Cultivating Awe


If you have been hanging around us lately, you might have been involved in a conversation about awe. It’s a quality I have been inviting into my life recently. There is so much going on in our lives - so much to navigate politically and personally. When we are called up to our personal and social/political change work in times like these it’s important to tend to our resilience, and ground ourselves in nourishment. This provides a strong foundation and a place to resource while doing the work. I have been expanding my gratitude practice with tuning my inner compass to several other qualities to deepen my resilience. Where have I seen beauty today? What inspired me? When have I felt love in my heart? When I have felt a sense of awe?

Cultivating awe has been more challenging for me as it calls up something bigger than the (sometimes) intimate gratitudes. When I think of awe, I think of how it feels to say the word in my mouth; my jaw drops and it almost feels like an exhale. Awe literally opens us up to take something in. It invites wonder and curiosity and spaciousness. I often feel a sense of awe in nature, or when I am struck by someone’s strength in spite of adversity. I also felt it when I learned that Robert F. Smith promised to pay off all the student loan debt for this year’s graduating class of Morehouse College. His generosity and commitment to changing the paradigm for these graduates stopped me in my tracks. My jaw dropped and I smiled as I took in the jubilant faces photographed upon hearing the news.

Feeling a sense of awe created more space within me in that moment. More space means more room to hold all that is happening within. When we have more room we can expand our sense of awareness, play and expression, building the strong foundation to take action on what matters most.

When have you felt a sense of awe recently?