Instinct, Intellect, Intuition

by Christopher Lovejoy on February 21, 2021

Turning distress into eustress by turning burden into blessing is the work of a lifetime. We all wanna feel good about ourselves and we all wanna do what’s right for ourselves, even as we grapple with the many tensions and frustrations that arise from instinct, intellect, and intuition.

But sometimes (oftentimes?), we don’t feel so good about ourselves; sometimes (oftentimes?), we aren’t sure if we’re doing the right thing for ourselves. As life grows ever more complex and complicated, so too do relationships grow ever more fraught with unintended consequence.

We all have our own feelings about what it means to be supportive, protective, and responsive, even as we continue to ask ourselves, if only in a tacit way, (1) is this feeling helpful (useful)? (2) what am I making this feeling mean now? and (3) what story, if any, am I making up about it?

To survive, strive, and thrive in this world, we are called to be master jugglers of feeling good and right: this feels good, and this feels bad; this feels right, and this feels wrong. This feels too good to be true, and this feels too bad to be false; this feels so right, and this feels so wrong.

No one escapes these vital catalytic dualities.

As complexity and complication grow along multiple fronts across multiple domains of interest and influence, it’s enough to drive anyone into addiction, distraction, obsession, provocation, or temptation, adding further to the complicating complexities of a life lived well and good.

Complexity and complication, however, need not be our nemesis.

With the right attitude, we can simplify. With the right tools, we can cut through complication with uncommon grace and ease. We can learn to hold our ground and speak truth to power in the face of those who would insist on more complexity leading to ever more complication.

The present state of the world is a true test of our capacities and abilities to reconcile instinct, intellect, and intuition. If we fail, we fall. If we succeed, we succeed beyond our wildest dreams, but the question remains, as it always has, lurking in the background: cui bono?


think for yourself, or others will think for you, without thinking of you

~ a fair warning for our times, courtesy of Henry David Thoreau

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