Tag Archives: brain

Floating Reminiscences: Amazing Discoveries in Mysterious Dreams

Floating in Dream

WHEN our thick brains get all heated up worrying about life’s complexities, that’s often the best time to kick off our shoes and give it a rest.

Faced with a critical decision, or stuck on a complex problem, researchers have discovered that sleeping or napping on them often lead to a right direction or decision.

“In a Wonderland they lie, Dreaming as the days go by, Dreaming as the summers die,” Lewis Carroll wrote of children:

“Ever drifting down the stream— Lingering in the golden gleam — Life, what is it but a dream?”

As adults, the notes of a song, the smell of burning leaves, the babbling of a mountain brook, a day-dream — all may open doors to another realm of the poetic mind. They also arouse unexpected emotions and reminiscences.

In Wordsworth’s haunting poem “Ode on Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood,” reveries opened for him an unexpected awareness of past lives, the realization he had lived before.

§

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting;
The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting
And cometh from afar.

§

There is “a class of fancies of exquisite delicacy,” the poet Edgar Allan Poe wrote in Marginalia, “which are not thoughts, and to which, as yet, I have found it absolutely impossible to adapt language.”

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Psychic or Noëtic: Choosing the Mind We Want

Alex Ross, ‘Beauty and the Beast’

WHEN acting through the physical filter of our human brains and bodies, our minds clearly manifest a complex double nature.

This idea is a critical and pivotal tenet of Theosophical psychology.

Mind’s higher aspect gravitates toward its home spirit-self, while the tendency of its astral and physical projection on this plane is an almost irresistible attraction to materialism and desires.

Broadly considered, what is called ‘higher mind’ in Theosophy is a really soul faculty, our intuitional power source — it is the ‘god’ in us.

“The inner man is the only God we can have cognizance of. And how can this be otherwise? Grant us our postulate that God is a universally diffused, infinite principle, and how can man alone escape from being soaked through by, and in, the Deity?

“We call our ‘Father in heaven’ that deific essence of which we are cognizant within us, in our heart and spiritual consciousness, and which has nothing to do with the anthropomorphic conception we may form of it in our physical brain or its fancy.”

“Yet, let no man anthropomorphise that essence in us … if he would hold to divine, not human truth, say that this ‘God in secret’ listens to, or is distinct from, either finite man or the infinite essence — for all are one.”

This is also Plato’s teaching about the ‘Nous.’ In her remarkable article Psychic and Noetic Action, H. P. Blavatsky wrote:

Occult physiology and psychology postulate within mortal man an immortal entity, ‘divine Mind,’ or Nous, whose pale and too often distorted reflection is that which we call ‘Mind’ and intellect in men.

Vulcan Mind Meld 🙂

“No physiologist, not even the cleverest, will ever be able to solve the mystery of the human mind, in its highest spiritual manifestation. Nor will they be able to understand the duality of the psychic and the noetic — or even to comprehend the intricacies of the former on the purely material plane.”

“Concerning the nous that is the source of understanding of individuals, Plato argued that relying on sense perception can never lead to true knowledge, only opinion. Plato’s more philosophical characters argue that nous must somehow perceive truth directly.” [Wikipedia]

The soul is the Perceiver is assuredly vision itself pure and simple, unmodified, and looks directly upon ideas.

(William Q. Judge, The Yoga Aphorisms of Patanjali, Book 2.)

Plato from Raphael’s The School of Athens

These two we distinguish as the Higher Manas (Mind or Ego), and the Kama-Manas, i.e., the rational, but earthly or physical intellect of man, encased in, and bound by matter.

Harvard trained neuroanatomist, Jill Bolte Taylor, following her life-altering stroke, had a direct knowing of this powerful duality; what is known in Theosophy as our ‘personal’ and ‘impersonal’ selves.

The enigma is dramatized by Dr. Taylor in her New York Times bestselling book My Stroke of Insight. As a brain researcher Dr. Taylor’s focus is neuroanatomical, i.e. the brain’s left and right hemispheres. Below is an excerpt from the TED Talk about the details of her life-changing experience:

Psychic vs Noëtic 

“The all-conscious SELF, that which reincarnates periodically, [is] verily the WORD made flesh, and is always the same! Its reflected “Double,” changing with every new incarnation and personality, is conscious but for a life-period. The Lower Self manifesting through our organic system, acting on this plane of illusion, imagines itself the Ego Sum, and thus falls into the ‘heresy of separateness’.

