Andromeda Galaxy. Courtesy : wikipaedia

The significance of being insignificant

Some thoughts change your perception of your whole world. Some change you. I have come across quite a few mind bending thoughts that have driven me.

Coming from a middle class conservative family, i had a surprisingly open minded father. He asked me to question every thing, make mistakes and learn to live with it. This excited the curiosity in me. And that drove me to become a designer. In this ‘living document’ that i will update when i get more insights, i will share few thoughts that changed me.

The perception of colour
In my visual design class, my professor was explaining how colours work. 
“How can you be sure that you and your friend are seeing the exact same colour?” Because colours are based on wavelength of light and how your brain interpret it, there is no way to ensure that the interpretation of two different brains are exactly the same. You might be seeing a slightly different colour than your friend and not realising it. It is proven fact that some people can see more colours than others and some less.

The perception of reality
You feel, smell, see, hear, taste with your senses. But your brain interprets signals from your nerves to make you feel emotions, pain, cold, heat, pressure, smell, taste and almost everything in life. If your brain is fooled that you have met with an accident, you can actually feel the pain and maybe even die. (reason why people get a heart attack during sleep/ dreams) Further more, what if our whole world is a virtual one. A figment of imagination of your brain and you are in a MATRIX? Many celebrities share the opinion and agree on the power of our brain to simulate situations and the possibility of the virtual world.

The perception of space
We run around to achieve more everyday. without pausing to think, to see. There are videos that have gone viral, that shows how deep the space is, how many stars and planets are there in the nearby galaxies and still we have 99% of the universe to see. What is beyond this universe? what about the reality of a quantum realm? Fantasy or not, the possibility of us and our billion dollar ideas being as insignificant as an atom of dead cell falling off your body every second is scary.

The perception of time
With the blackhole, and gravity waves under study, it has been almost established that time bends. Just like light. Let me ask you now, when you feel that time has passed quickly, or the time is moving very slowly, what if time is actually bending? Out of the billions of years the universe lives, our life is as insignificant as a micro second of the time you spend reading Terms and conditions. And even in such a short span, time changes, beyond your control.

The butterfly effect
The concept of butterfly effect requires very less introduction. The concept of that a small wing beat of a beautiful butterfly can create havoc is terrifying. If the concept is true, maybe you are responsible for the last calamity that hit the world.

The perception of freedom
This is a debated concept that how much freedom does a human actually need. With the advent of civilisations, people needed rules to ensure civil code. Laws were created to restrict the free will. But then laws could not control ethics and decisions. Hence Religion was used to control your decisions for the better good. The perceptions changed through the ages and the flaws in these two ideas created friction, opportunities, competition and were utilised in plenty. And now in the 21st century, when people have finally moved beyond the concept, comes consumerism. A well planned concept that controls our lives and decision making based on our consumer instinct. More than half your shopping decisions (and in effect, lifestyle) are influenced, half your decisions daily is influenced. Even more life changing decisions like love, marriage, career, travel etc. are influenced. Even you reading this note is influenced by medium.

Thinking broadly and accepting the vastness of the information around you will help open up possibilities beyond comprehension. It will help you have a more tolerant and beautiful life. Cheers. Let me know in comment if you have come across any similar realisation that changed the way you think.

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