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“I do believe in fairies! I do believe in fairies!” In the classic tale of PETER PAN, even adults are convinced or entranced to claim they believe. As a child, I disliked the animated movie of the same name because in the end, growing up means relinquishing fun and adventure and imagination. You eventually must be boring. “Don’t be ridiculous! Act your age!”
The current gigantic popularity of comic book films proves that adults do want to have adventure and imagination—and escape from their scary world, but they accept that the only way is through pretend. I beg to differ. The real world is absolutely stuffed with happy wonders, many of which we deliberately overlook because they’re weird.
When I was younger, I felt compelled to appear sensible. I’m over that now. The magic of life occurs outside the box, beyond the way things have always been done. Consider the absolutely confounding discoveries of science. Quantum physics, nano-technology, even wondrous advances in film—these fields and many more crackle with ideas that sound ridiculous until they’re fact. Reality is often not sensible at all.
I’m careful to avoid saying anything is “impossible.” The furthest I dare go is “that seems unlikely.” Scientific experiments are careful to limit the variables so the results will have more meaning. But in the huge, multi-dimensional fabric of being, the variables are nearly infinite—starting with all the ways in which our human perception is limited. A wave can be a particle or a wave, depending on whether you look at it. Doesn’t that sound a bit mad?
What does all this mean to the average person? To me, it means don’t let the stodgy folk who dwell inside the box tell you life is hopeless and dreary. Spend some time in nature—and by time, I mean days not minutes. Nature from a car window as you speed past might as well be a sixty-second advertisement on TV. Read or watch documentaries about animals and miracles and how plants can conspire to poison us so we don’t eat them up—then try to convince yourself people are the only important beings. Do something you’ve never done before. Play. Pretend you’re the kind of person you always wished you were.
We create a happier world by insisting that it happen, by believing that there are realities our hearts understand better than our minds do, by caring about the life around us more than we care about our toys or jobs, by trusting that we make a difference without ever realizing it. The nice part of growing older is we can finally give ourselves permission to have fun even if we look or sound silly.