False knowledge comes from misperception. (1:8)
Misperception is conceptualizing or imagining something without any substance or reality as the basis. (1:9)
Misperception occurs when we are looking through a clouded lens. This lens can be clouded with misinformation and/or assumptions. This is the opposite of right knowledge. When our perception and our reality don’t match, we find hurt and disappointment.
For example, a friend cancels plans with you. You wonder what happened and why she is mad at you. (She is overloaded, burned out, and has been putting in long hours at work with little relief.) Your boss is distant and carries a look of concern, yet doesn’t say much. You wonder if the company is in trouble, if you are going to be losing your job. (Your boss has an ill family member and it is weighing heavily on his/her.) Your partner quickly closes their phone/computer when you enter the room. You feel angry, wondering what your partner was doing, thinking the worst. (Your partner is planning a surprise for you or shopping for a special gift for you.)
When we are able to clear away misperception, we can avoid unnecessary hurt and disappointment. We can avoid suffering. We can move forward in a positive, healthy, and hopeful way.
Another lens of misperception is when we visualize or imagine something without any reality to back it up. Daydreaming and imagining situations is a great creative release. They can even inspire us to work toward goals. However, when our imagination distracts us, it can set us up for disappointment and suffering. This filter we use can be very harmful.
For example, when we are heading home to visit family, we often will envision the perfect family holiday or weekend. Norman Rockwell like, picturesque. When we arrive, toddlers are running or crying, food is burning in the oven, the heater breaks down, someone’s car runs out of gas, the favorite dessert is unavailable, etc…… Our filter in our mind created an impossible image that would never be acquired. When reality hits, we suffer and become disappointed, angry, and frustrated. If we keep this filter clear, and let go of imagining the picture perfect weekend; if we accept that seeing our family is most important and the rest will not make or break the weekend, we will find joy, peace, and hope amidst the chaos. We will appreciate the moments instead of being disappointed by the weekend.