“The former, we term INDIVIDUALITY, the latter PERSONALITY. From the first proceeds all the noetic element, from the second, the psychic, i.e., ‘terrestrial wisdom’ at best, as it is influenced by all the chaotic stimuli of the human or rather animal passions of the living body.

Jill Bolte Taylor

“The seat of memory is everywhere throughout the human body. To locate it in the brain is to limit and dwarf the Universal Mind and its countless Rays (the Manasaputra) — which inform every rational mortal. Materialists sniff contemptuously at the mention of ‘Universal Mind’ and the Higher noetic souls of men.”

“The assumption that the mind is a real being, which can be acted upon by the brain, and which can act on the body through the brain, is the only one compatible with all the facts of experience.”

George T. Ladd,in the Elements of Physiological Psychology.

(Quoted by H. P. Blavatsky in her Article, Psychic and Noetic Action)

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Kangaroo Care and The Healing Heart

Kangaroo Care

STUDENTS of Theosophy are sometimes called to task by some for being overly metaphysical or ‘intellectual.’

It may be true that some students of Theosophy prefer to use the force of their intellect to hammer out meanings, and have a purely intellectual discussion.

That means not consulting their feelings or emotions which are deemed lesser powers from the human ‘lower nature’ and therefore unreliable.

But W. Q. Judge was not of that opinion. He wrote in the Ocean of Theosophy that “intellect alone is cold, heartless and selfish.” The truth of this is shown today by studies of neurological correlates in the physical brain. Similarly, Mr. Judge, back in the day, insisted that if we can live “according to the dictates of the soul

the brain may at least be made porous to the soul’s recollections — if the contrary sort of a life is led, then more and more will clouds obscure that reminiscence.

Materialistic and intellectual data are stored in the lower mind and desire body, and such grosser data does not stimulate higher areas as the pineal gland in the brain. The mysterious ‘third eye’ whose vehicle is the pineal gland, is known by occultists to transmit spiritual powers including intuition and compassion.

Pituitary and Pineal Glands

Our Dual Nature

We are spiritual beings at our core, but our behaviors on this physical plane — just like the actions of the horse guided by the rider — are determined solely by how we have entrained our psychic and physical instruments.

“No physiologist, not even the cleverest,” Blavatsky wrote, “will ever be able to solve the mystery of the human mind, in its highest spiritual manifestation, or in its dual aspect of the psychic and the noëtic or the manasic, or even to comprehend the intricacies of the former on the purely material plane – unless he knows something of, and is prepared to admit the presence of this dual element.” 

– H. P. Blavatsky, Psychic and Noëtic Action

Horse and Rider

“There are persons,” H. P. Blavatsky writes, “who never think with the higher faculties of their minds at all.” (Studies in Occultism)

This is why it is so very difficult for a materialist — the metaphysical portion of whose brain is almost atrophied — to raise himself,

“Or for one who is naturally spiritually-minded to descend to the level of the matter-of-fact vulgar thought,” she wrote. “Optimism and pessimism depend on it also in a great measure.”

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Evidence of an Immortal Mind in Man and Nature

In the Matrix

MAINSTREAM science looking for the source of consciousness insists its origin has to be generated in the physical brain.

Most neuroscientists agree that all cognition arises from the activity of neurons attached to specific structures, which have fixed brain locations.

Yet many credible scientific researchers today are unconvinced and dispute these biased mainstream materialistic assumptions.

Open-minded investigators are willing to pursue truth wherever it leads, even exploring evidence that mind and its corresponding consciousness is a living entity independent of the physical structures through which it manifests.

But because research findings on this question upset established assumptions, it is frequently ignored by mainstream science. H. P. Blavatsky found the same evidence in her own era declaring:

We live in an age of prejudice, dissimulation and paradox, wherein, like dry leaves caught in a whirlpool, we are tossed helpless, hither and thither, ever struggling between our honest convictions and fear of that cruelest of tyrants—PUBLIC OPINION.

