While management researchers argued intuition could be explained in rational terms, I found scholars with a spiritual perspective saying we must look beyond the rational mind for understanding. I shifted from viewing intuition as "analyses frozen into habit" to include "connecting with the perennial wisdom." (Note 147) This extended my sense of intuition in the small to encompass intuition in the large. A spiritual quality emerged in my writings. An article I submitted to an executive management journal was rejected because it sounded too mystical and parapsychological. That tone emerged from a variety of intuitive explorations that guided me closer to soul.
Using an Intuition Journal
As part of my deepening psychological work, several modalities opened up over the years that gave access to intuitive knowing. These were the Intuitive Hand that communicated through pastel drawings and clay sculpture, the Intuitive Voice that came through poetry, the Intuitive Eye that expressed itself with photography and The Intuitive Self that came through journaling. In retrospect I clearly saw intuitive channels opening up and showering me with a cornucopia of knowing.
Although I used free form journaling in the Synthesis Institute, the most sophisticated was material I developed for the Intuition in Management course. As mentioned in another thread, the first oral edition of Intuitive Experience Journaling from 1993 evolved into the eighth edition by the spring of 1997. I personally tested each version before asking students to use the guidelines. I was as much a student in the course as other members of the class. I only asked participants to do what I had already done myself. For instance during a one month trip to California in 1995, I field tested the current revision on a daily basis before preparing a final draft for the fall term.
Exploring the dimensions of intuitive experience deepened my appreciation for their subtle aspects. The varieties of intuitive experience framework showed me the type, form and kind of intuitions that were characteristic of my Intuitive Self Profile. Armed with that information, I saw opportunities for knowing outside my preferred modes. My pattern was dominated by professional and transcendent types; thought, image and epiphany forms; and solution, suggestion and understanding kinds. This left a broad range of possibilities to expand my horizons into the personal type; body, sensation and emotion forms; and the decision, impulse and ESP kinds.
Other Intuitive Explorations
Examples of other modalities for intuitive discoveries appear in the Author section under the Explorations link. The Synthesis Institute program encouraged use of the Intuitive Hand through drawing and sculpture for accessing the subconscious. These tools helped me discover what I knew but did not know that I knew! Drawing and sculpture pointed to intuitions in the small waiting in my shadow. Both media came out in simple abstract images. I used reflection and free form journaling to tease out the subtle meaning of the images that flowed from my hand to paper and or that were shaped from clay.
During the period when my Intuitive Hand explorations began, poems would spring to mind while free form journaling around the meaning of a drawing or sculpture. Momentum gathered for the Intuitive Voice as they came of their own accord without a hand created image to evoke them. Sometimes the words came as half formed incomplete phrases that required reworking before the rhythm was satisfactory to my ear.
On other occasions, they sprang as if cut from whole cloth. I had to get the words on paper as fast as they came. These poems offered immediate and satisfying insights. That is not to say those with a more difficult birth were not as satisfying in the long run. They were, but more attention was necessary to distill the wisdom they held. The "Intuition" poem in the Introduction flowed onto the paper without a word of editing. Its intuitive message was immediately clear.
Connection with my Intuitive Eye through photography occurred more recently. I became aware of the intuitive insights my choice of subjects offered on the trip to California mentioned above. One of those pictures was a sunflower shown in the guided imagery discussion. The strong impetus to take and the care devoted to acquiring the photograph all signaled that picture was more than a tourist snapshot. My awareness of these dimensions of the photograph was stimulated by my attention to the subtle aspects of daily experience acquired through keeping the Intuitive Experience Journal.
On a recent trip to Southwestern India, I used a camera more than on any other excursion. Of dozens of pictures taken with a digital camera, a half dozen called out for special attention. These are included in the Intuitive Eye section of the Author Explorations along with a title suggesting the metaphorical meaning evoked by the images. Recently a strong urge to photograph treescapes captured my attention. Even though this calling has not been answered, impetus for that initiative lies just below the surface of consciousness. Provision has been made to include them on the web site when that initiative begins.
Life in TV Land
Even though TV watching was physically passive, it challenged my intuitive senses. These influences fell in two broad categories: satire and soul. General comedy did not hold a special interest but satire did - the more biting the better. British farce like "Faulty Towers," "Benny Hill" or "Absolutely Fabulous" and less so American comedies such as "Sienfeld," "Politically Incorrect" or "The Daily Show" were favorites.
TV satire encouraged intuitive knowing by providing a light get away from the task at hand. I could hang out mentally setting intellectual responsibilities aside for a few moments. After a satirical comedy break, I returned to a task with a new flow of energy and ideas. Comedy breaks nurtured The Intuitive Self.
TV soul programs had a more direct effect on intuitive knowing. These were children's programming and depth interviews. I loved to watch "Mr. Rogers" and "Sesame Street" with my children and now have fun watching programs like "Barney" with my granddaughter. Any children's program that I perceived as nurturing their sense of self esteem evoked a warm response. I learned the appeal came from my recognition that whatever nurtured their sense of self was at the same time stimulating their intuitive development. During a program's commercials, I channel surf to children's programming.
I was hooked on "Sunday Morning" before I realized the appeal was the depth pieces that emphasized the human side of experience. Often something about the intuitive side of life was a subtext to a program segment's central theme. As program hosts, both Charles Kuralt and now Charles Osgood brought out the non rational side of the human journey. For a time, I watched reruns of Kuralt's "On the Road" travels in search of Americana. Often his stories captured the spirit of The Intuitive Self peeking out from behind the guest's story.
