Perception: The 8th Deadly Sin

I want to start off by asking what word you saw in the banner of this blog post? Keep that answer in mind until the end.
Character is the result of a system of stereotyped principals.
Think about this. Do you find yourself labeling yourself because of stereotypes and pre-conceived ideas of how you should or ought to be?
Here’s something else to mull over…

Cause and Effect… What is it? If you study hard and review your notes before an exam, you expect to receive a good mark, correct? If you eat healthy and exercise, you hope to improve your overall health and well being, do you not? We live by cause and effect each day, but how much are we really aware of it? We really on it in a sense. We assume that the sun will rise, and that it will rise the next day simply because that is what is has always done. In a way this is a a reassuring cushion that can reduce our worries and everyday stresses. But think about how it can be turned around, and used against us. That is, if we let it. If we have a bad track record of failing exams, and we just presume that we are going to fail the next one, we let our spirits drop possibly to the point of insecurity and depression. But, it’s all in how we perceive it.

Cause and effect is completely subjective to each person. It’s what makes us unique and individuals. All in the same sense, we can take it for ignorance and just take things for face value when it could be just the tip of the iceberg. I suppose what we need is a good balance of it, because face it we can’t live without the idea of cause and effect. It is in a sense habitual. These ideas are that of British Empiricist, David Hume. He touches on the idea of cognitive behavioural psychology, and proposes the idea of thinking out of habit. To him, we think a certain way not because of our minds nor our bodies, but because we possess a level of innate behaviours and responses. It is out of habit that we continue to think in a certain way about things. We conditional ourselves to keep repeating and repeating the same behaviour over and over again, even if it drives us crazy and causes us much turmoil. This is because it is so much easier to keep going along with these possibly harmful habits than to correct them. We allow ourselves to perceive that there are no other alternatives.

We can’t let things that seem to always be working in our disfavour, or this perceived bad luck, control our everyday lives. These unfortunate effects, the result of possibly a positive causation, have the ability to consume us. But it doesn’t have to! It isn’t the easiest thing to rise above, but it is possible. Think of how accomplished you could feel if after three, four or hundreds of set backs you finally did it! With perseverance, motivation, hard work and a little help from your friends and family, anything can be accomplished. We can utilise these habitual behaviours to our advantage. If we form positive good habits that benefit ourselves as well as others, we can gain confidence and improve our overall mental and physical health!

We all have our bad days where we feel unsuccessful, but success is subjective as well. You define and measure your own success. Maybe this is what I should have started with: never let anyone define your own success. It should only be defined by you! Cause and effect is inevitable, but it is how we use the effects that determines the true outcome. If we carry a positive view on a negative situation, we can make the best of any situation. So maybe perception isn’t all that bad if we perceive through optimistic lens.

Beauty, whether moral or natural, is felt, more properly than perceived. -David Hume

So now I ask: did you see the word good or evil in the banner? This perceptive illusion may reflect what form of outlook you carry with you, whether it is an optimistic one or a pessimistic one. Now this isn’t meant to point fingers to all of those who saw the word “evil”, but it is meant to make you think about what kind of attitude you are carrying with yourself on a daily basis because it will affect how you view yourself and others, whether you realize it or not.


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