The Search for Reality

Human being is a creation endowed with insight and understanding.  This insight is an instrument that helps man to govern the hidden realities within oneself and within this universe.  Using such faculties, man is able to discern realities hidden to him and is now capable enough to govern secrets of the cosmos which were unveiled before through the constant energies and rational thinking applied.  Even though man has reached to greater level of advancement through the aid of rational faculty, his primal purpose of existence in this universe and the essence of his reality is still a mystery to all, and every time there are always speculations and thoughts that circle around his objective of existence, which try to indicate directions as to how man should behave as far as his reality beyond social animal is concerned.   

Who is man?  It is indeed a question to all of us, which may have various answers from various perspectives, depending on the perception that one may derive out of the relation and association that exists between man and the environment.  But, the conclusions we may reach through our own observation about the purpose and realities of man may not be complete for two reasons.  The first reason is due to our own limitations or shortcomings and limited capability to investigate and analyze a mysterious being like our own selves, no matter how great and prestige our education is, it is pretty challenging to provide the true picture of man.  To define man, one can simply look at oneself and meditate the various changes one has undergone in life, so that one can witness from one’s own personal experience and life exposure, human being is such a mysterious creature and is not something that one can easily come to a definition, for there are numerous actions and reactions going on every individual which varies from one person to the other, and the recipe that one may derive may help one individual, but not may work out for other, for life as human being is not like baking pan-cake.  Our life is indeed full of unexpected circumstances, which change the course of our life from one color to the other due to two general conditions.  One is by the choices we make and the other is by our reactions towards the unexpected incidents to our life. There are also certain circumstances, which happen to our reality that are not under the control of our mentality and perceptions, and in which people may prefer them as ‘fates’, which are conditional and unconditional in nature.

The second reason is the nature of man’s reality itself, is something beyond our own imaginations that there are certain realities, which are beyond our own control, and very difficult to comprehend.  For this, one good example may be the dream.  In the world of our dream, there are two opposite realities happening.  In such state, our body is dead, but we have some kind of life going on in our reality that we go for shopping, and make tour without our instruments like feet, tongue, hand and the like.  In such a mood, our body is passive, but there is reality, which is so active. Growth [in terms of physical and also in intellectual] is a reality that we have no control over.

It may be indeed a mere speculation to define the realities of human beings without considering and understanding the mysterious nature of man, which is latent, and not manifested in this objective reality. Our observation can only tell us what is practically manifested, which does not mean that man is not.  Since human beings did not manifest the whole reality entrusted due to lack of opportunities and other factors, it should not lead us to a conclusion that man is a product of the manifested actions and reactions in this objective reality, but rather there are other aspects we may need to figure out.  As every seed is potentially a tree, and we can say that the tree is within a seed, for the moment that seed gets favorable atmosphere, it will be a tree.  By looking at the seed, the only thing we can tell of that seed is a grain, no more reality beyond that, which hides its potential to be a different reality, i.e., tree.

Human being’s nature is more complex and sophisticated, and it seems a formidable task to figure out the true purpose of existence through the sole observation of what is manifested by the actions and reactions of human beings while carrying out their daily ongoing businesses which limit the unseen and undiscovered realities to take place, and also without taking into account the potentialities latent in the reality of man.  The term used to define man as “a social animal” is one of the examples we may find as to how our observation and interpretation of any reality is dependent, and on how we perceive specific reality by looking at the manifested realities or characters, which may not ultimately direct us to look into depth and define the abstraction of any reality or the hidden powers enshrined beyond the definitions we have derived.   

Our observation and conclusion may mislead us to a different end, due to the misunderstanding and misconception we already have and may not direct us to the true aspect of any reality, if we already have a set of mind, and arrived at some kind of judgments before we investigate any reality.  This kind of observation can never lead us to the true point we are required to reach, but rather adds the confusion that was already created by the previous set of mind, and makes our path of search so stony and so far.  For instance, if I assume already that Mr. X is a bad man, my area of observation and interpretation of this person’s reality will be in conflict if I find an act contrary to the set of mind I already have on this person, and may not accept as legitimate if there is a different and opposite reality.  If I assume that blacks are ignorant, it is impossible to accept a reality, which is opposite, but may prefer to accept a reality, which is consistent to the framework I have already designed, even if there are certain facts that may oblige us to change our set of mind already designed. 

When we investigate the validity or the correctness of any reality, we have some how told to our mind with some kind of thought we need to prove, which by itself is a judgment, and it is not such a simple task to verify what we thought is true or not, by being so objective and not attached to the ‘designed mind-set’.  It is such a chimera to have unbiased mind and true judgment, and accept any facts which are contrary to the mind-set we already have while we are processing and carrying out the investigation process.  In such a case, the conclusion we may derive out of such investigation will be misleading and may remain as valid and being acceptable to the public at large for centuries and ages.    

The current mind set between people of the world—which creates differences in human beings, in terms of mentality and responsibility, is such a challenge that the gap which occurred in the past due to the variation of opportunities and facilities provided that created different capabilities between human beings, is still underway, and a challenge we face in our planet, until people’s perception towards all kinds of human beings is totally changed and get convinced that all human are equal.  The observations and investigation of reality in the past is still working in a way that merits those who were beneficiary from these fictitious ideas, and deprive those who are exposed to the danger effected as a result of these mentalities, which do have an effect on the way of thinking and on breaking the cage that one is already shaped in.

Since our observations and thinking are so limited, to perceive a reality which is unlimited and unthinkable is such a challenge we face, which cannot be guaranteed as a true source of reference and standard, but may be accepted as rudimentary reality, which should be revised and renewed as time goes by and checked through the evolutionary process of this world, so that what we may define a truth in any given time has no end, but can be considered as beginning to find another truth.

 Written by Dereje Amera

The views reflected in the above article  are solely of the author and are not necessarily shared by Meskot.  You may contact Dereje Amera  for comments at .