Welcome to this all free website of quotes on intuition from great minds in business, literature, the arts and sciences.



INTUITION (philosophy), the act by which the mind perceives the agreement or disagreement of two ideas

INTUITION (knowledge), understanding without apparent effort


There is a thread of truth going through all these quotes, even if some of them may need updating due to new scientific research and some are humorous.

1. "For whereas the mind works in possibilities, the intuitions work in actualities, and what you intuitively desire, is possible to you. Whereas what you mentally or "consciously" desire is nine times out of ten impossible; hitch your wagon to a star, or you will just stay where you are." D. H. Lawrence (1885 - 1930)


2. "You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself." Renee Descartes, philosopher, mathematician, physicist


3. "The only real valuable thing is intuition." Einstein


4. "It is inevitable that in the near future, neuroscience will unleash a veritable revolution in consciousness and its study, that will result in a paradigm shift orders of magnitude larger than any in science preceding it."



5. "All perceiving is also thinking, all reasoning is also intuition, all observation is also invention." Rudolf Arnheim, Psychologist, Philosopher

 6. "Isn't truth inherent in man?" I interjected. "You once told me that progress is made only by intuition, and not by the accumulation of knowledge." "It's not as simple as that," replied Einstein. "Knowledge is necessary, too. An intuitive child couldn't accomplish anything without some knowledge. There will come a point in everyone's life, however where only intuition can make the leap ahead, without ever knowing precisely how. One can never know why, but one must accept intuition as a fact."



7. "There is no logical way to the discovery of these elemental laws. There is only the way of intuition, which is helped by a feeling for the order lying behind the appearance." Albert Einstein


8. "Intuition (is) perception via the unconscious" Carl Gustav Jung, psychiatrist


9. "Intuition will tell the thinking mind where to look next." Jonas Salk, medical researcher, virologist


10. "Intuition becomes increasingly valuable in the new information society precisely because there is so much data." John Naisbitt. His first book Megatrends sold more than 9 Million copies. He is one of only fourteen nonfiction authors who had has more than one book as #1 on The New York Times bestseller list since its beginning in 1946.

* Assistant Secretary of Education to President Kennedy

* Special Assistant to President Johnson

* Former visiting fellow at Harvard University, visiting professor at Moscow State University.

* Current faculty member at the Nanjing University in China

* Distinguished International Fellow, Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS), Malaysia -- the first non-Asian to hold this appointment

* Recipient of 15 honorary doctorates in the humanities, technology and science


11. "I would rather trust a woman's instinct than a man's reason." Stanley Baldwin 1867 – 1947 British Conservative politician, statesman


12. "An absolute can only be given in an intuition, while all the rest has to do with analysis." Henri Bergson Major French philosopher 1859 - 1941


13. "A woman's guess is much more accurate than a man's certainty." Rudyard Kipling, author, poet


14. "All thought must, directly or indirectly, by way of certain characters, relate ultimately to intuitions, and therefore, with us, to sensibility, because in no other way can an object be given to us." Immanuel Kant


15. Jules Henri Poincare 1854 – 1912 French mathematician, theoretical physicist, and philosopher of science. Poincaré's famous lectures before the Société de Psychologie in Paris (published as Science and Hypothesis, The Value of Science, and Science and Method) were cited by Jacques Hadamard as the source for the idea that creativity and invention consist of two mental stages, first random combinations of possible solutions to a problem, followed by a critical evaluation.



16. "Logic sometimes makes monsters. For half a century we have seen a mass of bizarre functions which appear to be forced to resemble as little as possible honest functions which serve some purpose." -- Henri Poincare


17. "It is through science that we prove, but through intuition that we discover." Jules Henri Poincare 1854 – 1912 French mathematician, theoretical physicist, and philosopher of science.


18. "When the logician has resolved each demonstration into a host of elementary operations, all of them correct, he will not yet be in possession of the whole reality, that indefinable something that constitutes the unity ... Now pure logic cannot give us this view of the whole; it is to intuition that we must look for it." ― Henri Poincaré, mathematician


19. "The intuition, by which discoveries are made, is a direct communion, without possible intermediaries, with the spirit and the truth." -- A comment from Henri Poincare's nephew about his uncle's beliefs.


20. "Cognitive research confirms that sensory input is mostly processed in the right brain..." In a 60/40 left brain society, that is virtually intuition.



21. "Arturo Uslar-Pietri, in presenting his term for magical realism, always kept its definition open by means of a language more lyrical and evocative than strictly critical, as in this 1948 statement: "What came to dominate the story and to leave a lasting impression was the view of man as a mystery surrounded by realistic data."


22.  "An individual's ability and vitality has a lot to do with his conscious mind's focus on reality and on its policies of nurturing management of the subconscious." The concept originated in discussions (circa 1960) between Ayn Rand, Nathaniel Branden and Barbara Branden.