-H. P. Blavatsky, A Paradoxical World

Caught in a whirlpool of dry leaves. (Flickr)

Yet, poised fearlessly at the cutting edge of psi research are scientific organizations such as the respected Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) in Petaluma, California, and the Institute of HeartMath in Boulder Creek. These researchers, and others, like NES energy medicine, are willing to take a leap in pursuit of the fast-moving “soul of things.”

Many frontier investigators risk being minimized and shunned by their peers—their careers stalled as funding dries up.

Such investigations were formerly the exclusive precinct of canny ancient intuitives and seers. Today there are many qualified, sincere scientific investigators on the hunt for answers to the puzzling questions of consciousness that stymie mainstream science.

Buddha meditating under the Bo Tree

“The Secret Doctrine is the accumulated Wisdom of the Ages, and its cosmogony alone is the most stupendous and elaborate system,” Mme. Blavatsky wrote.

“The facts which have actually occupied countless generations of initiated seers and prophets to marshal, to set down and explain, in the bewildering series of evolutionary progress, are all recorded on a few pages of geometrical signs and glyphs.”

The flashing gaze of those seers has penetrated into the very kernel of matter, and recorded the soul of things there.

“The genuine texts of the Upanishads treat of and expound the secret and mystic meaning of the Vedic texts. They speak of the origin of the Universe, the nature of Deity, and of Spirit and Soul, as also of the metaphysical connection of mind and matter. In a few words: They contain the beginning and the end of all human knowledgebut they have now ceased to reveal it, since the day of Buddha. . . . One thing in them — and this in all the Upanishads — invariably and constantly points to their ancient origin.”

“But modern science believes not in the ‘soul of things,’ and hence will reject the whole system of ancient cosmogony.” 

The Secret Doctrine 1:272 

Now all this may be changing . . .

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Dream Prophecy, Precognition and Telepathy

“Dreaming and Prophecy” written by Diane Hennacy MD

SEVERAL years ago I awoke in a panic from a nightmare. I didn’t remember the nightmare, but the first thought that I had upon awakening was, What if it is melanoma? 

I’m not prone to nightmares, and I wasn’t worried about the new mole that I had seen on the back of my leg the week before. It looked perfectly normal. I had no history of sunburns. In fact, I never spent much time in the sun and barely remember having had tans. No one in my family ever had melanoma. Still, I showed it to my then husband, who was an oncologist.

“That’s not melanoma,” he said looking at my leg. “It’s perfectly round, has uniform color, and is less than a half centimeter.”

“I know,” I said feeling almost foolish for asking. “I went to the same medical school as you. It’s just unusual for me to wake up terrorized.”

I didn’t think about it again, that is until I awoke the following month in a panic. But what if it is melanoma? I sought reassurance from my husband a second time. After the third awakening, I scheduled an appointment.

“It’s not melanoma,” said my internist with certainty, “but if you want me to take it off I will.”

“Please do. At least it will help me sleep better.”

I returned the following week to have the suture removed and to receive the pathology report. My internist looked her usual serene self, so I felt relieved immediately. Upon opening my chart, her expression changed to concern. “Oh…….I’m sorry. I didn’t review this before you arrived. It is melanoma.

Fortunately, it is in situ and can be cured by a wider excision. Good thing we caught it early.

Reports of prophetic or precognitive dreams exist throughout the ages and across almost every culture. The first written record of dreams dates back to 2000 B.C.

Abraham Lincoln

About ten days ago, I retired very late. I had been up waiting for important dispatches from the front. I could not have been long in bed when I fell into a slumber, for I was weary. I soon began to dream. There seemed to be a death-like stillness about me. Then I heard subdued sobs, as if a number of people were weeping. I thought I left my bed and wandered downstairs. There the silence was broken by the same pitiful sobbing but the mourners were invisible. I went from room to room; no living person was in sight, but the same mournful sounds of distress met me as I passed along. I saw light in all the rooms; every object was familiar to me; but where were all the people who were grieving as if their hearts would break? I was puzzled and alarmed. What could be the meaning of all this? Determined to find the cause of such a state of things so mysterious and so shocking, I kept on until I arrived at the East room, which I entered.

