Today, my students took turns telling each other riddles. Most of them were silly, mildly clever, or just plain nonsensical.. But one of them made me think.
Marci: “Oh I have one! My friend told me this last week. Okay, okay. Wait! Before I start, PAY ATTENTION to the words….okay: Imagine you’re trapped in a room, no doors, no windows, no way to escape! You’re stuck! How do you get out???”
I thought and thought ‘til my brows furrowed and I started biting my nails, determined, adamant that I, the “Miss” Jessie, wouldn’t be out-witted by a 3rd grader.
But every one of my hypotheses were rejected by Marci. “Nope, nope, no, definitely not, no. There’s no way out! It’s an impossible room.”
I sighed and threw in my white towel. “Okay, you got me. What’s the answer? How do you get out?”
"It’s simple! You just.. stop imagining! I started the riddle by saying, ‘Imagine you’re…’ so, to get out of the situation, all you have to do is stop imagining it!"
Hm. That unexpectedly turned on a lightbulb over my head.
How often do we create problems in our minds that snowball into actual problems in real life? How prone are we, intelligent beings, to overlook the fact that much of our pain and struggle can be cured or alleviated by a simple shift in our mindset?
Not that, by ignoring or dismissing our problems, they magically disappear. But I’m talking about illuminating your focus on the things that are real. The things that matter. The things that can come to fruition, if only you believe in it.
"If you want to view paradise
Simply look around and view it
Anything you want to, do it
Want to change the world?
There is no
Life I know
To compare with
You’ll be free
If you truly
Wish to be”
Odd, how wisdom can be found in such an innocent and unassuming little riddle. Thank you, dear Marci, for your life lesson disguised as a snacktime activity.