Perception is Reality

Five friends are looking at a rock in the ocean.  John is in a boat far off and says the rock is small and black.  Adia is diving and says the rock extends well below the surface and is connected to the earth.  Ahmed is on the cliff overlooking the rock and says the rock is one of many make up the shoreline.  Alina is blind and describes the rock as rough and wet with a beautiful smell of the ocean.  Aadhya says the rock is not there at all but only a figment of our imaginations.  Who is right?  They all are because our perception is reality.

I do believe there is only one reality that actually exists in the world, call it God, Allah, Yahweh, the Universe, Bahá, Krishna, Brahman, simply reality, any other name or even just science and quantum physics.  Our attempts at defining this reality are like the friends defining the rock in the ocean.  Each has their own perception of the rock, based on their circumstances and own understanding of what the rock is.  No single friend is more “right” than another and no one friend is able to really define the totality of what the rock is but each one of them has a piece of the truth and each person has as valid a definition as the other.

The truth was a mirror in the hands of God.

It fell, and broke into pieces.

Everybody took a piece of it,

and they looked at it and thought they had the truth.

–Rumi

So often the fights and disagreements which occur in the world are just because we have different ways of defining the same thing but get caught up in being right.  We let our ego blind us to the fact that the other people in our lives are just trying to talk about the same things we are but using different words.  Taking the time to really understand what the other person’s view is can be an invaluable way to find harmony in relationships.  This isn’t a new idea and is echoed in Buddhist thoughtlifehack.orgquora.com and others.  Relationships are based on communication to a large degree and being able to see the world through the other person’s eyes really helps that communication flourish.

Shifting the way we relate to others through the use of this shift in perception is a disruption to our normal way of viewing the world.  It helps us to use another person’s perception of reality as the lens we view the world through and that is a gift we give ourselves and them.  We disrupt the understanding of our own view of reality and that grows us because we are able to learn what others experience.  This can lead to a lot more understanding, caring and love for those in our lives and really does a lot to create better relationships.

Perception is reality and disrupting our normal perception creates more love in a nonviolent manner in the world.  So next time you are talking to someone and you are feeling upset or in disagreement stop and pause for a moment to see the world through their eyes.  Do this enough and you will see the rock in the ocean much more fully.  It creates a more beautiful world for you to live in.

Challenge yourself today and disrupt your perception of reality as the only truth!

We are responsible for what we hear other people say and for how we act.” Marshall Rosenberg

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