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Precognitive dreams

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Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/16/18 7:00 AM
I'm just curious what others' experience of this phenomenon might be. It seems to be happening to me more frequently.

Caveat: In a world of seven billion people having billions of dreams and billions of real-world interactions, coincidence is baked in. Since there's a distribution curve to all things, some subset of those coincidences will be absolutely incredible. Those who experience them will find it hard to believe that they weren't psi phenomena. 

And so it's always hard to say whether a dream is just a coincidence or is truly precognitive.

Earlier this week, I had a vivid dream in which I was in the bathroom and my wife walked in on me. I woke up and thought 'That was weird.'

A couple of hours later I went to the bathroom. The lights were still off in there and, just as in the dream, my wife suddenly walked in on me. She had flashed into the bathroom with her phone-flashlight and jolted/gasped in fright when she saw me.

So weird and apparently precognitive. Also utterly meaningless.  

But then I also had a dream in which a person was sitting in a room full of animals--like a doggie daycare place--and weeping for the mortality of humans and animals. It was a very vivid and emotional dream. Again, I took note of it upon waking.

Having gone downstairs after this, I checked email and read a message from a friend. Earlier that night, the husband of a friend of mine had died in a car crash. My friend owns a doggie daycare place. 

It all makes me wonder whether meditation makes precognitive dreams more likely, or whether they're just something that happens to everybody. I certainly remember having a few when I was a kid, but I never hear anybody else mention them. Maybe they're afraid to look weird? 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/16/18 7:53 AM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
Ever since I started meditating, I've had plenty of those dreams. Many with details that make it hard to believe it's just coincidence. So yep, it happens. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/16/18 4:49 PM as a reply to Ben V..
Same. Never anything useful like Powerball numbers, unfortunately! ;)

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/16/18 6:23 PM as a reply to Andromeda.
LOL! That would rock! Let us know if they show up! 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 1:30 AM as a reply to Andromeda.
In my teens I also had a number of very detailed precognative dreams, which consistently manifested about one month after the dream. In the most memorable one I was at school and a series of specific events unfolded just as they had in the dream and I got this very strong physical sensation which in hindsight was like piti. As it got stronger the events continued to occur until the dream memory was over and the sensations faded. Whenever I had another event like that, it would be preceded by the same physical sensation.

Years later I had one again and very deliberately wrote down details and a date 30 days from then, which passed with nothing of note happening. Either I lost the ability, "collapsed the waveform" by writing it down, or I never really had the ability and it was all just the mind seeing patterns in chaos. If I were a betting man i'd put my chips on option three.  emoticon

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 2:04 AM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
I suspect that it is a form of 'recovered' memory syndrome, or deju vu.  So when the actual event happens an error occurs in the coding of the event that matches it to a past time, or to some past memories, as well as to the present.  This could occur with an erroneous strong felt sense of prior experience (similar to the strong felt sense of other presences, that aren't actually there, that can also occur in spiritual experience). Meditation loosens up the normal mind function, so that could be why these coding errors become more common.

I have no evidence of this, however.  It's just a competing hypothesis!

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 7:11 AM as a reply to curious.
Occam's razor doesn't always work, but I prefer the simpler interpretation that at this point in history we just don't understand understand time and space very well and it's all a lot smearier and more porous than we think. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 7:45 AM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
I had plenty of those in the past. Check out https://www.shambhala.com/dream-yoga-and-the-practice-of-natural-light-2208.html

Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche talks about it

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 8:34 AM as a reply to curious.
That may be true in some cases. But all my pre-cornitive dream experiences occur a few hours apart. I dream something and it's the next day that it happens.  No strong felt sense here. Just an event happening that matches the dream. Some of these are not dreams but day-dreams, with one case happening during meditation.

E.g. -Taking my shower in morning, I suddenly have vivid mental images of big spiders crawling all over the walls around me. Then I go to work (I'm a therapist) and a client reports a dream in which he is locked in a room with big spiders crawling all over the walls.

- I call a new client to schedule an appointment. I never met her before. On the phone she has this tiny shy soft voice. I immediately imagine a very small petite brunette, for whatever reason. The night before meeting her I dream that I greet her in the waiting room, and she is not petite brunette. She has thick curly long blond hair attached in a knot, a piercing in nose. As she sit in my office she speaks in an accelerated tone, gesticulating and talking fast, hypomanic in behavior. Then she unties her hair knot and shakes her head with hairs flying loose. Very different from what I had imagined on the phone. Well, my meeting with her happened exactly as described in the dream when I met her, minus the nose peircing. 

