Visionary decision making happens at the intersection of intuition and logic

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It was the time of the first half of the 20th century. Indian leaders were fighting for freedom from the British empire with the entry of Mahatma Gandhi in 1916, it has become a mass movement in a true sense. Subsequently, with the series of planned movements from Champaran Satyagraha to the Ahmedabad mill strike, Indian leaders posed a grave thrust to the British empire. However, all these small movements culminated in the non-cooperation movement in 1920.

Two years later in 1922, some protestors set fire to the police station in Chauri Chaura. It has given a non-violent touch to the Gandhian movement. Therefore, it forced Mahatma Gandhi to call off the non-cooperation movement. However,  many Indian leaders including members of INC criticized this decision. However, the decision of Mahatma Gandhi was based on intuition and logic.

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Mahatma Gandhi’s intuition was based on non-violent movement. He was adamant about this principle. But there was an element of logic as well. If Indian freedom fighters used violence, it would give legitimacy to the British to crush the movement. Therefore, visionary decision-making happens where the line of intuition and logic intersect. Intuition allows leaders to tap into their inner wisdom and make decisions based on their gut instincts. However, logic is the process of reasoning and making decisions based on rational thinking, evidence, and a systematic approach. This trend can be found in history since ancient days.

In ancient Greece, Athens state was in a bad state vis-a-vis Sparta State. Greek philosopher Socrates was concerned about the decline of Athens. Therefore, Socrates started educating youth through dialogue. The church was not happy with this action. He was alleged for misleading youth. So, he was sentenced to drink poison. Socrates, here decided to drink a cup of poison based on intuition and logic. His intuition was saying to educate youth about real problems. Whereas, logic suggests that youth must be obedient to the state. If the state has sentenced him to die, he should accept it.

Similarly, in Medieval Europe, the role of the Church was dominating. The Church has demarcated logical boundaries of people. It was saying that the earth is at the center and the sun revolves around it. It was Galileo’s intuition of inquiry forced him to find and test it. Based on his observation and findings, he decided to oppose the logic of the church. Therefore, his decision was based on intuition and logic to find the reality about it.

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On the same line, in the modern world, Europe made visionary decisions based on intuition and logic. For example, after centuries of violence during the inter-war period, Europe decided to bring peace to Europe. Intuition of peace forced Europe to construct the European Union. This construct was supported by the logic of functionalism. It says to bring peace in pieces. It means bringing low conflictual things to the fore and pushing conflicts past at back seat. Therefore, the formation of the European Union, indeed, was a visionary decision at the intersection of logic and intuition.

Intuition and logic shape visionary decisions in the contemporary world as well. It can be seen in different spheres of life from social, political, economic, administration, and environment.

Firstly, in the social sphere, suppose a condition where the whole family is watching TV while having tea. Unfortunately, if a cup slips between the hand and lips of the male child. What would be the response of the family? – If the family member asks the male child to clean instead of a female child, it would be a visionary decision making. Because this decision would be taken at the intersection of logic and intuition. For example, an institution says to work on its own task on his/her own. Also, logic suggests us not to stand with patriarchal behavior.

Similarly, in the political context, the enactment of the 73rd and 74th Amendments would amount to visionary decision-making where logic and intuition would intersect with each other. Here, intuition asks for social justice. It means the involvement of weaker sections like women, SCs, and STs. 73rd and 74th amendment provide one-third reservation to women and in proportion to STs and SCs. Additionally, logic suggests that decentralized decision-making ensures efficiency and effectiveness in governance.

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On the same line, in the economic context, the government of India has made visionary decisions based on logic and intuition. For instance, India witnessed a low rate of growth between 1950 to 1980. Subsequently, in 19902 India faced an economic crisis in the face of the balance of payment crisis. Therefore, the situation of the balance of payment crisis in 1991 provided logic to open India’s economy. It was also backed by the intuition of fast economic growth based on the experiences of West.

Apart from the social, political, and economic, the footprint of logic and intuition is found in the environmental context as well. For instance, development is also necessary along with environmental protection. Therefore, government-mandated compensation through CAMPA fund where companies would compensate equivalently to the environment. This decision was based on the logic of sustainable development. However, intuition asks for commitment toward environmental protection.

Similarly, in the context of administration, the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the intersection of logic and intuition. For instance, after the first wave, the intuition of Dr. Rajendra Bharud suggested preparing for oxygen. Therefore, he started arranging infrastructure for it. It was based on the logic of the possibility of a second wave. Consequently, his decision based on logic and intuition not only helped his own district in the second wave but also the neighboring districts.

However, it is true that visionary decision-making happens at the intersection of intuition and logic. We have seen it from historical context to different spheres like social, political economic, environmental, administrative, etc. But other factors also shape decision-making.

Apart from intuition and logic, other factors like economic viability, environment sustenance, desirability perseverance for perfect timing, etc also matter. For example, we can’t go with a decision that is not economically viable. In the context of the Indus Water Treaty of 1960, intuition and logic suggest altering the 1960 Indus Water amid state-sponsored terrorism. Some analysts argue for its abrogation and folding of water in Rajasthan areas. It poses a logical question, whether is it viable for India to do so.

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Similarly, it is also not advisable to degrade the environment even if intuition and logic are strong. For instance, on the one hand, intuition and logic in the decision to legalize MSP suggest that it would increase farmer’s income and give legal assurance to them. But on the other hand, it may motivate farmers to push more water-hunger crops that would lower groundwater. Therefore, environmental sustenance also plays an important role in decision-making.

Additionally, time also plays an important role in decision-making. For example, just after independence, there was a discussion based on logic and intuition to open the market while economic planning. But it was not a good time since we were facing a scarcity of resources. Our priority at that point in time was fighting poverty and hunger. Therefore, the first five-year plan focussed on agriculture. Thus, time also plays an important role in decision-making.

As we have seen intuition and logic shape together in the process of decision making. For more visionary decisions, there is a need for compassion in the leadership. Along with compassion, ethical competence, perseverance, fortitude, concern for weaker sections, accountability, integrity, etc have a great role in making decisions more visionary. Therefore, all the above qualities would help in making decisions that would be beneficial for mankind. It would lead to making “just soul” and “just state” as imagined by Greek philosopher, Plato.

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