“What can I see?”
I’m knelt on the floor with a cup of tea and my journal laying open in front of me, ready to record the answers. From my position I can see out the window. And out of the window I see three things.
First, I see the sky. The blue, slightly cloudy sky represents possibility. The sky is the portal to the rest of the universe. The great, unexplored expanse that hovers above us. But maybe I’m only thinking that because I’ve been reading A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy?
Second, I see a tree. Trees are symbols for a lot of things. In my mind, they represent wisdom, growth and strength. But they can also symbolise impermanence. Transience. The falling of their leaves is a reminder of the passing of the seasons. Of the constant transformation inherent in our lives.
Third, I see a house. What simpler structure is there to demonstrate the human capacity for innovation and problem solving? A house is a place of warmth and comfort. A shield from the elements. It’s a private place where we can take shelter from the rest of the world.
I can see these three things through a window. A glass structure which creates a transparent barrier between the inside and the outside. Between me and what I’m seeing. And this window that separates me from the world isn’t clean. I can see specks of dirt on the window pane.
If it wasn’t for those specks of dirt, I would have a flawless view of the world outside my window.
Which got me thinking.
Reality is what goes on outside. Perception is what we can see from the inside. There’s something separating the two. A metaphorical pane of glass.
Our aim as thinkers and learners is to have a window so clean that we forget the glass is there. A window so clear that what we see from the inside is indistinguishable from what is actually outside.
Our task, in other words, is to see the world exactly as it is.