The Power of Seeing
While we rely on all our senses to connect with the world and better understand it, sight is usually the one sense we rely on the most. When people are asked which sense they would absolutely not give up, the majority of them choose sight.
The thought of not being able to see forever, when you have been blessed enough with the ability to do so for several years already, is simply terrifying. We rely on it from the moment we wake up to the moment we turn the light off at bedtime. Some of us even feel great discomfort and can’t sleep soundly at night if the room is completely pitch black that we must install night lights along the corridors.
Even the mere idea of being blindfolded, perhaps for a game or a surprise, can leave us feeling anxious, nervous, and off balance even when our closest friend is leading us by the hand. Although at the back of our minds we know for certain that we are totally safe and in good company, or that it will only be for a few minutes, a feeling of great anxiety starts creeping in and we simply feel helpless when we’re not able to see a thing. On a more practical setting, we normally panic when we’re driving down a foggy road with zero visibility. We instinctively stop out of fear of hitting a tree or falling off a cliff. That’s how much we rely on our sense of sight. Thus, we should learn to be more aware and appreciative of how precious the gift of sight truly is.
The sense of sight, together with our other physical senses, is all interconnected in perceiving and storing memories. While our brain can receive millions of visual stimuli a day, it can simultaneously filter or focus on things that matter most, leaving the rest much like an insignificant blur. Without this selective mechanism and focus, we will be bombarded with an influx of impulses and left feeling overwhelmed with unnecessary and insignificant visual memories.
On the other hand, most of us have unfortunately developed the habit of putting our eyes on auto-focus, so to speak. Sometimes, people hardly ever notice a new tie a co-worker wears, or the fact that the maintenance man that has worked at their office for decades has been replaced. We virtually go through the motions each day without stopping for a moment to enjoy the first spring flower in our garden, or to at least take notice of the homeless man that has been sleeping outside our office building for years already. Unfortunately, we have become like robots that glance at our laptops and smartphones every few minutes.
If we try and divert our sense of sight from the gadgets we use whether for work or play, we are giving ourselves the chance to live more fully. By making a small effort to be less like robots, we can feel and act more like the sentient humans that we are. We can start simply by turning off our phones when dining with friends and loved ones, and talking to them eye to eye, person to person.