“Sometimes a change of perspective is all
it takes to see the light.” –Dan Brown
“We tend to judge others by their behavior, and ourselves by our intentions.” –Albert Schlieder
To put into perspective
In every situation there exists an objective truth and many subjective perceptions. This is why there are multiple sides to every story. I remember reading a story a while back that once again made me realize the importance of perspective.
A child with a stutter – a symptom of Asperger’s Syndrome (now part of autism spectrum disorders) – got on a bus and asked a man where the bus was headed to make sure he was going the right way. The man ignored the child several times and refused to answer the question. The others in the bus who witnessed this were disgusted by this man’s apparent discrimination against the mentally disabled. Turns out, the man also had a speech impediment- he had a stuttering problem. He didn’t want to embarrass the child or seem like he was mocking him, so he had kept his mouth shut.
As individuals who are born with different genes and temperament, and grow up with different experiences, we cannot escape from having subjective interpretations of the world around us; however, we can acknowledge and respect that people have different ways of thinking, and recognize that this diversity is what makes the world a little more interesting.
No Eyes. No Boundaries.
With human eyes, everything is relative. Direction, for example, is relative to and based solely on our surroundings – landmarks loom around us as physical boundaries for our reference. I have once asked a blind friend out of terrible curiosity, very cautiously as you can imagine, “what do you see?” I had thought a vast blackness – something similar to what we see when we close our eyes before bed. She replied with one word, “Nothing.” She didn’t know what “blackness” was even like. She used, maybe not visual perceptual imagery as others, but her other heightened senses to encode spatial relationships. She formed representations of her own world by the ways she knew how. The word “boundary” can have negative connotations of confinement and repression, and with this in mind, my friend lives on with utmost optimism – with hopefulness and confidence about her ever-growing, idiosyncratic world, laden with images and concepts of external objects not present to the ordinary sense of sight.
Eyes, Nose, Lips
by Daniel M
There is a really famous K-pop song called “Eyes, Nose, Lips” by Taeyang. It portrays a sensational experience of love, how I “feel” my lover through my eyes, nose and lips. I listened to the song five months ago when it was hot, hitting the top notch of the K-pop chart. The song was catchy and addictive, but at the same time, deep and emotional. So, I was singing it everywhere, on the streets, in my room, in the shower. A friend of mine, however, hated this song, and declared a war against my singing of it. Not just because I was singing with a duck voice (it was probably one of the reasons), but more because he disliked the song so much - he said he would even pay me to stop playing the song. I got a lot of hate and criticism from him: “This song is just way too shitty,” “Not my style, go kill yourself,” “Awful. Please stop it.” My friend, you have no taste in music whatsoever. I persistently continued singing.
Not so long ago, my friend’s voice that sounded even more sickening than mine was leaking out from his room. The voice was walking on a melody that I used to hear. “My eyes, nose, lips, and everything...” God, I found my friend playing the song. “This is a joke. What’s happening to the universe?” I thought. I slammed the door open loudly, shouting, “WTF.” My friend sat there with a surprised and awkward face, looking embarrassed from the sin that he committed. Completely blushing, he didn’t know where to look. His trembling lips tried to make an excuse: “Umm, don’t look at me like that. It’s just that my girlfriend wants me to sing this song for her…” I gazed at him for a second and suddenly burst out laughing. He is one of my most stubborn friends, and he changed his taste in music just because of her. What a good reason, sir. Well, I had to listen to his non-stop singing of this super-old, hateful song for days which felt like decades. He tried so hard to impress his girl, but he still sounded disastrous to me. It was my turn to fire shots - “Don’t sing, you make me hate that song. It literally decays my eyes, nose and lips.”