Saturday, March 26, 2011

Refining and Trusting Your Intuition

I've already talked about intuition/inner knowing before, and in this context, I really am speaking to people who have been practicing with it and are working with it as it brings in more and more information. If you are new to engaging with your own intuition, I recommend the What Is Intuition and Using Your Intuition blog posts.

But This Seems Crazy
You always know when you're hitting the edges of your mind and your ego when you start labeling things "crazy" and "weird." I've learned how to accept a lot. In essence, the first, next, and last steps to working with intuition is acceptance. So long as things are for the betterment of humanity and coming from a place of honesty and love, just accept what you're intuiting and go with it.

Going with it is essential. Enough of us have stories of when we had an intuition and we didn't trust what we knew and then we got into all kinds of trouble. After awhile, you come to rely on your intuition implicitly because you start to see that the consequences of not doing so are tremendously bad. You also will have quite a few experiences of things going better beyond your expectations, and those too will give you more and more reinforcement around why your intuition is critical.

Intuition in Action: As if I Needed Any More Reinforcement
Those of you who know me, know that I trust my intuition. In some ways, I can seem enigmatic to people about why I do or do not do some things because a lot of it comes from intuitive knowledge. My closer friends simply know that I'm trusting my inner guidance, and most of the time things, turn out really, really well because I do. The story that follows is one my more powerful affirmations of my intuition.

I had just really gotten into conscious dancing last spring, and there was a huge dance gathering that was going to happen up in Nevada City. I had about 5 different people mention it to me, including my best friend at the time who wasn't even involved with any of this stuff. Usually, that's a pretty big critical mass for me to go check something out, but I had a feeling that I shouldn't. I had a feeling that I should stay close to home. So I did for most of June, and then one night coming back from a dance class, my stomach was feeling really cramped. I tossed and turned all night, and the intensity of it grew and grew until I was in the emergency room by 9 am. Turns out, I got appendicitis, and thank God that I was only 13 minutes away from a hospital. If I had gone to Dance Camp, I'd have been far away in Nevada City, and who knows what might have happened then.

Origins of Intuition
This is yet another example for me just how important it is to trust that inner knowing. I can't imagine what would have happened if I was in Nevada City. Because of this trust, I was quickly taken care of via laparoscopic surgery (minimally invasive surgery, which would have been what I wanted), and I was in a place where my father could come and look after me for awhile. I don't really question the origin of this knowing. To me, it feels so integrated with my general awareness that it doesn't feel like it comes from outside me or is a distinctly different voice. I simply know that the more I trust it, the clearer I am about how to be and act in the world.

Intuition Within Spiritual Awakening
After an awakening, your intuition may be about the only working mechanism in you. It's actually very clear immediately thereafter because everything else just got blown up. The problem comes when people try to reach back to use old ways of thinking and being because they don't know how to be in this intense space of the unknown. They start bringing in that other stuff which blocks out the intuition again, so right after awakening, they're becoming intensely confused again.

Obviously, this is a big problem. As a teacher, I can tell when someone is in awakening, and my way of being with them is very different than with someone who is just finding their way. When someone is in awakening, I'm usually saying something like, "What do you think you should do?" I can't direct them, nor should I. The point of the spiritual path is to find, know, and be your truth. Subsequently, the question is designed to turn the person back towards themselves and their inner intelligence. Usually, just holding a space of loving presence and unconditional acceptance goes a long way for them to let go of their remaining self-judgment and find their answers. It can happen really quickly in the conversation. Then the intuition gets even more important because soon that person is off going down a potentially brand new road and all the sign posts and markers are different. It's why meditation and taking time to nourish yourself to stay clear are so important.

Refining Intuitive Knowing
Above all else, practice and trust are really the keys to refining your intuition. I would also emphasize that intuition has nothing to do with emotions. A lot of time people will say that "I have this feeling," but the clearer the intuition, the less emotional charge comes with it. Fear can be wrapped up initially with intuitions because so many people can't accept this knowing. The lack of mental acceptance triggers a fear of the unknown that tangles up with the intuition. This is why coming to know our fears and doing the work to clear space inside of us is so critical. If you don't, it makes it that much harder to hear important messages.

It's also important to mention that we do ALL have access to intuition and deeper knowing. Some people are especially good it. It just comes natural, while others have to practice more. It's kinda like sports that way. Some people pick up a basketball and can do all kinds of things; others have to practice a lot more. Regardless, we all have this space of inner knowing, and with practice and clarity, it becomes a critical compass to finding what's right and true for you in this life.
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