Interviews with Heart
Depth interviews like those by Charlie Rose, frequently dealth with the non rational side of an artist, business person or politician. His questions often led the guest to talk at length about the hows and whys of their work. For example, this might be the creative process of an artist or the strategic vision of a businessman. I always heard nuances about the intuitive process between the lines of their discussion even though neither Rose nor the guest would have said that was their intent. It was there whether they intended it or not.
For several years the only not to miss program on my list was "Inside the Actors Studio" with James Lipton. His incisive interviews with actors, writers and directors brimmed with gems about the intuitive process. The best artists of the stage and screen had an innate connection with The Intuitive Self. As Liption questioned their approach to the craft, the theme of attention to the moment emerged at every turn. Although this was usually expressed in slightly different terms by each guest, the theme was consistent. After listening to these interviews for several years, I realized good acting was pure intuitive flow.
Each time one of the guests expressed a knowing about the intuitive process, I experienced an epiphany. My box of tissue was always handy. Each epiphany would well up with an emotional release. I could measure the extent to which a particular guest touched the intuitive theme by the number of tissues at my feet by the end of the program. A three tissue program was good, while the occasional six tissue guest was an absolute delight.
Aside from having beliefs about the intuitive process affirmed by the guests, I gained new found respect for many actors. For instance Julia Roberts was just a "Pretty Woman" until I heard her interview with Lipton. She turned out to be more than a pretty face! I found that every good actor like Roberts was a conscious or subconscious student of their inner self. They were living examples of intuition in action whether they were on the stage or in front of the camera. My fascination with the actor's process was a window to The Intuitive Self.
Seth and Soul
An early influence on seeing self, intuition, creativity and soul together came through the writings of Jane Roberts as a channel and in books about her relationship with the entity Seth. The ideas in Seth Speaks and The Nature of Personal Reality challenged my mind. (Note 148) Many of the ideas of the Seth material such as multidimensional personalities struck a responsive chord. These notions were consistent with my budding intuitive sense. Of course we existed in alternate realities. I already knew that at some level of awareness.
Roberts' automatic writing was fascinating. I recalled stories of composers who wrote musical scores as if they were taking dictation. Perhaps the soul spoke into the world as a conduit from realms beyond the boundaries of human consciousness. Since writing was essential to progress in my academic career, I wondered how I could find easy flow onto the page? When I wrote Information Systems, I experimented with a different method. For each chapter, I prepared the figures and tables before a word was written. I tacked these illustrations on the wall and dictated the first draft as if I were presenting the material. This bypassed writing to a direct expression of the mental process. This was the closest I came to an unencumbered expression of the mind.
Seth spoke of the inner senses and how to use them. Being brought up in a rational tradition emphasizing the outer five senses, reading his material opened my mind to other possibilities. Seth asserted that we cannot truly appreciate something unless we become that thing. To really know intuition, I would have to become intuition. If I could sense with every cell of my body what Pretty Kitty felt as she stood in the pose shown in the web site Introduction, then I would know intuition in the fullest sense. But I would not be able to teach that. Others also would have to learn through first hand experience.
The close link between the soul and inner senses from the Seth material planted the seed for my association of The Intuitive Self with the soul. And my work with Assagioli's psychosynthesis focused on the Higher Self as my true nature. But my academic mind placed ideas in neat boxes that separated them. I had to transcend intuition in the small before I realized that Self, The Intuitive Self, Creativity and Soul were synonyms for the same experience. Surprisingly some help in that direction come from executives themselves.
Intuition in the Large
Even though business academics did not accept the larger view of intuition, the same could not be said for business executives. Among other data from an international intuition survey of 1300 senior and top managers from nine countries, Jagdish Parikh and his colleagues assessed respondents with "objective" and "self rated" intuitive scales. Based on the objective measure constructed from ten pairs of rational and intuitive items, they classified executives as low, medium or high in their intuitive orientation.
The most notable result was that sixty percent of the nearly 400 respondents who were high intuitives expressed agreement with the statement they "tuned into higher levels of consciousness" when they had an insight. They also expressed agreement with "spontaneous insight based on prior experience" and "flashes from subconscious levels." The fact they recognized a "higher" source of knowing beyond themselves in addition to experience suggested at least a subconscious awareness of soul by a majority of business executives world wide.
Frances Vaughan influenced my thinking about intuition beyond the limited rational perspective. In Awakening Intuition, she spoke of four levels of intuitive awareness: (a) physical, (b) emotional, (c) mental and (d) spiritual. Although a particular intuitive experience might have elements of more than one level, Vaughan believed they were usually easy to categorize according to level. She stated "Spiritual intuition is associated with mystical experience, and at this level intuition is pure." This was consistent with the broader concept of intuition typical of Eastern views.
Mysticism offered a deeper understanding of intuition than Western thought. Yogananda's definition represented this breadth and depth. He characterized intuition in this way:
I found this view elaborated by Swami Rama when he wrote about the third eye. In the mystical literature, the intuitive seat of knowledge was located at the sixth chakra. In Rama's psychological rendering of the traditional wisdom, intuition took on a level of meaning beyond conventional Western thinking. True intuition was seen as a function of higher levels of consciousness that provided access to a wider range of knowledge. In the esoteric literature there was no question about intuition in the large - that was the genuine article. What Westerners called intuition was an unreliable lower level of knowing.
The definitions offered by Eastern traditions were richer in scope than those of Simon and other business scholars. In contrast, psychologist Vaughan's spiritual level was consistent with the esoteric view. These definitions spoke directly of intuition in the large without a nod to the experience based intuition in the small of rational thought. Carl Jung was explicit about the relationship between yoga practices and the ability to access a level of knowing beyond personal experience: