Posted August 1, 2008
Instinct and Intuition
Tapping Into Your Most Powerful Wisdom
Ariole K. Alei
What is instinct? What is intuition? Let's explore them one at a time.
I encourage you to close your eyes for a moment, to turn off any unnecessary sound in your immediate proximity, perhaps even to dim the lights. Relax your body, allowing it to sink with its true weight into the chair in which you are seated. Take a deep, slow breath.
As you learn to meditate with openness to what you discover, with inquisitiveness as to the true nature of reality within, you will be able to tap into your felt sense of what instinct - and intuition - and many other inner states and capacities, are.
Let's begin with instinct. Instinct is an inner warning, a signal. It arises from within in response to a stimulus or a situation without. It is your higher mind's, or your deeper wisdom's, way of telling you that there is danger, real and true, imminently near to you. Your instinct directs both your attention to the danger and your action.
When the instinct is awake - or rather when you are awake to your instinct - you immediately hear this message and receive it. You might 'hear' it as a strong surge of energy in your body. Or as a sudden alertness to a specific stimuli, focusing in from the abstract or 'large view' to the very precise. Or you may 'hear' it as a sudden sense of what to do, in this moment, now.
Instincts are about survival. They are the internal mechanism of alerting us to the perils and dangers to our survival. Cutting ourselves off from and disregarding the signals of our instinct, we become numb to the real and present dangers which threaten our very existence - physical, emotional, mental, and psychic.
Intuition is different than instinct. It is not about danger, about survival. It is about thrival. Where instinct is a sudden, sharp, not-to-be-denied message of danger and what to do about it, intuition is a fluid message. In fact, intuition is precisely about flow.
The purpose of intuition is to lead us, to guide us, to self-actualization - the process of becoming all that we essentially are and nothing that we are not. It is, in a sense, a guide to our becoming whole and real. I mean here not real in terms of scientific real of see, hear, touch. I mean real in terms of authentic, truthful, fully embodying one's heart and soul.
I was once shown, in a meditative experience, how intuition 'works'. How it always seems to know the best way, the richest way, the most growth-oriented way, the 'path of least resistance and greatest gain'. It went like this …
Imagine that you are above the earth, in an airplane perhaps, or a hot air balloon. You are flying over land, with water flowing and meandering through it.
From this vantage you are able to see an object, or an idea or a possibility. For ease of understanding you might think of an idea or a possibility as an object.
You can see, from this vantage, where the object is relative to the bigger picture - the world around it. You can see the obstacles near and far from it. And you can see the pathways of potential flow.
Energy, unhindered, always flows. Sometimes this is swift, other times nearly imperceptible. Yet energy is always in flow. To be alive is to be in flow.
Intuition is like our own birds' eye view, embodied. It is the voice of that birds' eye viewer, speaking to us from where we can hear it most intimately - within. Intuition is the process, or voice, or mechanism, which guides and directs us to where and how we can flow. It guides us around the obstacles. It gives us a sense of options, of choices. It shows us where we, as energy, can flow.
If you are a follower of your intuition you will know that it always leads you to opportunities - never to dead ends. It always leads you to personal growth - it never banks on what you've already done, already learned, without naturally stretching you to discover and to know more of your Self.
Intuition leads us to expansion, yet in a very organic and natural way. It is not the mind dreaming, or planning. It is the inner wisdom leading us to our own next step.
Copyright © 2008 Ariole K. Alei
All Rights Reserved
Excerpt from "Awakening Instinct - Running the Gauntlet - Windows Through Time" by Ariole K. Alei.
Ariole K. Alei is a Tele Class Leader, Keynote Speaker and Author of 7 books. The Co-Founder with her husband Colin Hillstrom of HeartSongMatchmaking.com - "the world's first holistic meeting site for singles interested in spirituality and ecology" and its 'sister' - HeartSong Life and Relationship Training, she leads international Teleclasses on a variety of topics.
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