Lincoln’s Funeral

There I met with a sickening surprise. Before me was a catafalque, on which rested a corpse wrapped in funeral vestments. Around it were stationed soldiers who were acting as guards; and there was a throng of people, gazing mournfully upon the corpse, whose face was covered, others weeping pitifully. “Who is dead in the White House?” I demanded of one of the soldiers. “The President” was his answer; “he was killed by an assassin.” Then came a loud burst of grief from the crowd, which woke me from my dream. I slept no more that night; and although it was only a dream, I have been strangely annoyed by it ever since.

Abraham Lincoln, three days before his assassination, as relayed to his wife and a few friends. (Recollections of Abraham Lincoln 1847-1865 by Ward Hill Lamon)

The Sinking of the Titanic

Precognitive dreams have been well documented. For example, Stevenson reported ten cases of precognition of the sinking of the Titanic, eight of which involved dreams. (Morgan Robertson wrote a novel in 1898 called  Futility about the wreck of a giant ship named Titan. The similarities between its details and the Titanic disaster 14 years later are striking. The Titan was considered unsinkable, displaced 70,000 tons, was 800 feet long, had 24 lifeboats, carried 3000 passengers, and sunk in April after hitting an iceberg at 25 knots. The Titanic displaced 66,000 tons, was 828 feet long, had 24 lifeboats, almost 3000 passengers, and sunk in April after hitting an iceberg at 23 knots.)

The Titanic

Similarly, several Muslims came forth after 9/11 to say that they had precognitive dreams of the events of that day.

Dream Telepathy

Another paranormal dream experience is dream telepathy. The first attempt at a theory to explain dream telepathy was made by Democritus (460-370 B.C.) who postulated that emotionally charged images could be transmitted to dreamers through their pores.

It wasn’t until 1882, with the founding of the Society for Psychical Research that serious scientific study of the subject was done. In their historic work, Phantasms of the Living, they reported 149 cases of dream telepathy. A typical story is the following, which corresponded with the event in great detail:

My brother and I were on a journey…I dreamt….I saw father driving in a sledge, followed in another by my brother. They had to pass across-road on which another traveler was driving very fast, also in a sledge with one horse. Father seemed to drive on without observing the other fellow, who would…have driven over father if he had not made his horse rear, so that I saw my father drive under the hoofs of the horse. Every moment I expected the horse to fall down and crush him. I called out, “Father! Father!” and awoke in great fright.

Horse and Sled

The pattern noted by the researchers was that over half of the dreams concerned death. Another significant number concerned an emergency. In most cases, the dreamer and subject of the dream were related or friends. The dreamers had no special psychic abilities before or after the dreams.

Discoveries and Inventions

Dreams have also been credited with multiple discoveries and inventions. It has been in dreams that many have been able to solve problems that their awake minds could not. One of the most famous is the discovery of the molecular ring structure of benzene by Kekule. He had assumed it was linear until a dream. He described the discovery to a group of scientists as follows:

I turned my chair toward the fire place and sank into a doze. Again the atoms were flitting before my eyes. Smaller groups now kept modestly in the background. My mind’s eye sharpened by repeated visions of a similar sort, now distinguished larger structures of varying forms. Long rows frequently rose together, all in movement, winding and turning like serpents. And see! What was that? One of the serpents seized its own tail and the form whirled mockingly before my eyes. I came awake like a flash of lightening. This time also I spent the remainder of the night working out the consequences of the hypothesis.

Friedrich August von Kekule

A remarkable discovery by dream was the periodic table. Before 1869 there were only 60 plus elements known. Around thirty elements were still undiscovered, which made it hard to classify the known ones. Dmitri Mendeleev, a Russian chemist, struggled with the problem until one night.

I saw in a dream a table where all the elements fell into places as required. Awakening I immediately wrote it down on a piece of paper. Only in one place did a correction later seem necessary.

The resulting table was so accurate that it enabled prediction of the properties of elements that were yet to be discovered.

Periodic Table of Elements

Otto Leowi had a hunch about the nature of nerve transmission in 1903 but forgot about it until a dream in 1920.

