Human Perception An Intimate Look Into The

Human Perception: An Intimate Look Into The Most Intriguing Aspect Of Modern
Psychology Essay, Research Paper

Human Perception: An Intimate Look Into The Most Intriguing Aspect of Modern


It determines what we see, what we do, what we feel. It controls our

emotions, our thoughts, and our conscience. What is this remarkable element of

the human mind? It is called perception. Perception as defined in the Merrian-

Webster Dictionary as the following-

1 a : awareness of the elements of environment through physical


b: Physical sensation interpreted in the light of experience

2 a : quick, acute, and intuitive cognition : APPRECIATION

b : capacity for comprehension

Perception. As hard as it is to define it, it is impossible to correctly

conceive a “correct” or “right” way to use it. Perception varies with not only

humans, but with virtually all other animals as well, whether through instinct

or with conscious thought. Let us take this a step farther. When a bee looks at

a flower that is meant for feeding from, they do not only notice the colors the

human mind sees. The bee sees a yellow “run-way” directly into the core of the

flower, guiding it into the source of nectar. This brings us to the question-

“is what we see real, or is what we see our own reality?”. What the human mind

sees is only three dimensions. Since Albert Einstein first conjured the

scientific possibility of a fourth dimension, human beings have longed to see it.

Many people assume that it does not exist simply because they cannot see it.

They are not able to see the yellow “run-way” into the heart of a flower, but to

the bee and an ultraviolet light, that “run-way” is certainly real. People’s

physical use of their own perception is very limited, as such noticeable in the

“tunnel-vision” effect. A good example of the Tunnel Vision effect is a

perception or thought such as “if I cannot see it, it simply does not exist”. We

as humans are limited not only to what we can sense, but how we perceive what we

sense. Such is a formidable question. What if that fourth dimension does exist,

what if we can see it , only our brain cannot perceive it being there, therefor

it never exists in the first place. I would consider that as a paradox.

Where does perception come from? Is it a result of the upbringing and

surroundings of an individual (animal or human), or is it a result of genetics?

Certainly I would believe that conditioning has a great impact on an

individual’s perception. An example to that would be as such : A dog is abused,

beaten, and starved by a group of owners in a kennel. The dog is then recovered

by the humane society and adopted by a local family. The dog in turns bites one

in the family every time a hand is raised near it as a motion, for food or

otherwise. The dog has been conditioned into fear. However, due to the

conditioning, the dog perceives the hand motions differently than would a

newborn pup. The dog perceives such hand actions as a premonition that it is

about to be hit or harmed in some way. I can only conclude to myself that there

is a distinct possibility that conditioning has the ability to alter perception

in a great amount.

People often mistakenly identify people for others in many circumstances

everyday. For example, I got on the bus to go to school a few weeks ago, and sat

down next to a person whom I believed I had talked to the day before regarding a

topic. I started to say something, I looked up and realized the person was a

totally different person than whom I believed I was talking to. I had seen the

person who I thought I was talking to when I got on that bus. The physical

features, the voice, etc. all matched. However, a neuron must have misfired

because there was an entirely different person altogether in that seat. I went

to another seat, pondered it over, and realized how speculative human

identification is. Often victims of rape, robbery, or other crimes are asked to

identify their assailant in a police lineup. Seventy two percent of people

misidentify suspects in police lineups the first try. The reason? The person

sees who they “saw” when they were attacked. I would presume that during an

attack, a person would be more concerned about staying alive than noticing the

exact physical characteristics of the individual who is attacking. Since the

brain is overworking to do multitudes of tasks at the time of an attack, I would

assume that a person would not pay particular notice to the appearance of the

attacker. This is why human visual identification is so controversial and hard

to support. Perhaps the person *did* see that person who attacked them in the

lineup. People often fill in the gaps of a picture and story to make everything

seem clear to them and the authorities. Therefor, human visual identification

cannot be trusted simply due to people’s differences of perception. When I

look at and read the Bible, I regard it as an awesome literary work, but not

something I would base or live my life upon. However, there are those who

perceive the Bible as not only words on a page, but as the guiding force behind

humanity. Religion and perception do not go well together simply due to the vast

differences in opinion among the human race. What I perceive as fact is that

Jesus Christ did not ascend into heaven, and that the Bible is merely a literary

work. A book to be concise. However, what Christians perceive as fact is the

exact opposite. Often, there are those in the religious or family oriented lobby

industries who try to suppress what I read or hear based upon their own

perception, Perhaps this is stretching the links of perception, but I believe

that the perceptual differences among people are the original roots of

censorship. One group of people or person perceives something as obscene or

“harmful”. Another group perceives *the same thing* as intellectually

stimulating or entertaining. Such is why I consider perception as not only

having to do with human psychology, but with politics and beliefs as well.

I consider perception to be not only what a person senses, but what they

get out of what they sense. I listen to hard-core rock and like the sound of it.

However, an adult would most likely label it as simply “noise”. The perceptual

differences among people is the *single* biggest speed bump in attaining world,

civil, and domestic peace. Our differences are small, but great in bounty. I see

white, you see black. Never will all people in the world agree on one particular

topic, however we can learn to respect the perception of that topic. Until

people understand the roots of problems is how they perceive them, and that it

is only a problem if you make it a problem, peace and respect are unattainable


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