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Butler's Crossing

Dreamed 1941/8/24 by David's father, reported to the Rhine Institute

On Sunday, August 24, 1941, a 78-year-old man in North Carolina told his wife a dream he had the night before. He dreamed he was standing at Butler's Crossing about three miles from his home when he saw a vehicle coming toward him at great speed. The light was so bright it blinded him. He screamed to his son, "Oh, David! It's Judgment Day." At that moment the vehicle struck him, as he said, hurling him into everlasting darkness.

His wife said it was a terrible dream, but she did not know then that it was also precognitive. Her husband at the time was suffering from an allergy, for which twice a week he was taking treatments from a doctor in a nearby town. Three days later, he went to town for his shots. On the way back he caught a ride to Butler's Crossing, where he got out of the car, stood a few minutes by the road lighting his pipe, and then started across the highway. He was at the center white line when a speeding car came around the curve. He stepped back, the car swerved to the left, hit him and threw him sixty feet. Fifteen minutes later he was dead.


At first glance David's father seems reckless; why would even the biggest dream-skeptic on Earth hang around the corner where he just dreamed he'd die? But he got a ride, and couldn't very well demand to be taken to his door. He had to cross the road, too; and notice he hesitated, had a pipeful while assessing the situation. In rural Carolina that could mean ears as well as eyes. So he waited until the coast seemed clear, but was surprised by a speeder. He took evasive action but the driver did too--unfortunately in the same direction.

So was this normal behavior, extra caution, or defiance? Did he act on his nightmare? I think it's unclear. Should he have? Unclear. If he should, how? Unclear. Was his death fated (implying a fixed future) despite attempts to heed the warning, or just bad luck despite caution? Unclear. The one thing that is clear is his accurate prediction.

--Chris Wayan

SOURCE: Hidden Channels of the Mind by Louisa E. Rhine, 1961, p. 147. Account untitled, author's name witheld; title & byline added to aid searching & indexing.

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