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The Power of Awe and Wonder

“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.”― Albert Einstein

In a recent New York Times article How a Bit of Awe Can Improve Your Health, research shows that there are health benefits to experiencing awe. As we start the new year with resolutions and intentions, a practice of awe could be the one that facilitates success of the others. Children are the authors of awe. Adults lose it when we enter the “real world.” We become flat, asleep and on autopilot checking off our “to do” lists. According to research, awe is something you can develop, with practice:

  1. Pay attention
  2. Focus on the “moral beauty” of others – witness the goodness of others
  3. Practice mindfulness – distraction is the enemy of awe
  4. Choose the unfamiliar path – gravitate to the unexpected

“Awe is the feeling of being in the presence of something vast that transcends your understanding of the world,” said Dacher Keltner, author of a new book: Awe: The New Science of Everyday Wonder and How It Can Transform Your Life

May awe be your new practice and daily habit to expand, deepen and brighten your journey. We can even find in the midst of winter.

“What makes awe such a powerful call to love is that it’s disruptive. It sneaks up on us. It doesn’t ask our permission to wow us; it just does. Awe can arise from a single glance, a sound, a gesture.”― Sharon Salzberg, Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection

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