Okay, are you guys ready? ‘Cause I’m about to get a little philosophical. You see, sometimes, when I sit for a formal meditation practice, certain visuals help me to center down, so I thought I’d share one with you today.
Step outside of yourself for a moment and think about the fact that, to a certain extent, “Reality” is what we make of it. Neurologically speaking, the human brain is notoriously fallible when it comes to processing stimuli (just think of your favorite optical illusion). But this is also true on a more subtle, emotional level. The way you perceive a certain event or interaction is bound to be different than the way I perceive it.
Since what you know to be Reality is very much a reflection of you, imagine for a moment that you are some kind of reflective surface. What kind of reflective surface are you? What version of Reality do you reflect back?
When I’m feeling high strung, anxious, agitated, distracted, or overworked, my reflective surface feels like a highly faceted prism, or a broken mirror, or… a disco ball. In those moments, my perception of Reality is rigid, complex, ornate, confusing, and overwhelming. It often feels like there is too much going on: too many thoughts, too many images, and too much to deal with.
So when it’s time for me to slow down and turn off the monkey mind, I like to visualize my reflective surface as a single drop of water. When I do, my perception of Reality becomes far more fluid, simpler. Anxieties seem to wash away, and I begin to feel as though I can see more clearly. Things that were eating me up inside don’t seem to matter so much anymore; in fact, they’re no longer reflected in the big picture.
We cannot change the true nature of things, but we can control our perception of them. Like a multi-faceted mirror distorts the reflection of everything it captures, the ego has a way of making things much more complicated than they need to be. Choosing simplicity and acceptance may not come easily, but things get much easier when you do.