Humans have five sensory organs (eye, ear, nose, tongue and body) to sense appropriate impulses from the out side environment and result in sensations (to see, hear, smell, taste and touch). These impulses contain information. The information received by the sense organs pass through to the mind via brain and generates a thought, through a comparison process with the help of stored information in the memory. The thought that results is an illusion and not the reality.
For example although we see people through our normal eyes, if we replace the normal eyes with X-ray eyes one will see them perhaps as skeletons. Further if we replace the normal eyes with radio wave eyes we will not see other people, or even houses and trees as radio waves pass through them and we will not see even our own bodies.
So with help of our normal eyes, light and darkness as a medium of information along with the brain and memory (a store full of such illusions), the mind creates an illusion. It is this ability of the human to acquire and apply this illusive knowledge and skills, is depicted as intelligence in common use. Such so called “intelligent” person does not even know that he or she is dealing with illusions.
How can one call that sort of state Intelligent?
I would call them simply “clever” and leave the word intelligence for a higher level of knowledge, at least to being aware of the illusion. However some people call it mundane intelligence. Hence to differentiate this kind of illusory knowledge through thinking, from intelligence beyond thought we call it supra-mundane intelligence.
This is a completely different state of higher knowledge, nothing to do with information gathering via the five senses and computing in the mind in association with the memory. In this state information about reality and beyond reality is experienced and seen. Seeing happens via special eye called “Panna” or “Pragna” in Sanskrit. This eye arises only when the activities of the sensory organs, brain, mind, memory axis are abolished. In other words enlightenment happens when the thought process is stopped or the mind and thoughts are overcome or neutralised or relinquished or simply when the mind is conquered. This uncovers another but much more efficient system available in us to know about us and around.
To rise above thoughts is the path to higher knowledge. Alternatively it means rising above the human character (which is thought mediated) or humanity. This is a state as you realise, is unthinkable and that is what it exactly is! It cannot be achieved by thought mediated investigation, scientific analysis, criticising, arguing or writing a thesis in a university.
The knowledge of nibbana is beyond universities. Such university education actually prevents and takes one away from supreme knowledge!
If everybody in this planet gathers information with out thinking, there would be peace, harmony and no burglaries, murders, conflicts and wars. What a change!!