I know that whole 'dress debacle' is old news at this point, but while it was a hot topic, I had this super profound realization and I meant to blog about it, but I've been sucked into Bones for the last couple of months which has rendered me useless at nap time. Lucky for you, however, I am currently sitting next to an enormous mountain of laundry that I need to fold and I thought I'd do that while watching Bones today. So naturally, I'm blogging instead.
It was the same image, you guys. THE SAME IMAGE.
I stared at him in disbelief and pointed to the picture again, "This dress? This dress right here you're telling me is black and blue?"
"Yeah. They've altered that one or something so it's black and blue."
"Babe. This is the same exact picture. Wait. You're telling me that when you look at this picture of a gold and white dress that it actually appears to be black and blue to you?"
"Stop. You're messing with me."
"YOU are messing with ME!!"
"Seriously babe, stop. Is this a joke or something...?"
I stared at him some more. My mouth was getting dry from all the hanging open it had been doing in the last few minutes. So I scrambled to find the first picture I'd shown him of the stupid dress.
"THIS dress...this one right here that is clearly white and gold...this dress you are telling me you see the colors black and blue??" I was starting to freak out a little bit because my husband is a horrible liar. The. Worst. Liar. And I knew he wasn't lying. He was actually seeing black and blue. And no matter how hard I stared at it, I could NOT figure out where anyone was seeing either one of those colors.
So he stared at the picture for a little while. "Woah. Babe. This is trippy. I CAN SEE BOTH."
It was then that I became really obsessed. Because I knew beyond a doubt that it was actually possible to see the colors black and blue and that the people who could see black and blue weren't all just in it for the attention or something...they could actually see those colors. AND I NEEDED TO BE ABLE TO SEE THOSE COLORS, YOU GUYS!
I watched countless numbers of youtube videos explaining the phenomenon. I read a dozen articles. I scrolled through hundreds of pictures of the dress and watched as people played with photo shop to change the colors and then finally...finally...that dang dress was black and blue. I can now officially see that thing in both white and gold AND black and blue and I can't even tell you how relieved I felt when that moment finally clicked.
And THAT is when I had a realization: life IS the dress. You guys. I'm serious. Life is the dress!!
You all have read those debates in comment sections of political bloggers, or on the Facebook pages of your friends and families where both parties involved are passionately positive that their point-of-view is the one that reflects the truth and they absolutely cannot begin to see how/why the members of the opposing school of thought could possibly not see what they are seeing. Sometimes, you've probably even felt like someone who has different ideologies than you must be joking and that there's no other explanation for their irrational opinions. And here's the thing: even though that dress is, in reality, black and blue...the important thing is that it legitimately can be seen both ways. And people who saw it white and gold weren't wrong...in that picture, the colors white and gold could be seen. And people who saw it black and blue weren't wrong because those colors are also visible. IT CAN BE SEEN BOTH WAYS.
I submit to you that almost every single issue can be seen in different lights because every single issue is being viewed through a different lens. We all see the world through filters of our experiences, struggles, triumphs, and growth and because each person has a different combination of those things, each person has a different lens through which they view the world. The world I see is not the same world as the one my husband sees. Though we tend to see things similarly; you just stick around for one of our arguments that is completely based in misunderstanding, and you'll get a fantastic glimpse into the ways that our lenses differ.
It's changed the way I think about politics. I'm not even lying. When a Facebook friend of mine posts something that initially makes me go, "Oh BROTHER. There's no way that people actually believe that." I try and take a step back and look at it from a different angle. Nine times out of ten, I can see the other side of the argument. I can understand where they're coming from. My respect for them increases and I can see it, too. Of course, I'm usually still pretty sure that I'm seeing the "right" colors...but just the fact that I can "see" their colors makes everything so much better.
Assume that people aren't ignorant! Assume that there are legitimately several ways to look at a problem. Try to look through their lens for a minute and honestly, I think you'll be surprised when you can legitimately see the white and gold.