To understand clairsentience, we should first define psychic energy. Psychic energy is an example of subtle energy. In the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, subtle energy, or subtle bodies, can be understood as vibrations that manifest as thoughts, feelings, matter, Spirit, and light, both consciously and unconsciously. These vibrations can manifest in the gross/physical, or subtle/metaphysical realm. The metaphysical realm consists of the aspects of reality that exist beyond the physical world and our immediate senses.
Psychic abilities, or siddhis, are subtle powers that are tethered to the metaphysical realm. According to Patanjali, these powers, while not the purpose of a spiritual pursuit, can be tapped into or refined by cultivating a humble Ashtanga yoga, or eightfold, practice. You can learn more about Ashtanga yoga by reading the second pada in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali- a collection of wisdom teaching that provides a pathway for Self realization and spiritual enlightenment. Most yoga teacher training programs in the West are based on the yoga sutras of patanjali or will at least mention them for reference. You can always inquire about the lineage of the yoga school you’re considering in order to learn the primary source from which they’re teaching.
Vibhuti Pada, the third collection of sutras in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, describes how a dedicated practice can result in certain powers. For example, meditation on the cosmos results in the ability to know the universe. Meditation on an elephant results in an elephant’s strength. Or, how meditation on a feather results in the ability to levitate. These powers can be understood as a purely metaphorical way to describe spiritual alchemy, or in some cases, quite literal. Ultimately, having a pratyahara practice can allow us to slip into a state of Dharana, or concentration. From there, we may shift into dhyana, a meditative state of being, that allows for messages from the metaphysical realm to arrive.
Clairsentience is one of the four ‘clairs’ associated with psychic abilities or extrasensory perception. Modeled from ‘clairvoyance’, which is built off the French word ‘clair’, which means clear, clairsentience is ‘clear feeling’ or ‘sensing’. Those who are clairsentient are experiencing an awareness of other people’s emotional energy through subtle cues like body language, facial expression, tone of voice, and energy. Sometimes so much so that they can feel what the other person is feeling as if it were happening to them. In the West, we would call these extremely deep feelers empaths.
Dr. Judith Orloff is a psychiatrist who specializes in working with intuitive intelligence in empaths. She describes them as “highly sensitive, finely tuned instruments when it comes to emotions. They feel everything, sometimes to an extreme, and are less apt to intellectualize feelings. Intuition is the filter through which they experience the world.”
Empathy is a beautiful trait, and if you’ve ever been described as highly sensitive, intuitive, extremely compassionate or creative, you absolutely could be an empath experiencing clairsentience. It’s important as an empath to both understand your gift and how to shield yourself from absorbing unwelcome energy or toxic emotions from others. You can learn how to cleanse your energetic field as a way to reground and center yourself in the event someone else has drained or impacted your energy.
Ultimately, all human beings are tapped into the metaphysical realm, and through subtle practices, can reconnect with these abilities whenever they like.
Shields and clairsentience
Rather than developing increased empathy, most clairsentient folk will want to focus on learning how to shield themselves from absorbing the energy of others so easily. If you are looking to improve empathy and are interested in learning more about relating to how others feel, you could learn to read body language or perhaps take on a loving kindness meditation practice. The below practice is great for protecting against clairsentient overload.
A seated practice for creating a shield
You can enjoy this practice before you leave the house for the day, or anytime throughout the day before or after a situation you know you’re likely to be drained.
Come to sukhasana, or an easy seat. Option to sit on the edge of a couch or chair, feet planted. Heels beneath the knees.
Soften the gaze and close down the eyes.
Allow the fingers to find the legs and soften the hands down.
Become aware of the sitz bones rooted to the earth.
Use the breath to create a field of energy around the whole body.
See the field ebbing and flowing with the breath.
Allowing anything that will not serve you to be released up into the ether, or down into the earth.
Become aware of the space in front of you. Say to yourself, my breath and body protect me.
Become aware of the space behind you. Say to yourself, nothing can harm my open heart.
Become aware of the space below you. Say to yourself, my body is held by the earth below me.
Become aware of the space to your right and left. Say to yourself, I am equally protected wherever I go.
Become aware of the space above you. Say to yourself, I am free. I am shielded.
Send the breath from the tailbone to the crown.
Imagine a shield of light pouring from the crown of your head.
Fill yourself with light of any color.
Let it radiate from your crown.
Continue breathing just like this until a beautiful orb of light has been built around you.
Allow the orb ebb to ebb and flow just like your breath.
Inhale, it draws closer.
Exhale, it expands.
Continue breathing just like this.
Heart lift, spine long.
Trust that nothing can penetrate your orb unless you want it to.
If at any time throughout the day you’d like to open up and connect, place a hand on your heart, smile, and let it in.
Take a few moments to imagine your orb anytime you like throughout the day.
Trust you are safe. Trust you are shielded.