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Vision has a number of meanings in ordinary language:

  • Most commonly it is used as a synonym for sight, one of the senses, the ability to see.
  • It is also used in the sense of visual perception, the experience of seeing that which is relaying light to us from the external world.
  • This is in contrast to visual imagination, the ability to form mental imagery in the mind of something which is not currently being visually perceived. Imagine a room at home and picture it in your mind as a vision
  • This relates to a further sense of the word which emphasisies the intensity of a clear vivid mental image whether it is being visually perceived or not.
  • This in turn relates to a further meaning associated with the intensity of experience of things that are not present as in the vision of Joan of Arc. Religious, mystical, supernatural or paranormal experiences are assumed to be of this sort. Visual hallucinations are also in this category. See also: Vision (spirituality)
  • Vision is also used in the sense of foresight or wisdom, as in, "she had the foresight to sell her shares before the big crash".

See also