How does one feel to be so disconnected to the world by the primary sensory means? Jorge Luis Borges embraces his blindness as a gift as it allows for his capacity to learn to increase and provides him the opportunity to appreciate languages and works of poetry that he might not had if he had retained his ability to see. While there is a disconnection to the environment through the capability to perceive through means of sight, one can assume that other sensory factors are heightened due to the lack of vision. Much of what I do depends on my ability to see, something I feel that many people take for granted.
Just closing my eyes I feel that my other senses are sharpened, acute to the slightest brush and able to pick up the sound of a pin drop from afar. As strange as it may seems, I catch myself staring blankly at some points throughout the day, completely numb to every other sense that I possess. Merely blank empty gazing into some sort of random void or distant horizon and without a single synapse or neuron firing. As blank as untouched paper, my mind will drift and my most useful sense is just taking nothing in. How would this change if I was somehow blind? There is nothing to vacantly gaze off of into. Is every other sense tensely waiting to react as any sort of incoming danger might arise? Is there never a moment where one is able to relax and attempt to perceive the hypothetical imminent threat that could happen at any moment?
Where Jorge Luis Borges lacks his ability to see, he makes up for in vision. Not vision in the meaning of sight, but in terms of what his expectations and goals. He does not let himself be held down by the restraints of blindness, but he actually comes to appreciate the way it has shaped him and his perspective of the world. This is much more than I can say about most people who have the ability to see. Everything is taken for granted.
Many people can see but they lack direction, vision, drive, and the capability to prove ones self. I do not think about what it would be like to be blind every day, but if I reflect back on how my lifestyle would have changed, then I wouldn’t be the same person that I am today. But then again who would I have been? Much of what I love to do is heavily dependent on the ability to see. I would not have been able to balk at he colossal oil paintings of the old masters, I would not have played tennis for years, I could not appreciate fashion or art. My career path relies on my ability to see shapes and determine whether or not they make a cohesive whole. Nothing would be the same.
Though one must appreciate their sight, do not take pity on those without theirs. Maybe they don’t want our sympathy. Blindness does not have to be seen as impairment to those who cannot see, but seen as a gift as Borges did.