Déjà vu is the feeling that one has lived through the present situation before. This is a French phrase that translates literally as “already seen”. Although some interpret déjà vu in a paranormal context, mainstream scientific approaches reject the explanation of déjà vu as “precognition” or “prophecy”. It is an anomaly of memory whereby, despite the strong sense of recollection, the time, place, and practical context of the “previous” experience are uncertain or believed to be impossible.
Two types of déjà vu are recognized: the pathological déjà vu usually associated with epilepsy or that which, when unusually prolonged or frequent, or associated with other symptoms such as hallucinations, may be an indicator of neurological or psychiatric illness, and the non-pathological type characteristic of healthy people, about two-thirds of whom have had déjà vu experiences. People who travel often or frequently watch movies are more likely to experience déjà vu than others. Furthermore, people also tend to experience déjà vu more in fragile conditions or under high pressure, and research shows that the experience of déjà vu also decreases with age.