Have you ever wondered what that feeling is? The feeling that says this is amazing but I am absolutely terrified. That feeling is best described in one term, awe.
To be in awe is a feeling of reverence or respect that could lead to a sense of fear. Not fear in the terms we usually think, but fear in terms of the unknown or something greater than us
What are some ways that we can experience awe in our lives?
There are things that happen in our lives, naturally occurring events that cause us to enter a state of awe. Having a child is one of these things. If you’ve had a child or been in the room alongside someone who has you know that feeling. That adoration for the new life, the reverence you feel towards them and the fear that follows. Sometimes even something like a thunderstorm can cause a sense of awe. The rain, winds, thunder, and lightning can be stunning but also scary. Standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon looking out at the vastness of what the world has to offer, the beauty and the unknown, that is awe! It’s such an incredible feeling that comes with natural life occurrences. Nature is a part of this as well. Rainforests, canyons, fields, orchards, and so many more can cause a great sense of awe.
We can also find this sense of awe in religion. The idea of something greater, someone greater or beyond our imagination can cause a true sense of awe. Religion evokes this sense of fear but complete wonder. If you’re not religious you can still gain that sense of awe of wondering about what lies beyond this life.
We have the opportunity to live a life in awe and wonder. To embrace the fear and the unknown. Sometimes that allows for feelings of anxiety to creep in, but it also gives us the chance to accept the things we cannot change and the things we cannot control.
Casey Shaw MFTi
Mental Health Counselor Intern