‘Seeing is Believing’ and ‘Believing is Seeing’

by E. Walsh, Australia

If the eyes are the windows to the soul, then why is it that our beliefs have come to shroud, control or influence that which we see? We all know how to manipulate our beliefs to satisfy and fit in with what it is we want to see. I suspect that we have come to do this for two reasons: firstly, to serve as a filter, so that we only see that which we want to find (projection), and secondly, as a veil to avoid seeing that which we don’t want to see or find (a reflection we avoid).

This introduces the philosophical discussion on the relationship between ‘seeing and believing’. 

Simplistically, Plato has been taken to have implied that ‘believing is seeing’, and this view was later reversed by his student Aristotle to ‘seeing is believing’ – the latter view contributes greatly to what has been accepted as the standard measure on which the sciences have based their principle known as the ‘Scientific Method’…. a structured method of arriving at a ‘safe’ conclusion. However, given the claimed unreliability of the first proposition – ‘believing is seeing’ – we find that it is still the more prevalent standard applied to everyday living (seeing), even though it is susceptible to those habits of prejudice and opinions with which we are all blinded, and that ultimately influence our findings.

Lest the so called ‘Scientific Method’ principles of ‘demonstrable, observable, repeatable’, are too vigorously promoted, it is worth mentioning that they too have been shown to be not immune to the influence of the intention underlying the method. Expectations can differ from person to place and results can be shown to still follow bias or belief even in sterile conditions. So there is validity in questioning the process used to establish accepted beliefs in all its derived forms.

But did Plato actually imply ‘believing is seeing’ in its simplistic accepted understanding, or was he offering us a whole lot more? This open ended question leads to another important question and one less discussed in the philosophical or scientific arena (with the exception of Quantum Physics which explores this exact problem): if our beliefs determine our choices and so affect the likely outcome, how can we make a real choice? Or, to put it another way, how do we really know how to choose when those choices are made from existing beliefs, how is any preference differentiated from beliefs, and does this fundamental variable, that is, this cause and effect equation, affect the outcomes of what it is we actually see or find?

It is likely that this question relates to the reason behind the Aristotelian reversal of Plato’s position in the first place. If our beliefs are behind the motivation or preference that then sets up what we see (seek) and then find (or vice versa), then Aristotle was of course justified to reverse the proposition set out by Plato. However, what if there is a knowing that is not influenced by this prejudice? What if there is a posture to hold that chooses to see and is not attached to what it will see or find? And if so, what if this posture is simply a knowing based on feeling and observation? It is a somewhat fraught concept to suggest that we can have beliefs and see what is true, and then accept that this process is not influenced by our habitual beliefs or needs. Therefore, is it possible that Plato, knowing this, actually presented something else, now largely forgotten, when he set out his theory of forms?

If so, what if seeing has little to do with our eyes in the first place! And if this is in fact so, what if seeing is actually a form of understanding the first principle of… ‘what is felt in our bodies’. From this understanding we can then see with clarity, depth and wholeness, and do so without being influenced by our limited ingrained beliefs. If this is so, we can then truly believe in what it is that we can see, through what is first felt. The concept of ‘believing is seeing’ can then be claimed as a belief in the knowing of what is already there; a knowing derived through the inherent felt qualities and not through our thought form projections or resisted reflections.

We cannot drive a car or ride a bicycle through only having read a manual, even though we may choose to believe otherwise. The ability does not happen until we get to the feeling ­– the tangible experience where learning is done through and with our body’s ability to engage in the act of feeling with the learning. The first ones to ever attempt to ride a bicycle would have failed the ‘seeing is believing’ test for quite some time and not before their true knowing posture – believing is seeing – actually took form and became reality.

I think that what Aristotle actually missed out on is this: our true beliefs are reached through our ability to feel and engage with our whole being – a felt knowledge, and from there know that while the principle of ‘believing is seeing’ may take time to then take shape to be seen, it will be a belief based on the quality of the essence of what is felt to be real – a complete knowing understanding that is behind those unshakable beliefs, that take form, even in the face of immense resistance.

