Reality is what you decide

"Useful as it is under everyday circumstances to say that the world exists 'out there' independent of us, that view can no longer be upheld. We are not simply bystanders on a cosmic stage, [but] shapers and creators living in a participatory universe."
      - John wheeler2

       If you view yourself as separate and unrelated to the world, you are not taking advantage of the dynamic forces of nature.3,4 The distinction between the "in here" and the "out there" upon which science was founded is becoming blurred.

       This is a puzzling state of affairs. Scientists have discovered that the "in here/out there" distinction may not exist! What is "out there" apparently depends, in a rigorous mathematical sense as well as a philosophical one, upon what you decide "in here."5

       Your thoughts have an effect on what happens in the world outside of you. It is imperative that you deliberately decide where to direct your thinking.

       Once you decide on an objective, you increase your awareness of what is necessary and what is available to make that happen.6 A vision assists in identifying the "in here," the mental process, that will have a direct influence on what happens in your life now and in the future.

"We are what we think."

"All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world."

      - The Buddha

       The mind and reality are not fundamentally separate categories, but parts of a system.7 What takes place in your mind is always interlinked with an external reality. As you interact with your environment, an interplay and mutual influence occurs between your mental process and events in the physical world. Reality and your mind act upon each other and evolve together.8

       While it is tempting to assume that the world outside of us exists without our input, human-made objects are an example of how we do influence reality. Human-made objects - chairs, computers, houses, and so forth - make up a significant part of our reality.

       All of these objects that surround us were once a thought in someone's mind. They did not exist until someone thought that they should exist. The words you read now were once just thoughts in my mind. Those thoughts are now in physical form - the book that you are holding in your hands. An airplane didn't spring from someone's head fully made. It required the Wright brothers to envision a machine that could fly. A vision begins the process of creation, of turning a thought (something "in here") to a material object (something "out there").

       The "Many Worlds" theory in physics postulates that reality is the "result of an interaction of an observed system and an observing system."9 In short, the observer of reality decides what to observe, and that affects the outcome.

       Margaret Wheatley suggests, "No longer, in this relational universe, can we study anything as separate from ourselves. Our acts of observation are part of the process that brings forth the manifestation of what we are observing."10 She continues, "The world consists of potential that can be brought into reality, once someone chooses to see or feel it."11

       Visioning is a way for you to clarify the future you desire. When you establish a desired future reality, possibilities necessary to accomplish the vision become more apparent. It is through vision that you harness the systemic concept of interconnection. If you have a clear idea about what you want to happen "in here", you will be focused on the opportunities that will move you toward the outcome desired "out there".12


2. John Wheeler is a Physicist and Professor Emeritus of Princeton University.
3. P. Senge, The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization (New York: Doubleday Dell, 1990).
4. Wheatley, Leadership and the New Science.
5. G. Zukav, The Dancing Wu Li Masters: An Overview of New Physics (New York: William Morrow & Co., 1979), 92.
6. S. Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1989).
7. G. Bateson, Mind and Nature: A Necessary Unity (Cresskill, NJ: Hampton Press, Inc. and The Institute for Intercultural Studies, 1972).
8. F. Capra, The Turning Point: Science, Society, and the Rising Culture (New York: A Bantam Book published by arrangement with Simon and Schuster, 1982).
9. Zukav, The Dancing Wu Li Masters, 84.
10. Wheatley, Leadership and the New Science, 36.
11. Ibid, 58.
12. Senge, The Fifth Discipline.

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