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Timeless Life Lessons This Children’s Book Is Still Teaching Us

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Queen's U chapter.

Entering my third year of university has made me realize how fast time flies and how quickly I’ve grown up. After reminiscing about my childhood memories and the fun I used to have, I began reflecting on how different of a perspective I used to have on life. 

In my high school French class, we read Le Petit Prince, or in English, The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, which turned out to be one of my favourite books of all time. At first glance, it may seem like a simple story, but the little prince and his journey possess an underestimated wisdom. 

As I’m reminded of the sincerity and curiosity of childhood through this story, I’ve realized the importance of revisiting The Little Prince as an adult. Here are some timeless life lessons from The Little Prince that have resonated with me over the years:

“A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.”

One of the most important lessons I’ve learned from The Little Prince is about mindset and the power of human perception. Believing that even within the most ordinary of things lies the potential for something extraordinary. While it might be cliché, the notion of seeking the beauty in life holds undeniable truth. Sometimes the daily stresses of life can get overwhelming and we start to live everyday just to survive the next one; however, a simple change in perception can make all the difference.

University might seem like a common experience we all eventually encounter, but in changing my perspective I was able to see that it’s so much more than that. My journey at Queen’s isn’t a simple series of mundane tasks but rather an opportunity to shape my success and personal growth in all aspects of my life—not just academically. The friends I’ve encountered along the way have made my life more colourful than I could have imagined and for that, I am truly grateful.

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

This quote so perfectly encapsulates the importance of listening to your heart and the significance of recognizing the intangible, essential aspects of life. Saint-Exupéry conveys that genuine understanding and perception go beyond what we can see. True insight comes from a deeper emotional connection. It serves as a reminder that qualities like love, kindness, friendship, and the inner character of people cannot be measured and shouldn’t be overlooked.

What transforms both our world and our existence within it is our love for certain things, pursuits, and individuals and the ways in which we fill our lives with significance. My friends, family, and passions are what speak to my heart and give meaning to my life. It’s the moments spent with loved ones and doing the things you find fulfilling that allow you to truly see what matters. Love and passion are invisible but no less real or significant.

“All grown-ups were once children … but only few of them remember it.”

In The Little Prince, narrow-mindedness is portrayed as a characteristic of adults and conversely children are portrayed as creative. Grown-ups are portrayed as lacking in imagination and firmly convinced that their limited viewpoint is the sole valid one. 

As I’ve entered my 20s, I’ve realized how narrow-minded I’ve become. With more responsibilities and the innate maturation that occurs during this time, comes the repression of childlike behaviours. Personally, reading this book again made me realize how much I’ve changed and how much fun I had as a child. Although I’ve changed, I still understand the importance of having the frivolous moments in life. 

I spent time this summer rediscovering my love for art and have reintroduced it back into my life. Whether that be through drawing a stick man with crayons or a beautiful landscape, it has allowed me to bring back the childlike joy that was always within.

It’s important to remember that it’s possible to recapture the initial feeling of wonder we all experienced as children that we may have lost in the journey of growing up.

This children’s book allows you to revisit the memories of your childhood and to embrace the wisdom that emerges from that journey. It reminds us that, amidst the hustle and bustle of adult life, the essence of our true selves remains, waiting to be rediscovered. If you haven’t already read The Little Prince, you absolutely must!

Emma Luong

Queen's U '25

A third-year Health Sci student at Queen's University who enjoys reading, making Spotify playlists, watching classic movies and cooking!