There are huge discussions on the question of good and evil, right and wrong, truth and falsehood. These are the fundamental questions of human life in both essential and existential domains. Almost all of the philosophers attempted to figure out the truth, to know what is good and how it could be separated from the bad – to know the truth of their origin and purpose and to get the answer of right and wrong to save people of the earth from his wrongdoings.
While trying to answer these questions, philosophers seem to have taken the idea of ‘perception’ as a hypothesis, as the unexamined process. For example, if a person admires a red rose and another person does not, we cannot say that there is something researchable in this process, the perception, the way of seeing the red rose of person one is different from person two. This process is not only limited to aesthetics but also ethics, ontology, and many other philosophical areas.
As Nigel Warburton wrote, Philosophy is what philosophers do. Declaring philosophy as a completely subjective domain might be wrong but we cannot completely deny it either. Philosophy is enormously constituted of refined opinions, refined and validated through logic, decorated by arts, and also somehow many of the fields are supported by sciences, still, the core of philosophy lies in the opinion or more precisely perception of a philosopher. Now, this is not the end.
Perception is a way of seeing things, but why do we see things as we see and why not how others see them? What made Plato think that there exists two worlds; ideal and existential 3 and John Locke says that the only real things are what we can sensually experience 4. There must have been some different points in their own lives rather than the difference in this world because the principle of the working of the universe is static and not dynamic. If there lies perception behind the constitution of philosophies and derivation of truthful laws from them then what is behind perception itself?
There could be three factors involved in the process of development of perception. First of all, there is the personality of the perceiver, a set of his characteristics, likes, and dislikes. His personality will attract him to extract different ideas from anything. His ideas will eventually become a part of his personality and his personality is already playing a part in the idea. Now the personality is itself the fruit of the past which is the second factor behind the perception. Past is the human’s individual history of experiences, or rather the conclusions he derived from his history from the gone days. These conclusions gradually become resolutions and then they play a part in the method of perceiving things, knowingly or unknowingly.
The past not only remains limited to the behavior one will show towards anything or any event but also the very act of seeing things become affected through the happenings of the past. The third factor involving the perception or one might say polluting the perception is the history of the universe. The facts which are already facts and are the things that have already happened shape the way we perceive things. Like it has already been proven in history that an apple falls to the ground because of gravity and thus another person seeing an apple falling down the ground cannot perceive anything else from it.
The mind deletes the possibility of anything else before even it comes to the conscience. And thus, we see things as we are, as we were and as the world had accepted it was and is. That’s how the people of the past could easily think of new things and had created ideas freely. Even if much more people are gaining education these days and the research process is using much higher technologies than before, still the minds cannot escape the previously accepted realities blocking the sight of perception. These three factors not only produce the method of seeing things but also limit the possibility of seeing things as they are.
Only through madly running the mind, seeing insane things, and producing a bulk of wrong ideas can lead to new golden ideas (and also can satisfy the hunger or freedom of will only through which we can escape from depression, the disease of the 20th century). For the purpose of seeing things as they are, the cages must be left open to receive any rubbish ideas contradicting everything, or even making no sense at all. To get the real meaning of the paintings of Picasso or to truly understand the symphonies of Beethoven, or to get what Shakespeare wanted to say in his poems – we must let go of the limitations of perception by not validating their points in the balancer of our personality, past or history. And hence, there should be only eyes (senses), behind the perception.