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Psychology | Visions of reality

If you ask 100 people what colour the grass is , they will probably all say green. There can be variations depending on what language they speak and their culture. We all live in the same world, but our view of it, our reality; can be different. Institutions affect our view of reality and shape our view of the world.


It seems strange that there are so many different religions in the world, that so many people who speak different languages and belong to different cultures would all worship some kind of God or Gods. They all have that in common even though all the religions are different. We can all agree on some things but we all disagree on many other things. We all see things differently, we all have different realities.


Political belief, like religious believe is an institution and shapes our reality. People with strong political beliefs like politicians often seem to live in an alternative world. We make comments, like ‘in the real world’ and ‘what planet are they living on’ when referring to politicians.


Art is another institution that shapes what people believe. Art doesn’t seem as divisive as politics or religion though. We seem to be able to agree to disagree.


We seem to have differing realities in relation to economics and this too involves powerful institutions. The reality of the rich is very different from the reality of the poor. The rich drinking champagne at Royal Ascot or Wimbledon are in a  very different world to the poor people of a council estate struggling for survival.


Culture and race make us different, but w still have a lot in common. We are all human, we all use language both oral and written to communicate. We all have the same needs and desires. Our realities are different, but perhaps the realities that we desire are the same?


Science drives our progress and in many ways seems at odds with many of the other institutions. Science and art seem opposites sometimes. There is often conflict between science and religion, because science demands evidence and something physical to measure. Science and politics are often in conflict, where science conflicts with political belief. Science might support theories about climate change and global warming, but politicians might argue against the reasoning because it doesn’t fit their ideology. Even economists might argue with such theories if it suited them. Most of us like the benefits that science brings us. We get a plentiful supply of food from agriculture, homes to live in and clean water to drink. Even modern advances like electronics and computers are taken for granted. It can be difficult to accept the gifts that science gives us one day and then argue against it when it suits us the next day.

What do you think? What institutions combine to make your reality? Please share your thoughts in the comments box. You can also follow me on Twitter.

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  1. Pingback: Black Country creativity | Mike10613's Blog

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