Sunday, June 17, 2012

Are our senses really imperfect?

Most of the blame for our miseries, desires, problems in life, understandings or misunderstandings about so may issues including religion, God and its existence, etc. is placed on our 'imperfect senses'. It is assumed and even propagated in many religious books that our imperfect senses make us to dwell in unnecessary or evil sensual pleasures, distract us from real meaning and purpose of life and create so many other problems for us.The question which comes in my mind is, if these senses are so bad then why do we have them? Why they didn't become perfect (or got improved) in the process of evolution?

There are five major senses traditionally recognized as methods or means of our perception of our surroundings, they are hearing (ears), sight (eyes), touch (skin), smell (nose) and taste (tongue). These five senses (or organs associated with each senses) collect and transmit the data to our brain for perception. Basically these senses just collect the data, it's our brain who process the data and then create certain perception about the things about which the data was received. The reality is its our brain who is the ultimate beneficiary and controller of these senses. Good smell doesn't make our nose happy or good taste doesn't make our tongue happy but it's our brain who feels that.

All our senses or organs have certain limits of detection, they all have certain minimum (below that they can't detect) and maximum (above which they cant tolerate) and most of the instruments also have these limits. Most of us know these limits and there is information available about exact numbers related with how low or high we can go, but having limited capability doesn't make things imperfect. They are supposed to be used for specific purpose, and during the process of evolution these senses have evolved to the limit which can allow us to survive on this planet. Our sensory organs are perfect for our survival on this planet, they protect us from rain, sunlight, warn us about dangers by smell, sound and this is the purpose we have them. We can not fly using bicycle or move with the lightning speed using it but that doesn't make bicycle imperfect machine, we can not fly with it because it was not designed to fly, its perfect for the purpose for which it was designed. There is huge difference between limitation and imperfection. Speed limit of bicycle is its limitation but we can not call it as its imperfection. Human brain is the ultimate power which controls all these senses, whatever we do is to please our brain and not to please these sensory organs, they are just receivers which receive the data and sent it to brain which ultimately decides whether its positive (which makes it to feel happy) or negative.

Human brain is very complex and amazing thing, it has helped us to conquer amazing frontiers which seemed practically impossible with our limited physical capabilities. Our body is not designed to fly like birds but we designed parachute which can allow individuals to fly like birds, we even designed aeroplane which can allow us to fly in groups while doing our day to day activities. We can not live like fish under the water but we designed submarines which can allow us to do that, we are the first animals from this planet to land on moon, its our brain which helped us to defy the gravity of this planed and launch our self in space I can go on listing amazing achievements of human beings which they have achieved with these so called imperfect senses. Our senses might have limited range but according to me they are not imperfect. Our brain which controls all these senses have unlimited capabilities.

To call something 'imperfect' we should have something to compare which is 'perfect' or at least have some idea about how that perfect thing should be, I don't know what people mean when they call our senses 'imperfect', they never tell how the perfect senses are and how they behave. Ultimately all senses are controlled and guided by our brain and I already mentioned its phenomenal abilities. Our brain's phenomenal power and abilities also generate endless desires, as our brain's abilities don't have any limits our desires also don't have any limits. The problem is how to control the desires of our brain, as I said its abilities are endless so are its desires. Our needs are limited but our desires are endless. Our senses are allow us to feel and enjoy whatever is requires for our survival on this planet. We need only limited food to satisfy our hunger, but we go on eating if we get some dish which we like, we can't control our desire to eat even we know that it might harm our body and health, we even try to acquire things (like money, land, food) in large quantities, more than what we need for ourselves and our future generations. We struggle to control our greed and then blame it to our senses. It's our brain, our thinking which makes us perfect or imperfect. Whole concept of perfection or imperfection is product of our brain, so rather than blaming our senses for our miseries we should try to control our desires and then our senses will automatically follow, just calling them 'imperfect' (when they are not) is not going to solve the problem.

Thanks for reading and please share your views.

(Copyright: Vinay Thakur. Please contact the author for re-posting or publishing at

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