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Awakened Instincts |
The Science of Intuition And Advanced Awareness

By Marina Rose, QDNA®

The Magnificent Human Experience | Quantum Living

June 01, 2015

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift."  -- Albert Einstein

The word intuition is defined as the ability to understand something immediately, without the need for conscious reasoning. The word comes from the Latin intuir, which appropriately means ‘knowledge from within.’ The power and truthfulness of intuition has had countless and celebrated champions — from Einstein to Michelangelo, to some of history’s greatest scientists, medical doctors, philosophers and entrepreneurs. But what exactly lies behind this mysterious phenomenon we call “intuition”?

Increasingly we are turning to science to find the answer—and you just might be surprised.

Some people think of intuition as a mystical power. Skeptics write it off as a matter of lucky guesswork. But scientists who study the phenomenon say it's a very real ability that can be identified in lab experiments and visualized on brain scans.

CUNY philosophy professor Massimo Pigliucci explores the nature of intuition in his fascinating book entitled, Answers for Aristotle: How Science and Philosophy Can Lead Us to A More Meaningful Life.

“Until recently, intuition, like consciousness, was the sort of thing that self-respecting scientists stayed clear of, on penalty of being accused of engaging in New Age woo-woo rather than serious science. Heck, even most philosophers — who historically had been very happy to talk about consciousness, far ahead of the rise of neurobiology — found themselves with not much to say about intuition. However, these days cognitive scientists think of intuition as a set of non-conscious cognitive and affective processes; the outcome of these processes are often difficult to articulate and are not based on deliberate thinking, but are real and effective nonetheless.”

It’s this accuracy that makes the phenomena of intuition most astonishing.

Look Before You Leap—Maybe Not

Decision-making is an inevitable part of the human experience, and one of the most mysterious. For centuries, scientists have studied how we go about the difficult task of choosing A or B, left or right, North or South -- and how both instinct and intellect figure into the process. Now new research indicates that the old truism "look before you leap" may be less true than previously thought.

Modern Sciences now appears to agree with this conclusion.

In Answers for Aristotle Professor Pigliucci reminds us that “it was William James, the father of modern psychology, who first proposed the idea that cognition takes place in two different modes, and his insight anticipated modern so-called dual theories of cognition.”

“Intuition works in an associative manner: it feels effortless (even though it does use a significant amount of brain power), and it’s fast. Rational thinking, on the contrary, is analytical, requires effort, and is slow. Why, then, would we ever want to use a system that makes us work hard and doesn’t deliver rapid results?”

The answer to that can be given in one word: Caution. Intuition is not infallible.

Cognitive scientists agree that we typically doubt our intuition more than we embrace it. We are conditioned by science and society to be “thoughtful” and “reasonable”, and being “analytical” is considered a highly regarded virtue. This could explain why more often than not, most people are inclined to treat intuition as a quick first assessment of a given situation--as a provisional assessment in need of further checking.’

But should we be so analytical? Should we look before we leap?

Maybe Not.

In a behavioral experiment, Professor Marius Usher of Tel Aviv University's School of Psychological Sciences and his fellow researchers found that intuition was a surprisingly powerful and accurate tool. When forced to choose between two options based on instinct alone, the participants made the right call up to 90 percent of the time. Those are pretty good odds for most.

Doing The Math: Value-Added Thinking

An important part of the decision-making process is what has been called "integration of value" -- that is, taking into account the positive and negative factors of each option to come up with an overall picture of the decision at hand. Professor Usher explains that typically we weigh the strengths and weaknesses of our decision factors. Although this process was once considered only relevant to analytical decisions, research shows that it also appears on an intuitive level.

"Our studies demonstrate that humans have a remarkable ability to integrate value when they do so intuitively, pointing to the possibility that the brain has a system that specializes in averaging value." Professor Usher suggests that this could in fact be the operational system on which common decision-making processes are built.

