Once I heard a voice calling my name on a busy downtown square just as I was about to cross the street. I stopped and turned. No one there. Just then a car whizzed by where I would have been walking. A spiritual intuition, an angel message? My colleague, Val Minard, writing for the April 12, 2016 edition of Infinity House, shares some popular theories on intuition and then provides a spiritual explanation that inspires and comforts. Here’s Val:
Have you ever had a gut feeling or hunch to wait–or to do something–that seemed to come out of nowhere? When you acted on it, perhaps a mistake was avoided; you were protected; or a problem was solved. Some people call it a sixth sense, an inner voice, or intuition. The dictionary defines intuition as “the ability to understand something immediately, without the need for conscious reasoning.”
We all get these intuitions. Sometimes we listen to them; sometimes we don’t. But, when we do, wonderful things can happen.
Oprah Winfrey, actress, author, and magazine publisher, would agree. “Learning to trust your instincts, using your intuitive sense of what’s best for you, is paramount for any lasting success,” she says. “I’ve trusted the still, small voice of intuition my entire life. And the only time I’ve made mistakes is when I didn’t listen….” Her advice is “when you don’t know what to do, do nothing. Get quiet so you can hear the still, small voice—your inner GPS guiding you to true North.”
Professor Gerard Hodgkinson of the Centre for Organizational Strategy, Learning and Change at Leeds University Business School says that intuition is a way the brain stores and accesses information subconsciously, drawing “on past experiences and external cues to make a decision – but one that happens so fast the reaction is at a nonconscious level.”
But is that the only explanation? Do inspired ideas really originate in a particular arrangement of molecules, or could there be a spiritual dimension to this phenomena? The Bible is full of examples of people who listened to their inner voice when they prayed….