What is this pleasant sensation when I learn something?
July 3, 2013 6:54 PM   Subscribe

Okay, here's something I've wondered about for more than three decades. Ever since I was a very young boy, I have had occasions where someone was teaching or explaining something to me, or showing me how to do something, and I would feel a very pleasant tingling sensation in my scrotum. It's not at all sexual, and I'm not turned on by it, but it is a very unique, pleasant feeling. Is this a known phenomenon? Does it have a name?

I would say it happens fairly rarely, maybe four or five times a year, and I can't really pin down what exactly triggers it, although it's always in the context of someone teaching me in some fashion.
posted by D+ to Grab Bag (9 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
Autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) is the pseudoscientific term that's been out a little while.

The reddit community on ASMR is a good resource too.
posted by betafilter at 7:01 PM on July 3, 2013 [4 favorites]

Are you open to woo responses?
posted by windykites at 7:43 PM on July 3, 2013 [3 favorites]

ASMR sounds very, very close, although it seems most people experience that in their scalp.

Sure, I'm open to woo. Lay it on me.
posted by D+ at 7:47 PM on July 3, 2013

Well, you say this happens when you're learning. It could be shivers of kundalini being sort of "nudged" by the intake of knowledge; since that whole thing is all about knowledge and learning, of a sort. But that doesn't even neccessarily fit with the existing framework of those beliefs, just the first thing that came to mind.
posted by windykites at 8:08 PM on July 3, 2013

posted by Wordwoman at 8:20 PM on July 3, 2013

On Top Gear, James May calls it the fizzing sensation, and if a car manages to have the fizz factor, that car is demonstrably the bees knees.
posted by anonymisc at 12:13 AM on July 4, 2013

The thread Wordwoman links to has people talking about a variety of sensations, not just the scalp. It made me sad because I have not the faintest inkling of what this is, or what it's like. Reading that thread made me feel like a person with no sense of smell trying to guess what smelling things is like. And I never got those magic eye posters either. I guess we're all wired differently.
posted by penguin pie at 2:49 AM on July 4, 2013

Yeah, I think it must be my version of ASMR. I watched some of the YouTube videos, and they definitely induce that sensation for me--and when it got strong enough, I began to feel it in the back of my head, too. Excellent! It's not just me, someone gave it a name, and I can recreate it anytime I have 10 minutes and an Internet connection. That's much more than I hoped for! Thanks.
posted by D+ at 5:33 AM on July 4, 2013 [1 favorite]

I have also experienced this since childhood, and am glad there is some sort of term(even if it may be a bit woo)
posted by Twain Device at 6:20 PM on July 4, 2013

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