Indirect Nature of Perception

Our everyday experiences attest to the immediacy of our perceptions. We need only open our eyes to see what is before us, much as the simplest of cameras needs only to be activated to capture a picture of what is visible through its lens. All that seems to be necessary in either case appears to be a lens that focuses the incident light rays and a light-sensitive surface upon which the rays can be focused, thereby creating an image of the object(s) reflecting the light. In the case of a camera, the film, or film equivalent, is the light-sensitive surface, but in the eye, the retina serves this function. Despite the appearance of immediacy, however, our perceptions are not immediate nor are they simply pictures ...

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