Swami Kriyananda used to say that people are a lot more intuitive than they realize.
You’re trying to solve a problem, and you get a hint of an idea that sends you in the right direction.
You’re planning a vacation, yet a subtle feeling tells you that it won’t happen. Sure enough, your son falls ill and you aren’t able to go.
Paramhansa Yogananda defined intuition:
“Intuition is that directly perceiving faculty of the soul which at once knows the Truth about anything. Unless you have the power of intuition, you cannot possibly know Truth. It is the knowing power of the soul without the help of the senses or the mind.”
The flow of intuition is forever with us. The field of “superconsciousness,” as Swami Kriyananda called it, is everywhere.
In the superconscious level of awareness we escape the illusion of our separateness from other people and from all creation.
Swami Kriyananda told how his guru, Paramhansa Yogananda, could speak with people about the details of their profession – for example, he could talk comfortably with doctors, even though he had never attended medical school.
Our intuition tends to be strongest in the areas of our lives where we’re most active. A singer won’t usually get mathematical intuitions, and a mathematician won’t get recipes.
Therefore, practice in areas where you have a comfortable flow of energy and experience. If there’s a problem you can’t solve by reason and logic, try appealing to the higher intelligence of it.
In other words: “Pray.” Realize that every situation has its own natural solution in God.
Most of my intuitions are about people. I pray to the soul of the person to whom I’m talking, “You know what is needed – tell me.” And it’s astonishing what comes out of my mouth. That’s because it didn’t come from me but from the superconscious.
To receive intuitive guidance, you must invest as much energy in asking as if you were trying to solve the problem logically. However, in this case, you’re holding yourself absolutely still. You can be walking, but inwardly you’re holding yourself still. You’re not letting your mind zip around, thinking and worrying about the solution. You’re holding your mind still, and you’re inviting the answer to reveal itself.
Here are the guidelines that Paramhansa Yogananda gave for developing our intuition:
“Pure reason and calm feeling lead to intuition. Therefore, the first requisite in developing it is to calmly reason and calmly feel everything. Intuition is developed by exercising common sense, daily introspection and analysis, depth of thought and continued activity in one direction, calmness, and, best of all, by meditation, holding to its calm after-effects. This is the only way. You then begin to perceive everything which is within as well as without.
“If you can produce a perfect state of calmness in concentration and meditation, when you have a deep problem to solve you will be able to solve it. If you hold to the calmness that comes after meditation, then you will be guided aright. Intuition guides your reason. When you have developed intuition, you will stand firm in your knowledge, though the whole heavens and the universe rise up to defeat you. Whenever you want to intuitively solve a problem, first go into deep meditation or silence. Do not think of your problem during meditation, but meditate until you feel that a sense of calmness fills the inner recesses of your body, and your breath becomes calm and quiet. Then ask God to direct your intuition so that you may know what you should do.
“First, try to find out the truth about simple problems; then, when you find your intuition working infallibly, use it in finding the solution to big problems. For example, suppose two propositions are given you about a business matter; both propositions seem very attractive, but both cannot be right for you. You are obliged to decide between them, and you can decide rightly by your intuitive sense. Supermen continually use their intuition in everything they do, and thus accomplish the seemingly impossible.”