The Primary World


Our perception of reality or our Primary World is the sum of our physiological and psychological filters developed consciously and unconsciously since the moment of our existence.

Because we live in this Primary World, making our decisions and categorising our experience, it is safe to assume that the richer or more developed our Primary World is, the more effective we can be in managing and interacting with the actuality of the real world. If our Primary World is a dark and unsafe place, then the real world will appear to reflect these attributes. Ultimately then our ability to operate, through our actions and reactions in the real world is entirely based on the internal representation of our Primary World.

The boundaries of what we are aware of in the real world are constrained by the attention filters, set up in our Primary World. It is only when we expand our awareness outside of our current scope that we become aware of what is outside. I am sure you have all heard comments like:

  • “Looking back now, it was so obvious!”
  • “If only I’d seen that then.”
  • “It was like I was wearing blinkers.”
  • “It was always there in his voice, I just never heard it until now.”

Our Primary World

Figure 1

This experience is akin to having tunnel vision, where we become so focussed on particular aspects of a situation, we negate / do not even acknowledge other options and choices.

We are held within this Primary World, as a direct observer on the Primary and real worlds, this is who we are and what we know in the here and now.

The Geography of our Primary World

There are actually two observer positions within our Primary World. One is who we are now and the other is a ‘doppelganger’, the shadow of a younger you. This is the you before you became the person you are today. xx

Figure 2

The space in between these two manifestations of you, defines the boundaries of the Primary World, (note that there is a boundary around the younger you this will be discussed later on in Secondary Worlds). The locus of control in this Primary World shifts between these two entities in an uneasy alliance. We are sometimes heard to say:

  • “I was beside myself with rage.”
  • “I was out of my mind with worry.”
  • “She made me feel like a child again.”

It is through these worlds of primary and secondary knowing and the inherent metaphorical logic, developed through a line of younger manifestations of you, that creates the perceptual filters through which we experience the world. These filters cause our Primary World to be scaled incorrectly in relationship to the real world when we want to interact in it, thus causing the problems and issues that are unique to us all.

Next –> Secondary Worlds


Roman, 03/07/2011 09:52

The following doesn't seem to be supported by your current theory: “If our Primary World is a dark and unsafe place, then the real world will reflect this.” This idea is known to and liked by some people, but according to the theory you've developed so far, the Primary World reflects the real world, not the other way around.

Matthew Hudson, 01/11/2011 13:22, 01/11/2011 13:22

Roman, Thanks for the pointer - This should of read “If our Primary World is a dark and unsafe place, then the real world will appear to reflect these attributes.”