Last year I happened upon a book that really struck a chord with me. I reached out to the author wanting to know more! Luckily she agreed! So I had the pleasure of speaking to author, Sophy Burnham about her book, The Art of Intuition. What a fascinating interview it was! Sophy is such a delightful and generous person and I believe we can all benefit from her timely information.
This is part one of the interview. I hope you enjoy her wisdom and candor. Check out the review of, The Art of Intuition!
Okay. I’m ready for you.
Perfect. So when I read your book, I thought it was such an amazing piece. I found, The Art of Intuition by accident. I was in the library and I was actually working on another writing project. One of the striking was that you approached it in a way that had a lot of scientific studies that explained and supported intuition but you weren’t trying to convince anyone that that was all that intuition is. And I thought that was so brilliant.
Actually, we don’t have any idea what it is.
Exactly. But some people want to explain it in a scientific sense and let it be purely that. And other people think of it in this very mystical, magical sort of way. I thought you took the middle ground and you gave bits and pieces to both groups. The other thing that resonated with me is the idea of intuition and creativity are connected to each other.
Oh, because they’re intimately linked, yeah.
I want to begin with, why do you feel that people have forgotten how to tap into their intuitive selves?
You mentioned this in your first question to me. Is it more a matter of remembering was the way you put it. And in my experience, it’s not always remembering because a lot of the time I get information I didn’t know about at all. So I couldn’t possibly be remembering something. It’s a totally new moment, as it were.
Now, I did have an experience the other day that was just remembering. But I had it so precisely that I think, there it is, there’s my higher teacher, my guide, giving me information. And it was very simple. I’ve had some surgery and when I came back from the hospital, I was very, very, very ill. And I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know if vomiting was just part of what happens at this phase and I couldn’t reach anybody and I didn’t want go rushing back to the hospital. And I remembered that about nine months earlier, I had gotten in the mail a little card which gave me the name of a nurse…practicing nurse on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week, call this number. I remembered that out of the blue when I had just sent up this little prayer, what do I do. And then, even more remarkable, I went in my office and I put my hands on it immediately. Which is not the way my filing system works. And she was fantastic. I got this woman in Ohio who listened to my symptoms and said get an ambulance and get to an emergency room immediately. And eventually that’s exactly what I did do.
Now, that was a remembering in a way, but it came with such suddenness on the part after having sent up this little heart message, help, what do I do. Maybe the intuition was merely remembering. For me, it has the sense of an angel, or my higher self, or that spark of the divine that we all have, coming to the fore and saying, get that piece of paper, call that person.
I have learned that there are symbolic things sort of looming and floating and presenting themselves to us in everyday life and we have to learn to see that string, that thread, that kind of pulls them all together.
Absolutely. And then you can enhance this ability. Meditation is the most obvious. Turn off the television, turn off the iPad, stop playing with your Smart Phone and go take a walk in the woods and you will know things that you will never get on the internet. And you’ll know how to solve your problems. But we have to be alone to do it. You have to take the dare of being in solitude at least for a little while and be comfortable with yourself.
I’m a big believer in the divine nature of human beings and I have to say, Shaheen, that after this latest Colorado massacre, it shakes me to the core. But I know that we have within us the spark of the divine. And that we have all of the God-given abilities to know everything and to be able to solve the problems if we can just trust ourselves enough to do it. Now it might take a little while to get there, and some people are better at it than others. Not everyone is a medium. Not everyone is able to give someone a reading. But I have certainly trained many people to do it, or trained is the wrong word. Opened them up to discover, one, I can do this, look at that. How did I know all of this about this total stranger? Because it’s part of our innate nature to know this information.
That’s a powerful thing to be aware of. In an interview you said people are more afraid now than they have been in the past twenty years. Do you feel this is because people are not connected to their intuition? Or for instance, this massacre, do you think people are serving a higher purpose?
You know, it’s such an interesting question. It’s a really important question. I don’t know if people are more afraid now than they ever were. I know that we are blasted with information. We are a very dysfunctional society at the moment, in part because everything is slamming us with terrifying information. If you read the newspapers, if you turn on the radio, if you turn on the television, it’s all bad news and it’s all being delivered at high scream velocity. And everything has the same quality as everything else, so they’ll say, there are more car crashes than ever before because more people are driving cars. This is a terrible thing and we have to… The next moment they’re saying, just in the same breathless way, the next horrible thing you have to be afraid of.
Everything has high-pitched terror in it and it is a deliberate function of the media to make the reader or that listener uncomfortable enough so that they want something of comfort. And they will rush to buy something or eat something or make a phone call or pay some money to this particular non-profit. Everything is about grabbing our attention and the way they do it is through fear. And then I think, you know what? People were afraid from the beginning of time. You have only to look at the Bible to realize how frightened people were in 3000 B.C. There would not be the need for the Twenty-third Psalm if people were not frightened.
So maybe we just recognize somehow when we come down into this plane of existence, on this pretty little, and very strange, planet, we’ve lost our connection to the divine and we’re aware of being alone and frightened. Maybe that’s part of the human condition unless you connect with your own inner heart, or with God, or with the divine in whatever way you reach it. This is why I say a walk in the woods is so good for you. There you are in God’s world instead of the human, man-made world. And you unhook for a few moments and you realize, you know what? Everything’s okay. And things work out for the okay. They don’t always work out the way I want, but they often work out better than I had imagined. And when I examine my life and I listen to the stories that other people are telling me, I can see in hindsight, always, how I’m being helped at every stage of the game.
In front of me everything is black. I am walking blindfolded and barefoot down a dirt road and I can only see my way by feeling the stones and dirt under my bare feet. So when I go off onto the gravel on the shoulder of the road, if I’m sensitive I move off the side way and get back into the center. If I’m not sensitive, I wander into the briars on the far shoulder and then I need a spiritual cattle prod to force me back into the road and I probably lunge too far over and throw myself into the briars on the far left-hand side, until I learn that I am being guided by silken reins and I don’t need the cattle prod anymore.
© Shaheen Miro 2013