-I dream that I go to a 90% angled hill with a river down there. In the river I see a drowned child. And I see an unsupervised baby half way down playing on a platform. I feel angry he is alone in such a dangerous place. Next day a client reports to me nearly the same dream: downward hill with a pool down there with drowned children. 

- While meditating in a group I sort of fall asleep and have dreamlike images of my friend sitting behind me, speaking on the phone with relatives in India trying to resolve a problem. I told her of this after the meditation session and she was stunned, admitting she had those very wandering thoughts while meditating.

I've learned to relate to these types of experiences with a grain of salt though, interesting experiences and nothing more. And to focus on the true goal of meditation nstead of those side-effects to phenomena that cannot be understood. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 10:31 AM as a reply to Ben V..
Really interesting, Ben. 
In cases such as those, a coding error just isn't possible. 
Not that they don't exist in some cases.

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 10:34 AM as a reply to Andromeda.
Andromeda:
Occam's razor doesn't always work, but I prefer the simpler interpretation that at this point in history we just don't understand understand time and space very well and it's all a lot smearier and more porous than we think. 

Yeah, and as we've known since Einstein, it's space-time--way more mutable than our normal subjective experience would indicate. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 10:35 AM as a reply to Lars.
Really interesting. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 11:26 AM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
Space-time, exactly. It's as if there is no true separation between anything at all! =D

Mine have been more like what Ben V describes--not dreams that occur while sleeping so much, but during hypnagogic states or during meditation when equanimity is strong. Or sometimes just randomly during the day. So not coding errors, either. 

I have had a couple experiences in the last year with a sense of something bad happening in the form of some confused sensory data (difficult to articulate, but intense and unpleasant) regarding what the something was. Of course, something bad is always going to happen because that's how life works! So I consoled myself. But there was a paradoxical sense of dread and horror that was relieved when the bad things actually happened within the next 12-24 hours. And even though it didn't help prevent the bad things, it did actually result in me being better prepared to deal with them. And at an emotional level I recovered more quickly, like I'd made a down payment with my feelings of dread. So subjectively there was some small benefit. 

Whatever the cause, they do present a great opportunity to practice equanimity and non-attachment.

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 1:51 PM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
Yes, and actually I have had one experience that can't be explained as a coding error.

For weeks, as I worked in my office, I somehow from time to time imagined a large bang behind me.  Then one day, in the location I had imagined the bang, my computer power supply exploded.  It made the exact noise I had been imagining.  That was kind of weird.   

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 3:59 PM as a reply to curious.
curious:
Yes, and actually I have had one experience that can't be explained as a coding error.

For weeks, as I worked in my office, I somehow from time to time imagined a large bang behind me.  Then one day, in the location I had imagined the bang, my computer power supply exploded.  It made the exact noise I had been imagining.  That was kind of weird.   
Wow. That's amazing. Even the coding errors are kind of dharmic, right? Kind of an insight into the constructed way we process reality. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
6/17/18 5:23 PM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
Tashi Tharpa:

Even the coding errors are kind of dharmic, right? Kind of an insight into the constructed way we process reality. 
Yes, absolutely !

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
7/5/18 9:30 AM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
I don't just have precognitive visions in dreams -- I have them while meditating. Here's a report from some years ago: http://www.personalpowermeditation.com/silver-bracelets/

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
7/6/18 3:02 PM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
I never get precognitive dreams,

what i do get is weird coincidences in daily life.

Like talking about someone and that someone is right around the corner.

Wanting some object and go to a random place i get that object.

etc

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
7/6/18 7:05 PM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
Tashi Tharpa:
I'm just curious what others' experience of this phenomenon might be. It seems to be happening to me more frequently.
I would have them now and then, until I read a book "An Experient With Time" by JW Dunne who documented his experiences keeping a dream log and discovering many precognitive dreams. He wrote that most people would have the same experience so I tried keeping a dream log and found I had quite a few precognitive dreams, several a week. His trick for remembering your dreams: When you wake up the first thing is to ask yourself, "What was I thinking about and why?" It worked for me.


