Your intuition knows things. You know this already. And yet it is common practice in our culture to put our intuitions aside, for the inconvenience of not being able to reason with them. Truly, though, this is only done as long as one person may wield power over another. When’s the last time you saw someone tell the sky it was wrong for raining? So it is with our intuitions not being wrong for what they are, yet people will say as much because they think they have more bearing over one another than the sky. Which they do, but only because they are also willing to forget themselves in a way the sky cannot.
I have known what it means to forget myself, to lose contact with my intuition as a source of knowing. It is like being a calculator, always operating on something “out there” without any idea that there might be an “in here”.
Yet incredible things can happen when we delve into intuition, when we give it permission to know that which we cannot explain or reason over. Such knowing defies the illusory hegemony of consensus reality as easily as picking a flower for a friend defies commerce.
It is from feeling that expressions of love grow, bloom, and give fruit. Not from reason, not from if-then thinking, not by seeking ends with means. Expression in the intuitive mode is an end in itself, unconcerned with its externalities, and it is by this mode alone that we feel loved.
Even an infant knows the difference between someone who feeds them or holds them only so their crying will stop. Transaction is as primitive as causality to a social organism. And that infant knows what a kind touch feels like, when the bottle is offered with gentleness rather than rigidity, when they are bathed purely for sanitation, or held lovingly for no purpose.
We learn so, so young whether our experiences matter to other people, our baby brains constantly correlating an interior state which arises as spontaneously as the world around it. At the same time we learn how to treat others, for how could we value the experience of another if no one valued ours?
The path to change, as I see it, as I’ve experienced it, is practice valuing one’s own experience and holding one’s own intuitions as sacred.
This doesn’t mean denying the consensus reality or rejecting reason, either. It means the allowance for a nap when one is exhausted. It means feeling uncomfortable pains instead of numbness, and coming to understand them for what they mean. It means slowing down with other people who slow down, who can love themselves enough to say also: “I’m glad that you’re here,” and speak with the kind of gesture that each of us knew, even as infants, served no purpose in any world except the invisible one inside of us. It is experiencing and offering in trust the experience of others as innately valuable. It begins with each of us, inside ourselves, even if we are the very first ones to do the work.
It is angering, the ways others did not do this for me. It is saddening, the realization they could not do it for themselves. It is humbling, the effort required to practice it myself. And it is beautiful, more than anything in the world, to share it, to let each other know that our experiences matter.