23. "How often people speak of art and science as though they were two entirely different things, with no interconnection. An artist is emotional, they think, and uses only his intuition; he sees all at once and has no need of reason. A scientist is cold, they think, and uses only his reason; he argues carefully step by step, and needs no imagination. That is all wrong. The true artist is quite rational as well as imaginative and knows what he is doing; if he does not, his art suffers. The true scientist is quite imaginative as well as rational, and sometimes leaps to solutions where reason can follow only slowly; if he does not, his science suffers." ― Isaac Asimov Fiction and non-fiction writer, biochemist


24. "It is often held that scientific hypotheses are constructed, and are to be constructed, only after a detailed weighing of all possible evidence bearing on the matter, and that then and only then may one consider, and still only tentatively, any hypotheses. This traditional view however, is largely incorrect, for not only is it absurdly impossible of application, but it is contradicted by the history of the development of any scientific theory. What happens in practice is that by intuitive insight, or other inexplicable inspiration, the theorist decides that certain features seem to him more important than others and capable of explanation by certain hypotheses. Then basing his study on these hypotheses the attempt is made to deduce their consequences. The successful pioneer of theoretical science is he whose intuitions yield hypotheses on which satisfactory theories can be built, and conversely for the unsuccessful (as judged from a purely scientific standpoint)." Sir Fred Hoyle (1911-1995), Astronomer, Co-author with British astronomer, Raymond Arthur Lyttleton.


25. "My view of the matter, for what it is worth, is that there is no such thing as a logical method of having new ideas, or a logical reconstruction of this process. My view may be expressed by saying that every discovery contains an 'irrational element,' or 'a creative intuition,' in Bergson's sense. In a similar way Einstein speaks of the 'search for those highly universal laws ... from which a picture of the world can be obtained by pure deduction. There is no logical path.' he says, 'leading to these ... laws. They can only be reached by intuition, based upon something like an intellectual love (Einfühlung) of the objects of experience.' (1959)" ― Karl Raimund Popper, philosoper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery: Logik Der Forschung (2002)


26. "The intellect has little to do on the road to discovery. There comes a leap in consciousness, call it intuition or what you will, and the solution comes to you and you don’t know why or how." - Albert Einstein


27. "I feel there are two people inside me - me and my intuition. If I go against her, she'll screw me every time, and if I follow her, we get along quite nicely." Kim Basinger


28. "Wisdom is a river that runs deep and slow. Inspiration and intuition are lightning flashes reflected on its surface." - Anonymous


29. "Listen to your intuition. It will tell you everything you need to know." Anthony D Angelo, founder Collegiate EmPowerment Company


30 ."The human mind treats a new idea the way the body treats a strange protein; it rejects it." - Sir Peter B. Medawar, zoologist


31. "The [human] brain is the only organ in the known universe that seeks to understand itself." Richard Restak, neurologist


32. "The implications of brain plasticity for understanding our senses, our consciousness, and the essence of what it means to be human are nothing short of staggering." "The second theme is what I've come to think of as a negotiable reality. We are wrong. Our brains construct our reality, molding every input to what we expect, what we imagine, what we wish for. Our brains have minds of their own." Faith Hickman Byrnie, science author


33. "As you see, I do not treat the creation of fiction, that to say the invention and development of fantasies, as a form of abstract thought. I don't wish to deny the uses of the intellect, but sometimes one has the intuition that the intellect by itself will lead one nowhere." J. M. Coetzee (born 1940) is an author and academic from South Africa. Novelist, literary critic as well as a translator, Coetzee has won the Booker Prize twice and was awarded the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature.


34. "I have trusted to my intuition to find the subjects, and I have written intuitively. I have an idea when I start, I have a shape; but I will fully understand what I have written only after some years." V. S. Naipaul, novelist, essayist


35. "The way in which mathematicians and physicists and historians talk is quite different, and what a physicist means by physical intuition and what a mathematician means by beauty or elegance are things worth thinking about." Clifford Geertz (1926 – 2006) highly influential American anthropologist known mostly for his strong support for and influence on the practice of symbolic anthropology. He served until his death as professor emeritus at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey.


36. "Often you have to rely on intuition." Bill Gates, business magnate, philanthropist


37. "Thus, in a sense, mathematics has been most advanced by those who distinguished themselves by intuition rather than by rigorous proofs." Felix Klein, Mathematician



38. "Einstein leaned forward, "… it is not a religion that teaches that man is made in the image of God - that is, anthropomorphic. Man has infinite dimensions and finds God in his conscience. This religion has no dogma other than teaching man that the universe is rational and that its highest destiny is to ponder it and co-create with its laws. There are only two limiting factors: first, that what seems impenetrable to us is as important as what is cut and dried; and: second that our faculties are dull and can only comprehend wisdom and serene beauty in crude forms, but the heart of man through intuition leads us to greater understanding of ourselves and the universe."



39. "[Mathematics] unceasingly calls forth the faculties of observation and comparison; one of its principal weapons is induction: it has frequent recourse to trial and verification; and it affords a boundless scope for the exercise of the highest efforts of imagination and invention." -- James Joseph Sylvester, Mathematician


40. "The analysts try in vain to conceal the fact that they do not deduce: they combine, they compose ... when they do arrive at the truth they stumble over it after groping their way along." --- Evariste Galois, Mathematician


41. "Down the hierarchal view successively appear, Intuitive Mind, Ilumined Mind, Higher Mind, Mind, Life, Matter, the Subconsient, the Inconscient and the Nescient." Kamaladevi R. Kunkolienker PES College of Arts of Sciences,



42. "A friend working in the computer industry tells me that there is an intuitive nature to human cognition that is frighteningly more accurate than the general logical reasoning of a computer."



