Critical Thinking And Perception Essay

786 words - 3 pages

Critical Thinking and PerceptionWhat is real? Our perception of reality is often a product of the environment in which we live. In general, weformulate ideas of reality based on our own experiences as well as the experiences of the people around us. Ourlives are influenced constantly by our surroundings. I truly believe that perception is a learned skill and notinstinctive. Outside of our communities, television, radio and movies sculpt our perception of the outside world.I think most of my thinking at the ordinary level is based on perception, language, and information. At the mostthere is one logic step: If this than that. I think most thinking takes place in the perceptual stage. These are thequestions that arise, How much do I take in? and how do I look at things? This perception is based on habits ofperceptions and what I hear, what I read and how I express myself. I understand that we do not need to use muchexplicit logic because we have already built the logic into our language. For example, killing is 'bad' unless justifiedby war or self-dense. I know that with decisions I followed what was recommended and what my friendswere doing and then rationalized it with the following rationalization: Everyone does this and the stock rises for awhile and when the market eventually gets a severe correction I rationalize that as well. This rationalization is basedon information--not all-available information but a selection that fits what I was inclined to do anyway.I think that logic can be used to reinforce perceptions (and prejudices) but logic and argument will not changeperceptions. Perception is more than sensing; it is processing, reacting, and interpreting. Faith Bryne describesperception as, "detecting the nature of both outer and inner worlds. In many cases, it also means responding in someway, either consciously or unconsciously." (Perception, 57) Perception is the way we look at things and I thinkprocessing is what we do with that perception. In my view if we take processing for granted then perceptionbecomes even more important, because the way we look at a situation will determine what we can do about it.The influences (family, teachers, religion, race, environment, and economic level) that have shaped or conditionedmy identity by instilling values, beliefs, viewpoints or attitudes that I have accepted without challenge serves as...

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