The night before Easter Sunday of that year, I awoke, turned on the light, and jotted down a few notes on a tiny slip of thin paper. Then I fell asleep again. It occurred to me at six o’ clock in the morning that during the night I had written down something important, but I was unable to decipher the scrawl. The next night, at three o’ clock the idea returned. It was the design of an experiment to determine whether or not the hypothesis of chemical transmission that I had uttered seventeen years ago was correct.

Austrian scientist Otto Loewi discovered the first neurotransmitter in an experiment which came to him in a dream.

I got up immediately, went to the laboratory, and performed a simple experiment on a frog heart according to the nocturnal design…If I had carefully considered it (the design) in daytime, I would undoubtedly have rejected the kind of experiment I performed…It was good fortune that at the time of the hunch I did not think but acted.

Elias Howe

A dream also assisted the invention of the sewing machine. Elias Howe was trying to invent the lock-stitch sewing machine but was stuck on how to thread the needle until a dream he had in 1844. He dreamt that he had been captured by dark-skinned painted savages who were taking him to a place for execution. As he shook with fear, he noticed that the spears had eye-shaped holes in their heads. He awoke excited with the idea of pointed needles with eye-shaped holes in the front.

Elias Howe Sewing Machine

Because people who otherwise report no psychic abilities have frequently reported paranormal dreams, looking at the neurocircuitry involved in dreaming may provide clues as to the neurocircuitry involved in the paranormal. Dreams have their source in the amygdala, hippocampus, and inferior temporal lobe. And although brainstem nuclei are involved, the amygdala may trigger the first phase of dreaming (REM or Rapid Eye Movement sleep). And thus, we see the same structures involved in dreaming as we do in mystical states. It would make sense for psychic abilities to be found here as well.

The ESP Enigma

Dreaming and Prophecy
Human consciousness, Spirituality, Telepathy

(Published with permission)

http://dianehennacypowell.com/

Diane Powell, M.D. is an author, public speaker, researcher and practicing psychiatrist. She has spoken in venues that vary from international scientific conferences to news and talk shows, including Dr. Phil. Her education has been both broad and deep. She feels honored to have trained and worked with some of the best minds of the century, including several Nobel laureates.

 

Lessons from the Light, the Near-Death Experience

Lessons-from-light

Soul Memory

SOUL memory according to Theosophy is referred to as ‘reminiscence,’ and it is this kind memory that assures every human being, whether they know it or not, of their having lived before, and having to live again.

To fully grasp the idea, we first have to study the complex relationship between the human and transcendental aspects of mind (represented physiologically by the brain’s left and right hemispheres.)

There is a well known analysis of soul knowledge transmission by W. Q. Judge in his Ocean of Theosophy, Ch.9: “By living according to the dictates of the soul the brain may at last be made porous to the soul’s recollections; if the contrary sort of a life is led, then more and more will clouds obscure that reminiscence.”

The differences were experienced directly by neuroanatomist Jill Bolte Taylor PhD, described in her book “My Stroke of Insight.” In a memorable TED Talk, she describes her experience in dramatic detail:

“Jill Bolte Taylor got a research opportunity few brain scientists would wish for: She had a massive stroke, and watched as her brain functions — motion, speech, self-awareness — shut down one by one. An astonishing story.”

My Stroke of Insight

Jill Bolte Taylor

This fundamental double consciousness, Blavatsky explained, is termed first “the spiritual, or those which belong to the imperishable Ego,” (Key to Theosophy, Section 8, On Individuality and Personality). Second, she describes the intellectual/rational, personal physical brain states:

which inhabit the ever-changing bodies, or the series of personalities of that Ego.

Notwithstanding, our higher mind knows and remembers all its lives, she insisted, “as well as you remember what you have done yesterday. The real Ego has not forgotten them, and the personal never experienced them. Shall the new boots on the feet of a boy who is flogged for stealing apples, be punished for that which they know nothing?” she asks.

oceanmeditate

Spiritual and Personal Memories

That which is called “the divine man,” is the “real Individuality,” who like the elegant elephant, never forgets.  But its vehicle the personality has no access to that history as it corresponds to “a new suit of clothes.” There are, however, importantly:

modes of communication between the Spiritual and human consciousness or memory.

