The Power of Awe – Meditation Again… and it’s A.W.E.some!

Life has a way of bringing back around the things you need – but fight against – until you stop and listen. Throw in that my word of the year is “Surrender” and you’ve got a recipe for humble pie.

Yep, meditation and I have quite the relationship… and it’s one where I mostly tell her/him/it to GET LOST. I have waged a mighty war and there’s never been a winner.

I guess I need to stop and listen, eh?

I was asked to read and review The Power of Awe by Jake Eagle, LPC, and Michael Amster, MD. I happily agreed. I love the word awe and have noticed how different my body feels when I’m deeply immersed in it. Like… when I was walking the summer after my dad passed (2021). I walked through places I’d never seen before, next to the water, over bridges, through forests, in gardens and neighborhoods, collecting feathers and memories. I grieved on those walks and talked to Dad a lot… but mostly, I felt so grateful… so moved… sometimes beyond words… by all that surrounded me. I was – in short – in AWE.

So, of COURSE, I jumped at the chance to be among the first to read this book (you’ll perhaps notice I have a proof copy. So honored!).

This is a book that will be among my keepers. That says a lot because – as you may remember – we moved at the first of the year (only weeks ago) to a smaller place. As we packed, I culled my book collection… I am a purger by nature, as you also may remember. Color me embarrassed with my (haha – culled! As if!) collection of twenty boxes of books. Not a word of a lie! So, guess what I’ve had to do? You guessed it! More purging of books. Oy! But I digress.

This book is about awe and also about A.W.E., a “clinically proven way to reduce inflammation, stress, loneliness, and burnout while improving overall well-being.”

Reducing loneliness and inflammation, you say? Now that’s not something you normally see listed among the benefits for … well… anything to do with meditation. You’ve got my attention, Book!

The book also touches on (no, actually, it embraces) my word of LAST year: Mindfulness. Meditation and mindfulness are a natural couple!

But first, I suppose we must first define the word awe. The way I described it above is inspiring awe… and that is only one of two possible definitions, which surprised me! There is also “threat-based awe, ” which is a whole ‘nuther kettle o’ fish. The only similarity, we are told, is the degree to which each may impact you. There’s some neat info about how the brain reacts to both kinds of awe… along with some biblical references, which finally got me to understand that “threat-based” awe that I hadn’t grasped. Although, I should have, given I was once a very fervent Christian. I still carry some of that God-awe (ahem, fear) I was taught from the pulpit. That gets in your bones and it’s tough to get rid of… but once again… yes, I digress. Except to say, in this book, while we are learning about both kinds of awe, we are seeking the kind of awe that brings us to a meditative state of wonderment.

The A.W.E. Method is a quick and straightforward way to get there! Simple, yet so profound that if you try it… you’ll feel a difference RIGHT AWAY. Seriously!

A.W.E. stands for…

A= Attention

W= Wait

E= Exhale & Expand

I could stop right here and you’d have the crux of the book… and the gift.

The gift is that when you’re in awe, your brain, body, (and for lack of a better word) surroundings change. You invite what you most want and need, even without the words to articulate it. 

This includes friends (to conquer loneliness) and health (to conquer things like inflammation). 

Is that not cool?

This gift of a book is wrapped in enough science, exercises, advice, and “education” to be considered a textbook. It’s *not* a textbook… but it could be! At the same time, it is engaging and inspirational! I love the “heart-opening” experiences in the back of the book A LOT, too! Seriously, if you ONLY read the experiences listed, you’d have a step up on anyone studying the subject… they’re THAT good.

So, the takeaways…

Meditation doesn’t have to be formal. Getting in a state of awe is as close as you can get without sitting cross-legged on a pillow with a candle burning and a guide leading the way.

Your (our) mind(s) can “microdose” mindfulness using the A.W.E. method for only minutes a day. 

This A.W.E. method can *actually* change our life!

So… a great big RECOMMEND on this book. It’s out this month! I just got the hardback copy in the mail!

2 Comments

  1. Yes, A.W.E.! Thanks for the review, Sheryl. I’m 2/3rds of the way through The Power of Awe and have been giving myself multiple doses of awe since getting the book. I can definitely attest to the fact that the A.W.E. method works, using it various times during the day (even while cleaning my house) to re-source myself. The poet and mystic William Blake, who invited us to see the Divinity in the “Minute Particulars,” keeps coming to mind… “When the doors of perception are cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.”

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.