Prophecy of Perspective

Aditi Vaidya

Final Year B. Pharm
2021 – 2022

It was a bright sunny Sunday morning during the summer vacation of school. I, with all the observation skills that an eight-year-old could have, was peering outside my window. The swaying of leaves, bright flowers in full bloom, clear blue sky, the melody of the cuckoo. Oh, what a sight it was!

This was my typical hobby, before running downstairs to play with my friends. Suddenly, a little something, hanging from a branch of the Champa tree outside my window caught my sight. My imaginative mind started to ponder on all the possibilities of what it could be and Bingo! I knew what it was right away! I hurriedly called my father, pointed at the little thing, and exclaimed, “Baba look, a cocoon! Will it open up? Will a butterfly come out of it?” Baba started laughing, he guided me to the other room from the balcony of which, the same Champa tree was visible but from a different angle. He then pointed towards the little thing and asked, “Now, can you tell me what it is?” I went into a little bit of denial but I had to accept the fact that it wasn’t a cocoon but merely a dried leaf. That day, though I was upset that I wouldn’t be able to see a butterfly emerge from a cocoon, there was one thing I learned that has stayed with me to date – ‘Perspective’!

I often wonder what the world would have been like today had humans not looked at it from their own point of view. What would happen if the microscope wasn’t invented? Would we ever know about Leeuwenhoek’s animalcules and the myriad world of Microbiology? What if ‘The Starry Night’ was never painted by Vincent van Gogh? What if ‘Gitanjali’ was never composed by Rabindranath Tagore? These and so many more questions surface the mind and I get just one answer – humankind would have been deprived of an entire dimension of what exists today. It was because of their perspective of looking at seemingly ordinary, day-to-day objects, situations, circumstances, that these great minds brought before us such a vast ocean of priceless treasures. I am also reminded of two movies that explain the importance of point-of-view very well – ‘Taare Zameen Par’ and ‘The Sky Pink’.

Having said that, along with having your own outlook, it is equally important to consider the outlook of others. Just like the age-old example goes that what looks like a six to you might look like a nine to someone else. Neither is wrong, it’s just the difference in the frames of reference of each. A variety of points of view leads to a variety of thought processes. A variety in thought processes leads to discoveries and inventions. How would gravity be discovered otherwise, had Newton not questioned the falling down of an apple?

So, my friend, don’t feel strange if a dried leaf looks like a cocoon to you, because the world is as you see it!