why our reality is an illusion

reality is an illusion - starry night
vincent van gogh starry night // Image by Eric Perlin from Pixabay

our reality is an illusion

i believe our reality is an illusion. and in this post, i will share why our reality is exactly that – OUR reality, and not THE reality. 

the reason i say our reality is an illusion is that everything that we experience as reality first goes through two filters:
1. mechanical filter
2. logical filter

below i will be expanding on these filters and how they colour our reality; and by the end of this post, there is a good chance of you agreeing with me when i say “our reality is an illusion”.

mechanical filter

everything we experience as our reality is an interpretation of what actually is – our reality is a rendition made possible by our senses and our brain. 

for example, right now, you are not seeing this matter in real-time. right now, your eyes are picking up signals based on how light is bouncing off of your environment, including the device you are reading this on. those signals are then sent to your brain which then forms an image (what you are seeing) based on those signals. all of this happens so fast and with such ease that we’re not present to this process.   

similarly, everything else that we experience through our senses is first sent to our brain, and then the brain translates those signals into the experience that we do experience.

our eyes can only perceive a certain range of the photon wavelength (visible spectrum, typically 380 to 720 nanometres), 
our ears can only perceive a certain frequency range of sound waves (typically 20hz to 20khz); and these ranges differ between human beings depending on age, etc. 

people having a different range of perception (than that of ours) experience the world differently from us. 
other creatures having different ranges have a different experience of the same environment altogether. 

our reality depends on our senses; we only experience what our senses are able to perceive

read this if you are interested in going into the technicality of how our senses work.

this is the role of the first filter, mechanical filter, through which we perceive reality — which makes the reality our reality! 

we don’t have much control or can’t do anything about our mechanical filter. this is the way nature designed it. it is what it is. 

there is another filter on top of this that makes our reality even more subjective (of which we do have control over), and that is what i call the logical filter.

logical filter

once our brain forms images, sounds, etc, based on the signals received from our senses or our mechanical filter, we process that experience through another filter – the logical filter

we add meaning and give value to the experience based on our logic, our reasoning, and/or beliefs. 

the experience itself has no meaning other than the meaning we give it. 

this activity further colours the reality and makes our reality even more different from that of others. the logical filter makes our reality extremely subjective. 

my reality could be completely different from yours even if we were to perceive the same situation, because of our logic and/or beliefs, our reasoning. 

consider this,
it is a beautiful day and you are on your way to work. halfway there, you get stuck in a traffic jam. now, there are (at least) two ways for you to respond to this:

  1. you could get irritated / frustrated / anxious. you could curse your luck, and so on.

OR

  1. you could choose to cease the moment.
    you could take it as an opportunity to make a call to your loved one, or to listen to music, or to observe and enjoy the environment/nature around you.
    you might take a moment to be grateful that you’re in a vehicle and are blessed to have a job that you’re going to, etc, etc. 

same situation, different realities based on the your logical filter. 

the good news is, we can take control of our logical filter and alter how we perceive life, and, hence, alter our reality.  

some quotes that remind me that reality is an illusion

we don’t see people as they are, we see them as we are.

anais nin

beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder

plato

if we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change.

dr. wayne dyer

Conclusion

all of our reality comes down to our brain’s interpretation of what actually is. 

the mechanical and logical filters make our reality extremely subjective.  

given this, i think it is safe to say that our reality, what we experience as reality is only OUR reality and not THE reality itself. 

what we experience is not necessarily going to be the same as what others experience, even if we’re looking at the same situation!

a lyric popped in my head while i was writing this post, and i think it is apt to end this post with that

we’ve been living life, inside a bubble

coldplay

If you enjoy music and lyrics, i invite you to check out the lyrics category of posts!


this is it for this post.

i would love to hear your thoughts on this, let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂

write to you soon x

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