Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Notes on Paquette's Dreamer

A fascinating book, by Andrew Paquette, titled Dreamer (O Books, 2011). All through the years I’ve complained about the writings of Emanuel Swedenborg saying that it is all analysis, not enough raw material. Well, here we have a case of all raw material, not enough analysis. Paquette is a gifted psychic, by profession an artist—commercial, fine, etc. Mostly in dream-scapes, he reports on experiences that range far beyond the borderzone. He discovered his talents by dreaming the future, rather dramatically, while working in the Netherlands. He dreamt of a hold-up in which he was killed, shot, died, and rushed back to New York as a spirit to his then girl friend, later wife, to tell her of his misfortune—still in his dream. And then woke up—still in the Netherlands and very much alive. Some time later the event actually took place, but, in the midst of it, remembering the dream with great shock as, again, two men, in the same locale, actually took hold of him,  he managed to escape his assailants.

Here we have a classical dilemma. He dreamt the future with one outcome. It happened, and identically, more or less, in real life—but only up to a point. Then the recall of the dream itself served as the cause of his action to escape the consequences. So how do we explain what appears to be a contradiction. The future is visible, hence apparently fixed. But the future is changeable, hence subject to action arising from knowledge and will.

In a much more minor way, I’ve been concerned with dreams, including the precognitive kind, for more years (I think) than Paquette has lived. My own powers are drastically muted compared with his, but I’m open enough to recognize the same objective reality over there that he reports. Multiple posts on this blog deal with some of my observations.

Thus far I haven’t penetrated very far into this modest but rich book (less than 300 pages). I may have additional notes on Dreamer as time goes on.


  1. Have you ever read John William Dunne's _An Experiment with Time_. It was, not too many decades ago, a very popular and influential work advocating a series of simple experiments with precognition and a theory, Serialism, to explain them.

  2. Yes, Brandon. Quite familiar with Dunne. I read his earliest formulation (1927) many years ago and then, much later, also his re-formulation of Serialism in the third edition (1934), which destroys the elegance of his initial take. I mention him twice in this blog here (reflecting his initial edition) and (in context of a precognitive dream of my own) here. Dunne was a competent aviation engineer and approached this subject ultimately mechanically, by spatializing time. I have real problems with that. Paquette reports multiple precognitive dreams and does now wax geometrically, like Dunne.

  3. Ah, I was wondering if you had mentioned him before; I seemed to remember a bit one of the posts you link to, but I couldn't find it when I looked for it.

  4. I noticed that too -- because I also looked. It turns out that the search box on top doesn't work, but my Categories listing has Dunne in it, and that brings up the right posts...