Toddler parallels: Trailers and how little we know 🚛Oct 19, 2023
One morning on the way to school we followed behind a truck towing a trailer. I tried to explain to Jack what a trailer was (since he loves trucks), but we were on a one lane road so all he could see was a rectangle getting bigger and smaller as we got closer and further away. Therefore my explanations of what a trailer is and does made no sense to Jack.
I started thinking about how this is a great metaphor for what we adults know about the world: we’re not wrong, but we’re hopelessly limited in our view. We can learn a whole lot and even make a lot of predictions using powerful math about how big and small that rectangle is going to be based on the speed we’re going, and the speed it’s going; we can say all sorts of stuff about its color, make predictions, etc, but we’re only looking at a 2-D representation of a much more wholistic object, whose true function is lost to us. Imagine how silly our efforts would be trying to control it, attempting to throw ropes around it to drag it back to us. How often is our planning and strategizing about the future a similarly hilariously out of sync effort?
This reminds me to approach life with a sense of wonder, humility, and openness, recognizing that there's always more to learn and understand. Why judge events as good or bad when we don’t really know what anything is in the first place? Or as Frank Herbert writes in Dune, “The mystery of life is not a problem to be solved but a reality to be experienced”.
With love, Jordan
More like this?
Fresh practices, psyche-activating perspectives, & relationship tips every week in your inbox. Plus occasional updates from our team.
We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.