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AWARE explores boundary-pushing research in the understanding of consciousness.


What is consciousness? Is it in all living beings? What happens when we die? Why do we seem to be hardwired for mystical experience? In these times of existential crisis, there has been an explosion of research into consciousness. After four centuries of silence, scientists are confronting the "Big Questions," cutting a window into a realm previously held tight by philosophy and religion.

AWARE: Glimpses of Consciousness follows six brilliant researchers, approaching the greatest of all mysteries from radically different perspectives, from within and without: through high-tech brain research and Eastern meditation, by scientifically exploring inner space through psychedelic substances and by investigating the consciousness of plants. Scientists are arriving at new insights - some have been integral to Indigenous knowledge for millennia.

AWARE opens as a science film but emerges well beyond the explicable, ultimately leading one on a voyage upon the ocean of consciousness, a contemplative, sensual, cinematographic meditation. The networks of consciousness are reflected in 'grand' imagery revealing the vast interconnectedness of Nature — from the smallest organisms, to the world of plants and animals and on to the cosmos. It invites one to experience the awe and mystery of life as the researchers do, to dive in with them, returning to see the world anew, to review long-held beliefs and assumptions and initiate one's own oceanic journey. Ultimately, to be aware one is aware.

AWARE is the second film in the Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth trilogy, also available from Bullfrog Films.


Christof Koch, Ph.D, President and Chief Scientist, Allen Institute for Brain Science
Matthieu Ricard, Ph.D, Tibetan-Buddhist Monk, Shechen Monastery, Nepal
Monica Gagliano, Ph.D, Professor of Plant Behaviour & Cognition, Univ. of Sydney
Josefa Kirvin Kulix, Mayan Healter and Therapist, Chiapas, Mexico
Roland R. Griffiths, Ph. D, Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research, Johns Hopkins University
Richard Boothby, Ph.D, Professor of Philosophy, Loyola University, Maryland
Mingyur Rinpoche, Tibetan Buddhist Teacher

102 minutes
SDH Captioned

Directed by Frauke Sandig, Eric Black
Produced by Frauke Sandig, Eric Black
Director of Photography: Black
Dramaturgy: Frauke Sandig
Editors: Franziska von Berlepsch, Rune Schweitzer
Composer: Zoë Keating
An Umbrella Films Production in Co-Production with Hanfgarn & Ufer Filmproduktion and ZDF/3sat

We offer two basic screening options: in-person or virtual. Book an in-person screening using the button below. For an online screening, fill out the virtual screening request form.

For more information on virtual screening options, visit our Learn About Screenings page.



Screening options:
$29.95 Home Use DVD purchase (private use only)

COMMUNITY SCREENINGS (single events with license to charge admission)
$100 Small Community Screening (1-50 people)
$200 Medium Community Screening (51-100 people)
$350 Large Community Screening (100+ people)

"I found AWARE to be in many ways the most moving and beautiful depiction of deep understanding of consciousness and of who we are that I have seen depicted through film. I was really stunned and touched and inspired. Underneath it, I see the film as an invitation for us as human beings to step out of our sense of separateness...and realize and understand that we are life itself, that we are part of the living fabric that breathes us and thinks us. And that changes everything."
Jack Kornfield, author and Buddhist teacher

"This film will change your life forever."
Alex Ferrari, Indie Film Hustle, Next Level Soul Talks

"AWARE is a deeply moving cinematic and philosophical achievement. The film cuts to the very heart of our mystical nature as humans, of consciousness, and of 'what is.' The viewer cannot but walk away with a restored sense of the sheer interconnectedness of the universe. Powerfully shot, fundamentally mind-expanding, and profoundly healing."
Anita Hannig, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Anthropology, Brandeis University, Author, The Day I Die: The Untold Story of Assisted Dying in America

