Inspired by the Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies
Are Intuition and Psychic Ability the Same?
By Kevin J. Todeschi
On a number of occasions, individuals asked Edgar Cayce questions about developing their own psychic abilities. Those questions were phrased in a variety of ways: "How can I develop psychic power?" "How can I train intuition?" "How can I keep in touch with the highest psychic forces?" and so forth. Looking at all of this information given to individuals who asked about their own psychic development you might wonder about Cayce's own use of the terms psychic and intuition. Is there a difference? After reviewing hundreds of pages of readings on the subject, I can answer with relative confidence: yes, no – well, maybe.
Actually, the real answer probably depends on how you decide to define the terms to begin with. I remember being at a Hugh Lynn Cayce lecture more than twenty years ago when he mentioned that it was important to define the terminology when discussing concepts in the Cayce readings. The reason is because the Edgar Cayce material does not always apply the same meaning to words that have gained in popular usage. The example that Hugh Lynn discussed at the time was the word karma – Cayce's use of karma is most closely associated with memory, not some sort of a universal debt that must be atoned for.
In today's society – with the proliferation of 900 lines and tabloid headlines – the word psychic has acquired some negative connotations that were not necessarily a part of Cayce's life experience. For this reason, a number of legitimate psychics have begun to call themselves intuitives, clairvoyants, or mediums – using this last term very differently than was implied during Cayce's day. With all of this in mind, just what did Edgar Cayce have to say about psychic ability and intuition? And how might we begin to define the terms for ourselves?
Edgar Cayce's interest in psychic ability was not simply because it was the basis of his own life's work. The readings are adamant in their stance that "psychic is of the soul." (261-15 and others) However, this means much more than the fact that psychic ability is a soul talent – as many individuals have derived from the expression. Instead it suggests something vitally important about the nature of humankind. Interestingly enough, that importance was explored as early as 1924 when the readings stated that attempting to understand the subconscious, the psychic, and the soul forces should be "the great study for the human family." The reading went on to explain why:
…for through self man will understand its Maker when it understands its relation to its Maker, and it will only understand that through itself, and that understanding is the knowledge as is given here in this state. 3744-5
In other words, it is only as we come to understand the subconscious and psychic part of ourselves that we will come to understand our true identity, our relationship to the Creator, and our connection to one another.
On other occasions, the readings state that rather than being associated with mental abilities the psychic is more closely associated with the soul mind or the soul body. With this in mind, Cayce suggested that there are nearly as many kinds of psychic phenomena as there are individuals. In a reading on the history of Atlantis, Cayce added that the whole realm of "psychic science" actually came into existence during a time in our history when we were much more connected to the realm of thought and being thought-forms than we were connected to the world of physicality. (364-10)
In many other places within the readings, Cayce actually uses the terms psychic forces and soul forces interchangeably. In a reading given on the subject of psychic development, Cayce suggested that the psychic was an elemental force that was inextricably connected to the nature of the soul: "for without the psychic force in the world the physical would be in that condition of 'hit or miss,' or that as a ship without a rudder or pilot, for that element that is the building force in each and every condition is the spirit or soul of that condition which is the psychic or occult force." (3744-2) In the same reading, Cayce clarifies the information by stating that psychic in the broader sense means "spirit, soul, or the imagination of the mind…" It also means the expression of soul forces into the material world. In fact, Cayce told one individual that the best use of the psychic force was that the ideals of the soul may shine through and give that which may be helpful in the experience…" (295-9)
In terms of the connection between intuition and psychic ability, at least one reading suggested that the highest form of psychic ability was actually intuition. (1500-4) When an individual asked about the possibility of training intuition, Cayce replied:
Train Intuition? Then, how would you train electricity – save as how it may be governed! By keeping in self those thoughts, those activities of the mental mind, those activities of the body that allow spiritual truths to emanate through. To train such! Not train, but govern! Govern it by knowing that the mind, that the body, that the influences are such that these are not sidetracked from the ideals and purposes that are set before self." 255-12
In other words, the best use of intuition is associated with an individual's will and his or her spiritual ideals and purposes.
Elsewhere, Cayce stated that individuals could become sages, or masters by constant introspection through meditation, and learning to practically apply their spiritual knowledge in everyday life. However, this same information could be abused. Although the information came from the same source, ultimately its application determined whether or not it was helpful. The more the information was associated with introspection and prayer, the more it had the potential for good. In the same reading the difference between intuition and the occult was explained by stating that the occult applied to psychic activities as a whole, whereas, "intuitive forces are developed more by the introspective activities of the conscious mind…" (282-3) In other words, ultimately intuition is attuning to the forces that arise from within rather than turning to the forces without.
In discussing intuition, Cayce told one person:
Trust more and more upon that which may be from within…On any question that arises, ask the mental self – get the answer, yes or no. Rest on that. Do not act immediately (if you would develop the intuitive influences). Then, in meditation or prayer, when looking within self, ask – is this yes or no? The answer is intuitive development. On the same question, to be sure, see? 282-4
Another who asked about the method of developing psychic powers was told:
By the intuitive forces that lie within, by the study very closely of those tenets as He has given in the 14th, 15th, 16th and 17th chapters of John. For put thy trust in Him and He will guide thee aright, in thine intuition, in thy expressions in the psychic or the soul forces of self. 562-3
To an individual who inquired, "How can I best keep in touch with the highest psychic forces that will aid me in fulfilling my purpose in this life?" Cayce replied that the first step was to discovering within self "What is MY Ideal" and the second was to know that the kingdom of God's was within. (440-1) Later, when that same individual asked: "What is the highest possible psychic realization?" The answer came, "That God, the Father, speaks directly to the sons of men – even as He has promised." (440-4)
Essentially, the Cayce information seems to suggest that psychic ability – or extended sense perception – is truly a part of the nature of the soul. Not simply because it is a soul talent but because the soul is not a body but rather a being of expanded consciousness inextricably connected to the Creator. By getting more in touch with that part of our selves – through introspection, meditation, and ideals – not only does intuition become the natural result, but we learn more about the nature of humankind.
What are Cayce's perceptions of psychic ability and intuition and how are they connected? They need to be defined. If we define psychic ability as the experience of tuning within to draw out information that can be selflessly helpful to self and others, then it suggests the same thing that Cayce had in mind when discussing intuition. If we define psychic forces as the elemental fabric of expanded sense perception, then we are more closely discussing the nature of the soul. From Cayce's approach, psychic ability is not really about amazing talents or miracles of the mind. Instead, it becomes clear that psychic ability and intuition are really about discovering who we truly are and understanding how we might be helpful to one another.
Kevin J. Todeschi is the author of twelve books, including Edgar Cayce on Soul Mates, Dream Interpretation (and More!) Made Easy, and Edgar Cayce on the Akashic Records. A spokesperson for the Cayce work, he is currently a Senior Manager for the A.R.E. All of his books are available through http://www.Amazon.com http://www.edgarcayce.org Copyright 2001, Kevin J. Todeschi
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