I’ve come across some amazing and amusing examples of advanced souls being guided by intuition. These stories are from a book of letters from Paramhansa Yogananda to his second-most-advanced disciple, Yogacharya Oliver Black, My Dear Oliver. Here is the story of how Yogacharya met his guru:

Master said he was in Washington, D.C., and he was on his way back home to Los Angeles. A straight line for his travel would have been through Columbus, Ohio, but he said the inner voice/Divine Mother told him to come to Detroit.

After he got to Detroit, he didn’t know where to go or what to do. He got a telephone directory and ran his finger down the pages, leaf after leaf, until his finger stopped, and it stopped on the name of Maude Emerson. He called Maude Emerson and told her who he was—that he was Yogananda. She had in fact attended one of his lectures many years before.

She explained to him that there was somebody meeting with a group in her home. He was teaching yoga to a class of about ten to twelve people. Master said, “I want to meet that man.” And she got us together.

Another story tells of this intuitive connection in the other direction. Yogacharya writes:

let intuition be your guide

One morning I came to my office and I had a strange feeling or sensation, or itch, and I was scratching the back of my head, at the medulla oblongata. I went in to our treasurer’s office and said, “Well, I don’t know what’s the matter, but while I go home and get my bag, I’d like to have you get me an airplane ticket to Indianapolis.”

Then I flew to Indianapolis, and after I got there, I didn’t know what I was there for! [He took a cab to one of the two best hotels in the city.] I went in, and I went up to the counter and asked the clerk, “Is there anybody registered here by the name of Yogananda?” He looked at me and said, “No, there isn’t.” I said, “Where is this other hotel?” He said, “Oh, it’s just down the street.”

When I got there, I went up to the counter and asked, “Is there anyone here by the name of Yogananda?” He said, “Yes, on the ninth floor.” I just went up the elevator and knocked on the door. The door opened, and there he was! Yogananda said, “I knew you would come! I knew you would come! I knew you would come!”

Intuition develops naturally as we grow closer to God and operate more from our soul than from our ego. Intuition, you see, is the soul’s natural way of perception. We can gradually improve our intuition. First, we need to develop our ability to feel: not with emotion, but with a calm sense of knowing. Next, we need to act on our intuitive guidance, which will help it develop just as exercising a muscle helps it grow strong.

As we saw in these two stories, they each acted on a strong feeling even though the next step had not yet been revealed. It takes faith and courage to act on intuitive guidance. Try doing it a step at a time—I wouldn’t suggest you start by buying a plane ticket. Better to wait until your intuition is more highly developed.

Most importantly, we need to deepen our meditation, and contact our soul nature. A dear friend suggested something that I will pass on to you: He told me, “I have started to keep a log of each meditation. I write down a number to indicate how much of the time my attention was focused, and I also put down a number for how deep my devotion was. Making myself accountable in this way is really helping me deepen my meditation.”

I also have started to do this as a New Year’s resolution, and can attest to its effectiveness. I can feel that it is helping me focus better, open up my intuition, and draw Master’s grace and guidance. You might want to give it a try.

In divine friendship,

Nayaswami Jyotish