Mentor Link: Active Imaginations
My daughter, age eight, has a very active imagination. Lately she has been talking about another world that she visits on a regular basis. She says she would like me to go there with her sometime, and I am not sure how to reply. She describes this world in such vivid detail that I am beginning to wonder if it could be real. I have read that you had similar experiences as a child, so I am hoping you can help me.
— C.M., Lake Champlain, VT
Your daughter is reaching out to include you in an experience that is clearly important to her, so I would begin by believing in her even if her experience is different than your own. We teach children to use their imagination freely in play and creativity yet often cue up messages that imply the opposite.
Our sensory abilities default to sight and touch in determining what is real, but this basic skill set is limited to the physical world. A rich imagination grants access to an advanced skill set, with sensory abilities that open closed doors, bridge chasms, and allow you to perceive potential worlds beyond this one. Most of us had these abilities when we were young but were not encouraged to exercise or develop them.