I had a great chat this week on Intuition with my friend Clay Lowe for the next Havana Sessions podcast. (You can listen to our conversation here or below.)
It was a topic Clay had suggested and turned into a conversation that I am still having with myself days later. What is intuition? Where do I think it comes from? Is it the same as ‘body wisdom’, or is that something else? Why are we so disconnected from that inner guide? What can we do to get back in touch with it? I just love that, when someone brings a question or an idea to you and gives you an unexpected chance to explore how you feel about it. Anyway, it has occurred to me how far I’ve come with the whole idea of intuition or ‘body wisdom’. There was definitely a time when I would have dismissed the idea as illogical. It was certainly not something I could have related to.
As you probably could tell from my previous blog on the Wisdom of Questioning, I have always tended to be sceptical about ideas that seem airy-fairy, wishy-washy, undefinable and unexplainable.
I suppose that’s the thing–many things seem airy-fairy and wishy-washy until you experience them for yourself. Until you experience the unexplainable.
The main thing that came out of the Havana Sessions podcast for me this week was that the way I have experienced intuition is not what I thought it would be like. It was not a thought (like: “don’t get on that plane!”). For me, there have been a very few points where I experienced a strong sense of intuition–once when I was doing a bunch of disparate things (novel writing, yoga teacher training, reading through various topics) and didn’t know where they would lead in terms of ‘career’ but something inside me told me to just keep going and I felt very strongly without any logical reason that at some point in the future things were going to come together and begin to make sense. Another time I had a distinct sense that something was wrong and I had to do something about it…and as it turned out, I was also right. These moments of intuition didn’t come as ‘thoughts’ but as a deeper sense of knowing. They were not usually focused on a minute decision but tended to be more generalised to the bigger directions and decisions in my life.
In my novel The Boatman, it is the character Tomas who must deal with this question of intuition and inner wisdom. Tomas is a boy whose childhood is marked by an unquestioned understanding of his natural inner wisdom. He also experiences a deep connection to the natural world on the island of his birth. On the brink of adulthood, however, circumstances challenge this inner knowing and Tomas’s journey is one of the hero searching to regain that inner wisdom and sense of self that he lost.
I think I’ve only begun this conversation about intuition for myself…
What does intuition mean to you? Is it something you’ve experienced and can relate to, or does it feel elusive?
Come have a listen if you fancy and share your thoughts here or on the podcast comments. Would love some input on this one!