There is a school of thought that feeding a child’s sense of wonder is a good thing, even if the content of these fanciful ideas are nonsensical. I’m no expert, but I’m skeptical.

Examples of the unreal-wonder mentality are everywhere: mythincal icons like Santa Claus, superhero cartoons and lunch boxes, christmas emotionalism. They are certainly right about the ends, but I don’t like the means.

I would rather help activate a young person’s mind by pointing out the genuinely wonderful aspects of reality. If one knows where to look, one can take in a smorgasbord of arousing experience without having to shut one’s mind as a mystic. The world has so many beautiful sights, big and small: nebulae, ice crystals, plants, thunder clouds, eyes, economics, locomotives. They exude an approachable complexity, invite an intelligent mind to ponder just how they work, how they came to be.

If somehow an educated educator could guide the “tabula rasa” that is a young person toward a wonder of the real rather than the imaginary, maybe it would innoculate the young against later plagues of weak minds such as superstition, religion, communism, relativism. Well, at least one can dream.