How I missed the fast train

The evening routine outside Waterloo Station is returning to normal. People are dining and laughing outside the steak house. Pedicabs are performing small turning circles. The bus hoots, as it always does, at the black cab which is forever blocking the approach while the fare is delivered.

At the foot of the station steps, a man in a Hi-Vis gilet (pink) holds us back. On the word “Action!” a fake crowd of fake commuters plods up the stairs. A real commuter who hasn’t caught on tries to join them. A fake commuter turns out to know one of the real commuters, which is how I know – I think – that they were filming an advertisement…

From the website of the Philosophy Foundation:

“THE STIMULUS
Chuang Tzu was a philosopher in ancient China, who, one night went to sleep and dreamed that he was a butterfly. He dreamt that he was flying around from flower to flower and while he was dreaming he felt free, blown about by the breeze hither and thither. He was quite sure that he was a butterfly. But when he awoke he realised that he had just been dreaming, and that he was really Chuang Tzu dreaming he was a butterfly. But then Chuang Tzu asked himself the following question: “was I Chuang Tzu dreaming I was a butterfly or am I now really a butterfly dreaming that I am Chuang Tzu?”

Follow the story with some Comprehension Time: get the children to explain the story and the question to each other. You could draw a diagram to help them understand...”

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