I would not have believed that what I now know and feel would have been possible if it was not for the work delivered through Universal Medicine presenting the Ageless Wisdom. I did not know how to move with myself or even use my sight to see or apply my feelings to confirm what it was I could feel (despite the countless eyes that I looked into every day), and as a consequence, I had denied myself the opportunity and the reward of tireless and yet immense contact with the world. A world that is so out of contact with itself, a world which burdened by the principle of ‘seeing is believing’, has denied itself access to a living expression.

The result is an exhausted world. All because of a concept – a simplistic but erroneous reversal of a few words, a philosophy that many, if not most, have been tied to, and through which has ultimately led to a devastating detachment from our essence and a disconnection from our natural ability to feel – that is, we have been existing and not living; moving through life without initiating life. A life abandoned to fatalism and measured by probable outcomes.

Look and you shall see, seek and you shall find – but feel and you will know what to believe.

287 thoughts on “‘Seeing is Believing’ and ‘Believing is Seeing’

  1. Is it possible that Aristotle reversed the words through jealousy so that the world did not get the truth of what was offered by Plato?
    I do not know the history of either but from what you have written such a switch round seems to have had monumental consequences resulting in a disconnection from our natural ability to feel. Was it the jealousy of Judas that cut short Jesus’s life and again changed the course of humanity? Jealousy is everywhere, we don’t always want to admit how deep it runs in our society.

  2. The mind has to have beliefs because when it’s operating in isolation to the rest of the body and whole being it can’t sense or feel anything. It’s more like a computer than a source of intelligence itself. Receiving life when living connected to our innermost heart offers us the greatest ability to truly see and observe.

  3. When we use our eyes to look outside of us we see what we believe is a reality, but when we allow our eyes to receive what is there into our body we feel truth.

  4. In the absence of truth, we need belief, and image prevails when observation is no longer simple receiving but an entry to judgment.

  5. We are missing out on life if we go by this phrase, there is so much that cannot be seen but every fibre of our being knows it exists.

  6. There is definitely more to this than meets the eye as it took Einstein to prove “everything is energy” and Serge Benhayon if “every thing is energy then everything is because of energy”, so discerning energy should be the way we look at everything.

  7. I love the last quote, yes we can see whatever we want to see & we can believe whatever we want to believe. We can even tell ourselves that we are feeling something, but that can actually be a lie. If it comes from our head, from our beliefs it is usually inaccurate.

  8. This is a blog to savour. Every sentence had to be read slowly, allowing my body to understand beyond what my eyes were reading. A very different way to read but one that was much needed this morning. I can feel there is a new standard to be set with my body leading the way.

  9. Seeing without filtering and needing it to be a certain way is an art we have lost. Mostly this is because we are not with our bodies, not observing ourselves and life where we can develop true sight, unhindered by what we want and don’t want to see.

  10. We see only what we want to see, even when there is so much more there to be seen, yet when we add what we feel deep within to what we see everything expands and what we know to be true remains and we expand what we know to be true.

  11. How often throughout history have words been reversed, re-interpretted or simply lost the living essence of a word truly lived? How different the world could be now if words had not been so bastardised over many years.
    “All because of a concept – a simplistic but erroneous reversal of a few words, a philosophy that many, if not most, have been tied to, and through which has ultimately led to a devastating detachment from our essence and a disconnection from our natural ability to feel – that is, we have been existing and not living; moving through life without initiating life”.

  12. “What if there is a posture to hold that chooses to see and is not attached to what it will see or find?” – Yes one where we don’t filter or dull down our awareness of what’s there, but are open to see it in full or a least to a greater depth and with that, respond in a way that is truly harmonious rather than not wanting to accept all, or parts of what is there…

  13. There’s a big difference between what we feel and know, and the emotions that we experience that aren’t actually part of us, but sometimes we’re so ensconced in these old emotional habits that it feels like they are us.
    Underneath the emotion there is that inner part of us- our soul, which feels and knows deeply what is true and what is not. It’s that small quiet voice within, that when listened to, is always guiding us, quietly and in the background.

