Editor’s Introduction

Robin Billings is trained in Developmental and Child Clinical Psychology, in which he has a Ph.D. He practices as a clinician.

Premonitory Dream of An Abused Child
Robin Billings

As a clinical psychologist I have encountered mental phenomena over the years that are not adequately accounted for by the model of consciousness prevalent in our Western, scientific materialist paradigm. These phenomena include, for example, finding myself voicing the thoughts and memories that patients have tried to suppress and not discuss, feeling strong emotions that I could not account for that later were revealed to be precognitive or clairvoyant information related to experiences of my clients, facilitating changes in consciousness in clients through meditative contemplation of them during sessions, and so on.

Here is one example of this kind of experience:

One night in 1992 I had a vivid dream of hiking in the wilderness and discovering a small cabin. Upon entering the one-room cabin, I noted a clear sensory awareness of the materials the cabin was constructed of, including the floor boards, walls, etc. I even noticed a candle stuck in a small wooden holder sitting on the floor. In the cabin I also encountered a young boy who was absolutely terrified and needed comforting. I held him in my arms for some time, soothing and calming him until I awoke. I rose, prepared myself to go to the office and drove in contemplating the unusual dream and pondered over what it could reflect of my own process without arriving at much insight.

I had a client early that morning. Upon meeting her, it was clear that she had strong feelings just beneath the surface, which I gently invited to emerge in the context of taking a history. The client then began to tearfully describe how her 5-year-old son had been tortured and killed by her husband, a Vietnam veteran, in a remote wilderness cabin, and that she still suffers terribly with the memory. As she related the story the dream returned vividly to my consciousness, my entire body began to tingle with electricity, and I had absolute certainty that this was the boy I was comforting in my dream earlier that morning. I found myself intuitively communicating with the mother on a level beyond verbal expression, through tone of voice and movement of what I can only describe as the “energy body” bringing her the same comfort that I was giving to her son in my dream and noted a deep connection emerging between us.

Contributor’s Comments on the Experience

If one adopts the notion that consciousness is more a shared, field phenomenon than the excrescence of an individual brain, it is easier to understand how we are deeply interconnected with the environment in which we are embedded, including the individuals with whom we relate. Over the years I have come to see these types of psychic phenomena not as isolated, unusual events that only rarely emerge, but more as a field of awareness that is always there. This deeper awareness can be consciously cultivated and developed through mindfulness training, and becomes more noticeable when the misperception that one is a separate self begins to dissolve and be replaced with a more accurate awareness of the true nature of mind and consciousness, which is transcendent to the individual body/brain.