The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder - Forums at Psych Central



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Old 07-06-2018, 11:05 AM #1
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Default The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder

I'm wondering now if wonder was something I ever had or if it is something that degraded over time. My memory is so poor so I have difficulty remembering which is true, & even the existant memories have proven to be more difficult during acute depressive episodes. Is wonder essential to a worthwhile life? Do we/those on the spectrum struggle with this concept? For me, wonder is concept that has probably existed on a continuum. Nonetheless, I feel that there was something in my being that kept me from tapping into depths of wonder that many others could. I don't know to what extent this is a chicken or the egg scenario as a matter of being the product of ASD versus being a product of the depression that follows up from ASD. What are your experiences (peers on the spectrum) with wonder? Has anyone found strategies for engaging wonder? Is there an answer that is better than just magical thinking that phenomena is for the best?

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Old 07-09-2018, 04:01 PM #2
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Default Re: The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder

How do you define wonder?
I have wondered at the incredible beauty and sometimes human-like behavior of wild horses. I have also wondered at the beauty and depth of color in flowers, of the gorgeous clouds in the sky, etc. Don't you appreciate these types of things?
Maybe if you slowed down and took the time to more closely view the world around you, this wonder could return to you. It might be a matter of taking the time for yourself. I think that is how if works for me, anyway.
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Old 01-13-2019, 05:32 PM #3
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Default Re: The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder

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Originally Posted by PrairieCat View Post
How do you define wonder?
I have wondered at the incredible beauty and sometimes human-like behavior of wild horses. I have also wondered at the beauty and depth of color in flowers, of the gorgeous clouds in the sky, etc. Don't you appreciate these types of things?
Maybe if you slowed down and took the time to more closely view the world around you, this wonder could return to you. It might be a matter of taking the time for yourself. I think that is how if works for me, anyway.
I suppose, a better way to describe my subjective experience of wonder, is that it isn't absent so much as it is muted and not easily accessed. I try to slow down at times. Sometimes it helps, but even that improvement is relative. I definitely experience curiosity but isn't very laden with any sort of joyful enthusiasm. The objects of my senses are often just objects that simply are, and any emotional valence to these experiences is either absent or just mild, generally speaking. I have experienced wonder in the duration of my life but not every day is filled with the titanic, or majestic, and if it were, then the wonder may disappear due to habituation.
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Old 01-13-2019, 07:18 PM #4
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Default Re: The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder

So, maybe it's the sense of uplifting part of wonder, more than the curiosity that I struggle with.
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Old 01-14-2019, 08:16 AM #5
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Default Re: The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder

I'm so sorry, Bri_Cnqr I believe your depressive episodes may be the answer here. When people are depressed, all sorts of positive emotions, or sometimes all emotions, tend to disappear. So I think what you're feeling is actually pretty common. I'm sure many people here on PC can relate to what you wrote. So maybe you need to work on your current state to bring back any sense of wonder. I'm so sorry. Do you see a therapist? Maybe that could help. I'd suggest to talk to your doctor about this and see how it goes from there, if it's a concern for you. Wish you good luck! Let us know how it goes. Sending many hugs to you
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Old 03-19-2019, 09:24 AM #6
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Default Re: The loss of, or perhaps absence of wonder

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bri_Cnqr View Post
I suppose, a better way to describe my subjective experience of wonder, is that it isn't absent so much as it is muted and not easily accessed. I try to slow down at times. Sometimes it helps, but even that improvement is relative. I definitely experience curiosity but isn't very laden with any sort of joyful enthusiasm. The objects of my senses are often just objects that simply are, and any emotional valence to these experiences is either absent or just mild, generally speaking. I have experienced wonder in the duration of my life but not every day is filled with the titanic, or majestic, and if it were, then the wonder may disappear due to habituation.
Yes, Bri-Cnqr, I can very much relate. It's only later life, I came to understand this about myself. I love to fish, most often alone, in beautifully remote places. Standing alone on a stretch of desolate beach in the early dawn, the sun just breaking the horizon with streaks of pink and blue, the surf flat and calm as a mirror, I truly appreciate the beauty of the scene, the intensity of color, the symmetry of the skyscape. Standing alone on a rocky stream high in the mountains, early morning light filtering down through the trees, mist rising from the stream, again I appreciate the beauty of it all. But I've come to realize, that I'm missing something in this scene, that feeling of joyful enthusiasm you speak of, that feeling of wonder. Yes, I feel at peace, content. But joyful wonder? Never. There's an empty space, where I think a feeling should be. And most often the moment passes, as I survey the scene, estimate the weather, and chart a course for the day. I'm ok with it, that's just who I am, and I do love to fish.
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