What we take in makes us who we are. There is no doubt about this. Our body is created by the food we eat, the water we drink, and the air we breathe. Given that we understand this as it is straight forward, why is it we don’t extend this out to our other sensory input?
Other input makes us who we are much the same as our food intake. All sensory input has some affect on our attitude, our way of processing information, and our behavior in return. Our underlying belief system is affected through conditioning. Conditioning is simply repeated input. So I think it vitally important to look at the sensory input we take in on a day to day basis.
Are we spending too much time on the internet? Are we watching mindless TV as a distraction? Are we reading too much political claptrap? Are we living in ugliness? Are we in high-stress jobs where we multitask with many open-gated input streams coming in all at once? Is our life bereft of deep philosophical consideration, intellectual discipline, beautiful and stimulating art and powerful storytelling?
I write this because I see how the input I am taking in is affecting my sleep, my dreams and my attitude during the day. When I read too much political commentary, I spend my day full of angst. When I watch violence or scary TV my dreams are filled with violence and horror. When I spend too much time in front of the computer, I lose awareness of my non-visual senses and feel my frontal lobe working overtime to process all the visual stimulation and ideas being thrown at me at light-speed.
We get to decide to some degree, the input we receive. All our senses require a healthy diet. To that end, I am challenging myself to seek out the healthy things in life. I need to spend more time looking at the night sky, listening to the wildlife and wind through the trees, reading writings filled with deep consideration and elegant prose, listening to music carefully and not as background noise. So many ways to bring health into my being. I am going to seek something healthy each day, not let it just be by chance.
What can you do to change the stimulus you receive on a daily basis? What stimulus do you think should be limited? What kind of person do you want to be and what will it take in terms of input to become that person? All sensory input is fuel for the soul. What do you need to fuel your life?