While adults spend so much time contemplating life’s weighty issues with mixed results, the answers seem to come quite easily to kids. Take my 5-year-old son, Andy, who rhapsodized about God and family while simultaneously sipping a juice box and eating fruit snacks. Maybe we could all learn something.
What does God look like?
“Oh, he’s a big guy with a long, green coat. He might look like a monster.”
Do you know what God is?
“It’s like, OK, people think that God created this whole city. I don’t know who really created a whole city though.”
Do you know what happens after you get very old and die?
“Heaven is when you, like, go up. You usually go up somewhere else. It’s what you get past, where you die. It’s a good place to go. It’s like, the next big place.”
Do you celebrate Hanukkah?
“Yes. After Thanksgiving.”
How do you celebrate it?
“Listen, I do what it’s all about. I do everything. I light candles with all my family.”
What is a family?
“It’s a bunch of people who live in a big house. Or it could be a tiny house. But they all stick together.”
What is your favorite thing to do with your Zayde?
“We read books. Any kind of books. History books. I also like it when he tickles my belly button, or tickles me to the ground.”
Did he give you anything special?
“My baseball glove, of course.”
What does it mean to be a good person?
“You help people, and you do nice things to people, and you say nice things, and that’s it.”
If you could help someone in any way, how would you do it?
“Oh, the person could be falling down a bridge in hot lava, and I’d rescue them. I’d do that if I could fly.”
What is your favorite thing about being a kid?
“Not having to do all the work, like adults do.”
What do you think could be the best part of being a grown-up?
“You could be a bike rider. It’s really fun. Or even an umpire.”
Who else do you know who is Jewish?
“My friend Griffin. We had that meat at his house. Brisket. And I found some matzoh! Also, my Uncle Steven.”
That was a fun time. Did you get anything special for finding the afikoman at Passover?
“A Dominus Rex! He can move around better than humans.”
How can people be more happy?
“It’s really not that hard, Mum. You just wake up, and if you smile, then you’re happy!”