A man was known in his neighborhood, just as well abroad, that walked and stumbled about, wearing a blindfold across his eyes. He became proficient in walking with his stick but still by the very nature of his inability to see, he was limited to what he could do. Family and friends grew accustomed to his blindfold so that they no longer noticed it or questioned him about it. The blindfold did on rare occasions became a topic of discussion when he would be approached by a stranger.
“Hello sir, if you don’t mind and I mean no offense, but may I ask you a question?”
He continues feeling about trying to ascertain what type of fruit is in his hand because he seeing a few ripe peaches.
“Yes you may, if you must.”
“Sir, why do you walk about with a blindfold?”
“Actually young man, is it? Yes, actually I do not know what you are referring to.”
“Sir, the” and he gently touches the blindfold, “this object sir. It covers yours eyes.”
“Young man, you are in error. I have no blindfold. I have been struck with blindness from when I was a young man. And to this day I can see no longer.”
The young man looks at the man as he was continuing to feel about the fruit. The young man looked around and noticed a person beside him a short distance who was following the strange conversation. He looked at him and the man shrugged and shook his head. “Um, sir if you would allow may I show you what I mean?”
“Young man, you have already poked me in the face, which was not appreciated; what other harm do you mean to do to me whom am innocently just like many here, seeking to purchase some food?”
“I did not mean to poke you, that was not my intent. I was simply touching the blindfold I was referencing so as to bring it to your attention. It is quite probably the source of your darkness. Your blindness. And if you would but remove it, you would be able to see. You could see the fruit before you. You could see your hands and your cart. You could see me, whom talks with you. Sir, you could see.”
“Young man, you poked my face and I didn’t appreciate it. I was going to let it go unreferenced but as with those like you, you must continue to push on me your words and belief. As I told you, I have been blind since I was a young man. Actually, quite possibly, I was your age or very close. I have had this blindness and I have mastered living with it and in it. It is no longer a restriction to me. Nor cumbersome. And seeing that you, pardon the pun, are of the sorts that are judgmental of people such as I, I request, no! I demand, you leave me alone and go about your own business. Your meddling has upset me and is not at all appreciated.”
With that the man with the blindfold pushed his cart away from the bin of nectarines. The young man watched the man go toward the next aisle and reflected on the encounter. He said within himself, “Why would a person choose to live life with a blindfold on? It hampers the senses. The person cannot see clearly and thereby understand correctly. Why would one want to live as such?”
The young man then walked toward the cashier and continued to ponder these things.