First steps in understanding intuition

A subject that I want to get a solid understanding of is intuition, not least because I’ve used the word to defend some of the things I’ve come to believe in over the past half a year. It strikes me that this is a topic best understood by experience, not by theory. Well, this morning I had my first verifiable experience of intuition in action (the first I’ve taken proper notice of, at least).

If you are the sort of person who sets his alarm at the same time every morning, you may have had the experience of forgetting to set your alarm (or leaving it off because it’s the weekend), and you discover that your body wakes you up at exactly the right time anyway, as if you have some kind of internal clock that keeps accurate time. It appears to be the unconscious mind at work. I’ve had this experience, and I’ve had the similar experience of waking up seconds before my alarm goes off.

This morning I had an interesting variation on this kind of event. I woke up because my bladder was full, so I got up and went into the bathroom. While relieving myself, I thought, “Why did I have to wake up at 7.30? No point going back to sleep now, because the alarm is set for 7.40 as usual … Hold on a minute. How do I know it’s 7.30?” It was dark outside, could have been 6.30 or 7.00, but I had the overpowering sense that it was definitely 7.30 on the dot. Furthermore, there was no way that I could have glanced at the clock on the way out of the bedroom because I always keep it facing the wall; I hate the way the LEDs light up the room. When I got back to my bedroom, I checked the clock, and it said 7.31. Spot on.

We know that the conscious mind doesn’t possess an accurate sense of time, otherwise there would be no market for wrist-watches. But the experience of many people confirms that the unconscious mind has an uncannily accurate timekeeping facility.

It seems to me that in those early moments of semi-wakefulness, before the conscious mind starts it’s usual chitter-chatter, I was able to pull information from my unconscious mind. I have also experienced in interesting parallel with this in another area of study: in my experiments with telekinesis, I’ve learned that it works best when I quieten my conscious mind and send information to my unconscious. It’s a strange experience, almost like there’s two of me, the conscious and the subconscious, or the ego and the soul.

Talking to our inner self is probably something you’ve done without realising it. I might say to myself, “Drat. What’s the name of the black actor in Pulp Fiction? I can’t remember.” Anything from a moment to several minutes later, the answer will pop into my conscious mind, as if from nowhere. “Samuel L. Jackson!” Now, the next time you have a conversation with yourself like that, ask yourself what process you went through to recall the information you wanted. Because I have no idea. The unconscious you just seems to get on with the task, and then it gives you the answer when it’s done. Spooky.

What is an intuition and where does it come from? It’s a sense of knowing that comes from the unconscious mind. And what is the unconscious or subconscious mind? That’s a hell of a question, one I want to get to the bottom of, and one that holds the answers to how much information it’s possible to access. Are we all one consciousness, as I suspect? Are we everything that exists? Hopefully I’ll be able to learn more about this.

It could be an interesting experiment to quieten my conscious mind through meditation and see if I can sense the time accurately on multiple occasions.

What is important to note from my experience this morning is that the concept of intuition is not some irrational flight of fancy. Intuition could well be a means of learning that is every bit as important as the critical thinking of the conscious mind.

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5 thoughts on “First steps in understanding intuition

  1. dscorereviews says:

    I have similiar experiences each morning. Funnily enough my start time for the day is also 7.30am. I find myself waking up each morning between 7.25am and 7.30am regardless of what time I go to sleep.

    If I go to bed late , something which I’ve discovered is happening lately since I started playing Oblivion on the PS3!!! Latest so far has been 3.30am!! I still awake between 7.25am and 7.30am.

    Tired , yes but the unconscious mind seems to think it’s time to get up anyway. Interesting subject.

    Barlow

  2. I’m pretty lucky in this respect, that I don’t even need an alarm to wake me up. If I need to be up by a certain time, then one of two things will happen:

    1 – I’ll wake up around 10-20 mins before the time I need to be up for.
    2 – I’ll actually dream that I need to be up, and wake up again 10-20 mins before I need to.

    In most cases, I can usually tell roughly what time it is just by how I feel, upon waking up. It’s not really judging whether I’m tired or not, I can’t really describe it, I just feel a certain way and I can tell if I’ve woke up in time to get up and go, or if I can go back to sleep. Obviously I always double check, with the time on my mobile phone, but I’m always right.

    The sub-conscious mind is a great and powerful thing.

    I remember when I was Christian, and got into a phase of repeating certain bible-based mantras, a few times each day. The idea being to speak positivity into my life.

    At the time I thought it was the power of god, or his word, etc, but whatever the reasons for it working, it worked. I saw huge benefits in my day to day life, both in my attitude, my thought processes, and in the world that immediately surrounded me.

    Looking back on that now, I can only assume it was the power of the sub-conscious mind. By speaking those things, I was taking power over myself, and the sub-conscious did the rest of the work, making the actions within me, to carry things out in a way that was more in line with those thought patterns.

    There’s too many coincidences in this world, for it to all just be poppycock. Probably the strongest evidence for intuition having a somewhat supernatural power, is when you think of someone and the phone rings, then it’s that person you were thinking of.

    Although, i’ve also heard it argued that this is the way the human brain is configured. A bit like we’re programmed to make out shapes, faces, etc, from a very early age, so when you look at wallpaper or clouds, you’re always going to see a shape, because you’re constantly looking for it. So, while we might well get the phone call, and it’s the person we were thinking of, we don’t remember how many times we’ve had that thought and it was wrong. So only the times we got it right are counted, and therefore we make something of it.

    Then you have the whole twin thing. That’s where the real fun begins. I’ve read some incredible stories about twins, half way across the world from each other and just “knowing” when something has happened to the other one.

    I don’t really have any answers though. I just find it very interesting.

  3. Isn’t time just an illusion anyway? haha.
    Vaguely related – you might be interested in this article:
    http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20126911.300-our-world-may-be-a-giant-hologram.html
    There’s a great story in that somewhere, don’t you think?

  4. naomihamilton says:

    That happens to me too. I usually wake up on the weekends in my own time at 8:30am. It feels really weird cause it’s your own little personal alarm clock. 😉

  5. Heidi says:

    I’ve just read the first post.. going to read the others soon. But… Apparently, (so the survey says) if you set your alarm for the same time, every day, regardless of what time you goto bed.. your biological alarm wakes you up. Sorta, maybe explains the time sequence? Maybe your precise time was due to the fact that you have been ‘experimenting’ with The Mind?

    You wrote “We know that the conscious mind doesn’t possess an accurate sense of time”

    But does it?

    I have no idea how you got to the exact time.. Intuition is a strange thing? Although, I know what you mean about ‘wake up’ … you’re fresh and not thinking about what you have to do for the day.. A kind of clearfulness…. Before our’ Inner Self’ can say…. ‘OI, you forgot to put the rubbish out’ or ‘what were those things I was going to do today?’ It’s Clarity.

    Personally, myself, I believe that comes from what you feel is right.. I hate getting up late in the mornings… When my body is knackered from staying up too late.. My intuition says get up, it’s a new day!

    … It’s late and I will add to this, but point being.. I think they have actually studied ‘scientifically’ this phenomenon? Also(I believe) Intuition is a feeling that something is right/supposed to happen/is going to happen….Is it a sixth sense?

    (Please remember, this is not a force of nature.. It’s just my opinion)

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