‘It doesn’t take long for our feet to wear a rut born of habit in our daily, default path. But if we’re fortunate, during any given day, something surprising startles our heart long enough to arrest the bustle and disrupt our rut.’
The question is, do we have to wait for that something surprising to happen spontaneously? Or can we build the experience of awe into our daily lives?
Can we design for wonder?
Today, Jeffrey introduces us to his working premise for Season 2: Wonder is not an accident and designing for wonder is not only possible but necessary in our world of deteriorating trust. He walks us through the possible dawn of awe when our ancestors developed the ‘irresistible urge to gaze’ and defines wonder as the emotional experience of surprise that dissolves our biases. Jeffrey also previews the themes of this season by way of two stories, one of a company designing for wonder NOW via Instagram hashtags and another of the philosopher Descartes discovering wonder THEN, in 17th-century Denmark through the laughter of his daughter. Listen in for insight around the role of wonder in facilitating radically new solutions and join the growing alliance of Wonder Trackers who choose wonder over cynicism.
[0:04] The definition of wonder
[4:05] Jeffrey’s working premise for Season 2
[5:37] The significance of choosing wonder over cynicism
[8:58] What to expect this season on Tracking Wonder
[11:44] The story of NOW
[12:56] The story of THEN
[18:06] James Baldwin’s insight on wonder
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Bay Area Discovery Museum
USC Annenberg Innovation Lab
Cogito, Ergo Sum: The Life of Rene Descartes by Richard Watson
Descartes’ Bones: A Skeletal History of the Conflict Between Faith and Reason by Russell Shorto