Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Further remarks on the intuition and its relationship with the intellect

Living at your parents house is a bit like being on a sail boat, with lots of amenities, in the middle of the ocean. However, this boat has no apparent destination. Meanwhile, fabulous blossoming islands float by on the horizon, yet the captain of the ship refuses to steer towards one of them and anchor. 

This ^ was my facebook post this morning. I am living at my parents house. The need to do so arose after the determination was made for me to leave college for a semester. There were some pressing family health issues that required me to weigh two sets of competing responsibilities. One the one hand, the responsibilities to college, my dear friends, and my position as student body president. On the other, the responsibilities to familial health and personal well-being. 

In The Gift of Death Derrida speaks about having sets of obligations and sometimes you will have to sacrifice one for the other, upon doing so a sense of remorse is felt. Well, this situation I was a perfect example of Derrida's writing. 

Being a senior in college and being the student body president precipitated a lot of stress, coupled with the family issues in the background the stress became dominant in my daily life. I exhibited lack of sleep, racing thoughts, erratic behavior, all being symptomatic of stress. This connects with the earlier posts, because as my intuition to spirit grew out of a personal integration, my intuitive understanding of the world seemed to lead to an exponentiation of itself. This understanding placed under the proper conditions and environment can become conflated for, and in conflict with the intellect. 

The intuition expresses and immediate  understanding of the world, while the intellect mediates to its understanding of the world. This is why the intellect is so poor at understanding the world as it is, as spirit. The intellect has many more links in the chain of understanding, whereas intuition is linked directly with the world. The intellect is therefore more likely to loose its way. For a full understanding there must be both the intellect and intuition in agreement. There is generally a stronger confidence in the assertions of the intuition in the mind than those of the intellect. This is so because of the nature of the more direct connection between the intuition and reality. However, when the intuition is mistaken and one tries to commensurate the intellect with a mistaken intuition an anxiety develops in one’s mind.
We can imagine cases where the intuition impresses a very strong association with a certain mode of reality, and where the intellect already has an established understanding that is contrary, even contradictory to this intuitive understanding. Anxiety will develop when these two understandings attempt to reconcile themselves to the degree that their respective representations of reality differ.
This is the type of anxiety that arose during my first two months of my senior year in college. As stated before my intuition began telling me things about the world, my intellect then attempted to commensurate itself (which had a vastly different understanding of the world) with this new reality. While I have always claimed to believe this newfound mode of reality, I never had a full understanding of it. That is my intuition and intellect were never aligned on the matter. I suppose this anxiety was inevitable considering my integration process.

For instance, intellectually my obligations lay with professional and academic work. Intuitively, they lay with family. The strong understandings of these obligations on both sides needed to commensurate, one needed to be dropped for the other, the intellect thus needed to shift, now intellectually my obligations also lay with family. No easy shift however. Perhaps this would have been easier for another.

I am utilizing personal experiences to better explain the philosophical concepts I hope to elucidate here. Ideally this strategy helps tell a story to the reader that is more communicable than simply speaking wholly abstractly and theoretically.

Til next time.

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