Carl Jung > Dream Interpretation

About Dreams of Death

Dream of Death

Dreams about death are among the most interesting if we take into account the number of Google searches. But I must say from the beginning that dreams in which the dreamer himself dies are very few. In fact, I did not have such a dream nor did I know anyone to have this kind of dreams. Instead we dream of the death of others: friends, relatives, co-workers. What do these dreams mean?

In my experience, death dreams are not about death. They can be due to our hostile feelings towards those we dream of. In other words, we would like them to die. Since this feeling is generally repressed(*) as immoral, it can still occur in dreams.

The reasons why we wish the death of our loved ones? A friend who deceived our expectations, a relative who competes with us at the love of the family (a very common case especially between brothers, sisters), a boss or employer who treats us with disdain (at least so we believe).

But most of the dreams of death are those in which we dream of the dead (really dead people). I recently dreamed of my mother who died a few months ago and who told me in my dream that she loves me very much (contrary to what I believed in reality). This dream can be a compensation, especially since I saw myself alone in the dream, left without any help and especially without any money!

A friend of mine dreamed of a deceased friend who told him in the dream that it was very bad "there". "There" was a kind of hospital where he was hosted for some reason. The hospital was very crowded and for this reason the stay was not comfortable. There were probably other drawbacks.

I remember shaking hands with him and I really felt the texture of his hand so that the dream seemed very real!

A friend of mine dreamed of her deceased father being alive and unharmed. Here the compensation is very obvious: she wanted his father to be still alive because he had loved her a lot.

A category of dreams in which the dead appear are those that foretell the future. There is an ancient believe that important dead people such as politicians, priests, philosophers etc. occurring in dreams can predict the future. Therefore these dreams were deemed prophetic. The explanation of this belief is simple: because it was supposed that the dead did not die but continue to exist in the afterlife, it was perfectly possible that they have premonitive abilities because they released their soul from the censorship of the body. All the more so with people who had prophetic visions during their life long.

Are there prophetic dreams? Here's a very actual question.

In general, death is not represented as such. I know from the experience with other people who have died that death is symbolized with reference to the Biblical symbolism of a bright and blooming land where they meet their already deceased relatives, loved ones and even pets (who are obviously alive in the dreams).

This category of dreams leads us to the field of religion.

I am not sure what is the case with the Catholics or Protestants but I know that in the Christian-Orthodox religion dreams of this kind are not very cherished. To quote Father Seraphim Rose, they do not come from God (that is, they are not real) but from the devil and are intended to confuse us, to hide the grim reality of death in sin.

I don't know if Father has right to say so. But, at least for common people, his saying may be applied.

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*A repressed feeling is unconscious. But it can return in a disguised form in our dreams. The term "repressed" is part of the psychoanalytic vocabulary and was included by Sigmund Freud.

Resources:

    - Check out our site section dealing with dream interpretation here.

    - Should you wish to learn more about Jung's method, please check our email course treating of this matter here.

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Paper by Ana Styla
(psychoanalysis researcher and writter)

 

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