Tetrachromacy in Humans
Did you know, the average person can see around a million colors using the three cones in the eyes? They are called trichromats. When a person is colorblind, they see 10,000 shades of color and are called a dichromat. The mothers and daughters of a colorblind person are carriers of an extra cone, so they have 4 cones in their eyes and are called tetrachromat. Each cone multiplies the number by 100, so a tetrachromat has a color scale of 100 million different shades! In 1948, a Dutch scientist, HL de Vries did a test on color blind men and at the end of his report he mentioned doing tests on the mothers and daughters of these men. He theorized that the women can see extra colors since they were the carriers of the gene. He did no further tests on the women. Recently more information has come to light about this unique ability. A researcher at the University of Washington, Jay Neitz states that there may be many women who are tetrachromat but need to awaken their abilities. He also suggests that it is possible to these women to learn to use their fourth cone and see “a kaleidoscope of colors beyond our imagining.” I agree with these statements and it is my intention to let others know there is more to what we see and how we see and that more people can do this too.
I theorize that these genes may need to be activated for the women to experience these extra colors. The dormant ability for tetrachromacy needs to be recognized and exercised for the extra colors to become apparent. I attest this process is an awakening, a spiritual awakening of sorts. That when in the mind a person is open to looking just outside the ordinary, they may discover the extraordinary.
In my life I woke up to these extra colors as a teenager. For me this was a period of time when my awareness of the world around was expanding at a rapid rate. I was opening up to becoming myself, finding things I was excited about, diving deep into things that interested me. One of these things was working on an Organic Farm. Eating fresh picked vegetables for the first time since I was a child brought many new flavors and likely very needed minerals into my body. It was at the end of this first season, I was harvesting collard greens and stopped to take a deep breath and feel the wind on my face. I open my eyes and stare across the field. I was very surprised to see the wind in the air swirling. Across the field I could see the swirl in the air, then knew that was indeed the wind I ‘saw’ when it hit the grass and made a ripple across the field. A few weeks later I was at an outdoor gathering of many people and could see their auras. It looked as though everybody was wrapped in a bubble of color. Later I was to learn this is the emotional layer in the aura, around 2 to 7 inches from the body. Some people were bright construction-worker orange. Some were deep electrical blue. Some people were splotchy yellow and brown. At this time, I could sense their energy and what the colors indicate through my own feelings as I observe them.
For many years I simply call this ‘seeing energy’ until I stumbled upon a BBC article titled, “The Women with Super Human Vision,” about an artist Concetta Antico. She makes beautiful paintings and adds extra color, and even more colors at low lighting. The article goes on to state that because she is artistically trained she has more ability to see more color than a tetrachromat that has not been trained to use and observe these colors. This article is the closest I have found to explain what I see however in observing Concetta’s art I find that while similar, I do not see her illustrating the tzips and tzings that I see in the sky or bouncing off the plants. To me, this goes to show that we still have lots to learn from these tetrachromats who see extra colors.