Some people have prophetic dreams involving more widespread
disasters. Lynn Walbeck has had many dreams of the crash of
commercial planes, usually days before the crash occurred. The
dreams, however, are vague, although sometimes she knows the
continent and occasionally the country.
Lynn's most disturbing dream, however, was about the explosion of
the space shuttle Challenger in 1986. The dream occurred the
night before the launch. "I was visibly upset when I went to
work the next day," she said. "I told some of my friends about
my dream, and, during break, a woman came in to tell me the
Challenger had just exploded."
Marla Miller also dreamed about the Challenger. "The next
morning," Marla reported, "I turned on the TV to a Special Report
on the launching of the Challenger. And then watched my dream
again as the Challenger exploded on my TV screen."
Kirby Bevans dreamed of an exploding plane. ""I found myself
falling toward the ground," Kirby says, "surrounded by sharp
plane fragments." Kirby landed in the water, then realized that
the water was actually a swamp. Twenty-four hours later, a jet
plane coming into Logan Airport in Boston made a low approach to
its runway and crashed into the sea wall. Passengers were thrown
into shallow water that was, indeed, like a swamp.
Reports are widespread of people who dreamed about the Kennedy
assassination. The mining disaster in Wales that destroyed a
school in Aberfam and took the life of many children haunted many
dreams beforehand. Another occasion when dreams may have been a
factor in the saving of lives was the sailing of the Titanic.
More than twenty tickets were canceled for undisclosed reasons
shortly before the ship set sail.
There are reports of dreams that foretell more pleasant events:
the birth of a child, an engagement or a wedding to come. People
have claimed they dreamed winning lottery numbers, or seen the
outcome of a horse race. Using the dream as a guide, they've
The majority of prophetic dreams, however foretell death,
disasters or accidents. Perhaps these events have a stronger
impact on the sleeping mind than pleasant experiences. Sigmund
Freud believed that, when a person slept, his mental defenses
were lowered. Another possibility, however, is that people do
remember more clearly the shock of envisioning death or disaster.
Richard Broughton, Ph.D., of Rhine University says, "It could
also be the case that these events are things one should be
warned about. [The dreams] may anticipate potential dangers and
thus serve some evolution-based survival mechanism."
Janice Baylis, author of "Sex, Symbols and Dreams," sets the
occurrence of prophetic dreams at 23 percent of all dreams.
Richard Broughton estimates a little lower, at 15 percent. There