“Awe is the feeling of being in the presence of something vast or beyond human scale, that transcends our current understanding of things,” according to Dacher Keltner. He leads UC Berkeley’s Social Interaction Lab and he helped Facebook create the recent additions of emoji’s to the Like feature.
When is the last time you felt awe?
For me, it was experiencing a whole sequence of events line up so that I was in the right place at the right time to be of assistance to someone. The sheer number of converging variables demanded an explanation beyond coincidence.
For Immanuel Kant: “Two things awe me most, the starry sky above me and the moral law within me.”
Michael Lerner says: “Nothing is more contagious than genuine love and genuine care. Nothing is more exhilarating than authentic awe and wonder.” He says that the universe produces a feeling of awe for him.
Goodness. Beauty. Truth.
Adults and children alike experience awe. We hold that in common. Feeling amazed by goodness, beauty or truth seems to be a universal human response. I ask myself, “Is awe one of the pathways God provides for humanity to experience God? Could it be that feelings of awe are yet another attempt made by a loving God to connect with each of us? How can I provide awe-inspiring experiences for the children in my life?”
Ideas for kids
The second half of this article gives specific ideas of how families can experience awe.
Paula Scott, from her article here on awe, adds another idea, “High school teacher Julie Mann takes her students on ‘Awe Walks’ to connect with nature or art. When they write about these experiences and share them in the classroom, she says, kids who never talk in class or pay attention come to life. ‘It helps them feel less marginalized, with a sense that life is still good.’ She suggests journaling, collage, photography, drawing as ways for students to reflect about awe for time, space, amazing events and people.”
Click to Tweet: We call it goosebumps, spine-tingling, tears in our eyes amazement. Good ideas here to add more wonder to everyday life. Click to Tweet