First: No this is not a complete summary of The Little Prince.:)
I am not going to tell you the story of the little prince. The author has done that so well – that me doing it again would be an utter failure.;)
But then it is a book that moved me – and made me read it again and again. So I have to tell you about it.
Is there a part of you that is interested in stars and flowers and paper boats – in almost everything around you? A part that keeps asking questions and that wants to explore more and more of the world? Which doesn’t understand why you are running around in trains but which wants to sit down and enjoy the sunset?
Of course there is!
At least, I have such a child inside me. :) And so though I myself run around in trains, strive to make money and keep calculating the time I am wasting or spending “well”, that lovely little child still lives….
Now imagine how it would be if this little child inside us – the one that does not care about society – the one that would not stop you from making friends with a beggar – if this part comes OUT of you and stands right in front of you? And how would it be to see this little child travelling the world and interacting with people? It would be fun…and insightful right?
This little child is the “little prince”!
The Little Prince is the story of such a pure, innocent and yet infinitely wise young boy – just like the little boy inside you and me – and it describes this boy’s adventures! And though all this seems weird, and the story might itself seem “childish” – I couldn’t help forgetting the mundanity of the world for a minute..and crying – as a part of me discovered itself in the little prince…
So who is this little prince? What is his story?
|Have you already read The Little Prince? Tell us all your "Little Prince Story"!|
Well here’s a picture of him. :)
This guy lives far away from the earth on a planet of own. And this planet is as big as say – my house. :) And he loves a flower on his planet. And he tends to volcanoes on his planet. And he looks at the sunsets…
And then one day he has a fight with his flower..and he goes out to explore the rest of the universe. He interacts with “grown ups” like geographers, businessmen, conceited people…and well lots of others.
The people the little prince meets talk like grown-ups – people who are so worried about “society” that they have lost themselves. And it is the interactions of the pure little prince with “grown-ups” that form the crux of the story – and teach us so many things.
Later, the little prince also interacts with animals like the snake and the fox. Both of them are wiser than the “grown-ups” and the fox teaches the little prince about friendship.
For instance, when I read about the little prince meeting a king who is desperate to feel powerful and important , you know what I found out? That I had that “king “ inside me – the one who desperately wanted to feel powerful – and yet I also had the “little prince “ inside me – the fellow who was so simple and pure and who cared not for others’ opinions. :)
When the little prince meets a conceited man – this is how the conversation ensues…
"Good morning," said the little prince. "That is a queer hat you are wearing."
"It is a hat for salutes," the conceited man replied. "It is to raise in salute when people acclaim me. Unfortunately, nobody at all ever passes this way."
"Yes?" said the little prince, who did not understand what the conceited man was talking about.
"Clap your hands, one against the other," the conceited man now directed him.
The little prince clapped his hands. The conceited man raised his hat in a modest salute.
"This is more entertaining than the visit to the king," the little prince said to himself. And he began again to clap his hands, one against the other. The conceited man again raised his hat in salute.
After five minutes of this exercise the little prince grew tired of the game's monotony.
"And what should one do to make the hat come down?" he asked.
But the conceited man did not hear him. Conceited people never hear anything but praise.
And thus…in his innocent and curious way the little prince talks to people and enlightens us about what lies deep within ourselves. As the little prince goes on meeting interesting people – I cannot help feeling: Is this a conversation inside me – with the “society fearing” part of me talking to the most beautiful part of me?
The little prince also talks to a flower in the story – the flower he loves. And though talking to a flower might sound funny, the conversation he has with her…provides simple and beautiful insights into how relationships work and how we can make our relationships more meaningful. That though deep down we love the people we care about so much, we do speak rudely to them on the surface. The flower ill treats the little prince and disrespects him when he is around. It is too demanding and keeps pestering him to get her a glass case to protect her. And yet this is what happens when the little prince is about to leave the planet for his explorations:
"I have been silly," she said to him, at last. "I ask your forgiveness. Try to be happy..."
Hasn’t that happened in your life, at sometime or the other?
When the little prince comes to the earth and sees a huge bunch of roses, he remembers his own flower. And then he realizes how special his flower is. He says:
|"You are beautiful, but you are empty. One could not die for you. To be sure, an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you — the rose that belongs to me. 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 it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars (except the two or three that we saved to become butterflies); because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or ever sometimes when she said nothing. Because she is my rose."|
The Little Prince is fascinating because it is the story of a little boy from another planet talking to flowers and yet it rings true with what is deep inside me and you. It taught me a lot about love, about listening to my heart and about observing the parts of me that are full of conceit.
I’ll stop my ramblings on The Little Prince now. :) I have gone on and on! But – do read it once – it’s awesome. The Little Prince is available on Amazon
in the Paperback and Kindle versions. If you are from India, you can buy it from Flipkart here.
And in the meanwhile, here are some sweet quotes from The Little Prince that I just loved!
* It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.
* He had taken seriously words which were without importance, and it made him very unhappy.
* The little prince never forgot a question once he had asked it.
* "Only the children know what they are looking for," said the little prince. "They waste their time over a rag doll and it becomes very important to them; and if anybody takes it away from them, they cry . . ."
* "Men," said the little prince, "set out on their way in express trains, but they do not know what they are looking for. Then they rush about, and get excited, and turn round and round . . ." "It is not worth the trouble . . ."
* One runs the risk of weeping a little, if one lets himself be tamed . . .
* It is such a secret place, the land of tears.
* “It's the time you waste on your rose that makes your rose so important."
* “The stars are beautiful because of a flower that cannot be seen.” (The little prince on looking at the stars and hoping that his flower was safe on one of them.)
* You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed. You are responsible for your rose . .
* But when one flushes does that not mean "Yes"?
PS: Thank you Saurabh Kumar – you were the one who inspired this summary of The Little Prince because it was you who first told me about the book. :)
Have you already read The Little Prince? Do tell us all what you felt - for The Little Prince is a beautiful book that elicits beautiful emotions... Or maybe you'll write your own summary of the little prince for us!