CW #24: PERCEPTION
IT’S A MATTER OF VIEW…
Life is full of impressions. Impressions that we absorb, process and transform. Sometimes it seems as if there are differences in the matter of how impressions leave an effect on us. Moreover, we might even distinguish between good and bad impressions. As a matter of fact, everything we deal with, the way we experience happenings surrounding and influencing our existence mainly depends on our individual perception. You may notice this on how, for example the attractiveness to different sorts of arts varies among individuals or the way we react in various situations. It is not just the childhood memories, our entire existence is based on, but also the everyday impressions that we use to initiate further transformation. What is more, maintaining an open-mind is an essential component in order to allow new impulses to induce growth. Because what truly distinguishes a positive reality from negative impact is based on our individual perspective. WELCOME TO CW #24: PERCEPTION!
Within this calendar week’s blogpost I would like to make the term “perception” a topic of discussion and relate its meaning to the actions of transformation. The word “perception derives from Latin perceptio and means „to become aware through the use of human senses”. What is more, based on our perception we are able to look at, comprehend and construe happenings. Therefore, and in combination with sensory informations, it is possible to establish understanding concerning the creation of reality. As a matter of fact, all perceptions involve signals, in science often described as “impulses” or “stimuli”, that are being processed in the nervous system. In many cases the construction of perception runs passively even effortless because processing happens outside conscious awareness. Having said this, we miss out on how this system is being constantly reestablished, its source of understanding and analyzing impulses would offer valuable information regarding individual concepts. However, a significant amount of perception is also shaped by the individual’s learning processes, memory, personal expectations and attention. Although the set up of perception depends on multiple complex functions of the nervous system, researchers distinguish between two main processes:
receiving low-level information as sensory input, for instance hearing sounds and transforming them into linguistic messages
receiving sensory input which we then connect to individual ideas and knowledge
The last form of processing is considered to function restorative and selective. Therefore it influences perception by making use of already existing concepts, then recreating new items. An example to prove this phenomenon is found in the studies of the term “hermeneutics”. Deriving from Ancient Greek ἑρμηνεύειν (hermēneúein), hermeneutics means ”to explain” or ”to construe”. Broader, its studies are based on knowledge transfer. As a reminder, you may think of the Greek god Hermes found in Ancient Greek mythology. Hermes is the god of trade and merchants, passing on items and information. On that account hermeneutics is seen as the science of knowledge transfer, and further the science of comprehension. For this purpose, when speaking of hermeneutics, scientists most often refer to receiving inputs by reading. Studies have proven that there are differences in comprehension regarding the amount of one particular text being read. Basically, this means that if you read a book once your understanding and interpretation will vary from reading the same book a second or third time. Thus, information are linked to existing structures and shaped into new knowledge. At the end of the day, the most essential message for us it to understand that the particular input - the book - is the same, the only difference is the way we receive and manage information in order to create reality. The following image is trying to create a visual approach in order to get some clarity concerning this situation.
Based on the information provided by science, we may state that transformation is always possible because our individual perception is constantly changing due to the receipt of various stimuli. It is important to understand that perception is an individual trait. What is more, we are able to influence perception by the way we want impulses to have an effect on us. Even when experiencing negative situations, often referred to as “stress”, we are able to transform these happenings into something positive. Because often it is just the recurring thoughts of living adverse moments that create a negative perception and lastly a distressed reality. That is why we have to realize, being exposed to unfavorable situations will happen and might cause suffering. Though we can count on one thing - it is a temporary moment because new impulses are waiting for us to be processed and transformed into something new! Just like the moon needs emptiness to feel full again, we experience the cycle of life in recreating perception.
Have a wonderful calendar week #24.