"For a long time, consciousness was a dirty word in science. It was a very strange thing to happen, that the very core of humanity should become taboo to the very people who are meant to be researching it, for what indeed can be more important than unravelling our innermost being and following the ancient maxim of 'Know thyself.' This marvelous film does a remarkable job of bringing together researchers from multiple disciplines, including my own field of psychedelic research, as they attempt to discover a little more about conscious experience and what it means to be aware."
Amanda Feilding, Founder and Director, The Beckley Foundation

"Drawing on new work in science and indigenous wisdom alike, AWARE is a lyrical and often moving journey into the prismatic question of consciousness - the wonder of it, the power of it, and how it connects us to the universe that surrounds us."
Cary Wolfe, Founding Director, 3CT: Center for Critical and Cultural Theory, Rice University, Author, What Is Posthumanism?

"Science and spirituality join forces in the mindful if heavily meditative documentary, AWARE...The investigation brings together individuals from both disciplines to provide colorful perspectives...Consciousness-elevating food for thought."
Michael Rechtshaffen, Los Angeles Times

"Whether it's an elephant finding amusement at play or a deep introspective psychedelics-induced journey into inner space to find meaning, the film surfaces existential mysteries at the core of the human experience in an entertaining and enlightening fashion."
Bradley Gibson, Film Threat

"The very nature of science is at the heart of Frauke Sandig and Eric Black's absorbing documentary, which asks more questions than it can answer in ways that leave you wanting to learn more...Ultimately, we get a touching portrait of a variety of different human beings all circling around the fascinating, perhaps unsolvable, problem of the mind."
Bilge Ebiri, Spirituality and Health

"A fascinating look at who we are, and how we fit into the cosmos and life's continuum...Humans are not nearly at a place where we have answered who we are, what we're doing here, and what happens to us when we're gone. Given what is happening to the environment and climate around the world, we could benefit mightily from answering questions about our place in nature and in the universe. A lot would change for the better if we truly knew how interconnected we are. With AWARE, Sandig and Black show us some brilliant people getting closer to figuring out something essential to us all."
Leslie Combemale, Alliance of Women Film Journalists

"AWARE: Glimpses of Consciousness is a heady experience — dare I say spiritual? — that stirs feelings of awe and wonder, humility and connection...The film creates a contemplative openness that words alone might find hard to describe. It's a remarkable film."
Valerie Kalfrin, Alliance of Women Film Journalists

"Scientifically and spiritually dense...AWARE will leave you feeling like you've unlocked a cheat code for a new level of otherworldly understanding."
Morgan Rojas, Cinemacy

"Stunningly deep, wise and visually arresting, AWARE: Glimpses of Consciousness is the most mind-blowing film the Maui Film Festival has presented in twenty years! It cracked open my coconut and filled it with insight, mystery, and visions of what might be. See it as soon as you can!"
Barry Rivers, Founder and Director, Maui Film Festival

"It is quite a task to create a film to represent something as ineffable as awareness, and yet the filmmakers, Eric Black and Frauke Sandig, managed to create a work of art that is highly compelling...The cinematography is stunning, offering us abundant images and sounds of nature that evoke both peace and awe, accompanied by a rich and varied soundtrack that contributes to the contemplative mood."
Kelly Birch, LA Yoga Magazine

"Not only do words fail. It's notoriously difficult to visually depict a psychedelic state of mind on film. Sandig and Black do so in subtle but powerful ways. Not with cheesy special effects, but with mystical footage of the cosmic dance between sea and sky, forests and ferns, birds and bees...There is awe and wonder coming from all the 'experts' interviewed in AWARE, whether they are scientists or mystics. In the end, this is a hopeful film, and God knows we could all use some of that right now."
Don Lattin, Lucid News

"A work of such startling beauty that it provides something of a psychedelic experience in itself."
The Curb, Australia

"One of the best and most beautifully crafted films on consciousness I have ever seen. And I've seen quite a few. Thought-provoking and inspiring, with exquisite cinematography. Highly recommended for anyone interested in leading edge ideas on consciousness."
Peter Russell, Author, From Science to God and Letting Go of Nothing


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