How does it feel to be blind? What is life for a blind person? Dialogue in the Dark, an organization makes us experience this. And it does open eyes.
When some of my friends came to Hyderabad, we decided to visit its centre, housed at the top floor of Inorbit Mall. The lady at the counter gave us a background of this organization and told us about the packages offered – a 1 hour exhibition tour or a tour with complete lunch/dinner. We opted for the 1 hour tour not knowing what to expect.
We were given walking sticks and asked to enter a pitch dark room. A young man introduced himself as our guide (we later found out that he was blind). And then the tour began. We passed through, or rather, felt through rooms in a house – a kitchen, a library, a storeroom. We encountered a park with trees, grass and a bench, then took a boat ride in actual water. Later we were led to a restaurant where we had tea. All this happened in a completely dark environment.
One obvious realization out of this experience is the importance of eyes in our lives. We grossly underestimate our blessings. But another lesson is how much of a visual life we lead – most of our activities (work, hobbies, entertainment) happen using eyes and we use them as primary source of reference. This was proven – for everything we felt, our minds immediately created associated images.
We also found how much we had lost touch with the other senses. In the darkness, everything else acquired more clarity and sharpness – the touch of grass on fingertips, the sound of waves lapping on the boat, even the taste of tea. Oh, and I experienced fear in all its sharpness too, when I tripped once and didn’t know what to expect ahead. 🙂