On Distance

Depending on your position, your sight can be improved by moving closer or further away from the object of your attention. Coming closer to an object allows you to notice finer details yet come too close and everything turns into a blur. Yet, its opposite suffers from a commensurate defect. Moving away may allow your eyes to adjust and clearly see what was once a blur but, move too far away and distinctions melt and you fail to tell essential things apart.

Sometimes we are too close to something (our attachments, our fears, our relationships with others and ourselves) to be able to see clearly what is going on with them. But by moving back – not by severing attachments or pushing things away – but by observing your own thoughts, behaviours, and emotions; you may see something you couldn’t before.

I like to think of philosophy like a pair of glasses. Philosophy, like glasses, doesn’t show you anything new. All that happens is your vision is corrected. You once saw things one way and now you see them differently. And, like with glasses, you decide whether your vision is improved or not. But, not everyone needs glasses and not everyone needs philosophy. But there is no harm in trying to improve your vision.

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