Rev. Claud's Corner

Is the intellect the enemy of spiritual evolution?

Posted by [email protected] on December 7, 2014 at 8:25 AM Comments comments (0)


This is a topic that has been on my mind for many years. Just what place, if any does the intellect hold for those who are seeking to evolve spiritually? It gets a pretty bad wrap, the intellect or intellectual people do, by some who are walking and even helping to lead others down a spiritual path. Intuitively, that never felt right to me. It never felt fair, but I never gave it much more thought than this.

If we define the Intellect using we have the following:

1. the power or faculty of the mind by which one knows or understands, as distinguished from that by which one feels and that by which one wills; the understanding; the faculty of thinking and acquiring knowledge.

2. capacity for thinking and acquiring knowledge, especially of a high or complex order; mental capacity.

In contract to this, intuition as defined by the same source is:


  • an immediate cognition of an object not inferred or determined by a previous cognition of the same object.
  • any object or truth so discerned.
  • pure, untaught, noninferential knowledge.


When we are in a meditative state we are generally and for the most part getting our information and insights from or through the intuitive channels. We are in essence bypassing the intellectual channels (although I do not believe entirely, but I will not argue that here.) And I do not know about you, but the type of information I receive during times like these, are typically short bursts of feeling or a sense of deep inner knowing, for instance about what direction to take. This mode of acquiring information has been incredibly helpful to me and one I would not want to be without during any time in my life.

However to make use of this information once I get it, I find myself further developing it by, either adding it to other bits or bursts of information I have previously received or perhaps journaling about it or allowing it to become a sermon/talk or a blog even. I might even be so moved to use this information to create a positive affirmation that I would use to re-work a core belief that I have determined is no longer serving me. The crafting of a crisp and effective affirmation, based on these truths obtained through intuition happens through the wonderful God-given power of the intellect. To form an opinion about a bible verse (or another great inspirational work) to apply it to real world happenings or events, happens at the power of the intellect. The intellect for me has been such a powerful God-given tool to help further develop my understanding of so many spiritual and non-spiritual concepts. Whether to deliver the message with humor or not is a function of the intellect. The intellect helps to order, make sense of and deliver the message in a way that others will most readily be able to understand. It adds clarity and color and if used correctly can really drive the point home in a way to reach more people, more effectively.

I have observed that the most evolved spiritual teachers have both highly developed intuitive and intellectual abilities. In fact, the marriage of the two can be quite breathtaking and critically important to those who would learn from them. These teachers are typically oh so careful about connecting the dots of their theories and suppositions; fully developing them and leaving no holes that have us asking “how in the earth did you arrive at that conclusion”. I pause here to thank all these glorious teachers for continuing to evolve these two incredible gifts of the Divine. You have created quite a sturdy bridge for the rest of us to cross over on our quest for spiritual evolution.

This entire line of thought takes me to the conversations that many have had around Science vs. Spirituality. And its only in the more recent past that people a lot smarter than I am, are determining that these two are complimentary and are supportive of each others claims. This is something that many of us on the metaphysis side had a deep inner knowing about, but had no scientific facts to back up (until now that is- read Dr. Joe DisPenza, Dr. Lissa Rankin, Bruce Lipton and the list goes on and on.)  It’s quite a glorious thing when these two work together. And so it is when the intuitive and intellectual powers work together. Yes, we can just all get along.:P