What is Intuition?

Intuition is the process of perceiving or knowing something without conscious reasoning: knowledge of events such as an act of nature that has yet to happen; or knowledge of a distant material object such as an as-yet unseen obstruction blocking the highway ahead. Researchers with the Institute of HeartMath and many others who have conducted numerous controlled and scientifically validated studies over more than half a century have expanded the definition of intuition to include not only conscious perception by the mind alone, but also by the body’s entire psychophysiological system. This unconscious perception often is evidenced by subtle changes in emotions and measurable physiological changes that can be detected throughout the body, according to the study Electrophysiological Evidence of Intuition: McCraty, Atkinson and Bradley, 2004.

At the center of this ability is the human heart, which encompasses a degree of intelligence whose sophistication and vastness we are continuing to understand and explore. We now know this intelligence may be cultivated to our advantage in many ways.

"The only real valuable thing is intuition."
– Albert Einstein, 1879-1955

"Heart intuition or intelligence brings the freedom and power to accomplish what the mind, even with all the disciplines or affirmations in the world, cannot do if it’s out of sync with the heart."
– The HeartMath Solution, 1999, Childre and Martin

Taking into account the array of intuition research, along with findings from years of experimentation at its research facilities in Boulder Creek, Calif., and elsewhere in the U.S. and abroad, HeartMath theorizes that intuitive abilities we’re unable to attribute to subconsciously stored memories and experiences or to the conscious brain’s analytic processes, make sense in another context: The body is connected by sensory perception to a field of energy that enfolds the information we attribute to intuition.

To help us understand this concept consider an established scientific fact in the area of quantum physics that could not be explained by classical physics in the early 20th century: We know there is virtually instantaneous communication of information in the subatomic world between particles separated by vast regions of space and these particles act is if they have knowledge of events before they happen. This "nonlocal communication" seemingly exists outside the confines of space and time as we currently understand them.

View Intuition Research Publications in our Research Library.