The Minister travelled for days by train and car and boat to one of the furthest islands in the nation. As he surveyed the bleak but inspiring landscape, he turned to a local villager and said: “You’re very remote here, aren’t you?” She responded: “Remote from what?”
The scenario of the glass being half empty to half full, or the grass being green on the other side; have been faced by most of us at some point of time or the other. The common thread of thinking running through these moments is “our perception and the reality of what happens”.
“There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception.” Aldous Huxley
Perspective has been one of the concepts, since the early days, which has been studied and attempts have been made to quantify or qualitatively assess it by mathematicians, philosophers, scientists as well as artists. Despite all the theories proposed, research as well as insight; till this day perception doesn’t exist by itself but leans heavily on our innate beliefs, opinion, experience and knowledge.
“No man has the right to dictate what other men should perceive, create or produce, but all should be encouraged to reveal themselves, their perceptions and emotions, and to build confidence in the creative spirit.” Ansel Adams
While one’s perspective may be right for some, it may be wrong for the other. Then the question arises, how do we draw the limits or the line? The practical aspect is possible as long as we ground ourselves in reality and lean on the principle of “to do unto others as one would want to be done unto oneself”. Simply put, as long as we learn to treat others with mutual respect, equality, freedom, justice, kindness and understanding; all the perspectives would reach the common target and purpose of doing good.
“What I need is perspective. The illusion of depth, created by a frame, the arrangement of shapes on a flat surface. Perspective is necessary. Otherwise there are only two dimensions. Otherwise you live with your face squashed up against a wall, everything a huge foreground, of details, close-ups, hairs, the weave of the bed-sheet, the molecules of the face. Your own skin like a map, a diagram of futility, crisscrossed with tiny roads that lead nowhere. Otherwise you live in the moment. Which is not where I want to be.” Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale