Studebaker car in woods

1951 Studebaker car in woods

We all see the world differently.  It’s a fact.  If you invite twenty people into a room and ask them to describe it, every story will be unique. 

If you take twenty folks into the forest with cameras and ask them to take pictures, the variety will be astounding.  Someone will focus on tree bark.  Another might catch a hungry mosquito in the act of sucking blood.  Another snaps only wildflowers.  Another notices the sheen on the new spring leaves and captures their beauty. Someone might photograph the people photographing nature!  The possibilities are endless.

Close up leaf near forest floor

Close up leaf near forest floor

Some people like to concentrate their seeing close up.  Others like the wide expanses, the distances, the far-away vistas.  At different times, we ourselves vary our attention.  One day we  prefer the tiny up-close world.  The next day all we want to do is stare across the water to the distant shore.  Sometimes this all shifts within the course of a single hour.  Or minute. 

Leaf-world in the sky

Leaf-world in the sky

We look up; we look down.  Perhaps sometimes we can remember to stretch our seeing.  As we notice the ways in which we’re accustomed to viewing the world, perhaps we might look in new ways.  If we’re always looking eye-level, let’s get on our hands and knees and see the world from the ground.  If we’re always looking at similar objects, find five new and interesting different things to examine.

On the ground to capture this photo.  Yep, still picking off wood ticks...

On the ground to capture this photo. Yep, still picking off wood ticks...

Not only do we see the world differently, we tell ourselves different stories about what we’ve seen.  Try to find two people who see the same things in life and tell themselves an identical story!  It even becomes more challenging when the viewers/interpreters come from different cultures.  No wonder we often have trouble getting along in this world.  Everyone sees the world differently; everyone interprets that seeing into a different story.

What do you see?  A face in a tree?  Rotting circles?  Woodpecker holes?
What do you see? A face in a tree? Rotting circles? Woodpecker holes?

I have trouble noticing some things.  Like haircuts.  Clothes.  Cars people drive.  My friend said today, “I could paint my house purple and you wouldn’t notice it!  But the things you notice, I never even see.”  (Well, I’m pretty sure I would notice her purple house.  Not 100% sure, but pretty sure…) 

Our attention is limited; we can’t perceive everything that exists.  You see things in different ways than I could ever imagine.  One of the special gifts we bring the world is our particular unique way of seeing.  And then how we share our sight with others.

Thank goodness for all of us.  How much we have to teach each other about our individual ways of seeing the world!  I am so grateful today for different eyes, different ways of seeing, the different gifts of all of us.



Some people might view that lake trout as beautiful.  Others might be disgusted.  Some might notice the dirty old cookie sheet (used solely for grilling).  Another might wonder where the picture was taken. Someone might ponder about hardwood floors.  Another imagines the waves on Lake Superior.  Another wonders who caught the fish.  (Barry did, today.)  Anyone wonder if it was a fat or lean lake trout, or how deep it was caught? Or how it smells in the kitchen? Anyone wonder what day we’re eating it for dinner?  Tomorrow night!