Mirrors Lie.

Mirrors lie.

Or, more accurately our brains do. More specifically, our brains lie when observing our reflection. It’s pretty much impossible for us to see ourselves as we really are.

At the most basic level, our mind plays tricks on us when viewing our reflection. Our brains are literally trained to focus on the things we don’t like. Moreover, our minds exaggerate the things we don’t like so that they appear larger. Anyone who has ever had a pimple knows this to be true.

But let’s take a step back.

Even beyond our tricky brains, everything we see is an illusion. Look at your arm. It looks like a solid mass of flesh and bones. But it’s not; it’s trillions of atoms whirling around in giant clouds of information and energy. When you look in the mirror, that’s not something you’ll see

But let’s take yet another step back.

There’s a great and fitting quote by Thich Nhat Hanh about seeing clouds in a piece of paper:

If you are a poet, you will see clearly that there is a cloud floating in this sheet of paper. Without a cloud, there will be no rain; without rain, the trees cannot grow: and without trees, we cannot make paper. The cloud is essential for the paper to exist. If the cloud is not here, the sheet of paper cannot be here either. So we can say that the cloud and the paper inter-are.

Though it sounds like a line in some cheesy song, almost every element on earth was made in the heart of stars. The nuclear fusion that causes our sun to glow and the stars to shine also creates the elements from which the world around us - and even our own bodies - are built.

When you look at yourself in the mirror, you might see wrinkles or fat or things that you don’t like. But if you could really see yourself at a deeper level, you wouldn’t just see the clouds or the stars. You’d see the entire universe reflecting back at you in all its grandeur.

The mirror lies.

P.S. To lose weight through a new relationship with your body, download Davey Wavey’s Weight Loss Program. You’ll get three professionally filmed workout videos as a free gift!

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  1. If it’s okay to ask… I’m having trouble connecting the ideas between us lying to ourselves in the mirror and seeing the universe instead. Can you expand or clarify on why the universe is the way to see things?

    All the best,

    • Because it took the death of many stars to create many of the elements found in your body. We are star stuff! The universe had to be here for you to exist. That makes us special 🙂

  2. Woooow, mind blowing 🙂

  3. I thought this was going to be a scientific post about binocular vision and why still-photos don’t do some people justice.

    For some reason, I was convinced that Davey Wavey was going to start showing well-researched support for better cameras in smart devices that take a 3D picture to help better capture the dimension of objects the way people naturally see them.

    Your mind really CAN deceive you.

  4. This is why Frank Zane says to take pictures, instead on relying on the mirror

  5. I dunno if mirrors lie, but it seems some fitness sites do. Putting up pictures of these ripped, perfect models with muscular low-fat bodies and say “do our program and you’ll look like this!”. Like the pic you put at the top of this article. BS. They totally discount that all those ripped bodies belong to guys with superior genes! They’ve been blessed by better DNA than most folks get.
    No. I’ve worked out for years and years and eat healthier than anyone I know. Took pricey supplements. Hired trainers. What do I see in the mirror? Someone who’s still flabby and unattractive. I wasn’t blessed with “muscle model” prettyboy genes. What the mirror is showing me is a fool duped by the fitness industry—as well as a hopeless gay man who’s considered “unworthy” and unimportant by the shallow community I’m a part of. Looking into that mirror on yet another dateless Friday night.