Subliminal Perception and Supraliminal Perception
Kimberlene A. Catalan
Imagine you are watching a group of Hawaiian women dancing to soft and filling ukulele music. Your Hawaiian friend, watching with you, exclaimed, “What a beautiful story!” You keep staring but neither see nor hear any story. You merely hear a pleasant melody and see some women waving their arms and wiggling. As your friend explains the meaning of each dance movements you begin to recognize a charming story about the wind.
Obviously, the dancers never change their dance movements. Why did your perception of the Hawaiian dancers change? This is what you called perception. You perceive sensory inputs giving a meaningful interpretation.
Perception is a process that combines both sensing and interpreting. Information from the outside world comes through our senses. The information is then interpreted, and this interpretation gives meaning to what is sensed. The process of interpreting or giving meaning to the stimulus received by the senses. The stimulus energy transmitted to the brain by the nerve impulses. Then the mind interprets the stimulus. Thus, sensation is a prerequisite to perception. Sensation is to the sense organ while perception is to the brain. Sensation is simple and perception a complex process in which understanding intervenes. Perception is preceded by sensation. The number of our sensory systems will give rise to the same number of perceptual systems. We live in a visually-oriented world where almost everything that can give meaning to us stimulated our sense of sight. Scientists believe the human brain is the most complex structure in the universe. In addition to ruling perception, your brain controls your moods, memory, moments, body function and imagination. If the primary function of sensation is to take in information, the primary function of perception is to help us make sense of that information. Perception allows us to...