It is known as astonishment at the surprise, stupefaction, shock or dismay that is produced by something unexpected or unthinkable. Amazement can be caused by a positive (pleasant) event, but also by a negative (harmful or painful) event.
For example: “The level of play shown by the Catalan team continues to cause amazement in football lovers”, “I can not leave my amazement! Last night I saw Santiago kiss Daniela ”, “ The technological development of the city usually generates astonishment among visitors ”.
According to DigoPaul, a scientific discovery can cause astonishment. Suppose that all known specimens of a given species of insect are no more than 5 centimeters. If an entomologist discovers a family of these insects with sizes exceeding 10 centimeters, the finding will generate astonishment throughout the scientific community.
Various situations that modify everyday life are also in a position to cause amazement. If a man who is married and has children and grandchildren suddenly begins to wander the streets of his neighborhood dressed as a woman, his appearance is likely to cause astonishment to everyone who knows him. Amazement does not imply a positive or negative reaction: it is associated with the surprise caused by what was not in the forecasts.
It is called a sense of wonder at the power of the people to be surprised at the new and learn from it. This ability is also linked to the adaptation of individuals to a changing environment, since amazement derives from a change in expectations.
Needless to say that humans are not the only ones able to astonish, because the other animals also react in this way to things that go beyond the framework of the known and can learn from them to understand and, in the best cases, control them for your own benefit. In living with cats and dogs, among other species considered domestic, millions of people observe day by day how their quadrupeds admirably adapt to our structures.
After all, awe is the first step towards reflection and contemplation, two fundamental points of philosophy. To elevate ourselves it is necessary first of all to recognize ourselves in a position of inferiority with respect to knowledge; This does not mean that we should despise ourselves but, in any case, value ourselves fairly and precisely. No one can possess absolute knowledge, and therefore wonder at the unknown arises; Once at this point, we have two options: ignore it or try to understand it.
We often associate the capacity for wonder with childhood, although the link between the two concepts is only a result of social impositions. While it is true that children face a greater volume of new and shocking situations every day, adulthood allows us to go in search of new horizons, beyond our circle of security. Heeding curiosity is healthy practice; appeasing it is dangerous.
The great creations that revolutionize science and technology would not be possible if their authors left their talents raw, but must polish them based on techniques and knowledge. For this, the aforementioned humility is necessary, which gives rise to amazement at everything that is beyond their possibilities and encourages them to tear down their walls.
In childhood, therefore, amazement is inevitable, since it is one of the fundamental resources we have to grow and develop. In adulthood, on the other hand, it is optional, although its benefits are incalculable to reach the highest levels of self-knowledge and self-improvement.