Reality doesn’t exist; at least not in the way that we usually think of it.
Dr. Jorge Martins de Oliveira writes,
“Our perception does not identify the outside world as it really is, but the way that we are allowed to recognize it, as a consequence of transformations performed by our senses. We experience electromagnetic waves, not as waves, but as images and colors. We experience vibrating objects, not as vibrations, but as sounds. We experience chemical compounds dissolved in air or water, not as chemicals, but as specific smells and tastes. Colors, sounds, smells and tastes are products of our minds, built from sensory experiences. They do not exist, as such, outside our brain. Actually, the universe is colorless, odorless, insipid and silent.”
Dr. Oliveira isn’t a touchy-feely philosopher, a halfwit existentialist or the delusional leader of a religious cult. He’s the Director of the Department of Neurosciences at an important institute in Rio de Janeiro. (I love Latin American scientists. They speak of the beauty of science more poetically than do scientists in the United States.)
According to Oliveira, each of us lives in a private world of our own perceptions.
Speaking of this perceptual reality he writes,
“Although you and I share the same biological architecture and function, perhaps what I perceive as a distinct color and smell is not exactly equal to the color and smell you perceive. We may give the same name to similar perceptions, but we cannot know how they relate to the reality of the outside world. Perhaps we never will.”
But isn’t there an objective reality that’s the same for all of us?
Sure there is. In the purest objective reality, 7 billion of us are trapped on a tiny speck of dust that circles an 11,000-degree fireball as it shoots through a limitless vacuum at 252 times the speed of a rifle bullet.
And none of us ever thinks about it.
That seems almost surreal, doesn’t it?
I point out the subjective nature of our perceptual realities to underscore the importance of articulate communication. Are you able to make others see what you see and feel what you feel? If so, you have persuasion, the most powerful of human skills. Physical speed, agility and strength seem puny standing next to it. Indeed, the pen is mightier than the sword.
Next Monday we’ll examine the word choices of a great contemporary writer during the first 30 minutes of our monthly, 1-hour video webcast for subscribers. I hope to teach you how to choose words as he chooses them so that you might speak and write with greater persuasive power. I’ll also be revealing a 25-year secret; specifically, the criteria my firm uses to select which radio schedules to purchase from the thousands that are submitted to my media buyers each year. I’ll teach you how to extract more benefit from your ad budget.
The Wizards of Ads are known for the growth of their clients, small businesses who currently air 52-week schedules on more than 700 radio stations across the United States, Australia and Canada. Eyebrows will jump when I reveal the criteria we use for choosing these stations. Tempers will flare. Media salespeople everywhere will shout we’re “doing it wrong.”
I’ve decided not to worry about that. Instead, I’ll be trying to wrap my head around how we can fly at 252 times the speed of a rifle bullet and feel as though we’re standing still.
Roy H. Williams
PS – There’s still time for you to subscribe to the monthly webcast, if you’d like.
By the way, the reason there’s no audio attached to today’s memo is that I recorded an entirely different one for you, then wrote this one after my studio chief, Dave Nevland, had gone home for the weekend. We’ll straighten it out later this week.
This week on Monday Morning Radio: “The road to success is never a straight line,” says Rich Christiansen, founder of 33 companies. Rich is also the author of two books, The Zig Zag Principle and Bootstrap Business, both of which draw upon his vast repository of entrepreneurial experiences – including lots of successes and failures. Listen in on Dean Rotbart’s interview with Rich Christiansen, beloved alumni and adjunct faculty of Wizard Academy.