Everything’s an Observation

I was looking at my blog categories, and I just realized that I categorize every blog entry, over 1300 now, as an observation. That makes me wonder if I should do away with that category entirely.

When you get down to it, everything in the world is an observation, isn’t it? To form an opinion about something, we have to have first seen it, either firsthand or through the media. To know how to behave ethically in this world, we first have to see what is considered ethical. Facts are facts because they have been observed to be true.

It is so important to set a good example for our children because they watch what we do and pattern their behavior after us. When we are trained to do a job, we are shown what that job entails. Learning is based almost entirely on observation. The fact that we tend to believe what we see in print puts extra pressure on the writers of this world.

What complicates things is that we all look at things differently. We each have a slightly different focus, which means our priorities tend to vary. If ten people view a scene and then are asked to describe it, their descriptions will be different.

So, if everything is an observation, and every observer sees things differently, what does that say about reality?

Something to think about during your morning commute.

After Close Observation by Arnett Gill

11 thoughts on “Everything’s an Observation

  1. Howdy Barbara!

    We all see things slightly differently, but did you know that birds, some fish, and some reptiles see things really really differently? They have four cones in their eyes; they can see ultraviolet wave lengths! Wouldn’t that be weird to see UV?

    Many animals have only two cones (dogs and cats, for example), but that is much less interesting.

    People who have four cones don’t actually see more colors, they just have a mutation that produces a fourth type of cone but no additional sight.


  2. Sam

    Hi Barb,
    I was just thinking about that very subject this morning. I wondered how I would observe the world if I had grown up in an urban setting like New York City, instead of in a small Florida town. My attitudes and interpretations of the world were shaped by my relationships and environment (small town upbringing in the South). As I get older, I realize I was very lucky. I assume people are generally good and don’t need them to “prove themselves” in order for me to approach them with kindness. This is not something often practiced in New York City. In fact, New Yorkers often ask me…”You are not from around here, are you?” Some even questions WHY I am so “nice.” I’ve never understood the practice of being abrupt, rude, and stand-offish with people I don’t know personally. I remember when I first moved here, I would immediately swing open the door of my apt. when a visitor knocked. The person on the other side of the door would say, “What are you doing, Sam? You should never open a door without asking who is there.” I told them that where I grew up, you didn’t assume that someone was out to attack you when you opened the front door. That’s the small town Florida boy in me. Of course, I’m a little more cautious now…because I know I’m no longer “in Kansas”, but my view of expressing human kindness and respecting the feelings of others is something I grew up with and don’t plan to abandon. After over 20 years in the big city, I’m still a small town Floridian at heart.

    1. Hold onto those gifts, Sam! I love you just the way you are! But yeah… don’t just open the door. I always assume the best of people, and am shocked when my assumptions are disproven. Still, I wouldn’t want to be any other way.

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