Posted by: Brendon O-L. | December 3, 2009

Does the Hidden Message Exist?

Meaning. Why do we strive to find it? Why does everything need an explanation?

The Duchess makes several comments about morals and meanings. In chapter nine, she says,

“Every thing’s got a moral, only if you can find it.”

Is this because everything is important and significant?

I think not. Everything does not need to have a message or moral, but everything does. Why? This is because we as humans believe that everything has a meaning, even when it does not. We always search for these explanations, even when we found none. We can say something has no significance, only after we have searched for a meaning within it. We are curious. We always ask questions, in hope of getting an answer. If there is not answer, we attempt to give our own meaning to it.

A great example of this occurs in chapter thirteen, when the Knave is being put on trial for stealing the Queen’s tarts. in the middle of the trial, they find a letter that they believe was written by the Knave.

At first, the king looks for evidence in a seemingly random letter. He finds a meaning, even though it was a letter filled with gibberish. He ties the letter back to the Knave by the fact that the Knave could not swim. This fact was mentioned in the letter, but there was no signature.

The answer? The Knave did not put a signature since it was a letter regarding the tarts and if it was found with his signature he would have been condemned to death. The King finds out the letter was talking about the tarts and the Queen, even though at first it seemed to be worthless.

Note: See my post called “Order in the Court!” for more about the trial and its nonsense.

Is this interpretation true? No, not necessarily, although it is possible. This letter may have no significance, but the king’s determination to find a meaning led him to find one. What if we say there isn’t one? Then, we are probably just to tired to think of one.

We as humans attempt to give meaning to everything, although there may not always be one. If it isn’t there, we give it one. Our human nature forces us to give it meaning because what if we are not important? Is there a point to living? This is why we must give everything some importance. By making everything else meaningful, we give ourselves a meaning and a purpose.


  1. Humanity’s incessant obsession with purpose is, ultimately, most likely going to turn up fruitless; I’d agree that there just might not be a true ‘meaning’ to anything whatsoever. However, it’s easy for a philsophically astute person to make this claim…but to make the follow-up point that you did takes an enormous breadth of wisdom. Regardless of whether or not there’s a grand meaning to the universe, we have to either convince ourselves that there is or find meaning in the simple aspects of life; otherwise, our species will rapidly plummet towards extinction. Therefore, seeking meaning is incredibly beneficial…even if there isn’t anything there but blackness.

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