Reality can be only what you can perceive and it would seem that nothing can exist – for you – beyond your perception sphere… In practice, there is a twilight zone in which you can vaguely perceive that “something” exists out there. Some only partly unknown unknown that you perceive enough that you realize you should be worried about it. But you don’t know how and why.
One way to perceive the unperceivable is to imagine yourself as someone or something who/which faces a similar plight, but one that you can understand.
In his post on ants and men, Antonio Turiel describes a metaphor that starts from another characteristic of ants, their very poor eyesight. That serves to underline another kind of human limitation: the inability of seeing beyond the narrow limits of what we see and hear in the media. Turiel describes an “ant-man” who has good smelling abilities but cannot see beyond a very short distance ahead. This ant-man is more intelligent than a regular ant and can plan ahead, even by sophisticated ways of reasoning. But he lacks the capability of seeing above himself at any distance
Read Turiel’s whole post (in Spanish) on “The Oil Crash”