He was born without language, a perceptual disconnection he never understood. He was born with a challenge – to survive in a world where visual and spoken languages were the only recognised mediums of communication. He was born deaf and blind to parents who were neither and they had no concept or recognition of his world, as he had none of theirs.
They took him to specialists, determined to fix what had never been broken. They were fortunate in being able to afford to do so. They were unfortunate in that nothing could be done. He grew, cared for and loved – from a distance. Isolated by his inability to react to a seeing, hearing world, he lived in an environment where he was cared for by people who said they understood his special needs. There was no way for them to understand him; they did not perceive the world as he did. He rejected their efforts, comfortable in solitude.
He was alone, but not lonely. In his isolation, within the stillness and quiet of his impressionable mind, there was no way for him to comprehend the concept of impossibilities. There were no limits imposed by a world of words. No lessons of life to be learnt from books.
He was seen as sub-normal, a man to be pitied, but he never learnt the meaning of pity, nor of self. The impregnable fortress that was his mind expanded beyond the limits of a language culture. He recognised air, because he breathed it. He recognised earth, because he stood on it. He recognised animals, because he lived as one. His mind was infinite, unhindered by the restrictions placed on others by their learnt perceptions.
He aged, his understanding of life expanding, until the day it snapped the limits of global consciousness and, effortlessly, he was the universe – from the furthest reaches of space to the tiniest cell in his body.
On that day, he died. Reborn.
*The idea for this story came after a discussion I had with a friend, an article I read here and the prompt from Rachel Poli’s Time to Write post. Unfortunately, we have a tendency to believe that language is a measure of intelligence. It’s not. The truth is, language is just one of the many ways in which humans communicate. One day, we may evolve enough to understand this concept.