Tuesday, 31 October 2017 19:37

One behaves in accordance to ones interpretation of what stimuli are

Written by 


Ozodi Thomas Osuji

There are few objective things in our world, such as a wall, a mountain and a tree. Beyond the objective things are many things that we really do not understand and have to have mere ideas of what they mean to us. We interpret the nature of what we do not know.

As we interest something to be we respond accordingly. Even if our interpretation turns out to be false we still respond according to our interpretation until we change our interpretations.

I learned this reality from the experience of hearing weird sound in my apartment and interpreting them to be made by unseen ghosts and having dreams where unseen objects appeared in them. That is, my attributing the noises to ghosts made my subconscious mind to use them to produce dreams where ghosts appeared to scare me.

Thereafter, I reinterpreted the noises as strictly physical and I no longer had the dreams with ghosts in them.

That is to say that what I say about things determine how I respond to them in my dreams and also in my day life.  In my day life it is what I say of stimuli, true or false does not matter, that determines how I respond to them.

It should be noted that fear played a crucial role in my initial interpretation of the noises in my bedroom as from ghosts. It showed that despite my apparent agnosticism that deep down I believed in the existence of ghosts and feared them. Fear colored my thinking and behavior.

It follows that I have to remove fear from my mind, both from the conscious and subconscious part of it; I have to prevent fear from shaping my thinking and behaviors.

However, this is easier said than done; fear is built into the very fabric of the human body and mind; fear alerts us to danger to our physical existence and urges us to run away from it; fear can also become debilitating, as in anxiety disorder.

The solution is to separate rational from irrational fears and be aware that fear can paralyze and immobilize one's behaviors and prevent one from living fully, doing what one wants to do.

If I see people as dangerous I respond to them as if they are dangerous even if they are not dangerous.

If I see people as loving I respond to them as loving people even if they do not love people. It is me who interprets who people and things are to me and respond to them accordingly.

This teaches me the lesson that most of my behaviors are the product of my interpretations of the nature and meaning of phenomena and that I must make sure that I have objective interpretation before I accept anything as true for me.

It  is my mind that gives whatever I deem scary the power it has to scare me; I am the one who attributed scary qualities to whatever scares me; otherwise what I had called scary is a neutral stimuli.

In sum, ones perception and interpretation of what people and things means determines how one behaves in this world. There are only a very few objective things in the world that do not need interpretation for us to know what they are. If one wants to change ones behaviors one must change ones interpretation of what things are; one must give things different attributes.

Science remains our best way of ascertaining the truth in the material universe (not the non-material universe, such as mind and consciousness).


If you observe yourself and people what you see are those who are mightily struggling to seem to have existential worth based on their bodies and egos.

Our bodies will die and smell like feces; our egos will disappear from existence upon our physical death.

Both body and ego are unreal but we want to make them seem real; both have no value and worth and we struggle to make them seem to have worth and value.

We enslave ourselves doing senseless work to earn money to take good care of the needs of our bodies and get the things that make our egos seem important in other people's eyes.

This is what all of us are doing; it is the basis of human civilization.

Now, if you accept that your body and ego are nothing and cannot have worth and you stop valuing them the question is: what else are you going to do?

If you say that consciousness beyond body has value but at the moment you are not living in consciousness that transcends body;  so you have not answered the question, how do you live in body and not enslave yourself to doing what makes body and ego important?

For a start, one must know what has no importance and treat it as such and not allow the valueless to cloud one's judgement.

Ozodi Thomas Osuji

October 31, 2017


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Ozodi Osuji Ph.D

Ozodi Thomas Osuji is from Imo State, Nigeria. He obtained his PhD from UCLA. He taught at a couple of Universities and decided to go back to school and study psychology. Thereafter, he worked in the mental health field and was the Executive Director of two mental health agencies. He subsequently left the mental health environment with the goal of being less influenced by others perspectives, so as to be able to think for himself and synthesize Western, Asian and African perspectives on phenomena. Dr Osuji’s goal is to provide us with a unique perspective, one that is not strictly Western or African but a synthesis of both. Dr Osuji teaches, writes and consults on leadership, management, politics, psychology and religions. Dr Osuji is married and has three children; he lives at Anchorage, Alaska, USA.

He can be reached at: ozodiosuji@gmail.com (907) 310-8176