Saturday, August 7, 2010

Vision of Eyesight

Those of us, who have been endowed with eyes as well as sight to go with it, are really fortunate. But at the same time those very people—armed with eyesight—are most unfortunate when bereft of vision.

I do not exactly remember where I read the lines: “Unfortunate are those who are gifted with eyesight but not with vision”. The line loaded with truth, because of its inherent philosophy, was given by none other than the incomparably indomitable Helen Keller.

So very true, but normally we end up using sight and vision synonymously. There is a thin line of demarcation, which again cannot be sighted by eyesight but is envisioned by the gift of vision. When we envisage something we are said to have a vision. And vision normally renders one progressive and not regressive. Though a lack of vision definitely draws us that much closer to being regressive, as it has been aptly said that stagnation is death. We need to evolve continuously as human beings. Evolution in the true sense is ‘educational’ progression.

Hence I feel how we graduate in life depends upon the vision or lack of it. Graduating in life doesn’t merely mean academic qualification(s) and financial up gradation. There is more to life—though one can’t do away with either. The most important credentials that we need to have are of a ‘Good and True Human Being’. ‘Human’ is a heavily loaded word. While it accepts as a foregone conclusion the presence of fault lines—we being humans and not ‘super humans’—it most importantly necessitates the innate qualities that are synonymous with ‘human’—the ‘humane’ qualities—empathy, sympathy, helping attitude, devotion…….The list is endless. But I name here the ones, which I find most pertinent.

I might be ridiculed for my observation: “even to possess the humane qualities we need to have vision”. But I would like to prove my point—a bit later! Before that there is something that needs incorporation as a prelude.

At the onset I had dabbled a bit in eyesight and vision. Now I shall come to their physical implications—to me. It is a bit of paradox. Vision to me is in essence an immeasurable quality while eyesight—the sight presented to us through our physical eyes, is measurable. But lo and behold, what does the optometrist say: he is testing our vision—6/6…….Thus vision is used synonymously with eyesight, which is very hard to object to—the definition.

Tied amidst this tug-of-war between my perception of vision—that which sees beyond the apparent, I had a vision of redefining vision (the dictionary meaning too corroborates me!) as being actually a state of sight, wherein we ‘see’ things that are not in the physical plane and are invisible to us, in that sense. Thus there is a difference in the ‘state’ of sight—other than those we see in the physical plane, in our consciousness. It could be mental picture, image, dream, idea, revelation, prophecy as has been enumerated in the dictionary.

The images, at the time we have the vision, are virtual and to make them real we need to take up the cudgels—if they are for a good cause.

That is why I had stated that even to possess the ‘humane’ qualities we need to have vision. Vision allows us to be understanding, show empathy when others are in want of our support the most. The vision would impel us to see ourselves in that predicament, which then would help us to realise what the other person might be going through. Then the human qualities ooze off us of their own volition.

Vision in turn is aided by imagination, awareness and sensitivity. One who is imaginative is automatically sensitive (to the people and surroundings, in general) and the one who is sensitive is rendered aware—to the needs of self as well as else. Needless to say that one who possesses these qualities is blessed with vision. And one who has vision is ‘human’ to the core. It might be an over simplification, but it is a simple chain reaction!

I am talking of positive vision here. Even the perpetrators of crime carry forward their heinous act forearmed with a concrete vision of its outcome. Their vision is loaded with images of spreading negativity and the execution of their vision—though provides them ample satisfaction—renders them ‘inhuman’.

All great men and women have been able to carry out their great deeds with great success, with high ‘effectiv-ity’ quotient because of the purity of their vision. This vision could be available to people of all ages and is free from the worries of being affected by cataract, glaucoma, retinal detachment……the ailments that affect the physical eyes.

Thus vision of an eyesight is desired wherein we would be able to envision things even through our physical eyes—they acting in synergy with the mental eyes—so that one could say that empowerment with an eyesight implies the concurrent existence of vision.

Sushmita Mukherjee,
1st July 2010