It technically means a particular attitude towards or way of regarding something; a point of view’.
Let me give an example in simple words. If A has a particular opinion about an issue, B has a totally different opinion. Now if you have to judge who is right and who is wrong how will you judge? Your decision will be based on your experiences, background, teachings, surroundings, beliefs, values and the culture around you.
For many of us it is difficult to understand the view point of another person. This is because our logic and the above mentioned factors don’t allow our brain to understand it. But if we have to accept a person, it should be with his individual perspective.
To explain this better, I would like to share a story told by Mr. Devdutta Pattanaik, a well known mythologist.
This is when Alexander the great had already set his mighty foot in India. One day he met a Monk who was meditating. Alexander wondered and asked what he was doing.
The monk slowly opened his eyes, smiled and said “I m experiencing nothingness”. Now he looked carefully at Alexander and asked “What are you doing”? To this the king replied, “I m conquering the whole world”. After this, both just looked at each other and smiled.
Now if we think about this story a little deeply, this may be called diverse viewpoints. What made Alexander decide what his aim in life was? He was taught about Homer’s Iliad and was told stories about the mighty warrior Achilles. He was also taught to be heroic, aim for impossible things, win them, not to be monotonous and mediocre.This is because as per Greek mythology, there is only one life and that life had to be spectacular.
Now on the other hand, the Monk had heard stories of king Bharat. This king once climbed the peak of Mount Meru, which is considered the highest and the centre of the earth in Hindu mythology. King Bharat was carrying a flag and wanted to mark the peak, so that everyone would know that he was the first to climb the mighty mountain. But when he reached the peak, he saw countless flags already waving there. His ego was crushed, his victory felt meaningless.The monk learnt from this that everything is temporary and nothing lasts forever.
He was living in a land where the concept of rebirth was deeply believed in, that life was not just lived once, but is actually a cycle and if you have to break the cycle, you need to enlighten yourself and surrender to the almighty.
So when Alexander heard the monk’s answer, he must have thought what a waste of a life and smiled. Similarly the monk must have thought whats the use of conquering, when nothing lasts forever.