Maria Popova recently reviewed on Answers for Aristotle, a book on the science of intuition by Massimo Pigliucci. The snap summary: intuition is essentially subconscious pattern recognition. Here’s an excerpt Popova included:
One of the first things that modern research on intuition has clearly shown is that there is no such thing as an intuitive person tout court. Intuition is a domain-specific ability, so that people can be very intuitive about one thing (say, medical practice, or chess playing) and just as clueless as the average person about pretty much everything else. Moreover, intuitions get better with practice — especially with a lot of practice — because at bottom intuition is about the brain’s ability to pick up on certain recurring patterns; the more we are exposed to a particular domain of activity the more familiar we become with the relevant patterns (medical charts, positions of chess pieces), and the more and faster our brains generate heuristic solutions to the problem we happen to be facing within that domain.
Full Story: The Science of “Intuition”
Your Unconscious Brain Can Do Math, Process Language
November 28, 2012 at 8:49 am
That’s an interesting take on intuition, thanks. Intuition is one of the main things I try to focus on/develop when meditating, (intuitive understanding is placed as one of the main things to develop in one of the sutras I use most as a guide.) so will be checking the link and keeping this in mind next time I’m meditating.