The person or people you just talked to have a history that is probably not like yours at all. The conversation that took place also probably brought about points, references, ideas, and other thoughts based on that history. Whether you agreed, disagreed, learned something, or not, you just got another perspective based on someone else’s reality. This is a subconscious process that shows perception; it takes place without us even knowing.
I love talking to people. I learn from their perceptions, try to rationalize what they think, and then go on to confuse myself. I want to know how they perceive things, but most importantly, why.
To keep it simple, let’s use love as an example to illustrate perception. Oh I’m just kidding, rationalizing love? Yeah, ok that’s really simple (or maybe just my perception of it).
I’ll stick with Politics. The Democrats and Republicans and those lingering Radicals have all proven that there are different perspectives. With the top two candidates basically determined, we see that there are two really different sides and perspectives running for office and the way they and their followers perceive how the government should be ran is very different. So we ask ourselves, which of these two guys makes better sense and why? It will all be based on how we perceive things. This means what is important to us, and what makes most sense. Would we rather have a hippie president, or one that might go to war again? This time it’s not going to be about oil. (Sarcasm) Someone might even say, “Well, I was born and raised a ______, so I will die a ______!”
I understand that because of what we know, we are going to make certain decisions. STOP, for a second. Even if the research is done, we know all about the other side of things, let’s think twice. Why is it that the others see things the way they do and what is their history? Personally, this still doesn’t mean I will then agree, but I will really understand where they are coming from. Shoot, now who am I voting for?
One more example, let’s say one of your best friends is one of the people you just had this conversation I talked about earlier with. You guys are like peas in a pod, Bevis and Butthead, tight as ice (ok that one is funny), or birds of a feather who flock together, and you still disagree on something! How are you going to resolve it? Take their perspective, yes this means going back to the memory you have of the two of you sitting at the dance in 8th grade and seeing them upset about you getting to dance with his/her crush and not them. Now do you understand why they see things they way they do? What are you going to do with this information?
I think a light bulb just turned on!
Taking another’s perspective is not the easiest thing, but it is having the best interest of everyone really in mind. If we do this, we really understand the other side and can work with it to come to a better understanding of what should really be. Perception is something that is created within yourself and in order to really make sense of things, it is important to keep in mind other’s perceptions.
David Bohm was a quantum physicist who contributed to the study of philosophy of the mind as well as other fields. Here is a short interview where he briefly talks about perception. BTW, his view is obviously WAY more developed than mine and AWESOME.