“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Le Petit Prince …
We generally think of using our eyes when it comes to perception and observation. After all, they constantly absorb ridiculous amounts of data in real-time when we have them open. The human eyes are capable of seeing an astounding detail of 576 megapixels, 30 times greater than HDTV, and each “picture” our eye sees is about 1.61 gigabytes of RAW data. In comparison, it would take a current high-end laptop about 2 minutes to save just one of those pictures and do any kind of data processing on it like pattern recognition or color and motion detection. With all this data bombarding our brains, we must remember that we often have other senses that are under-utilized when it comes to observation and searching for truth.
I was friends with a blind person several years back who made a difference in my perceptions in life. I used to rely solely on my eyes for sight in life, only trusting what I saw–my belief was in seeing. However, one day, my friend was talking to me about food that he found delicious and I found gross. During our discussion, I came to the realization that I dislike some foods merely by their appearance, and not their taste, touch, or smell. I was restricting my perceptions to sight, and not allowing my other senses a chance to observe. This principle exists in all aspects of our lives–that rude and obnoxious man could be a sorrowful and hurting man.
What we see each day is not the most important aspect of our lives, for there is so much more that we can taste, smell, touch, and hear, and so much more that we can feel and experience from our hearts and spirits. Our bodies are beautiful and amazing instruments, but they are limited in how they let us experience our world. They do not tell us that another person needs comfort, nor do they feel the joy of an early-morning walk when the sun is rising. Our bodies cannot distinguish between concepts such as compassion, trust, love, peace, wonder, and acceptance. Not even our brains can do that, as wonderfully crafted as they are.
Our life is fashioned not by what we see with our eyes, but by what we feel with our hearts. So much of life I cannot see with my eyes, yet I know it in my heart. Thus, you choose poverty by feeling poor; you chose misfortune by not allowing your heart to feel fortunate; you choose happiness by allowing your heart to bathe in joy and elation. And although our eyes are amazing creations, the world that they present to us is at least half illusion–what we see is not always what is there. If you remember this, and let your heart do much of the seeing for you, you will discover a new look at life, right there in the midst of the one you have always thought you have known.
Try to see the world with your heart today–the troubled coworker, the sad child, the angry stranger.
Questions to consider:
Why are people so willing to believe that the world is just what their eyes tell them it is?
How might we go about “seeing” with our hearts? What would be the benefits of doing so?
Who are the people who have taught you the most? Thinking very honestly, have their teachings opened up your perspectives, or limited them?
For further thought:
“Inside yourself or outside, you never have to change what you see, only the way you see it.” ~ Thaddeus Golas