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The Power of Awe

Music has the power to move people. Music can encourage individuals to get up and dance or go for a walk. But music can also move people emotionally and spiritually. Rhythms and lyrics have the power to inspire awe in listeners. But what is awe?

Awe, per Google dictionary, is “a feeling of reverential respect mixed with fear or wonder.”

Fear and wonder are not just limited to music. Awe is all around us.

Recently an article was posted regarding the traveling entertainment performance, Cirque du Soleil and the show’s ability to inspire awe in viewers. Just like music, the show that the majestic circus produces every year leave viewers feeling inspired, connected, and transformed as they watch, seated all around the audience.

Basically, the gist of the article states: For years the program has been entertaining and mystifying spectators, leaving them wondering how in the world something so amazing can happen right before their eyes. The program manager wanted to learn more about why viewers were all experiencing similar emotions after watching the show. With that question in mind, Cirque du Soleil teamed up with Lab of Misfits to study the emotional reactions on a neurological level. Different parts of the brain were impacted by this reaction called, “awe.”

Experiencing Awe

The same thing happens when one listens to a song, sees the winning goal, watches a sun rise or takes a walk in nature. Have you ever done one of those things, and felt differently than you did, just moments before?

Intersecting awe into our lives has the ability to help bring wonder and creativity into the regular and mundane. Blending bits of old and new can help open a world of inspiring moments. Just don’t forget to take a second to enjoy it.

 

P.S. The article is actually really informative, and if you are interested, I suggest reading it here:

https://www.vox.com/culture/2019/1/10/18102701/cirque-du-soleil-lab-of-misfits-neuroscience-awe

 

Written by GUADS staff member Paige

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