3. The theory of a reality tunnel
According to this theory, a person sees the world through the filters of their own experience and beliefs. Upbringing, education, and all the joys and failures that have ever happened to us make up the material of our reality tunnel. That’s why people often have different reactions to the same things.
Here is an example from real life: Looking at the Mona Lisa, the famous painting by Leonardo DaVinci, one person will see a mysterious smile, another one will find mathematical perfection in it, while the third one will see a fat, browless woman. None of these people is mistaken because they all live in their own reality tunnels and strongly believe that they are right.
All this happens because, according to the reality tunnel theory, there is no common truth. It is impossible for it to exist because it’s very hard to escape your own familiar, safe, and comfortable tunnel.
4. Hedgehogs’ dilemma
People tend to stay close to each other and most of us need family and friends. However, close relationships are sometimes followed by pain. The imperfections of our loved ones sometimes cause us to become estranged and move away. However, after some time we make the same mistakes by searching for closeness and suffering from it later.
A German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer called this the hedgehogs’ dilemma or the porcupine problem. He shared the following parable in his work:
“A number of porcupines huddled together for warmth on a cold day in winter; but, as they began to prick one another with their quills, they were obliged to disperse. However, the cold drove them together again, when just the same thing happened. At last, after many turns of huddling and dispersing, they discovered that they would be best off by remaining at a little distance from one another. In the same way, the need of society drives the human porcupines together, only to be mutually repelled by the many prickly and disagreeable qualities of their nature.”
Arthur Schopenhauer, Parerga und Paralipomena: kleine philosophische Schriften
The key to happy relationships lies in love and friendship, as well as in the ability to give to another person enough warmth and keep personal space at the same time. Don’t tolerate quill pricks and don’t run away from close relationships at the same time. Keep a sensible distance where you maintain your own harmony.