Alex asked:

‘Temporary Epiphany’ is what I call it when it happens, as I am unsure if there is a word for it. Sometimes when I am puzzling over the vast expanse of the universe or the amazing probability of human existence, I will be overcome with a sudden extraordinary understanding of the subject, unable to translate the feeling into words, it quickly subsides and I can no longer remember what it was I had just ‘seen’ in any great detail.

Has this ‘phenomenon’ ever come up in your studies? I wish to understand more about this subject but I have searched without prevail.

Answer by Shaun Williamson

It is wrong to call this a temporary epiphany. There is a great difference between ‘understanding something’ and ‘feeling that you understand something’. You shouldn’t confuse these two things.

Intense feelings of understanding life and the universe are quite familiar to people who take recreational drugs or to people who consume large amounts of alcohol. They may be interesting as feelings but they should be compared with dreams and fantasies and not confused with reality or real understanding.