Soveriegn Mind Cheryl Matthews- Perception v. Reality

This topic and short paper were discussed at the weekly Sovereign Mind Meetings, to which there was a great dialoge of exchange between those who believed that all reality was subjective and those who believed that objective truths exist in the world as well (such as the scientific laws of gravity, etc.)

Romans 12:2 “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

Perception is the process of attaining awareness or understanding of sensory information.  The word perception comes from the 15th century Latin word “perceptio or perceptionem” meaning “receiving, collecting, acting or taking possession, apprehension with the mind or senses.”

Essentially, there is a two fold process: sensation occurs, where the sensory organs absorb energy from a physical stimulus in the environment, convert and send the energy into neutral impulses to the brain; perception is the physical process of “collecting material data” in order to deducing meaning or constructing our reality from the things we hear, see, touch, taste, and feel (our 5-peepholes to the universe). By funneling these sensory neural impulses through the limitations of our 5-senses (biology), culture, past-experiences, what we are told to fixate on, etc, we selectively fixate on things in our environment and ultimately construct a picture of our reality.

 So what is reality? Although artwork is beautiful, it is only a glimpse into the mind of someone else – how they fixated on certain objects and translated the objects into symbols containing meaning. Physics, likewise, is the study of how others perceived the universe, converted their sensations into numbers, and plugged the numbers into equations that produced another number, which they gave meaning.

 At this cultural and technological juncture, there is little that we actually perceive first hand (at least speaking for myself). With television, movies, itunes, telephone, cameras, skype, facebook, etc., there are barriers between the concrete material word and our senses, which create this funneling system (which I mentioned above) not after the sensation process begins, but before. What I mean is that receiving sensations first hand requires an interplay between many different senses – from which we are able to gather more information (sensory data) in order to create more complex and varying temporal realities and meaning. By creating a technological barrier between our senses and the material world, we limit our perception (gathering of data) to one, or at most, two senses (eyes and ears). This is what I call: the Dulling of the Senses.

 EX: having conversations on the telephone, we hear the sound-waves from someone’s vocal chords translated over wires, microphones, and electrical conductors (I definitely don’t know the true mechanism, but please follow my thought process), through the receiver of an electrical device. Although a telephone does assist in our ability to communicate with others over a greater amount of space-time – allowing this to be the primary means of intimate communication (especially with friends and family) may (although I have not done any studies) affect our ability to encode deeper and more complex neural imprints of these people.

Another example: television is the most widely used telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images. The images are distorted through the use of high-powered radio-frequency transmitters that broadcast these distorted images through the TV receivers (however big or small). Now, these distorted images are translated through digital signals. After this funneling process occurs, with our eyes, we view and intake the limited waves lengths light, process this data, and give this information meaning.

 As the level of sensation is dimmed, the ability to perceive and thereby construct a variety of “out-puts” or meaning is also affected. I believe this can ultimately affect our sense of reality.

 My theory is that when this dulling occurs, in addition to creating weaker and less complex neural and psychological imprints, we either loose trust in our sensations and perceptions, accept others ascribed meanings and explanations for the unperceived material word, or seek for outside sources to ascribe meaning to perceptions.

The author has a blog I reccomend-


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