The other day I was having a chat with one of my 14 year old daughters. Concluding a conversation on some personal yet mundane topic, I asked her if there is anything else on her mind. She considered my invitation for a moment and then responded, somewhat casually, “I have been wondering, why am I here?” I could not resist a smile. And, I must admit, I felt a little proud: my daughter is growing up, and, so it seems, in the right direction…
I told her that she is asking the ultimate question, one that others have asked since time immemorial; an inquiry likely made by the caveman as he stood searching the night’s sky, by ancient Greek philosophers, as well as by modern men and women. It is a question that gave birth to various religions, to scientific quests and to poetry, a riddle that made some men jump off cliffs in desperation, and elated others to nirvana.
Okay, my answer to her wasn’t that illustrative. But I did tell her that I am glad to hear her asking this ancient question; a query that has no absolute reply but that the journey to discover answers, a quest that may last a lifetime, is a mission worth embracing.
Learned from: my daughter’s questioning the meaning of life