LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Seeing light and colors in nature

We’ve all seen a green leaf, a red rose or a rainbow. Well … not really. Actually, colors don’t exist in nature. When we’re not looking, a leaf isn’t green, a rose isn’t red; they’re just blank.
And a rainbow isn’t in the sky.
Photons, those tiny electromagnetic objects, bring all of the information to our retinas, which is then relayed to the occipital lobe of our brain where all colors are created. Colors exist nowhere else.
As Sir Isaac Newton cautioned us three centuries ago, “The rays, to speak properly, are not colored.” The light reflected by a leaf is not green, and neither is the leaf; green exists only in the neuron based representation of the leaf in the observer’s consciousness, and then only if the light is not too dim.
And every person has their own private rainbow. That’s because raindrops refract (bend) sunlight, but my angle to the refracted sunlight is different than yours. So there are as many rainbows as there are observers. And when we’re not looking, there’s no rainbow, just raindrops in the sky.
As physicist Roy L. Bishop says, “Our visual world with its brightness and colors occurs inside our skull. The eye does not detect the colors of the rainbow; the brain creates them. WE are part of the rainbow, its most beautiful part.”
Speaking of colors: Since colors don’t exist in nature, why do we have racism? We’re all blank! It’s what’s inside that counts. A blood transfusion from someone of another race with your blood type can save your life. Or your blood can save the life of an African-American, Hispanic, Asian or Native American.
Same with compatible organ transplants; someone can save your life, or you can save theirs. So, thinking logically, why hate people who can save your life, or the life of one of your family members?
Whatever happened to “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” or “Love thy neighbor as thyself”?

Francis Parnell,

Author: Stephan Drew

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