What is reality?

Reality. The stuff, the world; that which we live in. Right?

Is it perhaps what I make of the world I live in? Am I shaped by reality? Or do I shape my reality?

What do I bring, to the experience I have of the world? My world, rather than The world?

How do I warp the reality into my reality just by having myself be the filter that everything I take in, gets filtered through?

I don’t know precisely what my filter adds to reality as I perceive it. I don’t need to. But knowing That my filter adds to reality, as I know it, is crucial. Understanding this, means I know that no other person on earth can have the exact same experience of the world as I have. No one. Everyone has their own unique filter, through which we take in that which we live in.

So the next time you and a friend talk about a shared experience, and you cannot understand how your friend says X happened, even though you know for a fact it was Y. This is the reason. You both took in the facts of the situation through your personal filter. It’s a bit like applying a filter on a photograph in Instagram. The starting point is the same, but the result can be just about anything, an endless diversity.

Given that – what is reality, really?

Beauty surrounds us

I don’t think I’ve ever experience the beauty of fall as I am this year. And I don’t think fall has gotten more beautiful – I think the change is in me. I’ve never been so aware, never taken the time, to look, to see the colors, the contrast, the smell, the vibrancy. The energy!fall love 1
I’ve become better calibrated. It’s like I’ve been fine tuned. My senses are functioning, on a whole new level. Whole heartedly.
I notice. I take it in. All of it.
For the first time, it feels as if I fully n o t i c e all the beauty that surrounds me.fall love 4

It’s been there before. Of that I am certain.
But it was never a part of my reality, in the way it is this year.
Because this year, my eyes have opened.
They take it all in, all that is, and always has been.
The texture, colors, smells, movement.
Wind. Sunshine. Dark clouds.
The heaven and earth.
fall love 5The withered hops in the allotment.
fall love 2

The horse chestnut leaves, glowing orange.fall love 7

The black walnut tree. The bark, the lichen, the leaves. And the fruits!fall love 6

The last holly hock, smiling at me, as I pass it. I have to stop. I ask if I may take its portrait. Of course, it tells me, smiling.
I smile back.fall love 3

It feels as if a view has lifted off my eyes. And my heart.
As I take it all in, I can feel myself expand, my awareness, love and gratitude for the beauty of the world fill me up, every cell of me.

I love it.
See it.
And live it.

Do you notice the beauty that surround you?

Fear begets fear

In the movie Bowling for Columbine by Michael Moore there is a short clip on fear, making a very poignant statement on the fact that fear begets fear. See for yourself:

It’s a dreadful story, but really…. what it says is this:

Within the reality of fear, fear is what you will get.

And that might not make a whole lot of sense, but let me try to put it closer to home.

Ever lost your keys? You search and search for them, checking in bags, pockets, the laundry basket, inside cupboards and drawers, in the ceramic bowl where you normally put them…. but to no avail. Gone. Nowhere to be found.

Know the feeling?

And then, all of a sudden…. your friend/spouse/child looks in the ceramic bowl, and says Here they are!

And you are dumbfounded. HOW is it possible? I LOOKED THERE, I promise I did.

Or, second scenario when your friend/spouse/child isn’t around, and you search and search, and finally give up. You go do something else for a while, and then go to pick up another key from the bowl…. and lo and behold, there the lost keys are as well!

And you are dumbfounded. HOW is it possible? I LOOKED THERE, I promise I did.

Ever experienced something similar to this?

This is the thing:
Within the reality of ”my keys are lost”, your keys are lost. Within that reality, you can’t find them. But within the reality of your friend/spouse/child your keys weren’t lost, they were simply not found. And within that reality, the keys are easier (unless you’ve really lost them) to find. And the same goes for the second scenario; when you leave the ”lost keys-reality”, you enter another reality where they can be found.

The same goes with fear. Within the reality of I am so afraid, you will not find comfort, safety and security. You need to shift from that reality to another one, where comfort, safety and security can be had. The good news about that is that just as the keys could be found from another reality, it’s entirely possible for us to switch realities (if you object to reality being used here, call is state of mind, call it my experience of life, call it the human experience), because the reality I experience is created by the feelings coming from the thought in my head.

And the switch only have one thing stopping it from happening, and that is if I cling for dear life to the current one. That very effectively stops a new thought (and hence a possible new reality) from showing up, and then I’m stuck.

So you have a choice: stick to the existing reality of the problem you’re currently facing, or let it go, and have a possibility to find whatever you are looking for?

Being human

So, understanding that I create the reality of my world, I cannot put the responsibility for my created reality on anyone but myself. However, and this is something I’ve struggled with, does that mean I can or should put up with anything around me? Like a stampeding herd of elephants in my workplace for instance?

Well. No.

The only thing it tells me is I can’t blame anyone else for what I feel. But if I have a preference for one thing (feelings are created via my thoughts, so it’s a part of the reality I create for myself), why shouldn’t I go for it, just because I know where the preference comes from?

I talked to someone wise about this, who didn’t really get why this makes such a mess of my understanding. He just said ”We’re human. Why make it harder than that?”.

imageAnd boy is that a great question, why make it harder than it has to be, eh? It made me let out a bit of tension on it, and perhaps I also stopped clinging on to the thought, but it’s still there in the back of my mind sometimes.

And this makes me think of The little book of contentment that Leo Baubata wrote. He’s very clear that noone else makes him happy. The feeling of being happy comes from within himself. But that doesn’t stop him from being with someone that he likes. Not because he or she is responsible for Leos feelings, but because Leo himself generate feelings of being happy when he’s with said person. And that makes him have a preference for some people.

Steve Chandler also talk about this, and he says something in the order of happiness being a feeling I bring TO a relationship, rather than a feeling I get FROM a relationship. (Happiness being but one example. Insert feeling of choice.) Ponder that one, why don’t you. I sure do.

Hm. Sometimes I think I make it harder to be human than I need to. But perhaps that’s part of being human?

Bubbling like champagne

Sitting in the garden, winding down after a lovely weekend. Snap a picture and start to fiddle around in PixlrExpress+. Satisfied with what wanted to show up:


Do you feel the same way as I do, to the fact that noone else creates my reality. It’s my prerogative. You create your reality. That’s your prerogative. What does this awaken in you?

Fear is not real

”Fear is not real. The only place that fear can exist is in our thoughts of the future. It is a product of our imagination, causing us to fear things that do not at present and may not ever exist. That is near insanity, Katai. But do not misunderstand me. Danger is very real, but fear is a choice. We are all telling ourselves a story.”
– Will Smith, After Earth, 2013

Your view of reality is created by your thoughts. So beware what story you are telling yourself.

The choice is yours – what do you chose?