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We have a responsibility to awe

This fast-paced video from the Shots of Awe series really breaks down the “contrast between banality and wonder.”

With repetition, what was once novel falls below our perception. This process desensitizes our mind mapping. Like our brains literally stop bothering to note it. It’s like you’ll notice how other people’s houses have a scent, but not your own. It made me *wonder* what stimuli or situations does my mind skirt over?

My favorite line from the clip: “We have eyes yet see not, ears that hear not, and hearts that neither feel nor understand.” Wow.

To produce awe, you have to provide your senses with something that requires you to reconfigure your mental schemas. That seems intimidating to me and hard to do…so I again wonder: is it becoming more rare?

What was the last thing that left you awe-struck?

5 Responses to “We have a responsibility to awe”

  1. May 31, 2013 at 10:18 am, Jamie Wallace said:

    Love, love, LOVE this, Emily.
    Thank you for sharing.

    As a writer – I think creating awe is a critical element of great writing. If the writer can inspire in the reader a sense of newness, difference, something to wake up the brain … that is writing that makes a difference, that touches and connects, and created change.

    Wonderful stuff.
    I hope you find awe today. :)


    • May 31, 2013 at 12:18 pm, Emily Everhart said:

      Thanks, Jame! I just keep watching this video. It’s fascinating to me. Jason Silva was also featured right now in Delta Sky Mag (can you tell I’ve been traveling?) and he calls himself a ‘wonder addict.” As we all should be :)


  2. May 31, 2013 at 10:20 am, Jamie Wallace said:

    PS – You (and your readers – or, at least those interested in writing) might also enjoy this great podcast from Brad Reed. He talks about the technique of defamiliarization, which is – at least in part – designed to create awe.


    • May 31, 2013 at 12:19 pm, Emily Everhart said:

      This is great. Perfect way to wake up from the mundane. Thanks for the share!


  3. August 14, 2014 at 4:20 pm, Open yourself to awe ยป Leadership Development said:

    […] amazing folks at Brains on Fire posted this video on their blog, and it blew my doors off! I won’t attempt to summarize this, […]


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