In order to document this value integration in the intuitive process, Prof. Usher designed an experiment to put participants through a carefully controlled decision-making experiment. On a computer screen, participants were shown sequences of pairs of numbers in rapid succession. All numbers on the left and right of the screen were placed into two groups to represent returns on the stock market. Participants were asked to choose which of the two groups of numbers had the highest average. Much to his surprise, the participants were able to not only calculate the different values accurately—but to do so at exceptional speed--processing very large amounts of mathematical data. In fact, the accuracy of the participants actually increased in relation to the amount of data they were presented. When shown six pairs of numbers for example, the participants intuitively chose accurately 65 percent of the time, however when they were shown twenty-four pairs of numbers the accuracy rate grew to about 90 percent. Wouldn’t we all love to see those kinds of odds in Vegas!

Because the numbers changed so quickly during the experiment -- two to four pairs were shown every second – there is no doubt that the participants were unable to memorize the numbers or perform any other type of mathematical calculation, explains Professor Usher. To determine the highest average of either group, they had to rely on solely on "intuitive arithmetic."

The results of Professor Usher’s work offer very strong evidence that the human brain has the innate capacity to take in large and diverse bits of information intuitively and process that information accurately, proving that gut reactions can indeed be trusted to make a quality decision -- a conclusion supported by his earlier work with Professors Dan Zakay and Dr. Zohar Rusou, published in Frontiers in Cognitive Science.

Reading Intuitive “Thin Slices"

Do you ever find yourself sizing someone up in an instant, noting their animation, gestures and manners of speaking? These intuitive first impressions, called "thin slices" of behavior, can reveal much and form lasting impressions.

Harvard psychology Professors Nalini Ambady, Ph.D., and Robert Rosenthal, Ph.D., discovered as much after videotaping fellow instructors during a “Thin Slice” experiment. Observers viewed three Thin Slices of each professor's behavior—10-second clips from the beginning, middle and end of a class—and then rated the professors' confidence, energy and warmth. They found that these ratings predicted with amazing accuracy the average student rating taken at the semester's end. Thinner Slices—three two-second clips—also yielded ratings surprisingly similar to earlier student evaluations.

Even micro thin slices tell us something of importance.

In a similar study Professor Bargh of NYU flashed an image for just two-tenths of a second—a remarkably short amount of time. The result showed that his NYU students responded to these ultra micro thin slices instantly. "We're finding that everything is evaluated as good or bad within a quarter of a second". How’s that for first impressions!

In short, these scientific experiments support the notion that before engaging in rational thought, our intuition may have already assessed the data and reached a conclusion. We may actually find ourselves loving or hating it quite literally before giving it a second thought.

Awakened Instincts - Enhanced Intuition And Advanced Awareness

What’s more, ever increasing research suggests that there could be an ancient biological component to this high speed link between visual perception and rapid response, perhaps a product of millions of years of evolution.

Two hunter-gatherers met in the forest: friend or foe?

Instantly decide. No doubt life depended on it.

Throughout human evolution, those who could read a person quickly and accurately were more likely to survive in the highly competitive and often hostile world of our ancestors. These highly intuitive survivors left descendants and passed along this ability through countless generations of genetic inheritance in our DNA. This suggestion helps to explain why humans today can rapidly distinguish between a diverse array of facial expressions—including aggression, anger, sadness, fear or pleasure--literally within seconds of a glance.

New medical research now confirms this ability to be a direct result of hardwired coding into our DNA. Studies show that the emotional pathways that run from the eye to the brain's emotional control centers—bypassing the cerebral cortex— trigger us to react emotionally to our visual perception long before we've even had time to interpret the visual consciously. It’s a form of Enhanced Intuition and Advanced Awareness which allows us process threatening information in milliseconds. Later, after the cortex has had time to interpret the threat, the analytical and thinking brain asserts itself to confirm or override our instinctive conclusions.

In the forest, we physically jump at the sound of rustling leaves, leaving the cortex to decide later whether the sound came from a predator or the wind. Instinct first—reasoning second.

Clearly, human intelligence is more than logic, and comprehension is more than consciousness. Psychologist George Miller illustrated this truth using a conversation between two ship passengers: "There sure is a lot of water in the ocean,” said one. “Yes,” answered his friend, “and we've only seen the top of it.”

