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How We See the World

Audio Version (featuring music by Sergii Pavkin)

We could think of ourselves as a digital camera, with our eyes acting as the lenses and us choosing what to focus on, our beliefs acting as the filters and us choosing what and how information passes through, our brain acting as the image sensor and us gathering information about how things appear, and our intellect, the software — which includes our knowledge, education, and level of understanding as well as our preconceptions, indoctrination, interpretations, and imaginations — acting as an encoder and decoder.

Now think about the amount of information we are exposed to every day, every second. Though through different eyes, there is still more information even when we are sleeping. And what or who is observing the observer?

Think about the volume of data that is continually dumped as we select and convert only the desired information from the infinite streams.


If you’ve ever read a book or watched a movie more than once, you’ve likely experienced a phenomenon. For me, I almost always discover something new: a phrase I may have overlooked, a concept that now has new meaning, some clever editing, something deeper, something more relevant or profound than before (or to who I am now), something that elicits a different emotion, or any number of things that may have been glossed over — depending on my state of mind at the time.

Life can be like this, though usually in a negative way. A situation or issue can and will reoccur, manifesting itself through different people and circumstances. The key difference, of course, is that we’re not just watching or reading; we’re actively participating. Therein lies a challenge and an opportunity. We use different rules for our filters and processes because it’s real, don’t we?

However, I believe we can apply the process from the former to the latter. What if we could recognize when the same-old, same-old is repeated and take a step back? What if, instead of grabbing the leash and nearly ripping the dog’s head off, we could take a moment to observe and glean new information we may have missed the last time? What if we paused, made a space between input and reaction, and asked for clarity or clarification? What if, when replaying it in our minds, we detach from our initial reaction and see what else comes up? What other possibilities exist?

The question holds more power than the answer we know.

Dan DeAlmeida – Unsplash

Recapitulation and Reconfiguration

This cognitive process of reality perception can and must be applied to our moment-to-moment perception and experience of the world and environment in which we live.

I can apply cynical, negative filters: I can see the weapons of mass destruction — the violent, dysfunctional, antiquated ideas of men — chaos, violence, indifference to life and the environment, vast waste of food and resources, genetically modified organisms (GMOs), childish politics, wanton ignorance, egoic arrogance, widespread stupidity, inequality, the sterility of socialization, the farce of banking, the deception of economic growth, manipulation of the mass media, and a long list of other consensus disorders…

I can use positive, optimistic filters: I can see the evolution of technology and energy production, quantum physics, history-changing discoveries, increasing levels of disclosure and transparency, benevolent and conscious businesses, peaceful protests, social media and increasing interconnectivity, balancing of feminine and masculine energies, openness and vulnerability, heart-centered integrity, shifting mindsets, and more and more of us challenging the status quo.

Same lenses, different filters, and, perhaps, a different reality.

We decide. What if it was that simple?

Love your life.