The sensory development notes published on this website are prepared in collaboration with an on behalf of Developing the Self Developing the World and to accompany the book “Spirit-led Community – healing the impact of technology” by Lisa Romero. The complete document complementary to the book can be opened here.
We understand the meaning behind what someone else is saying by using our thought sense. The thought sense starts to mature in the late teens, early twenties and helps us understand the essence of what we are studying and of those teaching us. When reading, listening or viewing something we use the thought sense to relate to the thought living behind the language. It follows on from what has been perceived through the sense of word. To be able to follow someone else’s thinking, we unite ourselves with the rhythm of the other, perceived through the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system. The matured sense of thought allows us to perceive the thought of the other and keep our own thoughts.
Hyper sense of thought
The person with a hyper sense of thought easily experiences that the thoughts of another are different to theirs. They may battle the other’s thought and /or they could be overpowered by it consciously or unconsciously. For example even though on their own they may be following a particular path in their thinking, when they are with others they may be diverted away from their train of thought. They may become engrossed in the other’s thoughts to the point that they lose their thoughts and agree with the concepts that the other is expressing. They may be easily convinced to completely change their opinion or point of view unless they take the time for inner reflection on their own. They can perceive patterns and systems that help them to work with strategies and pick up concepts quite easily, but risk becoming caught in them and losing contact with other parts of their life.
Hypo sense of thought
A person with a hypo sense of thought has their own thoughts, but do not recognise the difference in the way other people think. They may think that everyone thinks as they do and therefore overlook what the other is trying to communicate that is different. Consciously learning from others may not be easy. They tend to have difficulty merging with the rhythm of the other and be able to follow the other’s train of thought. Like hypo activity in each sense, they can be impressed upon by the other, without realising it. So they too could take on the other’s thoughts as their own. They can also find themselves in unclear agreements because they mistakenly thought the other person agreed with them. They may not follow the motive behind someone else’s actions.
How to harmonise and support the development of the thought sense
Harmonising the life sense also harmonises the thought sense. Children can be read traditional Grimm’s Fairytales and share in prayer and verse which serves to build a reverent relationship to something greater than the material self. These practices are also beneficial for adults, as is poetry, history, art exhibitions, as well as studying the way symbols are used in myths, legends, and languages.
Forms of spiritual development that strengthen the individual’s relationship to the truth and harmony within the cosmos and the meaning of life also extend the sense of thought.
To develop this sense, adolescents require teachers and role models who have a living connection to their work and enthusiastically bring this through what they are teaching, while at the same time letting the adolescent take up the parts they are sensing a connection with, and leave the others behind.
A person with a hyper sense of thought will be supported by being asked questions that lead them towards individual consideration to build broader perspectives so they can learn not to drop their own, but to hold many. A person with a hypo sense of thought will be supported through questions that deepen their point of view so that the nuances become highlighted.