Can your dreams predict the future?

John Rentoul

dreams 300x263 Can your dreams predict the future?Fast, and thick. Number 521 in the series of Questions to Which the Answer is No is asked by the Daily Mail on behalf of Richard Wiseman, professor of psychology at the University of Hertfordshire.

The clue to to the answer lies in the full title of Prof Wiseman’s book, from which the two-page spread is extracted: Paranormality: Why We See What Isn’t There.

Update: Bonkers Guardian follow-up (showing that the Mail-Guardian right-left nexus does not apply only to anti-war Blair rage) here.

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  • LancashireLad

    For someone that is so ready to reject fact, it is all to easy to reject theory.

    I look forward to Mr Rentoul’s dissertation on intuition; my own informs me I may have to wait.

  • Ciaran Rehill

    Precognition is well documented Mr Rentoul.

  • tykejim

    I don’t suppose I should have been surprised by the first two comments, given the track record of their authors. I know that it’s a waste of time, but I happen to have nothing to do for the next couple of minutes so:

    Mr Broxted – what do you understand by the terms ‘precognition’ and ‘well documented’? And could you please point to the ‘well documented’ evidence you think exists, given that even one such piece of evidence would be of great interest to the whole scientific community?

    LL – do you think that intuition is the same as precognition?

  • Guest

    If you fancy a ’sciencey’ book on this subject with what appears to be an approach using the scientific method, you could do worse than “An Experiment with Time” by the inventor John W Dunne. It’s info is on Wiki and was written in the twenties last century. The guy was a bit of a genius and went on to write a book about serial time. I picked up an old copy from the Hard to Find Book store here in Auckland. His style of writing leaves you swimming against the tide at times but for those not in ‘must-have-now-in-small-pieces-now-now-now” mode, it’s reasonably accessible.

  • LancashireLad

    I think a prat is similar to a pillock but not the same.

  • tykejim

    I suppose that response to the question counts as a ‘don’t know’.


    … but of course there are info in dreams that can predict the future…
    the story of Joseph in the OT in the Bible is proof enough for those who have faith…
    it also means that it is a gift from God to a few who are willing to accept God’s inspiration…
    but it can also happen for other reasons… taking psychotropic drugs, maybe?…

    e.g. I dreamt yesterday that Gaddafi’s son will be beheaded slowly with a sharp sword… and that he was tied to a slide moved towards his executioner, screaming and begging for his life -
    is this a premonition, will it happen? or is it because we are saturated with news from Libya? and just the way my mind lets off steam?…

  • petersimplex

    I think the Thames Valley Police accurately predicted that Dr David Kelly would go out for a walk at 2.30 pm and it would all be wrapped up by 9.30 the next morning. They even had a 110ft high radio mast on standby, apparently ,in case he didn’t return. That is a grade one example of the paranormal. What do you reckon, John? Do you think Tony Blair also had a dream that David Kelly would be found dead in the woods? Is that what he was beaming back to the radio mast from his plane?

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