'Clairvoyance' implies clear-seeing - and usually means perceiving that which is normally unseen; and it can include being a 'seer' - who can more clearly perceive the future. (I am using the term clairvoyance to include all kinds of perceived experiences - seeing visions, hearing voices, performing divination etc.).
'Seeing' more generally implies perception, and this reflects that clairvoyant-type experiences are necessarily at several removes from reality, indirect.
In this respect 'clairvoyance' - perhaps surprisingly - can be seen as typical of all the normal, everyday, indirect - including 'official' - forms of knowing.
Intuition, by contrast, is direct-knowing of the primary level of reality.
Therefore, intuition (in its pure form) must not include anything that renders experience indirect or mediated; e.g. no language or symbolism, nor translation, nor interpretation.
In this respect intuition (in its essential, original, private form*) can be regarded as categorically different from any other kind of knowing.
I believe that intuition can best be understood as Primary Thinking; when Thinking is itself the 'primary' (ultimate) reality: such that God and creation are to be understood as (primarily) Thinking.
This means that when we engage in Primary Thinking, we are directly participating-in ultimate reality.
There is no 'mediation' - such that in Primary Thinking (and only in PT) we are part-of the ultimate reality of things.
This means that clairvoyance - because it includes perceptions - is at several removes from reality.
1. If Primary Thinking is ultimate reality...
2. Reality needs to be translated into symbolism, such as language...
3. This symbolism needs to be communicated, transmitted...
4. The received communication needs to be interpreted and understood.
This same, multi-layered indirectness (selectivity, summary, hence distortion) implies to all external sources that are received by the senses - even when it is assumed that the external source is working honestly on the basis of valid knowledge of reality.
This constraint applies to external personal and institutional authority, to all written (and spoken, and visual) inputs, to all socialization, training, education...
In sum - the above explains why we must ultimately, at the deepest and foundational level of knowledge of reality level know for ourselves.
No form of external and indirect knowledge can substitute:
We must do Primary Thinking for ourselves - or it will not be done; and we cannot be grounded in knowledge of reality.
We must do Primary Thinking for ourselves if we want a direct relationship with the world; yet there is no 'method' for doing it; and many or most people probably assume that they cannot do it - and have no idea how to start...
There is no 'method' for Primary Thinking - but there is a 'framework' of sorts; various 'assumptions' which enable Primary Thinking to happen.
For example: to know that Primary Thinking is both real and possible, both necessary and a Good Thing. To knowing that this is a creation we inhabit; that God is the creator; and that God loves us each as his child and desires our salvation - and will therefore ensure that anything we need in this mortal life will be possible.
And then by wanting to do it: by wanting to know the truth of things, wanting to experience reality - and wanting to participate in reality by Primary Thinking.
If, then, we experience what seems (on reflection and examination) be be Primary Thinking, then we would be wise to regard it as true (unless or until further intuition modifies it) - because there is no comparably valid source.
Yet (again I emphasize) we cannot communicate the results of intuition to others, nor should we expect others to be bound by our own Primary Thinking; and in general this 'trying to convince others' ought not to be attempted because public discourse can only use public language/ symbolism/ imagery etc.
On the other hand, intuitive knowing can and should affect public discourse indirectly; as the most important influence for an individual on evaluating public knowledge claims, and discerning between rival claims.
And - insofar as a intuitions is a valid participation in reality; then another-person's intuition of the same part-of-reality (if indeed, it is the identical part-of-reality that is being considered) will be the same insight - albeit within constraints of ability, time, effort etc.
But this is only true when mortal Men are living as-if already in Heaven.
*Note: The commonest criticisms of intuition come from those who focus on secondary and indirect communications of the (alleged) experience of intuition - in other words, the criticisms are directed against those who are regarded as arguing that 'other people' should accept as valid, linguistic interpretations and summaries of experiences that were originally wordless and private.
What I'm saying is, the truth is certainly not hidden in some room or box. Therefore, where is it? It is distributed throughout reality, and at any given point the truth is complete, not some part of it. Thus, we can grasp the true meaning of reality by observing it, the only thing to do is to open the perception.
@Ap - Truth is not a separable entity, not detachable from reality - it IS reality.
"The commonest criticisms of intuition come from those who focus on secondary and indirect communications of the (alleged) experience of intuition . . ."
Secondary and indirect communications are externalized symbols (objects) of reality, not reality itself. I think those who strictly adhere to the symbolic readily acknowledge this, but they seem to disregard reality of the subject perceiving the object. To truly "know" the primal reality to which a symbol points, the subject must possess some intuitive grasp of reality itself. If the subject lacks this capacity, the symbol loses its connection to reality and becomes just another thing among things. This applies especially to sacred symbols such as doctrines, scripture, tradition, etc.
Christians who remain fixated on defending and preserving Christianity at the object/symbol level of culture and tradition tend to regard Christianity primarily from this perspective. They mistake symbolism for spirit, object for subject. But spirit is never an object and spiritual reality cannot be reduced to objectification. The subject alone has reality.
Am I wrong to assume that primary thinking transcends subject/object dualism and gets to reality itself, which is subjective?
Primary thinking seems to entail subject encountering subject (not ego subject, but spiritual subject/reality). Communicating this via conventional symbols gets us back into dualism and its subject/object mode of thinking. In this sense, language or other symbols fail us.
At the same time, it would seem the symbolic could still serves a purpose, at least as far as pointing out some semblance of reality. Yet this purpose can only be useful if people approach the symbol with the right sort of intuition/motivation. In this sense, the symbolic can be regarded as a sort of necessary falsehood that can serve good purposes. Having said that, I fully accept your main point -- human language and symbol cannot communicate the reality that subjective experience is contained within the depths of Divine Life itself.
Posts like this demonstrate how crucial consciousness really is.
@Frank: "Am I wrong to assume that primary thinking transcends subject/object dualism and gets to reality itself, which is subjective? Primary thinking seems to entail subject encountering subject (not ego subject, but spiritual subject/reality). "
I would say that the reality of creation is God's 'thinking' - and that originally we were passively immersed-in this thinking. God thought in us. We were separate beings, but our thinking was of-God, and our agency was only potential.
But God wants a reality in which beings are agent, and from agency will consciously choose to ally with God in the work of creation. Thus Men (and I think other beings, plant and animal - also including what we think of as mineral) are becoming more separated in thought from God, until there needs to be a positive and active choice to work with (or else against) God.
Barfield and Steiner see the historical change in consciousness as due to reincarnating spirits learning from their mortal experiences; but I think that through history - these many degrees of agency are to cater for the needs of different pre-mortal spirits to incarnate into lives that address their major needs.
Perhaps most people alive today (on average) were pre-mortal spirits who had developed an hostility to the project of creation (i.e. were inclined towards evil); and therefore needed to experience a high degree of agency and alienation from God - and therefore to experience the (ultimately adverse) consequences of choosing to be cut-off from the divine.
This, in order to bring each person (each being) to a point of clear choice; to increase the chance that a soul would consciously choose to accept Christ's offer of resurrected eternal life.
"Perhaps most people alive today (on average) were pre-mortal spirits who had developed an hostility to the project of creation (i.e. were inclined towards evil)"
My goodness, it certainly feels like that!
I think that Frank's point that intuition or primary thinking "seems to entail subject encountering subject " is very true. It is about engaging with reality directly rather than at the object/symbol level which includes thoughts as conventionally understood though not thinking on the spiritual level which is more a matter of seeing.
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