If you can see a number in your mind and immediately know what color it is, physically feel the effect music has on your body, or perceive concepts like time and space as specific images, you may have an ability that only 4% or less of the human population possesses.
Synesthesia is the ability to sense physical aspects of non-physical concepts. The name comes from a Greek word which means “to perceive together,” and as APA reports, it is the ability to “hear, smell, taste or feel pain in color.” Some can perceive the colors of numbers, letters and words, while others have what’s known as “conceptual synesthesia,” and can perceive concepts like time or mathematical operations as shapes or colors.
There are a lot of theories as to why this happens, but nothing has explained it exactly. We know aspects of the ability, such as that it is biological and unlearned, that it comes from a genetic overabundance of neural connections in the brain, and that it is not hallucination nor metaphor. We know that it is more common in creative people and women, and potentially has a connection to some neurological functions, as some develop the ability after suffering a stroke, for example.
However, none of this explains what it is, or how it occurs. It’s theorized (but not proven) that people who have extraordinary perception abilities like Synesthesia are actually tapping into the quantum field. They can perceive that colors, like numbers, are inherently a vibration – some of which are similar.
This means that people who see colors in numbers are actually picking up on the inherent vibration of those things, and identifying that some are, in fact, the same.
Think about it this way: like the internet is made up of 0s and 1s, so too is the world made up of geometry and numbers. Duality (day and night, good and bad) is represented by the number 2. There are 23 chromosomes in the average person, and DNA is the shape of a double helix. Numbers and colors have deep religious and philosophical associations. For example, the colors of the rainbow are associated with the chakras and auras for a similar reason. White auras are associated with pure energy, while red ones are associated with sexuality, power and groundedness.
It’s not a coincidence that all of these elements coincide, and historically, have been used to represent certain aspects of society. (The color purple is associated with royalty, and it is also the color of the highest chakra in the body (the third eye) for example). It also probably isn’t a coincidence that the people who experience Synesthesia are inherently more sensitive, intuitive and artistically-inclined.
Synesthesia is entirely self-diagnosed. There’s no test to prove whether or not you really have it. However, the following requirements are necessary, according to LiveScience:
1. It is an involuntarily experience. You cannot force it or try to have it.
2. It is possible for the sensations to be external and internal. You can either imagine colors in your head, or physically taste something in association with a number.
3. The perceptions have to be the same each time. Though they are different for everyone, they are consistent for each individual: if the number 2 is pink, it is always pink.
4. The perceptions are generic. For example, associations with a number are often a plain color, or a simple shape. It isn’t a vivid memory or complex image.
5. It is easier for the person to remember the synesthetic perception better than the primary one. This is to say, it’s easier to remember that the number 2 is pink than to remember the number 2 in general.
6. The perceptions are emotional in nature. It is clear whether or not a perception is positive or negative.
Many people who have this ability cite that they did not say anything about it for fear of being seen as too weird. It is, after all, an inherently unusual ability, and to those who have never experienced it before, it would undoubtedly come across as confusing, or odd.
However, it is real, and you’re not crazy. All that’s left to figure out is what other superpowers these people possess.