43. "Imagination decides everything" Blaise Pascal, Mathematician


44.  "If anything, BrainMeta seeks to awaken people to the fact that the full potential of consciousness has not yet been realized, and that in order to begin realizing it, we must potentiate our consciousness, and ultimately, transcend our human consciousness. This may be brought about in many different ways, and while spiritual insight is important for awakening one to the latent potential of consciousness, the most important way for fully realizing this potential will be through the use of science as a tool, or more specifically, through the adequate understanding of brain mechanisms and the manipulation and enhancement of the human brain and its functioning, in order to make it more than human."



45. "Eliminativists such as Patricia and Paul Churchland argue that while folk psychology treats cognition as fundamentally sentence-like, the non-linguistic vector/matrix model of neural network theory or connectionism will prove to be a much more accurate account of how the brain works." Wiki on Eliminativism


46. "The mind can assert anything and pretend it has proved it. My beliefs I test on my body, on my intuitional consciousness, and when I get a response there, then I accept." D. H. Lawrence (1885 - 1930)


47. "...the native and unspoiled attitude of childhood, marked by ardent curiosity, fertile imagination, and love of experimental inquiry, is near, very near, to the attitude of the scientific mind. If these pages assist any to appreciate this kinship and to "consider seriously how its recognition in educational practice would make for individual happiness and the reduction of social waste, the book will amply have served its purpose." John Dewey in How We Think


48. "There is nothing in the intellect which has not been in the senses" ..., while he [Pierre Gassendi] contends that the imaginative faculty (phantasia) is the counterpart of sense -- that, as it has to do with material images, it is itself, like sense, material, and essentially the same both in men and brutes." Pierre Gassendi, Mathematician, Wikipedia


49. "Human knowledge has two forms: it is either intuitive knowledge or logical knowledge; knowledge obtained through the imagination or knowledge obtained through the intellect; knowledge of the individual or knowledge of the universal; of individual things or of the relations between them: it is, in fact, productive either of images or of concepts." Benedetto Croce on intuition, Critic, Philosopher


50. "The object of mathematical rigor is to sanction and legitimize the conquests of intuition, and there was never any other object for it." J. Hadamard, Mathematician


51. "All physicists and a good many quite respectable mathematicians are contemptuous about proof." G. Hardy Some other mathematicians writing on intuition: Gauss, Heaviside, Jean Baptiste Joseph Fourier, Richard Courant and too many others to name. Philosophers: Socrates, Aristotle, Descartes.


52. "There are things so deep and complex that only intuition can reach it in our stage of development as human beings." John Astin, actor


53. "Mathematics as an expression of the human mind reflects the active will, the contemplative reason, and the desire for aesthetic perfection. Its basic elements are logic and intuition, analysis and construction, generality and individuality." Richard Courant, Mathematician


54. "Gerd Gigerenzer argues that most decision theorists who have discussed bounded rationality have not really followed Simon's ideas about it. Rather, they have either considered how people's decisions might be made sub-optimal by the limitations of human rationality, or have constructed elaborate optimising models of how people might cope with their inability to optimize. Gigerenzer instead proposes to examine simple alternatives to a full rationality analysis as a mechanism for decision making, and he and his colleagues have shown that such simple heuristics frequently lead to better decisions than the theoretically optimal procedure."



55. "Intuition and concepts constitute ... the elements of all our knowledge, so that neither concepts without an intuition in some way corresponding to them, nor intuition without concepts, can yield knowledge." Immanuel Kant


56 ."On the conscious level, the mind sets goals, breaks problems into sub-problems, monitors the thinking process for consistency, relevance, etc.; on the subconscious level, the mind's vast integrative machinery, utilizing previously acquired knowledge, memories, observations, associations, etc., works to provide the material which will lead to the achievement of those chosen goals...." Dr. Nathaniel Brandon, Objectivist Psychiatrist


57. "In any case, Turing makes it clear that the 'intuition' being discussed is related to the human act of seeing the truth of a formally unprovable Gödel statement."

"Turing gave his subject-matter an interpretation which described the mathematician's 'intuition' in theorem-proving, and Newman (1955) effectively identified the uncomputable 'oracle' with intuition."

("Turing defined the 'oracle' purely mathematically as an uncomputable function,...") "As Penrose points out, intuition can again outdo the oracle."

"In his 1938 work, Turing also stressed that 'intuition' was actually involved in all the mental work of mathematics; it was only when the steps were formalized according to Hilbert's programme that the non-formal deductions were exposed explicitly. (Penrose takes this point further, saying that it requires intuition even to know that numbers, rather than formal symbols, are the subject-matter of mathematics.)" Andrew Hodges, mathematician, in an article on "Uncomputability in the Work of Alan Turing and Roger Penrose" at calculemus.org, the Polish on-line journal of logic and philosophy of science.