Saturday, 2 February 2013

The Magic of Perception

"It's all in the mind" - George Harrison (The Beatles)

WYSIWYG. Is anyone familiar with this acronym? To those who are not, it stands for : What You See Is What You Get. It is generally used in context of text editors and is more commonly known to people who are related to computers.
We'll not discuss about computers here. We'll ponder upon something more marvelous than the computers, something so intriguing that it can't actually have a map legend - the human mind. To the human mind I ask - what do you see? And to the same human mind I question again - what do you make out of it? It's all in the mind. What appears beautiful to someone, might be perceived as ugly to someone else. What seems natural to someone, might be perceived as artificial to someone else. And who's the puppeteer? The human mind.

We all meet so many different people in our daily life. And each individual has a mind so different, so impenetrable to the other individual that often we yield to the illusion that we know what the other person is thinking. Meanwhile, let us hear a joke. I'll share it in parts.

' Man goes to doctor. Says he's depressed. Says life seems harsh and cruel. Says he feels all alone in a threatening world where what lies ahead is vague and uncertain. Doctor says "Treatment is simple. Great clown Pagliacci is in town tonight. Go and see him. That should pick you up." '

If I put a glass filled with water in front of 10 people, what does each one think? Someone might think of drinking the water, someone might think of offering it to the other person, someone might not even notice it, or someone might just feel like spilling it. One simple object, in front of different minds, and what does each mind see? Everything around us is a marvel - an intricately structured jewel that humans insist on viewing one edge at a time, when the whole design is visible in every facet. And that whole design, is never consistent in each mind. There might be a certain degree of similarity, but nonetheless, never exactly identical.

See the following images.

I shall not ask what do you see. And I shall not ask what do you make out of it.

The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”  - W B Yeats

Actually, the world is not full of magic things. It is full of simple things, yet our minds choose to see them in so many different ways that we never are able to keep them simple anymore.

People meet people. Thoughts meet thougts. Minds meet minds. And the story unfolds. But, never the same to everyone.

The magic of perception is awesome, yet dreadful. You never know what one gesture, beautiful to you, might mean to the other person.

To conclude the joke :
'Man bursts into tears. Says "But, doctor...I am Pagliacci." Good joke. Everybody laugh. Roll on snare drum. Curtains. Fade to black.'

-Unless you win the game or solve the puzzle, you are nothing but a loser.