I don’t know that I’ve considered awe’s role in my life to any great degree, but recently I was made to pause when I read Why Do We Experience Awe?. This article was a game changer for me. I immediately decided that I needed more big awe in my life.
Looking back, I’ve had numerous moments of awe, but in my early 20s I had two that were incredibly defining for my future, both were when I was out alone in nature. One was in the middle of nowhere in the prairies at dusk, the other was while laying on a rocky river bed, surrounded by giant trees, watching an eagle soar overhead. Both these experiences added a great deal of clarity to my life at the time. I know from experience, as the above article states, “that awe imbues people with a different sense of themselves, one that is smaller, more humble and part of something larger“.
Through mindfulness I have found awe in the everyday, often out my back window, on walks in the big nature park just outside my front door, in the smiles of my little boys, the chirp of a bird and so much more. But I thought it would be fun to actively pursue some of those bigger awe moments out in nature with my family. After all, I have the Rockies right at my doorstep.
Here is my plan. My church (I reluctantly type that here as I know it immediately conjures all sorts of ideas about who I am, but there it is) does not offer a children’s program throughout the summer, so every Sunday (or at least most), starting June 28th, we have decided that we’ll head out into nature. Awe-Sunday, if you will. I will be sharing our experiences here.
I would love for you to (virtually) join me, in your own stomping ground of course, and share your experiences in the comments below.
For further inspiration you may want to check out this youtube video Awe.
Let’s write an ode to awe.