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Exercises to be a better architect of your own realities

June 11, 2023 by nancy

Reality is not a passive experience that happens to you– it’s something that you’re constantly creating. Instead of seeing reality as perceiving, it’s a role-play. Here’s a starting list of experiments to create different realities. 

  1. Interpreting modern/contemporary art
    1. When viewers say they don’t get it”, it’s because they don’t realize the artist deliberately left no clear instructions. Contemporary artists express their message as if in a visual poem– there’s restraint, associated references, and subtext conveyed. WIth context, it provides depth to understanding artist’s intention with depth. Without context, we have to engage and create meaning–  projecting our assumptions and prejudices from past experiences and values.
  2. Learn a new language and understanding how language affects your thinking 
    1. New languages naturally introduce new ways of orienting oneself in terms of speaker, of culture context, in time and place through grammar.  
    2. Language doesn’t just reflect thinking, but shapes it. The infamous trolley moral dilemma prompts different answers from the same person, when asked in different languages. 
    3. Ludwig Wittgenstein claims that all philosophical problems are linguistic confusions.
  3. Doubt your brain and learn its fallacies, question your beliefs 
    1. The mind creates and imposes reality, as informed by our experiences, emotions and physiological reactions. 
      1. Even neuroscientists propose that consciousness is a controlled hallucination that happens with and through our living bodies. Reality is agreed upon hallucinations. 
      2. Your brain is always regulating the body. Every sensory information is  summarized and communicated as feelings. Your brain then creates a narrative of what’s going on in your body in reality to what’s happening in the world. You can’t tell whether what you’re feeling is diagnostic of the world, or it it’s just if your brain is feeling uncertain and unregulated. Try on a different emotion in reaction to the situation, and see if that shifts your perspective on what’s going on. 
  4. Try out new experiences in which you have little to no past reference to compare to 
    1. The brain is a prediction machine– expose it to inputs that surprises and challenges your brain to expand beyond its normal range of interpretation.
    2. Traveling, new skills.
  5. Play more games! where you play with the rules, permissions, and imagine different realities with others.