Why are we drawn to magic?

From the AMA pile, Nameless One (though not the Nameless One . . . I don't think) asks:
Why are we so drawn to the theme of magic?

When viewing cravings, be it one for air, food, sex and something else...they are all based on things that we can observe and acquire, so why do we crave works of fiction that involve magical themes as strongly as we do?

Well, I can't tell you why you are drawn to the theme of magic. I can tell you that there are people who aren't drawn to the theme of magic, who feel fantasy fiction is ludicrous and a waste of time (and I really can't tell you why they feel that way).

But I can tell you why I am drawn to themes of magic: because I want to believe there is more to this world than what we think we know.

I want to believe there are powers we don't understand, worlds we've never visited and can't imagine, wonders that we could accomplish -- right now, even -- if we only knew how.

This sounds superstitious and silly (okay, I guess I can understand why those people feel that way about fantasy), but it's not. Gravity is a power I can calculate but don't fully understand, and I understand black holes and the strong nuclear force even less. The universe is filled with worlds we've never visited and can only imagine by pointing really powerful telescopes at distant stars and measuring how they twinkle.

And we are surrounded by wonders that, whether we can explain them or not, are no less wonderful for that. Cancer survivors are magic. Forests that regrow after a raging wildfire are miraculous. Everything at the bottom of the ocean is a fricking horror marvel.

Shoot, man, my kids are magic. They are people, with thoughts and ideas of their own, who will one day do things that no one has done before. And yet twenty-five years ago, NOT A SINGLE ONE OF THEM EXISTED.

So I don't know about you, but I'm drawn to themes of magic because my world is filled with it and nobody seems to notice. I want to notice. I don't want to think that, just because I can explain or reproduce a thing, it means that thing is now mundane. And I want to believe -- I do believe -- that there are greater marvels out there that we know nothing about yet, or perhaps that we've dismissed because they don't fit our schema of what the world should be like. There's got to be more than this world seems to offer. We just gotta find it.

I don't know, guys. Why are you drawn to themes of magic?


Got a question. Ask me anything.