On many occasions you have described your mission to transmute and communicate AWE. Why is that so important according to you?
I think what is interesting about the experience of awe is that it confirms the gnostic suspicion that there is something more to us than nature allows. Whenever we experience awe we find that our suspicion that there is a hidden door or a rabbit hole to fall through or a belief that there is more, is confirmed. And a recent study out of Stanford found that... Well, first of all they defined that awe is an experience of such perceptual expansion, or such perceptual vastness that we literally have to reconfigure our mental models of the world in order to accommodate the scale of the experience. So basically blowing our own minds and pulling ourselves radically out of context induces awe. Grand Canyon, some new found mathematical truth, looking upon the universe, these are experiences that give you awe. And what they found is that doing that on a regular basis to your brain, like giving yourself awe, leaves all these profound psychological benefits: increased empathy, increased compassion, increased altruism towards fellow human beings, this is a Stanford study. And so basically what they were confirming is that this wonderful experience of blowing our own minds and inspiring ourselves until we spill over with ecstasy, is not only good for us at the moment, but it leaves all these kind of profound lasting benefits. And so for me with my work, I am an idea junkie, I'm a wonder junkie. I love big ideas because revelling in big ideas is perhaps the best antidote to existential despair that I have ever found. And so I try to make short films that take a lot of these big ideas that have to do with the co-evolution of humans and technology or how technology extends, what it means to be human, and I look upon the writings of Ray Kurzweil and Kevin Kelly and Terrence McKenna, you know, technologists and psychonauts, and realize they are all saying the same thing. Terrence McKenna will take a bunch of psychedelics and talk about how technology is a real skin of our species, and then Kevin Kelly who started Wired magazine says we're on a trajectory, smack in the middle between the born and the made. So I remix the ideas of these big thinkers and I distil them into these two minute philosophical espresso shots to transmit not just the information, but to induce awe.
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