“We are prone to see what lies behind our eyes, rather than what apprears before them.” – Thomas Huxley
This is an an old sentiment, but this particular phrasing is attributed to T. Huxley.
My word for this is the “lens.” As in, the translucent shade we put in front of our eyes, coloring our perception. We all build our own lenses, through nature and nurture, but primarily experience. Not just experience, but how we interpret that experience. How we use it to build our mental map, our mental constructs of the world.
We need this to function, but too often it hinders us.
My theory is that enlightenment occurs when we drop the lens. I don’t know since I have reached it, but it’s my guess. Still, we can gain enormous benefit if we just learn to see the lens itself. Just watch. Don’t try to change it. Not at first. Just look for the lens, try to see it, how it colors things for you. Just awareness of it will cause the change you desire.