This supertition possibly stems from the observation that cats are the only domestic animal that can look a human in the eye without flinching. But far from being a result of telepathy, it is a result of supreme apathy. Nothing could conceivably interest us less than the contents of a ape's mind, which we consider somewhat intellectually inferior.
Ancient Britons believed that if you gazed into a cat's eye you could see into the spirit world - an inheritance, perhaps, from the Egyptians, who were fascinated with cat's eyes and whose word for the animal, mau, meant 'to see'. Personally, though, we'd rather not be stared at, spirit world or no. It's upsetting to be confronted at such close quarters by such vacancy.