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It is fascinating that some of our most insightful thoughts come when we are not thinking about the subject in question.

Perhaps it is when our mind is in a calm, meditative state that we are most open to new discoveries, revelations and insights. Could it be that when we are in a non-thinking state that we open up to a form of divine inspiration? Is it that we can achieve a mental state where we can connect to a mass consciousness made up of the energy of everyone’s thoughts? Or does our unconscious mind deliver more intuitive messages to our conscious mind?

Are we most imaginative when we can create that mental blank canvas to be original in? If so how do we best empty our minds of all the mental clutter that so easily swills around our brains?

There are no definitive answers and we may each need to find our own special individual ways. For me meditation helps. If I get stuck whilst writing, a couple of minutes meditation empties my brain and allows my mind to fill with fresh ideas. A mindful walk in the woods near my mother’s home or across Hampstead Heath can generate lots of very interesting insights. Some of my greatest inspirations have originated during a long walk in nature. I find it helps to engage my senses of smell, touch, hearing and sight so that I am totally absorbed in, for example, feeling each step, looking at moving shadows or smelling the honeysuckle. It is during these simple experiences that sometimes a new inspiration appears to help me move forwards again.

I have also found that repetition has helped me be more intuitive and insightful. I have noticed this most during activities like cooking, healing or massage. If I have done something so many times that I can be completely relaxed about the required mechanical actions, I reach a meditative state where sometimes fascinating revelations pop into my conscious mind.

Playing with thoughts as I fall asleep can lead to very interesting insights and revelations in the morning. This something that has been very helpful in writing or when I want to create more imaginative and original thoughts about an issue.

In all these processes it seems that some kind of relaxed contemplation of an issue, followed by a period of being in the moment conjures up a state where we are better able to be intuitive and insightful.

I no longer feel any need to work everything out, apply logic, analyse or reason. Although I still do all this and enjoy it, I am aware that my most interesting thoughts often come from what feels like no-where. Over the years I have learnt to trust my self and that a new discovery, insight or intuitive response will appear when I need it.

Copyright Simon Brown, London, 2010