Monday, 26 November 2007

Procognitive Deja Vu experience

Following is an excerpt from a school paper I wrote in which I described an experience I had, which I can still often remember vividly almost thirty years later. In the first 'Comment' to this post can be found the responses to an email survey that was part of the paper:

...The same fifteen people had all experienced Déjà vu. Common sense is that are memories are based on past experience. Is this true, or can Déjà vu be a memory of a future experience? One third of the respondents believed that they knew what was going to happen, and what they believed would happen, did happen. The author has experience in this area as well:

When I was about 10 years old, in Naugatuck Connecticut, my grandmother took me to a roller skating rink that used to be a movie theater. As I looked around, everything and everyone was exactly where they were in my memory of what was happening. As I turned my head several ways, I could not make anything happen differently than it was in memory. I realized that I was engaged in a déjà vu. Something happened that doesn’t normally happen. I was able to speed up my memory of what was happening and knew that a couple was about to turn the corner into my view. I had never in my short life seen these people. Within a couple seconds, the couple turned the corner. Everything about the situation was true to my memory. The people, their clothes, the angle of view, and the obstructions between the couple and me were all the same. Though I may have experienced this to a lesser degree,I cannot be completely sure that it has ever happened since.


Anonymous said...

Appendix B (Survey results):

Survey Questions:

Q1. As a child, how did the passage of time compare to the passage of time today?
Days?(Faster, Slower, Same.)
Q2.Years?(Faster Slower Same)
Q3. Have you ever had Déjà vu?
Q4 If so, Have you ever had Déjà vu to the point where you believed you knew what was going to happen next?
Q5. If so, did what you believed would happen, really happen?
Q6. Have you ever had an experience where time appears to have slowed significantly?
Q7: Describe incident (optional)

Survey Data:

Respondent A: Q1: Much slower. Q2: Slower. Q3: Several times. Q4: Yes. Q5: Yes
Q6: Yes. Q7: I used to play a lot of baseball, when I was hitting I was so focused that I didn’t hear or see anything but the ball, when it was pitched it always seemed to be slower than it actually was. I also get this feeling if I’m in deep thought while riding my chopper too….the whole world seems to slow down

Respondent B: Q1: Much slower. Q2: Much slower. A year was “forever” then.
Q3: Yes. Q4: No. Q5: N/A. Q6: Yes. Q7: Once, when I fainted. As a approached unconsciousness, everything slowed down. Another time was when I fell off a boat – the time between falling and hitting the water went into slow motion.

Respondent C: Q1: Faster. Q2: Slower. Q3: Yes. Q4: Yes. Q5: Yes. Q6: Yes. Q7: there may have been some outside influence on this, rather not say and incriminate myself.

Respondent D: Q1: Time didn't matter as a child, so perhaps slower. Time matters more today and seems to fly. Q2: Slower, years didn't really matter. Q3: Yes. Q4: No. Q5: N/A. Q6: Yes. Q7: When exceptionally bad news is heard, e.g. death of a parent.

Respondent E: Q1 Time is relative to past. so as a child your past is relatively short so 1 year as a child could be 20% of your basis so time in this case moves very slow.. conversely for an old person. Q2: See above years move slower as a child…
Q3: Yes. Q4: Yes. Q5: Sometimes. Q6: Yes. Q7: Reason…. Your brain sample rate increases dramatically during time of extremes….so when you play it back in your head it seems like slow motion…the brain can’t regulate…

Respondent F: Q1: Same. Q2: Slower. Q3: Yes. Q4: Yes. Q5: Yes. Q6: Yes. Q7: Waiting for an event to happen, ie. short-timer (another measure of time) counting the days to discharge. Comment: Time is the most paradoxical of all things. Seconds, Minutes, Hours, Days, Weeks, Months, Seasons, Years, Lifetimes, Eternity and it can be added that on Saturday you will turn the clock back to gain 1 hour that you lost when in the spring an hour was sprung forward for daylight savings time. Then there are ways to measure time such as a sun-dial.

Respondent G: Q1: Slower because you didn’t know any better. Q2: Years went slower because you wanted to get out of school to have fun during summer.. Q3: Yes. Q4: No, I have only had it to be aware something was happening and I realized while it was that it had happened before. Q5: No I didn’t realize till certain things happened that made me remember I wish I could see the future. Q6: Yes all the time usually when I am doing something I don’t like time drags. On the opposite when I enjoy something I am doing time flies so I don’t get to enjoy it anymore because I ran out of time. Q7: Already have.

Respondent H: Q1:Slower. Q2: Slower. Q3: Yes. Q4: No. Q5: N/A. Q6: No. Q7: N/A

Respondent I: Q1: Slower. Q2: Faster. Q3: Yes. Q4: Yes. Q5: No. Q6: Yes. Q7: When Boo Book kicked me in the Head with a High Top Sneaker

Respondent J: Q1: Slower. Q2: Slower. Q3: Many times. Q4: Yes. Q5: Yes. Q6: Yes. Q7: N/A

Respondent K: Q1: Hard to remember. I would have to say day-by-day passage was about the same. Q2: Time passed much slower. it seemed like FOREVER from Christmas to Christmas as a child. Q3: Yes. Q4: No - always past experiences - not what was next.... Q5: N/A. Q6: Waiting. At airport, doctor’s office, slow day at work waiting for time to go home. This is pretty common with me. If my mind is not occupied, time seems to pass much much slower. Q7: N/A

Respondent L: Q1: Same. Q2: Slower. Q3: Yes. Q4: No. Q5: N/A. Q6: yes but it usually only appears that way when I reflect on it in the past. Q7: N/A

Respondent M: Q1: Slower. Q2: Slower. Q3: Yes. Q4: No. Q5: N/A. Q6: No. Q7: N/A

Respondent N: Q1: Slower. Q2: Slower. Q3: Yes. Q4: No. Q5: N/A. Q6: Yes. Q7: While at work being bored.

SK and the girls at the Spa:
Time goes faster as an adult both days and years
Time slows while waiting for water to boil, or while at work when not busy.
These are answers from some girls at the spa.
Deja vus yes but not to where you new what would happen next

Anthony Peake said...


Thank you very much for this contribution. I am sure that members of this Group will find this material interesting. If you are keen to continue your research may I suggest that you check out the work of Dr. Arthur Funkhouser. Dr Funkhouser is a member of this Group and I am hoping that he may spot your posting and add a comment. I know that Art is doing his own world-wide survey of the deja experience so I am sure that you both have a good deal to discuss. Art's questionnaire can be found at

Art's paper 'Three Types of Deja Vu' can be found at

Also check out Dr Chris Moulin's page:

Best of luck with your project.