark estimate. Ten hours a day for three years is a typical quantity of effort and time needed for an individual with average skills to have developed enough experience and knowledge to then be able to illustrate an above-average skill."

Most everyone on earth has not devoted so much as one hour to sensing and describing what was sensed. Of course the individuals are not skilled at sensing, nor of describing. Most everyone knows that strong muscles only arrive from the effort of lifting weights. Most everyone knows that you cannot become a skilled violinist if you have only looked at a violin, and have never so much as played one. However, most everyone on earth sincerely believes that the ability to sense and to describe things is a mystical magical supernatural built-in genetic magic of which magically pops into existence all by itself without any effort.

The absence of effort is a crippling mental disease that is far worse than autism: it is named 'laziness'. The normal human creature suffers from incurable laziness.

How many hours have you yourself devoted to sensing and describing?

The answers to the questions, given by oneself, prove oneself's effort or laziness.

A person cannot know nor describe what it is like to see or to not see mental imagery unless the person has firsthand experienced mental imagery, as well as experienced the absence of mental imagery. If an individual is unable to intricately describe what they observe within themselves (as what the above questions may verify), then the individual cannot know what the words 'hyperphantasia' and 'aphantasia' mean. Reciting words without knowing what they mean, is the norm for normal people.

Related articles are on the HHAP Home Page.