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What exactly is intuition

  1. Jun 11, 2003 #1
    I was wondering what exactly is intuition. I looked it up and basicly it is knowing without knowing. Like an instinctive knowledge. How can knowledge come from nowhere?
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 5, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 11, 2003 #2
    Excerpt from the book The Advent of Dionysus. Which entails the relationship between intuition and the Christian Church, in accord with the Six Churches of Man -- and hence "mindsets" -- which culminates into the seventh state, The Marriage ...

  4. Jun 11, 2003 #3
    Re: intuition

    not come from nowhere....
    newton said:" if i have seen further, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.":wink:
  5. Jun 11, 2003 #4
    "Knowing without knowing" now that's a helpful definition.

    I didn't look this word up but my intuition tells me I can do better than that definition.

    I agree with newton, it doesn't come from nowhere. I believe intuition could be defined in two ways. 1) To know something or some event based on subconsciously stored information from the past that suddenly arises in a given situation without necessarily knowing when the origin of learning that knowledge occured, or 2) knowledge simply based on instincts such as survival instincts.

    The first definition refers to recognizing something like a detective's intuition telling them something is wrong with a situation or a story even though everything on the surface seems to fit. The latter definition is simply comparing intuition to instinctually knowing something. Tough to explain, but try asking yourself this. Have you ever felt scared even when there is no identifiable reason or danger that you should feel fear? A subtle change in environment could trigger a response in all of us yet we may not be able to figure out what that change was? Nevertheless, we respond to it intuitively. Our instinct says Oh oh intuitively we know to stay away, run or whatever. We know something changed yet may not know what changed. I also believe some people's intuition are more developed than others and may trust their intuition more than others. In general, I think listening to your intuition is good but it doesn't mean it can't be wrong.
  6. Jun 11, 2003 #5
    Re: intuition

    Intuition is like the rising and the setting of the sun, where you have an "inkling" of the light that precedes the dawn and the light which fades after sunset. It's more the matter of the "impression" of whence things come and whence things go.
  7. Jun 11, 2003 #6
    I like how you worded this, though I would have included the fact that our subconscious is constantly picking up information that our conscious minds have no idea about, and thus those would play a part in (to make use of your later example) a detective's intuition.

    Intuition is cannot arise from nothing, but it does consist of a lot of hunches, and hunches usually have to do with your personal tendencies, and personal tendencies usually have to do with genetics (plus upbringing). Thus, basically, intuition is having a hunch on something (the hunch can be of varying degrees).
  8. Jun 11, 2003 #7
    Way back in the middle ages when I was in college my anthropology proffessor told us that humans are not born with any instincts. We have to learn everything. We have reflexes but not instincts according to him. The word "hunches" can be just another word intuition. Again I think intuition come from the right side of our brains and is conceptual thinking rather than linear. This is part of the reason that we don't recognize where it came from. With the same information plus the unconscious or subconscious we come to a conceptual conclusion is one thought process without following the normal paths and steps of linear thinking. We, men, are not used to using our brains in this way and the two halves of our brains are not connected the same way women's brains are which is why women are more intuitive and artistic than most men. My daughter says that men's brains were wired on a budget.
  9. Jun 12, 2003 #8
  10. Jun 12, 2003 #9
    Basically, he was a "Nurturist", right?

    This goes along rather well with the dictionary definitions in the link that sheldon posted (which I rather approve of).

    Is this actually verified?
  11. Jun 13, 2003 #10


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    Re: intuition

    intuition is the source of "knowledge" we all have the ability to hear within ourselves...it is the voice of the life force that is within us all...when you listen to it, life seems to have more meaning for you personally...
  12. Jun 14, 2003 #11
    I would define it more as "Knowing without knowing exactly how we know."
  13. Jun 14, 2003 #12

    I like that definition, that works:smile:
  14. Jun 14, 2003 #13
    Here's the philosphical defenition from Random House: Philos. a. an immediate cognition of an object not inferred or determined by a previous cognition of the same object. b. any object or truth so discerned. c. pure, untaught, noninferential knowledge.

    Although I disagree with the untaught part I agree that it seems mostly noninferential, it seems as if one knows without reasoning, it seems like just good guesswork. It would also be very likely given the structure of the brain that intuition and visualization are highly related and that it is commonly pronounced in females due to the corpus colloseum being larger and with more lines of neuronal connectivity or simple put a wider bridge to cross, yet much intuitive knowledge is difficult to reason out or even grasp, perhaps nature equiped females to be more aware of all the many things going on in this way and males to pay attention to the details, perhaps the very shy are born this way for a particular person of being extremely vigilent of possible dangers or problems, but too many shy ones would be disadvantagous to the whole tribe like ant societies are specialized to a degree.
    I agree with Royce on intuition, that it is cogs running behind the cogs of language and reasoning awareness, that it is mainly visualization operating underneath the awareness and because of this it is extremely difficult to see through the cloud of emotions impinging on even aware thoughts to a tremendous degree, that primarily presents itself when there's a danger that prompts a feeling that if one trusts can lead to a closer inspection and avoidance of that danger. If intuition resides in the right hemisphere and speech and reasoning lie primarily in the left then a feeling must traverse this distance and be processed in a way to language or reasoning in most cases before we are comfortable in saying we are aware of it, it would seem difficult to discriminate feeling from emotion without logic and speech, or trust feelings with an over-reliance on logic and speech.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 14, 2003
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