  14. For many it will be a challenging concept that we already know without first attaining that knowledge from the outside in, even though it’s actually true. And it is also a very deliberating thing to hear that we have all we wish to know within us, already. That gives it permission to be activated.

    1. Yes, a concept we might struggle to live if we have been told all our lives that the learning comes from outside in and we walk away from the relationship of the education we get from our bodies.

  15. We do know the bigger picture of life and what is being played out in our world, but how many of us are willing to feel this and take responsibility for our part in creating the mess we exist in, which we now call life.

  16. Only seeing what we want to see is a great way of avoiding what we don’t want to see! Universal Medicine has helped me immensely too in being more aware of how much I am truly letting myself see (or receive we could say).

  17. A powerful blog and great to debase how limited it is if we only use our eyes to see, whereas if we are connected to our bodies we are able to feel truth in a more universal way.

  18. I really love what you are proposing here, and it does feel as though something got lost in translation when whatever Plato said was put as ‘Believing is seeing’. I agree with your view about there being a posture that is beyond the proximity of seeing with our eyes that has very little to do with self-conviction, and that can actually be very simply about surrendering.

  19. Our eyes are limited and limiting. No essential truth about life is revealed to us through them but through our entire body feeling what our Soul allows us to access. Once we feel, we know.

  20. Thank you for this unravelling blog. I feel like threads have been pulled so I can see more clearly by feeling the truth of what is there to be felt without the imposition of what I believe to be true. We have an unattractive ability to create illusion so the eyes can be deceived so it seems to be vital to build a knowing that comes from our bodies that discerns to a deeper level.

  21. I love the way you have shown that seeing is believing is not it, in fact so far from it to be 180 degrees wrong and very interesting to see how Aristoltle’s bastardisation of a simple truth plays a big part in the mess we are in as a world.

  22. How we all have grown up with this ‘seeing is believing’ and I can only describe it as our eyes see these images and our brains calibrate these images and fit them into our belief system. We are not taught to treat our eyes otherwise, but if we allow the eyes to ‘feel’, there is more going on that meet the eyes and around us. We are not used to this, it can be overwhelming at first but with consistency ‘what is seeing is actually a form of understanding the first principle of… ‘what is felt in our bodies – then our senses will be seen as one.

  23. One could say the conglomerate of our world is add up of individuals with varying perceptions and perspectives of life. Whilst we can have different interests and expressions the underlying truth of how we choose to live ought to be the same. The fact that it is not currently being lived that way means that our varying perception on what is true is what divides humanity. Some think this is truth while others see it as a lie. War alone can commence from point of separation.

  24. The conversion of ‘believing is seeing’ (Plato) into ‘seeing is believing’ (Aristotle) marks a significant shift in the intelligence of mankind away from the worldly view of the ancient Greek philosophers and their preceding ancient lineage, into the doldrums of the much reduced form of thinking that so plagues our world today. It is this that we must resurrect ourselves out of so that we once again know in full the truth that we see with the eyes of the heart (all that we feel) and nothing less.

    1. Yes, I don’t think I had felt the reduction of our sight and understanding quite as clearly till this. If we champion this reduction we cut ourselves off (if temporarily) from the worldly, multidimensional view that preceded it.

  25. Seeing is believing entrenches the belief that we need to see something to believe it. This focus on the eyes and visible proof undermine the great gift of feeling that we have through clairsentience. This sense takes in everything not just the 2D of what is seen.

  26. “feel and you will know what to believe.” A great discussion showing that our 6th sense of feeling offers us so much more than what we only see with our eyes.

  27. When I first attended a Universal Medicine course many years ago I remember thinking “I can’t feel anything”, but I was wrong. After some time my ability to feel the truth grew and now I know the world through a whole new lens.

  28. Brilliant blog E.Walsh, ‘seeing is believing’ feels limiting, it is knowledge based and like you shared it feels like, ‘a veil to avoid seeing that which we don’t want to see or find (a reflection we avoid)’. Our current society is mainly based on this form of seeing life, it is driving us further away from our true intelligence.

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