Watching a magician turn a stone into an egg is an act that common sense says cannot be done. Nevertheless, awed by that act, we immediately ask: "how did she do that?" Answer: fooling our minds. Similarly, it was a magical moment in every human being's life--a moment long since faded into the deepest recesses of ones mind--when an Image was originally experienced as the first and natural display of the human mind's organization. Maybe one saw a thing in the outside world (the "stone") that the mind converted into a Picture visualized by ones mind as an image (the "egg"). Or, maybe the reverse happened--i.e. an image, mental picture, or idea in ones mind (the "egg") was somehow converted into an outside world "Thing" (a "stone")--a seeming impossiblility but still fascinating. Or, maybe the magician made a substitution. Regardless of which came first--the "stone" converted to an "egg" or an "egg" converted to a "stone" or an "egg" substituted for a "stone"--all of this is covered by the Kamitic (Ancient Egyptian) etymology of the word "Image" ('tut,' "to beget"). In reality, just as the magician substitutes an "egg" for the "stone" when the audience is unaware of her "sleight of hand" (tricks done so quickly that the manner of execution cannot be observed), so do ones senses convert something real in the outer world into an Illusion in ones inner world. Occurring here is "seeing" with ones eyes, mind, or imagination something that SEEMS the same when comparing the "egg" and the "stone." Because they are not exactly the same, an Illusion represents what SEEMS to be the same. Or, ones Imaginative/Creative mental faculties convert an image ('egg") in the mind into a "Thing" (a "stone" or virtual being) in the outside world. Though the "egg" is more oval than the "stone," it is accepted by the mind as "close enough" to be true. To equate the "egg" and the "stone" is an illusionary Belief causing a mistaken idea about what is real--a usual happening. Mistakes involving the sense of sight about a Picture (Middle English, 'to paint,' draw, depict--as in paintings or tattooed people) is visualized by the eyes, called an Optical Illusion.
Mistakes involving the mind's interpretations are called Thoughts (“Think,” “it seems”; “it appears”)--i.e. joined ideas and/or images. Ideas can cause Images or Reflections to appear in ones brain. Such Mental Imagery production, a first and natural display of the human mind before it develops the ability to do abstract thinking, begins with Percepts--sensations, similar to the ingredients for a flower bud, making one aware of something good or bad. The newly forming flower bud itself is a Notion--vague, hazy, organized Sensations. If there are no interferences, an evolving and further developed non-factual Percept/Notion (flower bud) is an “Idea” ('a becoming'). An Idea is a patterned quantity of "frozen" energy whose forces are shaped into a defined "Thing." When "like-kind" memories (apperceptions) are called up, it is termed an Image (an Imagination form or figure with 'character' and power). A vivid Image (a bouquet of flowers) spurs sentiment reflections that strengthen/enlarge upon the intended meaning. Perhaps the biggest offender causing Illusions comes from ones Affect (or Emotional) orientation which always overrules Cognition in undisciplined minds.
Cognition is the mind’s information processing system involved in attention, perception, learning, memory, language, step-by-step thinking as well as judgments expressive of these. Emotions interfere with perceptional clarity, sound thinking, fair communication, and direct contact with ones own Real Self as well as with Reality. When fully developed Ideas and/or Images convert into a Thought wrapped in emotions, it can make illusionary Certainty out of the false or doubtful (Bailey, Private Selfhood Greatness). Emotions naturally power ones Lower (animalistic) Self but signify ones False Self when attempting to power ones Higher Self. Others' (or ones own) opinions defining who one is can never be the truth and it typically is the opposite--or is on some non-truth plane. Since Knowledge derives from the direct perception of Reality (an abstract understanding without thoughts), the presence of an Image is merely what SEEMS right. In other words, the Image makes one once removed from reality; Emotions, twice removed, and the undisciplined mind steering the situation to conform to ones desires, thrice removed. Yet, by lacking boundaries makes Images useful for metaphysical "definitions" and in Figures of Communication.
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