The other day a friend of mine posted a youtube video about Robert Anton Wilson talking about people’s perceptions of reality being it’s own reality tunnel:
I don’t know the context of the talk and I’m not familiar with the man although after a quick wiki search my interest is definitely peaked.
The message is very simple: We all see the world differently because we look at it through our own perceptions. But, it seemed so profound to me. I’m not sure if others see this as so obvious. We see the world through our own perception, then we interpret that perception based on an infinite number of factors and call that reality, which Wilson refers to as a Reality Tunnel. And we all have our own Reality Tunnels.
This is where I find compassion for the religious zealots, homophobes, republican/conservative extremists, people who run red lights, mean people, etc. It’s not that any one of them are “stupid” or deliberately trying to undermine your happiness. They just see things differently. They’re in their own Reality Tunnel. And so am I and so are you. What would it take to force me out of my Reality Tunnel and into one that matches someone else’s? Shame? Guilt? Not likely. It’ll just add shame and guilt to my tunnel.
Right at the end of this brief clip is the part that I find the most interesting.
“Every reality tunnel might tell us something interesting about our world, if we’re willing to listen.”
Stop and pay attention without judgment to a couple of different reality tunnels today. There are as many out there as there are people. But, don’t get overwhelmed, just make yourself aware of the different reality tunnels that around you, especially your own. And then just become curious about the world. What do these reality tunnels tell me about the world I live in. Sometimes it might be depressing and sometimes it might be joyful. But, I encourage you to look without judgment. It is what it is. Why not try looking at what-is with full awareness from your own reality tunnel and see if you can get a glimpse of another person’s tunnel.
(I’m trying to figure this all out for myself, as well, from my own tunnel and it’s all very complex and beautiful. Thanks for reading. I welcome comments and interpretations)