Caveat: In a world of seven billion people having billions of dreams and billions of real-world interactions, coincidence is baked in. Since there's a distribution curve to all things, some subset of those coincidences will be absolutely incredible. Those who experience them will find it hard to believe that they weren't psi phenomena. 

People who want to claim it can be explained by chance have to do real calculations with real numbers and prove it, otherwise they are just making up a story in order to fit the facts to their preconceived ideas. You should demand the same high level of proof from skeptics that they demand for claims of the paranormal. Unfortuantely my experience with the skeptical literature is that there is a lot of misleading information in it.

And so it's always hard to say whether a dream is just a coincidence or is truly precognitive.

Earlier this week, I had a vivid dream in which I was in the bathroom and my wife walked in on me. I woke up and thought 'That was weird.'

A couple of hours later I went to the bathroom. The lights were still off in there and, just as in the dream, my wife suddenly walked in on me. She had flashed into the bathroom with her phone-flashlight and jolted/gasped in fright when she saw me.

So weird and apparently precognitive. Also utterly meaningless.  

But then I also had a dream in which a person was sitting in a room full of animals--like a doggie daycare place--and weeping for the mortality of humans and animals. It was a very vivid and emotional dream. Again, I took note of it upon waking.

Having gone downstairs after this, I checked email and read a message from a friend. Earlier that night, the husband of a friend of mine had died in a car crash. My friend owns a doggie daycare place. 

It all makes me wonder whether meditation makes precognitive dreams more likely, or whether they're just something that happens to everybody. I certainly remember having a few when I was a kid, but I never hear anybody else mention them. Maybe they're afraid to look weird? 

I think meditation does make psychic perceptions more likely. When you quiet the mind you will be more aware of faint psychic perceptions that would otherwise be drowned out by mental noise. You might have intuitions while awake, or they might work their way into consciousness through dreams. The dream state is by itself more receptive to psychic perceptions. There are techniques for using the hypnogogic state (the state just before you fall asleep) to have psychic perceptions.

When I took classes in mediumship we would meditate at the beginning of class. I described my experiences in class on my web site: 
https://sites.google.com/site/chs4o8pt/psi_experience

The first time I tried to do mediumship in class I was astonished with the results. I did exactly what the teacher said and it seemed to work. After a short period of meditation, I looked around the class (we were sitting with the chairs in a circle) and when I got to one particular person it seemed like I was looking at him through a zoom lens. He stood out from the other students in my field of vision. I tried looking around again and the same thing happened when I got to him. Then I closed my eyes and in my mind's eye there appeared a tall man in a uniform. When my turn came to describe my experiences, this person said that his grandfather had been tall and wore a uniform on his job. The teacher of the class encouraged me to try to get more information and I tried again and saw a scene of the sea shore. It turned out the grandfather had also lived near the water. I had never experienced anything like this before in my life. I was in shock for a couple of days afterwards.

As the classes continued I had many other experiences. Once I gave a reading to a woman in the class and I saw, in my mind's eye, her and another woman sitting drinking coffee. I described what I saw but she said there was more than one person who fit the description. Then I saw the other woman smoking a cigarette and there were very unusual little square framed pictures on the wall behind them. With that information the other student knew exactly who the spirit was.
...
In another reading I brought through a family member of a woman in the class and I saw a church, a fishing pier, and a box truck. It turned out the spirit was a deacon at the church, they used to go fishing at the pier, and he drove one of those larger square shaped ambulances.
...
Sometimes the mistakes are the most convincing part of a reading. Once during a reading I saw a swimming pool and I said, "You went swimming together". The person said, "no that's not right." I went on and continued the reading with other evidence but the pool came back. When I asked, "Why do I keep seeing the swimming pool?", the person said, "Well, she [the spirit] had a swimming pool in her back yard, but we never swam in it together". Skeptics will say mediums get their information from the person getting the reading but in this case it seemed to me that I was contradicting what the person was saying and sticking with what I was perceiving, and the information was eventually validated.

In one reading, I saw buildings in a foreign country I have never been to. I was able to find the same buildings on the internet in a photograph of the city.

I have also heard amazingly accurate information from fellow students when getting readings in the mediumship classes. One student was able to tell that when I was a child, my grandmother used to wrap snacks in a plastic bag and drop them out of her apartment window to me while I would stand on the walkway below. Another student saw a vision of a snowy field when bringing through my uncle. He had lived in a town called White Plains.

