The psychologist Abraham Maslow labeled ‘peak experiences’ or PE’s as “those moments, lasting from seconds to minutes, during which we feel the highest levels of happiness, harmony and possibility.”
PE’s range from intense pleasure to almost ‘supernatural’ experiences of enhanced consciousness, These experiences feel different from and superior to normal experience.
A recent example of a peak experience was reported by the mathematician, Andrew Wiles, in the Horizon program on BBC. Andrew Wiles described the moment he solved ‘Fermat’s Last Theorem’- a problem that has exercised the minds of the greatest mathematicians for three centuries. After working for seven years in solitude and secrecy, Wiles announced that he had succeeded – only to publicly find a flaw in his reasoning. As opposed to giving up, Andrew engaged in another year of intense work. Andrew reported, then ‘Suddenly, totally unexpectedly, I had this incredible revelation… It was so indescribably beautiful; it was so simple and so elegant. I just stared in disbelief for twenty minutes’. As Wiles recounted his peak experience, he became overwhelmed with emotion at the recollection.
This description of overpowering feelings and sensations accompanying creative insight has been repeatedly described. From the ‘eureka’ moment of Archimedes in the bath, right through to modern intellectual giant’s, the moment of creative insight displays striking similarities. Whether we call it enlightenment, moments of genius, peak experiences or samadhi – these spectacular experiences are available to us all. They are not limited to the wisest amongst us or the most elevated.
However, these experiences do not strike at random, they are associated with particular circumstances. Their occurrence may be associated with intense focus, transformation in physical posture, mental flexibility, states of complete relaxation. Studies suggest that yoga, meditation and mental training techniques enable one to experience PE’s more frequently.
The I-Yoga: Interoceptive Yoga program is designed to enable your body to function optimally thereby increasing the frequency of peak experiences.
Dr Nitasha Buldeo is an Integrated Medical Practitioner, Entrepreneur, Scientist and Yogi. She created I-Yoga & Organic Apoteke and is Director of the Centre for Exceptional Human Performance. She researches human potential and delivers programs that encourage you to live exceptionally. Nitasha believes that every one of us is striving to be the best we can. Her passion is bringing you experiences that inspire you. Her intention is for you to unlock your genius.