What do you mean the answer is X?
The answer is X.
But X doesn't mean anything..
Yes, it does, it means X.
Is X a letter?
What does X stand for?
It stands for X.
Is it an animal, a mineral, a plant?
No, it is X.
Is it a process, a theory, a hypothesis, a conclusion?
No, it is just X.
You're being silly now.
X doesn't think so.
What do you mean X doesn't think so! You just said that X doesn't stand for anything, so how can it think anything?
Well, X just is.
X is just what? !
X just is.
Hmmmm. If X is the answer, what is the question?
If the answer is X, then the question should be X.
So if the question is X, the answer should be X?
Why isn't Y the question?
If Y was the question, the answer should be Y.
Why can't Y be the question and X the answer?
Don't be silly. Then it wouldn't make sense.
It doesn't make sense already!
Yes, it does. Obviously Y is Y. It would be a pretty crazy world if X was Y and Y was X. Don't you think?
Ok. If X is just X, what is Y?
Y is Y.
Grrrrrr. What is X again?
X is X and if X is the question, the answer should be X.
So X is the question.?
If you say so...
What do you mean, if I say so? You just said that if X was the question then the answer should be X!
Yes. The answer should be X, but ONLY if the question was X. I didn't say the question WAS X.
So, the answer mightn't be X at all?
That's right. The answer depends on the question.
So, how do I know what the answer is?
The answer should be directly related to the question.
And the question will be directly related to the answer?
But you just said that the question was X and the answer was X and that the question was Y, and the answer was Y.
Yes, I did.
So, if I know the answer is X, then the question must be X.
No. Sometimes people supply the wrong answer to the right question.
So, the question is the most important thing?
How will I know if I have the right question?
There are no right and wrong questions.
But you just said that the question is the most important thing!
Yes. The question is extremely important. Some people ask X and end up with the answer Y, or Z.
Don't tell me. If Y is the question, Y should be the answer. But if Y is the answer, the question might not be Y. And if Z is the question, Z should be the answer. But if Z is the answer, the question might not be Z?
By jove! You've got it!!
X, of course...
As way of explanation: -
In "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" by Douglas Adams, there is a computer named 'Deep Thought' which was built by a race of super intelligent beings in order to calculate the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything. When the answer is revealed as by 'Deep Thought' as 42, it evokes this reaction.
"Forty-two!" yelled Loonquawl. "Is that all you've got to show for seven and a half million years' work?" "I checked it very thoroughly," said the computer, "and that quite definitely is the answer.
I think the problem, to be quite honest with you, is that you've never actually known what the question is."
And so it is, most of us concern ourselves with the answer, whereas we should be spending more of our time on the question.
"The question you’re not supposed to ask is the important one." - Mason Cooley
The part in "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy" where 'Deep Thought' provides THE ANSWER.