UC Berkeley psychology Professor Dacher Keltner researches biological and evolutionary origins of emotion— particularly, prosocial states such as compassion, awe, love, and beauty.
He reports that awe – sensing something vast that challenges your understanding of the world –diminishes bounded self-focus and expands sense of connection to life. Awe promotes sociality, strong community and, thus, survival. And it’s available! – felt 2-2.5 times a week on average.
Keltner reports awe’s most frequent source is other people’s kindness, wisdom, creativity, heroism, virtuosity. Second most frequent is nature, then spirituality, then arts, music and architecture.
In short, awe enhances well-being. You can get some at your local UU gathering or by paying attention to oceans, forests, wildlife, art, people, and your own consciousness.
Meet you there,