Evidence for such modes lies in powers of intuition, conscience, premonitions, & etc. and, most powerfully, from recent research into the so-called NDE or Near Death Experience. But such states as this “have never been recognised by your scientific modern psychologists,” Blavatsky wrote in her day.

That may be changing now.

Continue reading

Dreaming and Prophecy

“Dreaming and Prophecy” written by Diane Hennacy Powell

SEVERAL years ago I awoke in a panic from a nightmare. I didn’t remember the nightmare, but the first thought that I had upon awakening was, What if it is melanoma? I’m not prone to nightmares, and I wasn’t worried about the new mole that I had seen on the back of my leg the week before. It looked perfectly normal. I had no history of sunburns. In fact, I never spent much time in the sun and barely remember having had tans. No one in my family ever had melanoma. Still, I showed it to my then husband, who was an oncologist.

“That’s not melanoma,” he said looking at my leg. “It’s perfectly round, has uniform color, and is less than a half centimeter.”

“I know,” I said feeling almost foolish for asking. “I went to the same medical school as you. It’s just unusual for me to wake up terrorized.”

I didn’t think about it again, that is until I awoke the following month in a panic. But what if it is melanoma? I sought reassurance from my husband a second time. After the third awakening, I scheduled an appointment.

“It’s not melanoma,” said my internist with certainty, “but if you want me to take it off I will.”

“Please do. At least it will help me sleep better.”

I returned the following week to have the suture removed and to receive the pathology report. My internist looked her usual serene self, so I felt relieved immediately. Upon opening my chart, her expression changed to concern. “Oh…….I’m sorry. I didn’t review this before you arrived. It is melanoma. Fortunately, it is in situ and can be cured by a wider excision. Good thing we caught it early.”

Reports of prophetic or precognitive dreams exist throughout the ages and across almost every culture. The first written record of dreams dates back to 2000 B.C.

About ten days ago, I retired very late. I had been up waiting for important dispatches from the front. I could not have been long in bed when I fell into a slumber, for I was weary. I soon began to dream. There seemed to be a death-like stillness about me. Then I heard subdued sobs, as if a number of people were weeping. I thought I left my bed and wandered downstairs. There the silence was broken by the same pitiful sobbing but the mourners were invisible. I went from room to room; no living person was in sight, but the same mournful sounds of distress met me as I passed along. I saw light in all the rooms; every object was familiar to me; but where were all the people who were grieving as if their hearts would break? I was puzzled and alarmed. What could be the meaning of all this? Determined to find the cause of such a state of things so mysterious and so shocking, I kept on until I arrived at the East room, which I entered. There I met with a sickening surprise. Before me was a catafalque, on which rested a corpse wrapped in funeral vestments. Around it were stationed soldiers who were acting as guards; and there was a throng of people, gazing mournfully upon the corpse, whose face was covered, others weeping pitifully. “Who is dead in the White House?” I demanded of one of the soldiers. “The President” was his answer; “he was killed by an assassin.” Then came a loud burst of grief from the crowd, which woke me from my dream. I slept no more that night; and although it was only a dream, I have been strangely annoyed by it ever since.

Abraham Lincoln, three days before his assassination, as relayed to his wife and a few friends. (Recollections of Abraham Lincoln 1847-1865 by Ward Hill Lamon)

Precognitive dreams have been well documented. For example, Stevenson reported ten cases of precognition of the sinking of the Titanic, eight of which involved dreams. (Morgan Robertson wrote a novel in 1898 called Futility about the wreck of a giant ship named Titan. The similarities between its details and the Titanic disaster 14 years later are striking. The Titan was considered unsinkable, displaced 70,000 tons, was 800 feet long, had 24 lifeboats, carried 3000 passengers, and sunk in April after hitting an iceberg at 25 knots. The Titanic displaced 66,000 tons, was 828 feet long, had 24 lifeboats, almost 3000 passengers, and sunk in April after hitting an iceberg at 23 knots.) Similarly, several Muslims came forth after 9/11 to say that they had precognitive dreams of the events of that day.

