The idiom 盲人摸象 refers to only having a surface-level understanding of something, or to only understand part of something but think you have the whole story. It is believed to have originated from a Buddhist sutra, the Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra 《大般涅槃经》, to be precise, which is over 1500 years old. This is not the original text of the sutra – the original Sanskrit version was lost, and this story has been re-told a zillion times in a zillion ways, but it’s still cool to get a glimpse into what is essentially a Buddhist story from antiquity.
Some language stuff
长什么样 zhǎng shén me yàng – The character 长 has many meanings and two pronunciations. The one we usually learn first is cháng, which means “long”, as in the opposite of “short”. But pronounced zhǎng, it also means “appearance”, or “what something looks like” (and about a billion other things, so don’t get married to that definition). So, 长什么样 means “what something looks like”.
原来 yuán lái – I just went over this in a recent post, but again, this means “turns out that”, as in, “Turns out she was here to see someone else.”
只不过 zhǐ bu guò – Is nothing more than / is nothing but.
才能 cái néng – My dictionary pop-up generator has this wrong, it displays the definition as “ability” or “talent”. As a noun, that is indeed what 才能 means. However, this is actually not a single noun made up of two characters, but two separate characters, 才 and 能, which together mean “only then can one _____”. I always found 才 to be a pain-in-the-butt character, because it has so many amorphous meanings that don’t translate well into English, and you can only really figure out which one is being used in context, and some of those meaning are direct opposites. Blogger Jenna Wang does a good job of explaining all of them here.