18 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2015
    1. Here are some more specific ideas for where to take an awe-inspiring walk. Natural settings: Hike up a mountain with panoramic views Walk along a trail lined with tall trees Walk along the shore of an ocean, lake, river, or waterfall Walk outside on a clear night and look up at the stars Walk to a place where you can watch a sunset or sunrise Urban settings: Climb to the top of a skyscraper or look up in an area dense with tall buildings Visit a historic monument Explore a part of the city that you've never seen before Tour of a large ballpark or stadium Go on a city art walk and explore different galleries Visit the botanical gardens or a zoo to see plants and animal species you've never seen before Walk around with no destination in mind and see where it takes you Indoor settings: Walk slowly around a museum, giving your full attention to each piece Visit a planetarium or aquarium Take a tour of a historic mansion, cathedral, or opera house

      Turn off your cell phone or leave it behind

      Go somewhere new when possible

    1. But does awe continue to have its beneficial effects on social behavior even if the stimulus is threatening or isn’t associated with nature at all? Indeed, after exposure to videos of threatening natural disasters (e.g. volcanoes) or beautiful close-up slow motion footage of colored drops of water, participants also showed a greater tendency toward fairness when distributing resources between themselves and another individual.
    2. Participants consistently reported that awe produced “a reduced sense of self importance relative to something larger and more powerful that they felt connected to,” says Piff. And subsequent analysis confirmed that this feeling of the “small self” was responsible for their ethical behavior. This seems to suggest that experiencing awe prompts people to help others.
    3. In answer to why awe would be a potent predictor of reduced pro-inflammatory cytokines, this latest study posits that “awe is associated with curiosity and a desire to explore, suggesting antithetical behavioral responses to those found during inflammation, where individuals typically withdraw from others in their environment,” Stellar said.
    4. In addition to autoimmune diseases, elevated cytokines have been tied to depression. One recent study found that depressed patients had higher levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokine known as TNF-alpha than their non-depressed counterparts. It is believed that by signaling the brain to produce inflammatory molecules, cytokines can block key hormones and neurotransmitters—such as serotonin and dopamine—that control moods, appetite, sleep and memory.
    5. She suggests that people evoke more feelings of awe in their lives by exposing themselves to nature, art, and music. “Put yourself in situations where you’re experiencing new things,” she says.

      She = Melanie Rudd

    6. researchers induced awe in some people—by having them read a story about ascending the Eiffel Tower and getting a high-up view of Paris—but not others. Afterwards, they found that members of the awe group reported feeling more satisfied with their lives than the other group. Also, when given a choice between material goods and positive experiences—such as a watch vs. tickets to a Broadway show—the awe group was more likely than the other group to choose the positive experiences.

      the researchers conclude that the awe group’s higher life satisfaction and preference for experiences over objects could be explained by the fact that they felt like they had more time on their hands.

    7. people who felt awe were less likely to feel impatient and more likely to volunteer their time than study participants who felt happiness. However, awe did not make people more likely to donate money, suggesting that awe does not make people more generous in general. Instead, it was the sense that they had more time to spend that seems to have made participants more willing to lend a hand.
    8. There are new psychophysiological findings finding that cytokine levels, cytokinesreally reflect an inflammation in response in your body, which is very tough news onyour health, the only positive emotion that really lowers levels of cytokines is provingto be awe.
    9. spiritually-orientedpeople are less likely to experience depression. Nowthose findings beg the question of why: what is it about feeling like you have a spiritualpractice? One hypothesis is, it’s really community.

      (paraphrase) it could also be awe

    10. that feeling awe, or elevation or inspired, in this case by beautifulnatural trees, makes people more pro-social and kind.
    11. if you live around beautiful green spaces, crime drops precipitously.

      This was done among urban environments, so not just "urban" vs "rural".

    12. E.O. Wilson’s writing about biophilia.And it’s really this very rich hypothesis that we have this evolved love about naturalbeauty. So if you’re out in the woods, you’re in the mountains, you’re watching patternsof light on the ocean, it triggers this feeling in us, this feeling of beautiful delight ifyou will. And E.O. Wilson makes the case that that is an evolved preference because whenwe attach to beautiful things in nature, we’re finding kind of resource-richenvironments that have food and water and shelter as a way to orient towards thelandscape.
    13. Awe ofcourse is very important to Immanuel Kant who wrote an essay that differentiated in1764 the experiences of the sublime or awe from beauty which we’ll talk about.
    14. Edmund Burke.And what he does, and really one of the most impressive books on awe ever written, is hesecularizes awe. He takes this emotion and he shows how it really is a part of everyday,perceptual experience. So he writes about how patterns of light and dark can triggerawe, how things that are powerful like oxen can trigger awe. He kind of maps out what sortof sensations create this experience that used to be the domain of religion.
    15. the scientific literature awe is defined as "the feeling of being in the presence of something vast and greater than the self, that exceeds current knowledge structures"--meaning that you need to adjust your understanding of the world, and your place within it, in order to make sense of an awe-inspiring event, feat, or behavior. 
    16. awe is best describedas a feeling that we have typically when we’re in the presence of something much greaterthan ourselves. So maybe we’re in a very high, expansive vantage point looking outat something huge and overwhelming or inspiring.