What do I see around me? Some scientists would say nothing. It is all electromagnetic light waves entering my eye, transmitted by electrical impulses into my brain, which translates it into what I perceive. From the time light waves strike my eye until I “see” an image takes about a tenth of a second, 0.1. Our brain predicts where and what our world will look like 0.1 second into the future. This provides continuity of vision, with the occasional glitches when something doesn’t act as predicted.
This is, perhaps, how political leaders and grifters convince us to see the world differently? Do they somehow short-circuit the electrical messages in our brain, causing us to see a different predicted image? In this way, they persuade us to see the world differently. I don’t mean differently than what exists, but other than our shared consensus of what we see in the world. We may be convinced to believe up is down and that in is out. If enough people, for enough time said that our sky is green, then it would be green. It would appear exactly the same as it does now, but we would alter our perception, the consensus view of the world, and the sky would be perceived to be green.
I do not believe this is a question of what we see versus actuality, but is more closely related to Schrodinger’s cat. Our world is true and not true at the same time. Consider when people thought the world was flat. As long as everyone believed the world was flat, the world was flat. That was their reality. From our modern perspective, we say they were wrong, the world was and is round. Then, when someone posited that the world was round, then the cat remains in the box with its poisoned cat food. As long as this box remains closed, the world exists as both flat and round, depending on your point of view.
No matter what might actually exist, either reality could exist within the group which believed them. Because belief is considering a conception, observation or perception true, without the ability to prove it. As in quantum states, a point is both here and there, a particle and a wave until an external view makes it a single state. Of course, the original actuality remains true. The perceived reality is true only to the person who witnesses it.
I first heard the phrase: What you conceive and believe, you can achieve, when my parents were involved with Amway. It doesn’t even matter where the quote originated, as long as I’m not pretending it’s my own. The implication is that we can manifest our own reality. This appears to be true. Remember, no matter how we believe we see and experience the world, it’s all light waves, sounds waves interpreted through our cortex and transmitted through low-grade electrical impulses. Or have I only been observing particle waves?
The power of our thoughts has been posited many times, from Rene Descartes’ assertion: Cogito ergo sum (I think, therefore I am) to Norman Vincent Peale’s the Power of Positive Thinking. Although there will be some who say Descartes changed the face and direction of Philosophy, I believe it comes down to a description of how we define our reality. As long as I make no attempt to verify the veracity of my statement, it remains potentially correct and potentially incorrect. It also remains my reality.
How we receive and interpret the signals impinging on the nerves which help create sight, sound, scent, taste and touch, are how we decide what our world is and how we will exist within in it. Maintaining my view of the world may not change what is actual, but it gives me the ability to alter my reality and possibly yours as well. This moment, for me, the sky is green. Take a look and prove to me that it’s not.