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Innate vs. Intellect: Life’s Every Day Conflict - Grasshopper

There is a war going on within us every day.  It’s not good vs. evil, although that’s what many would have us believe. The battle that rages is between what we know and what we think we know. Like all battles, a cease fire or surrender is necessary in order for peace to have a chance.

How many times have you talked yourself out of something you innately know? My experience is that it’s an every day event.

It’s the battle that keeps you guessing. You have a gut feeling about something and then you reason it to the point that it rips your guts out. That’s the price of war.

Notice the odds. You have one gut feeling and then it is attacked by a regiment of reasons. It’s hard to “go with your gut” in the face of all of those odds.

The process of peace begins when we start to notice the conflict. When we just observe the battle taking place, we get to see how it forms, how it escalates, how it retreats and how it reforms. We get to observe the structure of war.

Once we know the structure, we know where to intervene to prevent an all out war. Like the ancient Chinese sage, Lao Tzu said, “Set about difficult things while they are still easy; do great things while they are still small.”

Begin to notice that an innate feeling comes first and then notice the infantry of the intellect starting to form. Here’s the key to avoiding war: There would be no battle if you initially went with your innate feeling. The reasons wouldn’t have time to marshal their forces and gang up on your gut.

My experience is we don’t give credence to our gut feelings because they don’t have all the pomp and circumstance of our “proper” thoughts. This little rag-tag feeling couldn’t possibly be as enlightened as our erudite, high-minded, never ending thoughts.

The way to peace is to notice your gut early in the process and take action before you get surrounded by an opposing force. There is no war if there’s no one there to battle.

If you just had the thought, “I don’t want to make rash decisions,” you have entered into a war with your gut. Rash decisions don’t come from the gut but are an intellectual event - thoughts arguing with other thoughts and one having a quick victory over another.

A gut feeling has no real opponent. It’s self contained and not open for debate. Our charge is to notice our innate feeling early in the process and give it the respect of a benevolent King.

Start cataloging your gut feelings. Make it your mission to know them intimately. Getting to know and trust your gut not only ends the war before it begins, it streamlines your decision process and gives you more peace of mind.

 

All the best,

John

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