One time in class, a student brought through one of my spirit guides. Since we usually have not met our spirit guides in life, we usually don't recognize them from a description of what they looked like. However, spirits can identify themselves as guides because they are around us in during the day and can tell the medium things about us that a stranger wouldn't know. During this class, while giving me a reading, the student saw a flashlight with a propeller on top. I had no idea what this was meant. Later, as the class ended, some other people in the building were also leaving and they turned out the lights without realizing they had left us in the dark. I automatically reached into my pocket and pulled out my key chain on which I have a small flashlight. This flashlight is turned on by twisting the top. It is amazing that the spirit was not only able to tell the student about a flashlight that I completely forgotten about, but that they were also able remind me about it by arranging to have us left sitting in the dark.


Occassionally on internet forums on meditation and Buddhism I see people asking about Siddhis, my recommendation is if you are interested learning to devleop your psychic abilities, find a teacher who has developed theirs rather than trying to figure it out by yourself from the sutras. If you are looking for a teacher you might be able to find one at a Spiritualist church or through a New Age book store or gift shop. Group classes are really helpful because you can practice giving readings to classmates and get feedback from them as to your accuracy. Feedback is necessary for every type of learning including learning to use your psychic abilities, and it is also necessary to maintain skills. Reading people is better than for example trying to guess cards by yourself because with cards you already know the possible answers and your thoughts about them will be hard to distinguish from psychic perceptions. With people where you might perceive anything you will be less influenced by preconceived ideas. Sometimes people will say pursuing the siddhis is a distraction from one's meditation practice. If you pursue it through meditation, then it could be, but if you take a class that meets one evening a week, it is no more of a distraction than playing golf or tennis. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
7/7/18 6:41 AM as a reply to Jim Smith.
Really interesting, and also challenging. Thanks! 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
10/8/18 8:29 PM as a reply to Tashi Tharpa.
I love these precognitive dreams! To me, whether they are coincidence or not is a matter of conceptual designation. If the mind recognizes a synchronicity, that is what is meaningful.

I am inspired by our neolithic ancestors and how they used dreaming for sympathetic magic. Not just dreaming, but creative acts like painting (cave painting), dancing around the fire, ritual, etc.... The borders between the mythic realms of consciousness accessed in dreaming, ritual, etc and waking life was much more fluid then than they are now. Nowadays people don't place any importance on dreams whatsoever, generally. They are 'merely' dreams, meaningless hallucinations by a brain, with no ontological existence in our materialistic modern worldview. 

Having a successful hunt was very important for the survival of the group. And so was social cohesion. Groups would act out the hunt the night before and one would dress up as the animal that would give its life. They would act out this hunt and imprint it into their mind so that it could happen the next day. They would paint pictures on cave walls of hunting the animal. They would dream about the animal that would give its life, where to find it, what kind of animal it is, how they would catch it and kill it. This was a matter of survival so it was very meaningful for them. 

Inspired by this I came up with a hypothesis, that perhaps we can train the mind to dream of the next day and use those dreams for guidance, and blur the line between dreaming and waking life. This is the method I used to test this hypothesis:

Whatever I would dream, I would act it out the next day to the best of my ability, unless it was undesirable. If it was undesirable I took the dream to be a warning to avoid acting it out. For example, I dreamed I went to the duck pond in the park and sat on the bench. So the next day I would go to the duck pond and sit on the bench. I had a dream I walked down a certain street and climbed a tree, so I did that the next day. Certain things I couldn't act out literally so I would visualize it as real as possible or act it out symbollically or draw a picture or something. My point was that I had to bring it into being in some way in waking life this next day, even if merely symbolically. 

In each case, as I was acting it out, I would mentally put myself back into the dream the night before. I would feel this connection with the dream, and some kind of causal energetic link-up which would trigger a deja vu feeling. This deja vu feeling was very important to notice and cultivate. 

The next phase of the practice started happening spontaneously. What began to happen is that I wouldn't have to act it out, elements from my dreams would spontaneously present themselves to me in waking life the next day with no effort on my part. I merely had to pay attention and encourage the deja vu feeling to emerge. This deja vu feeling got very strong and started to last longer and longer. 

