You’d expect a book about déjà vu to seem familiar, wouldn’t you? And yet the latest offering from Marie D. Jones and Larry Flaxman, The Déjà vu Enigma, is full of fresh and exciting information about that spooky experience that happens to all of us at one time or another.
The term déjà vu is French for ‘already seen,’ and it is applied to those brief moments when we feel as if we have previously experienced the exact event that we are experiencing at that time. While the description may be confusing, anyone who has had a déjà vu moment certainly knows what it means. Explanations for what happens range from memory of a previous lifetime to a brain glitch. Like so many of life’s little mysteries, there is no definitive research to tell us exactly what’s going on when déjà vu strikes.
Jones and Flaxman have written several books together, including 11:11 The Time Prompt Phenomenon and The Resonance Key. Now they have ferreted out a number of theories about the phenomenon for The Déjà vu Enigma, as well as the history of its exploration, quotes that enlighten and delight (ex: Yogi Berra’s famous exclamation, “It’s like déjà vu all over again!”), and anecdotes about personal déjà vu moments from people in different circumstances and with varied backgrounds.
Among the intriguing possibilities, Jones and Flaxman include the Many Worlds Theory; this one posits that parallel universes exist, and that our déjà vu moments involve a brief crossing-over of alternate realities. Another possibility is that our memories simply get lost and loop around. From one end of the believability spectrum to the other, the authors of The Déjà vu Enigma lay out theories for readers to consider in an entertaining and subjective manner that makes this book all the more fun.
Personal stories are especially appealing, since they provide a context within which we may assess our own ‘already seen’ experiences. To help us sort it all out, there are interviews with experts from the fields of psychology, parapsychology, astrophysics, and the CIA’s Project Stargate. In discussing the role our belief systems play in the manifestation of paranormal phenomena, dark plasma theory researcher Jay Alfred suggests that belief plays a significant role in how we perceive not just unusual events, but everything that we experience:
“…we do not actually see or hear the raw data, but the brain’s hypothesis of what the sensory data mean. Perception is therefore an active process that is modulated by beliefs.” Clearly, then, there can be no one correct explanation for déjà vu – at least not until we learn to tame our brains and record exactly what happens rather than what we believe happens.
As in their earlier books, Jones and Flaxman have done the legwork and presented a broad selection of information in a neatly organized fashion. They wisely leave it to the reader to draw conclusions. The Déjà vu Enigma brings up more questions than it answers, and that is part of its appeal; long after the last page is turned, readers will be pondering the abundance of possibilities. Yes, this is a fun book to read, but its lasting effect is profound and promises to provide many hours of contemplation.