I like reading children’s literature. I have always liked reading children’s books. They tap into beautiful aspects of our mind that is dormant in our adult lives. It is almost like unicorns and fairies are only there for minds great enough like a child’s mind. The son seems to like tales of friendship between frogs and toads, race cars and tow trucks, octopus and squid etc.
The ability to imagine a whole different world when we have a perfectly good one around us requires an imagination greater than our conditioned minds can take.
Of late, I have been thinking often of the post of mine a few years ago:
Children’s books remind me of the quote by Einstein. When asked what to read to children to make them intelligent, he said:
If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be very intelligent, read them more fairy tales.
I love the books by Dr Seuss addressing important questions such as:
Want kind of feet do you want?
Would you rather be up or down?
A question our children often get asked is: What do you want to be when you grow up?
I know it weighs on some children a rather lot more than on others. When they ask me what they should be when they grow up, I reverse the question and send it back to them to think. What do you like to do, and from there we can see what you would like to be.
The son’s answer is an interesting one. He wants to be an eye doctor and a fire fighter ‘this month’. (He was fascinated that his sister went for an eye exam and got to come home and test her brother’s eyesight, and he is in awe of fire-trucks and Disney’s Planes 2 movie about a plane training to be a firefighter ).
The daughter picks a different profession every few months, and one day when they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I thought a little harder instead of shooting something out to appease them: This is what I want to do. I want to do several things that stretch my imagination in several directions for several weeks at a time. I want to be a writer, a dancer, a teacher, an entertainer, a researcher, an economist, a firefighter, a nurse, a counsellor, a tree planter, a software engineer, a banker, a naturalist, a biologist, a librarian (one of my earliest dreams), a doctor, a teacher, a painter, a sculptor, a physicist, a chef, a scented candle maker, a perfume maker, a florist, a gardener, a textile engineer, a physicist, an anthropologist, a historian.
How about a reader, a dreamer, a traveler, an adventurer, an imagineer?
Some weeks, I want to be as introverted as it is possible to be, some weeks, I want to work a party into everything I do. I would like to be the animated one day and an animator the next. I would like to be a thinker one day and a do-er the next.
I would like to be curious-er everyday.
There are several things that removal of poverty can bring about. One, I hope is the ability to try different things to see the most appealing work for each person. That, in itself, could obviate the need for self renewal:
Our education could be a few years of doing everything, for the mundane is already taken care of, the existential is no longer a question.
What do you want to be today? This month? This year?