Precognition is the direct knowledge or perception of the future, obtained through extrasensory
means. It is the ability to actually perceive or see a future event through extrasensory perception
(ESP) or clairvoyance, before it happens. The term is derived from the Latin præ, meaning “prior
to” and cognitio, meaning “to gain knowledge.” Precognition is often confused with the terms
premonition or prophecy, which only relate to a feeling of or sensing that something will happen
in the future.
Precognitive events usually appear to individuals as a flash or spontaneous vision — when, in an awakened state, a person receives a short intense mental scenario. One example of this would be that of a mother who is driving in her car and sees a vision of her child injured at a playground. She quickly turns the car around to find her child about to fall from a tall tree. Another example would be of a person who is about to board an airplane and has a vision of a crash that is so intense that he decides not to board the plane. He finds out later that there was in fact a plane crash.
Some people experience precognition through dreaming. A future incident is vividly played out in the dream, thus allowing the ability to predict something will happen or to avoid an upcoming situation altogether.In studying precognition, it has been found that most of the predicted events happen within a short time frame. In 80 to 85 percent of the time, the events involve a loved one, family member or close friend. The rest of the events fall under the category of individuals who are unrelated.
One peculiarity concerning precognition is that one rarely perceives one’s own death; perhaps one explanation is the trauma it too great for the ego to accept. Some notable exceptions do exist: Abraham Lincoln dreamed of his own death six weeks before his assassination.