Premonition or precognition has been a part of the human experience since ancient times. It still captures our imagination: accounts of individuals who had presentiments of accidents and disasters, for instance. You will be hard-pressed to find someone who has never heard of Nostradamus. It is one of the most widespread and well-known psychic phenomena, since it is common for everyday people to experience a "vision" (but more often a "feeling") of what might take place in the future of his or her personal life or a larger-scale event. These often take place during an altered state like a dream.
One of the trends in psi research today is the study of retrocausality as possible mechanism for precognition. Some theorists even suggest that the "mechanics" of all psi phenomena could be explained by precognition. However, that would not account for the phenomenological richness and diversity of the dozens of psi perceptions one can describe.
The premonition can be explained as a "paranormal" event where the consciousness acquires information related to a potential, future event. Most of the data, accounts and evidence that are found today regarding premonitions are spontaneous cases. There have been some exceptions such as the Precognitive Remote Perception research at Princeton University's PEAR laboratory and some well-known precognitive dream psi experiment programs.
From a more personal perspective, we have noticed that the more that individuals develop their subtle energy perception and control and their out-of-body experience abilities, the more they seem to experience and understand this phenomenon.