Innocence is a trait that both the pilot and the little prince value. For the pilot, the little prince's innocence makes it important to protect and comfort him. For the little prince, his rose's naïveté similarly makes it important for him to return to his planet to protect her. Innocence itself serves as protection as well—when the little prince encounters the snake, the snake refrains from poisoning the boy because of his innocence.
Grownups are those who have lost their innocence—and as a result, have stopped seeking the truth. They care more about sums and titles than about the traits contained beneath the surface. The state of innocence is therefore valuable because it comes with perceptiveness and an ability to see the important things in life.
Innocence Quotes in The Little Prince
"I don't believe you! Flowers are weak creatures. They are naïve. They reassure themselves as best they can. They believe that their thorns are terrible weapons..."
"My flower is ephemeral," the little prince said to himself, "and she has only four thorns to defend herself against the world. And I have left her on my planet, all alone!"
"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..."
"They are lucky," the switchman said.
I said to myself, again: "What moves me so deeply, about this little prince who is sleeping here, is his loyalty to a flower—the image of a rose that shines through his whole being like the flame of a lamp, even when he is asleep..." And I felt him to be more fragile still. I felt the need of protecting him, as if he himself were a flame that might be extinguished by a little puff of wind...