What Lens are You Looking at the World With?

September 19, 2022
Featured image for “What Lens are You Looking at the World With?”

These days, everyone in the Office is using Glasses. It does appear that using the computer for so long is taking its toll on our sights. Yours faithfully is not exempt. It is so hard to read anything without the glasses and so to avoid stories that touch the soul I have 2 pairs. One of which I keep permanently at home & the other is in my work bag.

After a hard day at work, I get home to a breaking news item on TV, but traditional TV is slow. So to fast track and get an unbiased portrayal from different angles I head to Twitter, na there story dey sweet pass! I then reached out to get out my glasses, I been don tell you my handicap abi? Wearing the glasses I could hardly see anything as I strained my eyes to read off the phone screen. What could have happened, I wondered. Is it that my eyes have deteriorated so badly or the glasses have failed? Was it not an exact copy I used just a moment ago at the Office? I jus confuse.

I was lost. Perhaps, it is a very good idea that I am going for an eye test the following week, I reasoned. As I kept pondering the matter, I noticed that something does seem right with my glasses. Ah, I can see it now; there was no lens in one of the eyes! Chai, the lens fell off as I tried to wear the glasses. So I was just looking through the frames, no lens.  A great sign of relief I heaved, hope still dey for the eye.

This incident set me thinking about the lens I look at the world with. Is there even a lens or am I just fooling myself by looking at the world through an empty frame? Perspectives are reality. Imagine there is a news item about civil unrest in a part of your country. Some would panic and live in dread even if it happened a thousand kilometers away, others in the city where it is happening will see it as an opportunity to rest at home, others will be indifferent, yet some others have already left the country. How you react is determined by the lens you are looking at the world with. What you believe about yourself and about the world is how you’d view things, how you react to incidents & how you act generally – yeah, how you would live your life.

We, one and all are plagued with this figurative bad eyesight. Thus we cannot figure out the meaning of things all by ourselves; we need the help of others who have made enquires & can see clearer. But there are quacks all over the place. When we adopt others’ beliefs and ideologies we are in a sense wearing their lenses. It is the same way a man with failing eyesight would go to a Doctor to get treatment which may involve issuance of glasses as it was with me. Please pause and think: which figurative Doctors are you seeing for a remedy for your poor sight? Along the road, in major Market like the famous Mile 3 Market in Port Harcourt, you will find self-acclaimed Opticians. You would patronize them at your own risk. What you will see with such glasses, in the long run, would be a mirage. Some lenses obscure our vision and render the world in a light that is make-believe or hides our true state even from ourselves.

So what philosophical lens are you wearing? Do these lenses show you where you are headed & who you really are? In what way are you checking to see that the lens you look at the world with is well attuned & is it in place all the time? As a precaution, each time I wear my glasses I touch them to ensure that the lenses are still in the frame & that I am not looking through an empty frame. Are your lenses in place? Are they clean? Are you seeing the World as it really is? If yes, you will be asking a lot of questions about the meaning of world events and why things are the way they are & I am sure that if you are wearing the kind of lenses I wear, you’d smile and know that the reality in store is very different from the foggy make-believe world that we live in.

I have worn lenses from various philosophical and religious sources with different levels of clarity ranging from myopia to blurriness to total blindness. Right now I look at the world through special lenses crafted in an ancient book of divine wisdom*. The Bible has proved to be very practical in all facets of my life. What are your lenses made from? Don’t deceive yourself that you wear none. We all do!

May your lenses not just be a fashion statement, may they bring light to your eyes & soul, and may you get understanding and wisdom.

*Psalms 119: 105 Your word is a lamp to my foot, and a light for my path. Psalms 119: 160: The very essence of your word is truth.