Flotation-REST and Virtual Reality of The Overview Effect

2019-11-11 17:49:39 | BioPortfolio


This trial aims to examine whether the combination of Floatation-REST (Reduced Environmental Stimulation Technique) and virtual reality video of real images of earth from space simulate the Overview Effect, or the profound experience that astronauts report while seeing earth from space.


It is known from astronauts' experiences that viewing the Earth from space can result in overwhelming emotions, including feelings of awe, appreciation, humility, and interconnectedness, also known as the "Overview Effect." These astronauts often report developing a global consciousness, or an affiliation with humanity, after seeing earth with no borders or boundaries separating countries and people.It is impractical to expect people to go to space to experience the overview effect, but it may be possible to simulate it with a high degree of fidelity and experimental realism here on earth. Sensory deprivation float tanks create a feeling of timelessness and weightlessness that imitate the conditions of outer space. Virtual reality provides a sense of immersion into the experience and presence that one is realistically "there" in that setting.The combination of both of these technologies, floating and virtual reality, may have the capacity to occasion intense feelings of awe, self-transcendence, and mystical-type experiences.

Therefore, the primary aim is to examine whether the overview effect, induced through virtual reality of viewing real images of earth from space in a sensory deprivation float tank, leads to mystical type-experiences that have lasting positive effects on attitudes, moods, and behaviors?

Study Design




Flotation-REST + Virtual Reality, Flotation-REST Only, Virtual Reality Only, Control


Clarity Float Spa
United States




University of Missouri-Columbia

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2019-11-11T17:49:39-0500

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