On Saturday afternoon Lachlan and I walked downtown to get an ice cream cone. We meandered over to the Black Schooner gift shop and sat on the porch. There weren't any customers in the shop, so the proprietor, Sundae, was sitting in one of the rockers. We chatted for a few minutes when Lachlan (he's seven years old; soon to turn eight) addressed Sundae: "What do you think the meaning of human existence is?" he asked.
Sundae jokingly asserted that meaning was "overrated" and allowed as how we humans tend to view our species as the center of the universe (she didn't actually put it quite like that, but I think that's close to what she was trying to convey), and that we often want to assign cosmic meaning where there isn't any. A rather nuanced discussion ensued.
Finally Lachlan said simply that he thought the meaning of existence was to be happy with what you have, enjoy nature, and try not to kill animals.
I think Lachlan's thoughts will change some as he matures, but they sure seem like a darn good beginning to me.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is Molly Lovejoy's 2012 Ocracoke School Valedictory Address. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news062112.htm.