Message from the President - Winter, 2023
Awe! A simple three letter word that presents a world of opportunity.
In his book Awe, Dr. Dacher Keltner states that awe is critical to our well-being as it has health benefits such as stress reduction, calming our nervous system, and inviting creativity.
Greater Good magazine by the University of California, Berkeley goes on to state that not only is awe a pleasant feeling akin to wonder, but also it helps us to experience a different relationship with the world around us.
Perhaps you have experienced “awe” as you hiked the Appalachian Trail. For me, I experience it every time I take the reroute on the trail section north of the Scott Farm. The vista of the farm in the foreground and the barn and Blue Mountain in the background stops me in my tracks every time.
Awe can also inspire a feeling of connectedness and a sense of being a part of something greater or larger than oneself. To maximize the benefits of awe, one can linger in the feeling when having an experience instead of grabbing for a phone or moving on. Slowing down and inviting a sense of curiosity might invite awe into our day-to-day tasks.
When we open our senses to a variety of experiences, we invite moments of awe. For example, the smell of a flower or the sound of the dawn chorus of birds. Unplugging is another way to inspire awe—turning to nature, art, music, or other mediums instead of the screen.
As you explore the Appalachian Trail, remember to savor those moments of awe. You will not regret it.
Yours on the A.T.
P.O. Box 395
Boiling Springs, PA 17007