What are some of the biggest illusions that you have had to face in your lifetime? Some relationships appear effortless when they are not. Others may not have given potential partners the time of day because they didn’t seem to have the means or lucrative tools we may have thought we craved. No matter what scenario you may have experienced, illusions are everywhere.  

There are pictures in my memories that present an illusion of happiness when masked with a fake mask in real situations. If you need an example, watch people who appear to have it all. Do you have a clue what they face at home? Many people push themselves to do well because their home life is less than ideal. I went to a private school where nannies and butlers raised many students. I didn’t do well in that environment because I saw things differently than the other students. When people dare to be different, they lash out at those who are unique because others don’t know how to handle those differences. 

One of my favorite performers is Meatloaf. Years ago, he had a song with the lyrics stating that “objects in the rearview mirror may appear closer than they are.” I understand what he meant because sometimes we think we are so close to something only to find out that the object of what we want is out of reach.  

I had no clue there were three types of illusions. They are as follows: literal illusions, physiological illusions, and cognitive illusions. All three types of illusions have one common thread. The perception of the image given to the brain doesn’t measure up.

Literal illusions are when the image you see is different from the pictures that make it up. For example, two images strategically drawn to look like one fluid image is a literal illusion. These illusions are when our eyes perceive a vision. Our minds fill in gaps that don’t exist, creating an idea that’s different from the object that makes them or focuses on specific areas of the image resulting in us “seeing” something that isn’t there.

Physiological illusions are comprised of effects on the brain or eyes after being exposed to something like brightness, tilt, color, or movement for a certain period. At first glance, a two-dimensional figure looks like it’s three-dimensional. That’s because the brain immediately interprets it to be that way. Upon further investigation, the brain realizes what the eye is seeing. The image in question does not exist in nature. 

Last but not least is cognitive illusions.  Unlike other optical illusions, these illusions rely on what the subconscious mind thinks and relates one object to another. In other words, what you see is believed to give insight into the depths of your thinking. A cognitive optical illusion uncovers what your brain infers and understands about something that has not been explained. God knows I’ve dealt with these types of illusions and thoughts a lot in my life and will continue to until my dying day. A mind is a powerful tool.  

My hope for all of you is that you can see the world a little differently each day. We all have illusions to challenge our sight. The key is to recognize that our eyes are not always seeing what’s there. There are many hidden objects that we can’t see, which help create the mirages we encounter. Discovering those illusions allows all of us to use our creative juices for empowering each other. Sometimes it takes an illusion to motivate us to create an imaginative reality. Have a great day, everyone. 

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