ESP and DREAMS
ESP, or extrasensory perception, refers to the acquisition of information without the use of any the normal five human sense organs. It is the scientific designation for psychic, intuitive, mediumistic, prophetic, and related phenomena. Related terms are telepathy, which indicates information originating from the mind of another person. Clairvoyance (literally, clear seeing), refers to psychic sensitivity (particularly) in the form of visual information. Precognition is the perception of information about future events.
Paranormal dreams fall within the range of research on extrasensory perception, although the dividing line between them and normal dreams is often difficult to draw. Various distortions or displacements of details frequently occur. Also, some go unnoticed by an outside researcher or even by the dreamer.
Individuals who experience paranormal dreams usually describe them as being vivid and intense. The paranormal character of telepathic and prophetic dreams is usually quite clear. Sweating and trembling often occur, the dreams produce an impression lasting for days, and they tend to be repeated.
The frequency and thematic content of paranormal dreams can be determined by examining surveys of psychic cases. The largest survey of documented cases, that is, those corroborating the existence of a correspondence between a distant event and the persons report of a psychic experience, is contained in the two-volume work Phantasms of the Living, published in 1886 by the Society for Psychical Research. Of the 5,000 individuals who were asked about possible psychic experiences, 702 reported evidence of telepathy. Most of these cases occurred while the participants were awake.
In the book On Prophetic Dreams: An Experiment with Time (1927), J. W. Dune claimed that precognitive dreams are to be expected as much as dreams of past events. By putting his own dreams down immediately on awakening and by keeping a record of them, he found that a considerable part of them anticipated future experiences. The results of his study were corroborated by fellow experimenters. The largest survey of non-documented cases is the collection of about 3,200 cases analyzed at the Parapsychology Laboratory at Duke University by E. L. Rhine, who reported that 68 percent of the ESP events occurred during dreaming.
Lost objects are frequently found in dreams, although in most cases the mystery can be explained by subconscious memory. An example of this type of dream is the dream in which Hercules appeared to Sophocle to indicate where a golden crown would be found.
Traveling-clairvoyance (the supposed paranormal faculty of seeing persons and events that are distant in time and place) in dreams may explain the experience of deja vu, which is often claimed to be a proof of reincarnation. An interesting attempt to explain the experience of deje vu is a theory of ancestral dreams put forward by Letourneau in the Bulletins et Memoires dela Societe d Anthropologie de Paris. He claimed that certain external or psychic events that have deeply affected a person may result in a molecular reorientation, which may be transmitted to descendants. In this way, ancestral recollection can be produced and revived.
Vivid dreams often seem to stimulate out-of-body experiences (OBE), during which the gaining of waking consciousness while still in a sleeping state may result in the finding oneself conscious in an astral body, which can move independently of the physical body. However, some experimenters have claimed that such out-of-body experiences may be stimulated by deliberately induced images of release just before dreamer passes into the sleep condition.
(taken from The Dream Encyclopedia, James Lewis, Visible Ink Press, 1995)
Bro. Harmon H. Edgar Cayce on Dreams. New York: Warner Paperback Library, 1968
Shepard, Leslie A., ed. Encyclopedia of Zoccultism & Parapsychology. Detroit, MI: Gale Research, 1991
Ullman, M. S. Krippner, and A. Vaughna. Dream Telepathy. Experiments in Nocturnal ESP. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 1989.
Wolman, Benjamin B., ed. Handbook of Parapsychology. New York: Van Nostrand Reinholt, 1977.
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