Monday, 8 September 2014

A Matter of Perspective

This was written by myself in a 25 minute time period as an essay assignment for an online practice examination. I thought I would share it.

"Two men look out through the same bars; one sees mud and one the stars." (Frederick Langbridge) a simple but exceptionally true statement. No, two individuals do not always see the same thing when they look at it. Every human being has a different way of thinking, as individuals no two people are alike, we have varying forms of intellect and different cultures, or economic situations can have an effect on how we perceive the world around us. Humans can be taught how to look at things and still, five students with the same instructors for their education will never turn out to be identical thinkers. One cannot exactly explain the process but there are a variety of factors that affect the outcomes. Individual DNA can be a contributing factor and an uncontrolled one at that.

 An artist will not look at the stars as a philosopher would, nor would an astronomer. One may see a beautiful backdrop to paint, another simply contemplates the view and it's greater meaning, while an astronomer will map it. All three are looking at the same sky but to each individual the outcome is astoundingly different. There is also the question of where an individual would look. As quoted by Frederick Landbridge, one man is looking down at the ground, while the other looks about to the sky, quite literally they are looking in two separate directions despite the fact that they are looking through the same bars.

Additionally is the metaphor to be examined here, optimism verses pessimism, most individuals would be inspired by a vision of the stars above, while mud on the other hand is less inspirational less one is an exceptional gardener. Not only in the quote, are the men quite literally seeing two different objects, but their perceptions on life seem to contrast, it is a classic tale of viewing the glass as half empty, versus half full.

What does this say of the human society? If all humans are of a basically similar genetic makeup, why are we not all seeing the stars through the bars, or the mud? There is a component of the human mind that cannot be controlled, it is the very reason that in an elementary class of thirty children, all receiving the same instruction for several years will produce so many different individuals and professionals. 

Out of one simple class of thirty individuals, despite their identical education could be an Author, a Doctor, an Educator and so on. In fact, despite everything there could be thirty different professions to appear out of this class and for no reason aside from the fact, that as human individuals each and every one of these students is potentially able to excel at different tasks. Some are logical thinkers, others are artistic, some have no preference and are comparable at both and others do not excel at academics at all but are much better at task work.

In conclusion often times no two individuals see everything from the same perspective It is not to say that it is not possible for this to happen, but the human brain is a complex place, completely individual to each and every new human being that is born and developed in a society.

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