Have you ever made a decision based on a gut feeling? Did you ever just feel like you knew something in advance without being able to articulate why or how you knew in that moment?
According to Dictionary.com, “intuition” is a noun meaning:
[pronounced in-too-ish-uhn, -tyoo-]
1. direct perception of truth, fact, etc., independent of any reasoning process; immediate apprehension.
2. a fact, truth, etc., perceived in this way.
3. a keen and quick insight.
4. the quality or ability of having such direct perception or quick insight.
5. Philosophy .
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.
More background on the concept can be found at good ol’ Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intuition_%28knowledge%29 As a side note, I find it interesting how the Wikipedia authors put the term “knowledge” in parentheses after “intuition” and included the reference note that says “See also: Insight” just after the heading.
In a recent Oprah.com piece titled “Women whose hunches changed — or saved — their lives“ (July 19, 2011 6:09 p.m. EDT), three personal stories outline how a feeling/hunch/intuition influenced their lives in important ways.
There appear to be mixed results from scientific studies on the topic of intuition, but intuition seems to be plausible and accurate at least anecdotally-speaking. How might you use your own intuition to benefit yourself or others in day-to-day life?