Wisdom from Books

<b>Wisdom from Books</b>
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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Perceptions Are Not Realities

Perceptions Are Not Realities

Your mind perceives all your life experiences through your five senses: seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, and tasting. To most people, seeing is the most important perception; however, what they see may not be the absolute reality, because their visual perceptions may be conditioned by what they see, and distorted by many other factors during the processing of their perceptions. Remember, it is the intuition of your soul that really perceives your reality. The wise have known for a long time that what we know through our eyes are not the same as the intuition of the soul. If that is the case, sadly, most people rely on what they see, thinking that "seeing is believing," and thus lose themselves in external things.

As an illustration, in 1997, Richard Alexander from Indiana was convicted as a serial rapist because one of the victims and her fiancĂ© insisted that he was the perpetrator based on what they saw with their own eyes. However, the convicted man was exonerated and released in 2001 based on new DNA science and other forensic evidence. Experts explained that a traumatic emotional experience, such as a rape, could “distort” the perception of an individual.

The truth is that your brain is composed of grey matters and neurons or nerve cells that transmit information and messages; they are the building blocks of your brain for the processing of all your perceptions. Neurons are responsible for all your behaviors in the form of perceptions, which trigger a mental process that results in an action or an emotion. If the process becomes instinctive or habitual, then the output in the form of an action or emotion is also automatic and predictable. That is how attitudes and habits are formed, including the fight-or-flight response to any dangerous situation. This automatic or spontaneous mental processing is often not “by choice.” The fact of the matter is that this “learned” mental processing is responsible for the way you think and act, for your beliefs and emotions, for you attitudes and prejudices, as well as for your decisions or indecisions—in other words, every aspect of your life experiences.

Descartes, the great French philosopher, made his famous statement: "I think, therefore I am." That means, you think, and your thoughts then become who and what you think you are. But that may not be the real you.


In many ways, the human brain is like a computer program. Your whole being is like the computer hardware with the apparatus of a mind, a body, and the five senses. The lenses, through which you see yourself, others, and the world around you as well, are the software that has been continuously programmed by your thoughts, your past and present experiences, as well as your own expectations and those of others projected into the future. In other words, you and nobody else have programmed your own present mindset. All these years, you might have been trapped in a constricted sense of self that has prevented you from knowing and being who you really are. Your “conditioned” mindset might have erroneously made you "think" and "believe" that you are who and what you are; but nothing could be further from the truth.                      
                            
Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

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