How To Live Life More Intuitively

While it isn't possible to intuit everything in life, developing you’re your intuition is an important step in increasing greater self-awareness. Here are four easy ways to tune in to your body's signals and tap into the incredible powers of intuition:

Believe In Your Intuitive Powers: Intuition is scientifically proven to be accurate as much as 90% of the time. Have trust in your intuitive ability to make good decisions. There’s nothing wrong with following up with a little bit of analytical evaluation, but if in doubt, trust your instincts.

Messages From The Body: Research shows that our instincts often hit us first on a visceral level, telling us what we need to know well before our consciousness catches up. It’s easy to tell something's afoot when your heart is pounding, you're drenched in sweat, and your stomach is tying itself in knots. But even if the shift in your pulse or perspiration is subtler, your intuition may still be trying to deliver a message. Listen to your body and find your personal confirmation signals to add extra credibility to your intuitive messages.

Be Aware: Intuitive guidance can come in many different forms. It can come to you as a T.V commercial or as a bird flying past that provokes a specific thought within you that feels significant. The possibilities are endless. As your mind starts to become more open and receptive, you will see more and more intuitive signals, but just be aware it is easy to create them yourself as well. Be sure to keep a journal and see how accurate your intuitive skills and readings are.

Meditation: Since thoughts and feelings can easily distort the messages we get, it’s important to cultivate a good mindfulness practice such as meditation, which helps to quiet the restless mind and clear the way for clearer intuition. Start and end your day with 15 minutes of meditation each day. Daily practice will help you relax, remove stress, and clear your mind from restless thoughts, feelings and emotions. It will also help to lift your vibration as well as your spirits. If you don’t know how to start, check out my YouTube where you will find many free videos and guided meditations that will help you get going.

Remember that we are intuitive creatures by nature. We are capable of incredible enhanced intuition and advanced awareness if we cultivate and allow it. Yet we are equally susceptible to the eternal rule of all gifts and abilities-which clearly demonstrates that we must use it or lose it. If we don’t practice enhancing our intuition and awareness but rather focus on doubting and limiting them instead, we are more than likely to simply do just that. Why not grow and expand these remarkable human abilities instead?

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For more information about the nature of intuition and CUNY philosophy professor Massimo Pigliucci, pick up a copy of his fascinating book and her groundbreaking book entitled, Answers for Aristotle: How Science and Philosophy Can Lead Us to A More Meaningful Life.

Copyright© Written by
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Marina Rose is the founder and developer of QDNA®, Quantum DNA Acceleration®, a revolutionary new technique for quantum growth in life and business. QDNA® uses the latest cutting edge science in Neuroplasticity and DNA Reprogramming to develop plans of action that activate solutions for you and your business needs. It compounds Quantum Field principles, Positive Psychology, and Epigenetics, in a powerful new technique to assist you to achieve desired results. Accelerate your life and business now.

This article was written and appears as part of the blog series The Magnificent Human Experience | Explorations of Consciousness And The Human Body.

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Marina Rose is an alternative health pioneer who employs cutting edge techniques that sit squarely at the intersection of the most leading edge scientific research and the ancient arts of traditional mind-body-energy medicine. She is the founder and developer of QDNA®, Quantum DNA Acceleration®, a revolutionary new technique for quantum growth in life and business. She offers seminars, programs, lectures, and private sessions in QDNA® that accelerate personal and professional transformation.

Marina has been an alternative healing arts and wellness facilitator for the past twenty-one years and holds certifications in more than twenty-four healing modalities. She is a highly respected facilitator, educator and lecturer in the field, with private practice based in Venice, California. Marina is the author of numerous articles on health and wellness, and is the author of The Magnificent Human Experience: Explorations In Consciousness and The Human Body, a weekly blog dedicated to far ranging topics that bridge the worlds science, health and spirituality.

Marina Rose has clients in 60 countries and all over the United States. She is based in Los Angeles, CA and lectures and practices QDNA® in locations worldwide.

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Marina strongly believes that there is nothing that cannot be healed or transformed when the mind, body and emotions are in balance. From over two decades of professional experience, Marina has developed a broad range of instructional programs, seminars and a complete line of organic products to support health and healthy living.

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