Even improbable dreams would manifest in some way. I had a dream that I looked up at the mountains and there were pyramids of fire, like blue flame from some pressurized gas or fuel, roaring like a jet engine. The next day I doubted that the mountains would catch fire, nor did I want them to. This was the first friday of the month when the art galleries are open and giving out cheese, crackers, and wine and featuring new artists you get to meet and watch demonstrations. In one gallery I saw a rather poor painting of a forest fire in the mountains. But at another gallery, a ceramics studio, I clearly heard the roaring sound that I heard in the dream, and I looked inside the open door of a kiln and saw the lyramid of blue flame in the propane kiln. 

This began happening every day with all my dreams having something which was reflected in my next day's experience. I was spending hours in deja vu. I seemed to be letting go of individual will and agency and merging with a bigger causal flow. People began telling me that I was in their dreams. Opportunities would come to me with no effort on my part. 

I began to form the idea of my next hypothesis which was using lucid dreams to influence the next day on purpose. But I never got to test it out because already I was starting to question my sanity and if I could handle it. I backed off the experiment but I think it was my most successful experiment. I truly believe that waking life and dreaming are merely two similar states of consciousness which can influence each other and bleed into each other. 

Inspired by this experiment and wanting to continue with the lucid dreaming part of the experiment, I have been pondering the idea of forming a group of precognitive dreamers who want to work together to collectively dream of world peace and environmental healing. 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
10/9/18 5:49 AM as a reply to Dannon.
Wow. That's amazing. Jung would be pleased! :-D 

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
10/9/18 10:02 PM as a reply to Dannon.
Hi Dannon,

What you experienced - having your waking life become like a dream - is called the "practice of illusory form" in Tibetan dream yoga practice. The ultimate goal of dream yoga practice is to get to sleep yoga, where you are aware of the clear light mind when you are not dreaming (technically, during non-REM sleep), and move from sleep yoga to dream yoga to wakefulness maintaining awareness of the clear light mind.

Check out Andrew Holeck's book, Dream Yoga. Andrew has been studying and teaching dream yoga for years. I took an on-line course with him through Tricycle last year, and he also occasionally does dream yoga courses in person. I think he lives in Boulder. The book is really great, very approachable for Westerners, though I think he puts too much into the footnotes. He mentions a practice similar to yours.

My personal experience with lucid dreaming and dream yoga is that it is very difficult. In addition to Andrew's course, I took a course in lucid dreaming with Stephen LaBerge, the Stanford professor who rediscovered lucid dreaming, and was only able to get lucid once. During Andrew's course, I didn't manage to get lucid at all (not his fault, many other people did). One of three things happens to me when I get lucid: I wake up, I fall back into "the story" (i.e. become nonlucid again after a short period), or the dream world starts breaking up into chucks or starts moving so fast that I can't keep track of what is going on. I have been trying for years to cultivate a dream yoga practice with little success. I sometimes have the feeling that my mind (small "m") is blocking me from becoming lucid, or if I do, causing the dream to become chaotic to avoid my getting access to any content. Recently, I started taking vitamin B6, which I read is supposed to help you remember your dreams better. I can say it does that quite well. When I take B6, I remember maybe half my dreams, especially ones from early in the night which you typically forget, but the memory is vague.

Good luck!

RE: Precognitive dreams
Answer
10/10/18 12:52 PM as a reply to Dannon.
Thanks for sharing Dannon!  Hearing high level lucid dreaming stories is always intersting, and I especially appreciated your discusison of how that led to uncomfortable states such as questioning your sanity.  I have a friend whose mom was a major lucid dreamer, who had major pre-cognitive type experinces, but he said she stopped because it just became too much.  As someone who has sought to develop these skills I have wondered about why you would choose to stop as an expert, but it makes sense if it begins to interfere with your waking sanity.

I also like what you said about appreciataing the importance of dreams.  Although the odd lucid type dream I have is awesome, I do appreciate dreaming more generally as a spiritual expience, and one which has the potential to provide us with important lessons.  I think the most obvious lesson in this regard is the emotional impact dreams can have. 

In high school I had a very specific experience where I felt mostly ambivilant toward someone in my social circle, and I had a dream I was dancing with this person in an intimate formal type situation, like ballroom dancing.  After that dream I always felt a sense of closeness and fondness for that person, which stemmed just from the dream experience.  I think these type of emotional lessons from dreams occur probably nightly - even if we dismiss them as 'just dreams', they do leave the concious imprint of a 'real life' expereince, which shapes our waking lives.