Don’t try to comprehend with your mind. Your minds are very limited. Use your intuition. ~ M. L’Engle (A Wind in the Door)
Instinct. Gut feeling. Hunch. Inkling. Sixth sense.
Whatever you like to call it, intuition is the mysterious force in our lives that guides us, protects us, and informs us with insight not usually available or readily present in the conscious mind.
We all possess some degree of intuition; from the most cynical, to the most naive of us. As Einstein once said of intuition:
I sometimes FEEL that I am right. I do not KNOW that I am.
And this is precisely what intuition is at its core: a sudden and inexplicable feeling that arises within us, a feeling that tells us to take this chance, to go down that path, to accept that opportunity, to open that door. Intuition also tells us what not to do, what to be careful of, when to be vigilant and when to stop. As novelist Dean Koontz summarized beautifully:
Intuition is seeing with the soul.
The Soundless Voice
Derived from the Latin word Intueri which means “to look at, to consider”, intuition is associated with the right side of the brain. As you may or may not know, the right side of the brain is responsible for creativity, imagination, musical and artistic aptitude, and emotions as opposed to the left side of the brain which is connected to logic, reasoning, and critical thinking.
So intuition stems from that nonlinear dimension of our minds, that part where unconscious connections and associations are made, and arise within our conscious minds seemingly out of nowhere.
As Joseph Murphy, author of The Power of Your Unconscious Mind notes:
Within your subconscious depths lie infinite wisdom, infinite power, and infinite supply of all that is necessary, which is waiting for development and expression.
Thus, intuition is an amazingly powerful tool, a gift ready and available to us, but often ignored or forgotten.
When Life Whispers, Listen Closely
All throughout history people have listened closely to the whispers of life.
From Dr. Loewi’s intuitive discovery of the chemical transmission of nerve impulses, and Elias Howe’s invention of the sewing machine, to Isaac Newton’s theory of gravity, many great strides in all fields of existence have been attributed to spontaneous sparks of intuition.
But why should we pay attention to our gut feelings? I mean … it’s not like we’re planning on becoming world famous physicists or inventors, right? Wrong. You don’t need to strive for either. This is why:
1. Intuition reveals deep truths in our lives.
Either about ourselves, other people, or life at large, intuition helps us to develop deeper understandings, which help direct our thoughts, feelings and decisions.
2. Intuition helps us identify negative omens in our lives.
Failure, financial collapse, death, emotional threat – intuition puts us in touch with our instinctive defense systems, helping us to avoid harm.