Perspective vs Perception
I just noticed this in another thread and want to comment on it here.
is what I see based upon the angle that I'm seeing it.
is my understanding of what I see.
Two different things.
My perspective (the angle that I'm looking at something) determines what I see and how I see it. This is why I'll see things differently than how others might see it. Often, we're not looking at something from the same angle, so we'll see the same thing differently. Like witnesses seeing an accident. It can cause arguments. Fights. Resentments. Anger. Because we saw the same thing from different angles -- and for each of us, "we're right", based on the angle that we saw it. The fight takes place when two or more people demand on their right to be right... rather than opting for the right to be happy rather than right.
My perceptions is my understanding of what I see. And, since things can change based on the angle that I'm seeing them -- perspective -- my understanding can often be wrong.
My sponsor told me often: "Alcoholism is a disease of perception." It took a while -- but, then I finally understood what he was saying to me.
It's my understanding (my thinking) about what I see, do, or feel -- that gets screwed up. My Ego then wants to prove to me that my understanding is correct -- when it isn't correct at all.... My Ego just wants me to be right about it.... because "it's mine."
Unfortunately, my understanding of what I'm seeing or experiencing -- causes me to feel guilt, loneliness, anger, remorse, resentment and fear, sad, depressed, and personally inadequate.
Fortunately, my understanding (my perception of what I see or what I experience) can also make me feel good, happy, joyous, free, loving, tolerant, patient, grateful, excited, inspired.
I believe this is why Bill Wilson, wrote: "To get over drinking requires a transformation of thought and attitude" -- and the Appendix in the back of the BB, refers to "Spiritual Awakening or Spiritual Experience" as the something -- that produces a change in the personality (psyche) that allows an alcoholic like me, to achieve and maintain sobriety.
I also learned that: "Turn it over does not mean give it to God."
What? Am I a heretic? An athiest? A detractor? No. Not at all.
You see -- whatever it is that I "give" to God -- God gives right back to me, in greater measure. This is why some religions teach the lesson of tithing. What you give to God -- is returned to you -- a hundred fold. The Law of Attraction. The Law of Seeding and Harvest. What I give -- regardless of what I give and how I give it or to whom I give it -- gets returned to me. Karma? I don't know. I just call it "giving and receiving." And, I believe it's also why we're instructed in the BB, that "Our guiding principle becomes giving rather than receiving"... so we better keep a check on ourselves... in regards to what it is we are giving!
If turn it over -- doesn't mean -- turn it over to God -- then, what does it mean to me?
Simple. It's what this topic is about. Perspective vs Perception.
"To turn it over -- means to look at the other side of it."
What? Yep. "If you change your perspective (the angle you are seeing something from) -- it will change your perception (what you understand about what you see, feel or experience).
This is precisely where the 12 Steps come to the rescue.
Through the 12 Steps, I learn "how to change the angle that I'm seeing something from" (perspective) -- but, learning it -- doesn't help me.
By "doing" (taking the 12 Steps) and then "using" (practicing what I learned to do through actions) -- my perspective get's changed and I learn what actions I can take to continue to change my perspective.... as needed.
When life isn't working for me, when I'm angry, resentful, afraid, remorseful, depressed, full of anxiety -- I have a solution. Use the 12 Steps and allow them to change my perspective.
Once my perspective has been changed (the angle that I'm looking at something) instantly my perception will change.
This is also why I believe that the series of talks by Chuck C., that was printed in a book -- was titled "New Pair of Glasses."
By using the 12 Steps to produce "Spiritual Awakenings" -- it changed how we look at ourselves, at God, at others, and at the world around us.
When it changed "how we were looking at things" it changed our personality, our attitudes and our thinking.
These "certain course of actions" results in "Changing our Perception" ... which means... even though the circumstances or situations that we face did not change... we can now experience them with peace, and serenity, and with a new attitude.... that is helpful to us -- rather than harmful to us, and those about us.
The next time that "turning it over to God" doesn't work for you -- or, if what you keep turning over keeps coming back to you -- try the Steps. They are God's tools -- that He has given us -- to make changes in ourselves and in our lives.
This also helps us to adjust to the principles of: "being personally responsible and accountable for my own experience." And, to be "self-supporting through my own contribution."
I have to do the work. God gave me the tools to equip me to do the work. And, now the ball is in my court. What I do with it -- is up to me.