Reality & Realization – 4. Perception

You soak up the world via sensation. You see it, hear it, smell it, touch it.

You know you have a mind, and it certainly seems like your mind works from what the body senses. But examine closely how the senses work, and you start to wonder what is really going on.

The information for sensation arises either outside or inside you. Though sensation may seem to come from your body, sensation is all in the mind.

Touch and hearing arise from mechanical vibrations. In the instance of audition, sonic vibrations stir little bones in the ear, which pass the vibrations on to a cell complex which transmits electrochemical impulses to the brain.

The sense of touch is even simpler than hearing. Physiologically, glial cells get pressed upon and they supposedly send a report to the brain via nerve cells. Physical pressure is transformed into electrochemical signals. Those electrochemical spikes in and of themselves mean nothing.

The business end of sensation is information. What information do those sensation signals contain? No one knows. How are those signals mapped to a specific part of the body? No one knows. Scientists make a bunch of assumptions and tell a story that makes sense but is a fabrication full of holes.

What researchers measure are electrical impulses, thermal signatures, or the residues of chemicals excreted by cells. Then, all they can do is imagine what happens. Inference is not evidence.

The universal failing of science is confusing correlation with causation. Just because 2 events coincide does not mean that one event caused the other. Causation is always a construal – a story the mind fabricates to feel that it comprehends. Conflicting details are erased to render a consistent narrative. That the story corresponds with what is observed does not make it true. All you’ll ever get from your mind is an interpretation.

You can’t explain sight by talking about billions of photons blasting into your eyes. The sketchy facts may make sense, but the story falls apart when you consider the details, like precisely how the panorama before you is magically composed and maintained. How exactly is a detailed color image representing what is before you painted in the brain after being transposed into electrochemical impulses passed between multiple cells? No one has ever had a decent explanation. Just because you experience something doesn’t mean it is understood at the atomic level, through purely physiological mechanics. That’s just fooling yourself, which is what most people do, including scientists.

You cannot fathom physicality without talking about perception, which transpires entirely in the mind.

Mentally, sensation turns sensed stimuli into a symbolic construct: a jumble of input data which the mind turns into a pattern. Sensation must work this way, but how this specifically transpires is a mystery; an enigma which has nothing to do with cellular activity.

Perception takes the symbols of sensation and makes sense of them. Perception proceeds with the mind trying to match a sensed object or event with those that it has experienced before. This pattern-matching from memory affords identification.

Perception then tries to derive some meaning from identified symbols. The mind valuates what it has perceived. Once your mind decides what something is, it then decides if the symbol of attention is worth any more attention than it has already got. If not, the mind moves onto the next thing.

Symbols that linger in the mind are continuously appraised for how much more attention they will get. It’s a competitive exercise; which is one reason why your mind flits about if your attention is not focused on a task.

How much consideration your mind gives symbols depends partly upon your desire. Objects of desire are esteemed by the mind. Their reward is being lavished with attention. Symbols so lovingly slathered are called “peak experiences.” Your mind flushes you with emotions that reinforce the positivity of the experience. Congratulations. You’ve just been played by your mind.

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Looking closely at how perception works indicates the something is askew in taking the world at face value. Next, what’s the matter with matter.