Today, I came across a folktale from India, called The Blind Man and the Elephant. It’s a story about six blind men, each with an idea of what an elephant looks like or what an elephant actually is. To make this discovery for themselves, the men decide to set out to finally discover what truly is an elephant. They end up finding an elephant, and since they are blind, the old men reach out to touch portions of the elephant, such as the ears or the trunk. They get into a fight as they try to determine which of them is actually correct in stating what an elephant is, based on the portion of the elephant their hand has touched. Only until the Rajah informs them that they have each touched a different part of the elephant and if they had only put the parts together, they would have seen the truth, do the men stop fighting and decide to trust and coexist with each other, despite differing viewpoints.
I share this story because today is World Elephant Day, a day to reflect and think about these animals that are rapidly disappearing from this earth. I also share this story as a lesson. With the occurrences of injustice and prejudice happening everyday in this world, it’s important to learn that such practices need to be quashed and that coexistence, respect, and trust, is the way that we should live our lives.