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Discussion 1 to Ask the Patriarch 256
Dreams coming true

by: Chanel

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I Have just Had dreams and woke up the next day to find them true!

The Patriarch replies:

I hate to say it, but this is almost as vague as your original query at the end of last year. I can only answer with generalities.

Yes - sometimes we do think that our dreams come true. But that's because we tend to make special note of those times that events seem to have been foretold in dreams. the vast majority of our dreams which we dont's see parallels for get forgotten.

Also, unless we keep a dream journal, rigoursously writing down our dreams immediately upon waking, we really don't remember our dreams very well. They start to fade almost immediately, and what we remebmer tends to get edited unconsciously by the mind trying to impose some logical order on a disconnected set of images. And when we find something has happened which matches something in our dream, we tend to tailor the dream to reality.

For example:

You wake up, you remember dreaming about an argument, but you can't remember the details. Later in the day, your best friend tells you she just had a fight with her boyfriend and they've broken up. Unconsciously, your mind knots that information into the dream and it's "OMG! I dreamt about that last night."

And really, you didn't dream that last night - you unconsciously put it together as your mind tried to makes sense of it.

Another reason you might see dreams coming true is dreaming (lucid dreaming) in that halfway step between being awake and being asleep, and your mind might be using this time to work out problems and situations. And it's possible that you might actually be making reasonable predictions based on the facts.

Using the same example of your best friend telling you she just had a fight with her boyfriend and they've broken up; you might actually have been concerned about the relationship, thought about it while between sleep and waking, and come to the conclusion in a lucid dream state that they were going to break up. That's not something psychic - just something you worked out as a possible future.

In closing, I'd just like to quote a paragraph from an essay by Robert Todd Carroll published on the Skeptic's Dictionary:

We are often ignorant of the causes of our thoughts and yet we sometimes attribute a paranormal or supernatural cause, despite that ignorance. We dream of Aunt Hildie dying and we find out later that unbeknownst to us, she had died within the past twenty-four hours. We think something paranormal has occurred. We don’t believe it could be coincidence; so, we think there is a causal connection between our dream and our aunt’s death. However, Christopher Scott, a British statistician, has calculated how often death dreams should come true by chance. He assumes that each person has one death dream in their lifetime and works out how often that should coincide with the death of the person dreamed about. Allowing for how many people die each night, even in a small country like England, he concluded that this startling coincidence will happen to someone once every two weeks. Now, each of these events is pure chance, but the people involved will almost certainly think it was psychic. (Think about it: if there are 6.5 billion people on earth and just 100 things happen to each of them each day, then there will be over half a million things that happen each day whose odds are 1,000,000 to 1!) Apparently precognitive or clairvoyant dreams are impressive to those who lack understanding of The Law of Truly Large Numbers. If the odds are a million to one that any given dream is truly prophetic, then, given the number of people on earth and the average number of dreams people have during each sleep period (250 dream themes a night, according to Hines, p. 50, but I don't think I've ever had more than five or six dream themes a night), we should expect that every single day of our lives there will be from 30,000 to 1.5 million dreams that seem clairvoyant or precognitive.

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