In my previous post I wrote about the importance of viewing your intuition as the only spiritual authority that you will ever need. Not too many people have a problem with that idea, but a few will sometimes express concern that their intuition might potentially give them bad advice, or mislead them in some way. What if their intuition tells them to eat a dozen Krispy Kreme Doughnuts every day for breakfast, for example? Or to kick the cat? Or even to take a leap from a very tall building?
These are legitimate concerns, but only because the questioners do not yet understand that their intuition would never guide them to do anything which would be harmful to themselves or others. Not all of our inner urges are intuitive, and therefore not every inclination that we have should be viewed as such.
We have said that human beings are spiritual beings in flesh-and-blood bodies. As such, you have both a spiritual nature and a physical nature. Intuition is the voice of your spiritual nature, but you also have plenty of inner urges which arise from your physical nature. It is therefore important that you develop spiritual discernment so that you can learn to tell the difference between the two.
Urges which arise from the physical nature tend to be concerned with obtaining some form of emotional or physical satisfaction. The desire to vent your anger or disappointment, to be impatient, to shout, to scream, to take revenge for some perceived wrong that has been done to you, to question your self-worth, or to feel sorry for yourself, are all good examples.
The voice of the spiritual nature, or intuition, on the other hand, tends to be concerned with your development as a spiritual being. This is the inner voice of reason, which gives you wise counsel which often runs contrary to your physical urges. For example, your intuition may suggest that you should resist giving in to your anger or disappointment, that you should strive to be more patient, that you should remain calm and trust the universe, that you should forgive those who have done you wrong, that you should be more mindful of your spiritual identity and that you should be grateful for all the good that you have in your life.
Another difference between the voice of intuition and urges arising from the physical nature is that the former will tend to advocate attitudes, responses and actions which promote the spiritual wellbeing and long-term happiness of both yourself and others in equal measure, whilst the latter will only tend to promote short-term pleasure, and usually for yourself.
Being aware of these differences between your intuition and the urges of your physical nature will help you to discern between the two in daily life.
For example, if you suddenly feel the urge to spend some time in prayer or meditation, or to speak words of genuine encouragement and kindness to someone, it should be quite clear that these are the promptings of your intuition. However, if you feel a compelling urge to give someone a ‘piece of your mind’ or cope with a feeling of sadness by seeking solace in a bottle of vodka, then it should be equally clear that these are the promptings from your physical nature.
It should be obvious that not all physical urges are to be ignored. The urge to eat when hungry, drink when thirsty, sleep when tired, and so on, are things which serve to keep you alive and healthy. What you should do is examine the urges of your physical nature as they arise and then choose consciously whether or not you should act upon them, and if so, how to act upon them in a healthy and balanced manner.
By taking this approach, listening to your intuition will not mean going along with every whim and fancy which arises, but evaluating your inner guidance to sort the wheat of genuine intuition from the chaff of sometimes irrational physical urges. Then, as you continue developing spiritual discernment, you will find that the voice of your intuition becomes ever clearer, and before long it will be quite easy for you to know which ideas are intuitive and which are not.