Yesterday, I played the waiting game to get out of the airport parking lot. In the big picture, everyone had the same intention. But, even as drivers barked insults at each other, attached to “their place in line,” most missed how helping others reach their goals would eventually help all of us get home. We had become so attached to our perceptions, that others were trying to get “their space,” that we had forgotten the power of the community to reach it. If we all cooperated and let someone pull in front of us, the conflicts could have been avoided. But—because of those perceptions—what manifested, in reality, was the very cause and proof that we would get nowhere.
Perception Is Reality
The perceptions of everyone in that lot, vying for a space, was that conflict would ensue, therefore it did. Perception is reality. We have all heard this phrase, but my belief is that we may have heard it so much that the impact and power of its message often goes unnoticed. The question is, when it comes down to it, why do we create our reality the way it is? Because what we perceive in others, the world, and ourselves becomes our physical reality, why do we often choose to indulge our energy, time, and our thoughts upon “battling against” or “passively accepting” reality, as opposed to deciding to change our experiences for the better?
Burned by Perception
The answer is that our perceptions create, on the physical plane, what it is we believe or expect will show up. Our ego creates thoughts. Our body reacts to these thoughts as being true. This, in turn, creates the existence of what we believe we will experience. If we are not conscious of what our ego is telling us, we buy into its reality. I was reminded of this when I was getting ready one morning. While it may be a strange time to experience a spiritual moment, it did became one.
As I reached for the burning hot flat iron resting on my bathroom sink, I realized that I was in danger of burning myself. I quickly moved my hand away. My next thought was that I wanted to wash my hands. I touched the cold-water tap and found that I, indeed, had the sensation of a burned hand. I was feeling the burning sensation that I had expected from the flat iron. My body still held the perception that I was going to get burned by heat, so I still felt the burn.
Similarly, if we perceive, for example, that people are going to judge us, we will see it through every interaction. If we perceive that we will be seen as stupid, insecure, broken, fat, weak, you name it, that will be our experience. If we allow ourselves to indulge in such generalizations about others, and ourselves, the universe cannot help but think that it is supporting us by manifesting exactly what we focus on. In other words, every event, experience, relationship, and interaction will be charged with that energy of what we perceive. And, our physical, emotional, and spiritual self will support those perceptions without awareness. Thus, what we believe becomes real.
The Outside Reflects the Inside
Just as in the case of my being “burned,” though our perceptions may be unconscious, they still shape our reality. With this in mind, what we experience in our day-to-day life can help reflect those unconscious beliefs back to us, for our examination. We just have to look at our outside world to discover our internal perceptions. For example, many of us hold core beliefs that we are not good enough, unworthy, unlovable, a failure, and a multitude of other negative, but powerful notions. While our logical minds know differently, our subconscious minds hook into these entrancing beliefs.
If we truly felt, from our heart’s very core, that we were good enough, for example, we would not accept negative, abusive, or toxic relationships, nor other negative types of situations. In other words, if we changed those perceptions and negative beliefs about ourselves, our physical world would also change to reflect that energy shift. We would not stay in the abusive relationships. We would not continue to abandon ourselves. We would not continue to ignore self-care and our physical health.
The fact is that we will continue to see life through whatever perceptions we have created, unless we decide to change it—which we can. That’s not to say that it is easy, but once we own this fact, we cannot sit in a passive stance anymore—only believing that life happened to us—and expect to heal. Instead, we can learn to change our perceptions, to experience change in our day-to-day lives. When we do change those core perceptions, a change cannot help but occur on the physical plane. The physical world we see will begin to reflect what we want to see in our lives, created through intention, rather than what our unconscious perceptions created in reality, by default.
© Copyright 2010 by Sarah Jenkins. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to GoodTherapy.org.
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