Another paranormal dream experience is dream telepathy. The first attempt at a theory to explain dream telepathy was made by Democritus (460-370 B.C.) who postulated that emotionally charged images could be transmitted to dreamers through their pores. It wasn’t until 1882, with the founding of the Society for Psychical Research that serious scientific study of the subject was done. In their historic work, Phantasms of the Living, they reported 149 cases of dream telepathy. A typical story is the following, which corresponded with the event in great detail:

My brother and I were on a journey…I dreamt….I saw father driving in a sledge, followed in another by my brother. They had to pass across-road on which another traveler was driving very fast, also in a sledge with one horse. Father seemed to drive on without observing the other fellow, who would…have driven over father if he had not made his horse rear, so that I saw my father drive under the hoofs of the horse. Every moment I expected the horse to fall down and crush him. I called out, “Father! Father!” and awoke in great fright.

The pattern noted by the researchers was that over half of the dreams concerned death. Another significant number concerned an emergency. In most cases the dreamer and subject of the dream were related or friends. The dreamers had no special psychic abilities before or after the dreams.

Dreams have also been credited with multiple discoveries and inventions. It has been in dreams that many have been able to solve problems that their awake minds could not. One of the most famous is the discovery of the molecular ring structure of benzene by Kekule. He had assumed it was linear until a dream. He described the discovery to a group of scientists as follows:

I turned my chair toward the fire place and sank into a doze. Again the atoms were flitting before my eyes. Smaller groups now kept modestly in the background. My mind’s eye sharpened by repeated visions of a similar sort, now distinguished larger structures of varying forms. Long rows frequently rose together, all in movement, winding and turning like serpents. And see! What was that? One of the serpents seized its own tail and the form whirled mockingly before my eyes. I came awake like a flash of lightening. This time also I spent the remainder of the night working out the consequences of the hypothesis.

A remarkable discovery by dream was the periodic table. Before 1869 there were only 60 plus elements known. Around thirty elements were still undiscovered, which made it hard to classify the known ones. Dmitri Mendeleev, a Russian chemist, struggled with the problem until one night.

I saw in a dream a table where all the elements fell into places as required. Awakening I immediately wrote it down on a piece of paper. Only in one place did a correction later seem necessary.

The resulting table was so accurate that it enabled prediction of the properties of elements that were yet to be discovered.

Otto Leowi had a hunch about the nature of nerve transmission in 1903, but forgot about it until a dream in 1920.

The night before Easter Sunday of that year, I awoke, turned on the light, and jotted down a few notes on a tiny slip of thin paper. Then I fell asleep again. It occurred to me at six o’ clock in the morning that during the night I had written down something important, but I was unable to decipher the scrawl. The next night, at three o’ clock the idea returned. It was the design of an experiment to determine whether or not the hypothesis of chemical transmission that I had uttered seventeen years ago was correct. I got up immediately, went to the laboratory, and performed a simple experiment on a frog heart according to the nocturnal design…If I had carefully considered it (the design) in daytime, I would undoubtedly have rejected the kind of experiment I performed…It was good fortune that at the time of the hunch I did not think but acted.

A dream also assisted the invention of the sewing machine. Elias Howe was trying to invent a lock-stitch sewing machine, but was stuck on how to thread the needle until a dream he had in 1844. He dreamt that he had been captured by dark-skinned painted savages who were taking him to a place for execution. As he shook with fear, he noticed that the spears had eye-shaped holes in their heads. He awoke excited with the idea of pointed needles with eye-shaped holes in the front.

Because people who otherwise report no psychic abilities have frequently reported paranormal dreams, looking at the neurocircuitry involved in dreaming may provide clues as to the neurocircuitry involved in the paranormal. Dreams have their source in the amygdala, hippocampus, and inferior temporal lobe. And although brainstem nuclei are involved, the amygdala may trigger the first phase of dreaming (REM or Rapid Eye Movement sleep). And thus, we see the same structures involved in dreaming as we do in mystical states. It would make sense for psychic abilities to be found here as well.

Dreaming and Prophecy
Human consciousness, Spirituality, Telepathy

(Published with permission)

http://dianehennacypowell.com/

Diane Powell, M.D. is an author, public speaker, researcher and practicing psychiatrist. She has spoken in venues that vary from international scientific conferences to news and talk shows, including Dr. Phil. Her education has been both broad and deep. She feels honored to have trained and worked with some of the best minds of the century, including several Nobel laureates.