The science of wonder — and why it’s good for us

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Do we need to make time in our day to feel awe and wonderment? Photo by Shutterstock.

Awe or wonderment is the feeling of being in the presence of something vast that transcends your understanding of the world. Historically, awe was a mystical feeling towards God and divine beings. The Irish philosopher Edmund Burke and naturalist Charles Darwin secularized the feeling of awe, saying the emotion can be experienced from music, art, or even the great outdoors. U.C. Berkeley psychologist Dacher Keltner is the Faculty Director of the Greater Good Science Center and co-author of “Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life” and “The Compassionate Instinct.” He joins host Jonathan Bastian to explain the science of awe, the purpose it serves, and why a daily dose is good for your health and society.


Psychologist Dacher Keltner explains the science of awe, the purpose it serves, and why a daily dose is good for your health and society.  Photo by Auey Santos for the Greater Good Science Center.

Credits

Guest:

Producer:

Andrea Brody