Blindness can manifest itself in many ways. Disputably the most damaging form of this condition may be the figurative blindness of one’s own situation and ignorance towards the feeling of others. In Raymond carver’s short story “cathedral,” the narrator’s emotional and psychological blindness is immediately apparent. The many issues faced by the narrator as well as the turn-around experienced at the culmination of the tale are the main idea for the theme of this story and these ideas aid the narrator in eventually collapse to character transformation by simply regarding the literal blind man in a positive way.
The narrator’s statement at the very beginning of the story explains his own lack of knowledge concerning physical blindness. His lack of knowledge relating to the visitor’s disability is undeniable, he make it very clear that he is aware of this stating that he “wasn’t very enthusiastic about his visit. ”(81) Beside he doesn’t know the blind guy and his being blind bothered him too. I believe that you can’t make judgment about a person or dislike just because he can’t see. The narrator was judgment him because of the relation that the blind had with his wife not just because he is enable to see.
The introduction of the story explains the relationship between narrator’s wife and the blind man, detailing how it evolved to its present status. It is in this part that I as a reader I see an example of the figurative blindness from which the narrator suffers because of his knowledge of the relationship between the two which seem to stem from his own troubled relationship with his wife. Is here when his wife gave him an ultimatum to accept Robert, stating that if her husband loves her, he would “do this for me if you don’t love okay. (83) Throughout the story the narrator show his jealousies toward the relationship his wife and the blind man share. Insecurity gives a way to a troubled relationship with his wife. The narrator revaluates his suspicious ideas regarding to the relationship with his wife and the blind men.
Drug and alcohol usage throughout the entire story significantly adds to another blindness of which the subject is unaware. Once Robert arrives he is immediately introduced to a social drinking, especially when he is questioned for his choice of drink. He stated that him and his wife carry “a little of everything, it is one of our pastime. (85) This is a point that is described on the plot. The final enlightenment experienced by the narrator is a direct result of the mindset brought upon by his marijuana usage. In fact I believed that many of his described problems may be attributed to his drinking and drug use. Someone that is under the influence of a foreign substance does things and says things that they may never say on their five senses. The story climaxes after the wife falls asleep and the two men are finally allowed to converse with each other. It is at this time when the narrator finally gets to see the attitude and thoughts of the blind man.
This lead to his own personal transformation when Robert ask whether or not the narrator is religious and his answer was “ I guess I don’t believe in it . in anything”(91) this answer was unsure of his own knowledge because he wanted to impress the blind man that I say he just respond that to keep the conversation with Robert. This made me see that the narrator is in need of something which means more than just physical blindness. I think that Robert feels the necessity to help the narrator both mentally and emotionally bringing understanding to a man filled with bad ideas and opinion about others.
Today society have a minute understanding of what it is to truly see that this initiative is more than physical viewing and is based more on emotional understanding for an instance. Figuratively seeing is what it is inside of other people and also is what they can feel and how they think. The final drawing of the cathedral truly helps me to understand the meaning of achieve through working together. The two men hold hands while drawing the cathedral which for me is the basis for the story being told. This changing experience helps me to understand between looking and seeing.
This narrator would simple have continued on his close-minded lifestyle and never had learn about or accepting other people as they are. The last few sentences of this story made me realize that being blind is not an affliction that is limited solely to the body. I learn that a person can be blind to the feelings of others and the problem that can affect our everyday life. I believe that with tolerance to an individual can find both respect for themselves and awareness for people around us. I agree with the author of this story blindness is not an obstacle to continue being a normal person in life.