What comprises the color of a forest or your
child’s eyes? Is the experience “blue” always the same, no matter who is perceiving? The rose, as they say, is red, and I see it
as red. This implies that perception is a passive process. That is far from the case.
Perception is a conscious act. Light, itself, has neither color nor brightness. Our awareness
entangles it with those properties. In the words of Sir John Eccles, a famous British
neurologist, ‘I want you to realize that there exists no color in the natural world,
and no sound – nothing of this kind; no textures, no patterns, no beauty, no scent.’ The only reason a rose is red is that you
have a human nervous system that registers a frequency of electromagnetic radiation,
or light, as a certain experience that we call red. But would it be the same for other
species? We have no way of knowing how a bumblebee or a dog experiences the world. Making perception the whole key to reality,
is where physics – and all science – needs to progress. We are used to making the world
“out there” a fixed, reliable point of reference. But quantum theory has informed
us that this is not the case, and spiritual teachings for thousands of years corroborate
this point. No object, however big or small, from subatomic particles to vast galaxies,
has fixed properties. All the properties that create reality are contextual. Reality, as
it turns out, is mind-made.