“THERE ARE THINGS KNOWN AND THERE ARE THINGS UNKNOWN, AND IN BETWEEN ARE THE DOORS OF PERCEPTION”
– Aldous Huxley
“PERCEPTION IS REALITY UNTIL IT IS CHANGED”
“THE FOOLISH REJECT WHAT THEY SEE, NOT WHAT THEY THINK. THE WISE REJECT WHAT THEY THINK, NOT WHAT THEY SEE” – Huang Po
Perception, perception and perception – it is all about “conceived perception.” In the last year I have come to believe that what we experience, what we feel, what we like or dislike, etc… are all related to our imagined perceptions. And if we can change our perceptions of what we think, feel or experience then we can change our thinking and in turn our world. It is all up to us. I came to this current conclusion partly by journaling almost every day for the last 4 years. It brought me to the deduction that most of what we think of as “truth” is just made up. It is our perceptions and the perceptions of others that we come to live by. Those conceived perceptions are just made up in the mind and are subject to all the same mistakes, errors, faults and blunders that humans make every day. This is not to say that if you keep a very positive outlook on life that nothing will happen to you that is bad. Terrible, awful things happen in life, and on the flip side wonderful, incredibly beautiful and joyous things happen too. Those events happen and there is nothing we can do about it, except to remember that perception is the means we use for the interpretation of those events. Good or bad. It is a relative truth. The day to day things and events that we talk about, gossip about, Facebook about, sell, buy, etc…those things are all conceptual. Just made up and always in a state of change from person to person, culture to culture, year to year – ephemeral as a Mojave Desert steam in summer.
Ultimate Truth – the “direct and immediate experience” of an event – this is something different. It is perception but not “conceived perception” which is cluttered by all the day to day matters in your life. Instead this is direct experience, direct perception. You cannot hold this type of perception in your mind – you can only experience it, as it is happening, right then, right now, right in the moment. The pain or joy that I feel in doing an Ultramarathon is a way for me to experience that direct perception. When I am lucky enough and can clear my mind having no other thoughts in place except on breathing or the discomfort in my legs, I experience what is known as an ultimate truth. No preconceived notions, no worries about yesterday or tomorrow, no concerns about work, family or friends, just experiencing the moment as it unfolds, good or bad, makes no difference. It can be a way to experience nirvana.
Some people might call this Buddhism, I just call it two kinds of perception. Conceived perception (Relative Truth) and direct perception (Ultimate Truth). They are neither good nor bad – they just are and both are needed to survive in the world. As humans we all have the tendency to ignore what we see in favor of what we would like to imagine. The challenge is to realize this. To examine the world around you in a clear and cautious fashion, testing all ideas, all concepts and all agendas. Remembering that nothing is sacred. That everything is suspect. To comprehend what is real and what is just made up but seems real.
Wow not sure where that all came from, but these are my opinions and I am sticking to them at the moment. Of course all is suspect and might change by next week!
Well on a different note, it has been very wet on the Front Range of Colorado for the last 7 to 10 days. But this past Tuesday turned out to be a beautiful spring day in the Fort Collins area. The high only reached about 60 degree with very light winds. A perfect day for running or biking. Since my middle daughter was in town for a visit and wanted to go running and hiking that is what I did. The above two pictures were taken in Horsetooth Mountain Park. The top one is looking west towards Longs Peak. Still looks like there is a lot of snow in the high country. The next one is looking south towards Loveland. It was taken while running on Tower’s Road trail. The bottom two pictures were from Wednesday. Of course what a difference a day makes. Clouds, mist and the chance of rain back in the forecast. The second from bottom picture is looking north from the Shore Line Trail at Horsetooth Reservoir. The very bottom picture is also taken from the Shore Line Trail but looking south.
Well that is it for me this week – take care and see you out there!!