Magical Places

Happy New Year everyone! I know, I’m a few weeks late but this is how it is these days with my ongoing renos at home. Not that I’m complaining…but I miss blogging! The other problem was that the year didn’t start too well. I mean, it was fine for me, but there were several events local, and worldwide, that were upsetting. That is to say, upsetting to me, devastating for those involved. The latest of which, being the earthquake in Haiti. Not that I’m in any way ignoring the importance of these events, but I wanted my first post of the year to be positive. So I will delay posting on more critical events by one post, if you’ll forgive my frivolity.

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My four year old daughter came to me today and asked me if I knew about fossils. She didn’t want to know what I knew though…she wanted to tell me what she knew. According to her, they are old footprints from a long, long time ago in the ground. Sure. Good start. I tried to expand on that, but her mind was already on something else.

“Are there Unicorn fossils? How long ago were they on the earth?”

I respond slowly and carefully. “I don’t think anyone has found any. They weren’t really on the earth.”

Silence.

“Well…where were they?”

This is where being a consistent atheist becomes difficult. When you think about it, the argument against the existence of God is just as applicable to magic, Santa, and all other imaginary things. But in the end I’m more fearful about curbing imagination than I am about being inconsistent. After all, many of the greatest fantasies were born of wild imaginations intrigued with magic. Think J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, or Gene Roddenbury to name a few. Sure you can claim that Star Trek is based on science…but when one thinks simply of being able to go from one place to another far away at the push of a button or by closing one’s eyes…is it not a fantasy, a little wish for magic – a wish that inspires invention and innovation? So I think, what’s the harm in allowing her to continue to believe in unicorns?

I turn on my kid-brain. “They’re magical creatures. They live in magical places.”

Her eyes light up. “At the end of rainbows?!”

“Uh huh.”

“Can we go sometime?”

“Well, they are very hard to find. Usually you need elves to show you the way. But if you can find an elf…”

She grabbed her backpack full of supplies and took off. Not too much later I heard her having a great discussion with an elf. I smiled to myself. Nope…no harm…just an afternoon of imagination and adventure.

Pure logic can easily dismiss magic, but it would be a boring, and I might dare to say unprogressive, world without it in our dreams and fantasy don’t you think?