Ah children; innocent, sweet and scarily accurate at times.
It comes as no surprise that children see the world differently to us jaded adults. They might still believe in magic, have a soft spot for Santa Claus or think that they can both enjoy avocado toast and be homeowners in the future. It’s sheer folly!
However, sometimes kids say things that make us stop for a moment and question the whole world around us – kids like the students in school teacher Bret Turner’s class.
One of Turner’s classes in Albany, California were tasked with solving this riddle:
“I am the beginning of everything, the end of everywhere.
“I’m the beginning of eternity, the end of time and space.
“What am I?”
The relatively simple answer to the riddle is the letter ‘e’. However, Turner’s students suggestions were a lot more complicated.
The first guess from one of my 1st graders was “death” and such an awed, somber, reflective hush fell over the class that I didn’t want to tell them that actually the answer is the letter e, which just seemed so banal in the moment pic.twitter.com/7sYFxHNcZk
— Bret Turner (@bretjturner) January 2, 2018
See what we mean? It didn’t stop there either!
Before I finally revealed the "correct" answer to the riddle, to a largely unimpressed audience, I fielded other guesses that continued along a similarly existential vein. There was "NOT everything," "all stuff," "the end," and maybe my favorite, "nothingthing."
— Bret Turner (@bretjturner) January 3, 2018
The answers were so thought-provoking, that they even created an existential debate on Twitter.
In practical terms, death leads to new life. Your remains become a part of everything. We are all made of ancient stardust. If you're religious death marks the beginning of everything. Life is merely a doorway into eternal life in paradise with god (whichever one you worship)
— ?Sal-Robin? (@Sal_Robins) January 3, 2018
Ah, nothing like an existential crisis to spice up your day!
Via Indy 100