Qualitative analysis of first-person accounts of noetic experiences

April 8, 2022
Helané Wahbeh, ND, MCR

Wahbeh, H., Fry, N., Speirn, P. et al (2022, March). Qualitative analysis of first-person accounts of noetic experiences [version 3; peer review: 2 approved]. F1000Research 2022, 10:497


The term “noetic” comes from the Greek word noēsis/noētikos that means inner wisdom, direct knowing, intuition, or implicit understanding. Strong cultural taboos exist about sharing these experiences. Thus, many may not feel comfortable transparently discussing or researching these topics, despite growing evidence that these experiences may be real. The study’s objective was to qualitatively evaluate first-hand accounts of noetic experiences. 521 English-speaking adults from around the world completed an online survey that collected demographic data and four open-ended questions about noetic experiences. Thematic analysis was used to characterize the data. The ten most used codes were expressing to or sharing with others, impacting decision-making, intuition/”just knowing,” meditation/hypnosis, inner visions, setting intentions/getting into the “state,” healing others, writing for self, and inner voice. There were five main themes identified: 1. Ways of Engagement; 2. Ways of Knowing; 3. Types of Information; 4. Ways of Affecting; and 5. Ways of Expressing. Subthemes. Future research will include investigating the nuances of these themes and also establishing standardized methods for evaluating them. This would also then inform curricula and therapies to support people in these experiences.

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