Wonder is a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable which increases curiosity and hopefulness.
Synonymous with the philosophical term “faith” which is something hoped for, wonder is not required to be connected to any particular tradition, denomination or belief system.
Lack of wonder can look like rebellion, boredom, apathy, despair, disinterest, indifference, restlessness, joylessness, melancholy & hopelessness, uncertainty, seeking to control
Development is a progression of change from completely out-of-control infants towards self-controlled adults. Development can be supported, arrested or re-visited. Human development is rarely linear across realms (social, emotional, physical, intellectual, spiritual).
For example, a gifted 14 year-old might seem intellectually equivalent to a college reader and be capable of questioning their purpose and the meaning of life, but not have developed the emotional capacity to handle the unknown or the social skills to search for answers.
Existentialism is the searching for understanding, meaning and purpose in life. Philosophers Kiekegaard and Camus argued that there are only three responses/answers:
Suicide: complete control (ends questions/pain): found to be illogical by philosophers
Defiance: actively fighting for control against external authority / institutions / conventionalism
Faith/Wonder: acceptance of less control because of something hoped for in
Ethics (others/all are important)
A higher authority (usually connected to a faith tradition)