Precognition or the ability to see the future has its own share of critics. The existence of the phenomena is strongly disputed by those who believe that known examples of precognition can better be explained using the principles of psychology instead of the paranormal. Early inquiries into the authenticity of precognition were done by Aristotle on his book, “On Divination in Sleep,” where he proposed that the sender of these precognitive dreams should be God and that the fact that precognitive dreams only appeared to common persons were proof that these were mere coincidences. Freud also touched on precognition in his book, “Interpretation of Dreams,” where he stated that dreams are merely the products of unfulfilled wishes and urges and devoid of any psychic content.
One of the strongest opponents of precognition is Robert Todd Carroll, the author of “The Skeptic’s Dictionary.” He believed that precognition has simpler explanations in science and that dreams that appear to be precognitions eventually happen to a portion of the population each day, according to the Law of Large Numbers.
Other theories on precognitive dreams propose that dreams are random, nonsensical products of an underperforming brain when the individual is asleep. Any meaning to the dreams is eventually added by the brain to make sense of these images that previously had no meaning at all. Believers of the uselessness of dreams when it comes to predicting the future say that dreams are the result of the brain’s attempt to get rid of useless information during sleep. Skeptics of precognition like Michael Shermer, author of “Why People Believe Weird Things,” believe that seemingly precognitive dreams are merely the results of overactive imaginations.