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Author Topic: Are twins mentally linked?  (Read 3096 times)

Fahim Monsa

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Are twins mentally linked?
« on: 14/05/2010 07:30:02 »
Fahim Monsa asked the Naked Scientists:
   
I love the podcasts all the way from Afghanistan. I listen to them on the way to school.

I just want to know are some twins minds linked together like if something bad happens to one will the other one some how sense something?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 14/05/2010 07:30:02 by _system »


 

Offline graham.d

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Are twins mentally linked?
« Reply #1 on: 14/05/2010 09:31:14 »
There is no known way that there can be any sort of telepathy between two individuals, twins or otherwise. Many such stated occurrences of "linked minds" are to do with the brain fitting together unrelated thoughts, after the event. If your brother breaks his leg at 10.00am you may, when you find out, then think back to some concern that sprung into your mind at about that time. If nothing had happened such thoughts would have been dismissed and forgotten.

With twins, especially identical twins, there is much evidence that they have very similar outlooks because their brains will be structured similarly. They may react to external events in very similar ways. But telepathic communication seems unlikely and there is no scientific evidence to support this.
 

Offline imatfaal

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Are twins mentally linked?
« Reply #2 on: 14/05/2010 11:01:15 »
It is sad to bring everything back to money - but if any form of telepathy could be shown it would have been by now due to the financial incentives to do so.  as a start the james randi foundation have pledged a huge sum of money (i think a million USD) for any verifiable telepathy under lab conditions; and whilst some twins might not wish to prostitute their close link, I find it hard to believe that no set of identical twins have decided to take the money.

To explain the anecdotes which are very common about linkages - I agree entirely with graham and his explanation of this form of post hoc rationalisation.  I would also mention that co-incidences do happen - I am not a twin but many things remind me of my brothers, sometimes with a positive feeling and othertimes negative.  I would guess the close emotional ties between twins mean that this contemplation is more frequent; every so often one will be thinking about someone close to you at the very same time that they are involved in an unusual event.

 Matthew
 

Offline RD

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Are twins mentally linked?
« Reply #3 on: 14/05/2010 17:50:56 »
In some cases of twins who have always been together it is as if they share the same psyche,
 e.g. often say the same phrase at the same time,
this is not telepathy but due to their almost exclusive relationship with each other from birth.

Apparently twins can even develop their own private language ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cryptophasia
« Last Edit: 14/05/2010 17:55:41 by RD »
 

Offline caffeineaholic

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Are twins mentally linked?
« Reply #4 on: 14/05/2010 21:27:20 »
I agree.  Me and my brother often think in the same way and respond to events in a similar or identical way.  Often, when we work together we don't even need to use words to know what the other is thinking.  For example, the simple task of moving furniture into a new house -- we don't discuss how to maneuver pieces of furniture around; we just know what to do.  When I move furniture with others we are constantly talking about how to maneuver the furniture through doorways and such.
 

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Are twins mentally linked?
« Reply #4 on: 14/05/2010 21:27:20 »

 

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