In many ways books are like people. You can’t judge it by its appearance. Some are shallow; some are deep and some should never have been printed.You flip through most books either because they’re bland or because they’re simply not your type. Some you read again and again because they’re interesting or too much to understand in a single read. Then there is that one book, which changes you, completely. For me it was “The Little Prince”.
The Little Prince, written and illustrated by Antoine De Saint-Exuperay is one of the most read children’s book. The plot can be summed up in one sentence. A stranded pilot in Sahara desert meets an alien who used to live on an asteroid. But it is so much more than that.
There was a time when authors actually understood the purpose of children’s books.They were more than just entertainment. they were supposed to teach children important things. Like friendship or how to to run away from home and signs of your own murder. Alice in Wonderland taught one the best people always appear crazy. Little Prince teaches the importance of being a child.
There is a difference between being a child and being childish. Being a child involves keeping your mind open and having tonnes of curiosity. Being childish involves conversations like the following
“Daddy I want a flying glass elevator”
“The only thing you’re getting today is a bath”
“But i WANT it!!”
Those who haven’t seen Charlie and the Chocolate Factory please do so at the earliest. Its a great movie.
What this book manages to do is put complex ideas into simple explanations. This book answers that one all important question “Dude, why are you so hung up over that girl?”. I’ll let the Little Prince answer it. but in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses:because it is she that i have watered;because it is she that i have put under the glass globe;because it is she that i have sheltered behind the screen….because she is my rose. He’s talking about a rose flower he had back on his asteroid but the same answer applies to anybody who walked out on you or you walked out on.
The book shows you the power of imagination. It teaches you the importance of looking at a marble block and seeing The West Wind (i googled marble statues, don’t ask me more). Technically the book teaches you to look at the picture of a hat and see a boa constrictor swallowing an elephant. The point is one needs a child’s mind to do that. Its the same feeling that drove Benjamin Franklin to fly a kite during a thunderstorm.
But the greatest message in the book is it is only with the heart one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye. Children set a very high standard and judge everyone by it. A standard that rate your character. they don’t care about what you wear or what you look like. Then they go to shcool and it all gets messed up. They learn unimportant stuff like tucking in your shirt. I often wonder why we won’t let children be themselves. Why do we contaminate them with our personal convictions? After all the creative adult is the shild who survived.