Top Ten Dream Symbols and What They Really Mean

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“A little learning is a dangerous thing; drink deep or taste not of the Pierian Spring.” Pope, Essay on Criticism, Pt. ii, 215


If you dream of some terrible event do you jump to conclusions and assume it is a prophecy of doom?  My mailbag is full of letters from worried readers who believe that their dreams predict terrible events for themselves and the world at large. Judging by the number of people who write to me, if these dreams were all to have come true there would not be a person left on the planet.

This is a copyrighted extract from my book  Psychic Dreaming  by Craig Hamilton-Parker ( ISBN 1-4027-0474-7 Sterling Publishers 2004 )

Clearly not every dream about the future is necessarily a prediction. A sceptic will point out that as we all dream between three and four times during the night and everyone dreams so it is likely that at least someone somewhere was dreaming about a news event before it happens. For example it is likely that a person somewhere was dreaming an airplane crash into a high-rise building just before the 911 disaster took place.

Sceptics argue also that the only reason that precognitive dreams come true is that you selectively remember when your dream comes true but not when they don’t, thus attribute it to psychic precognition. Of course they assume that dreams are just random thoughts and images and reject all the convincing evidence for psychic phenomena such as the extensive research into telepathy using the ganzfeld experiments, the remote viewing and precognition data from the Stanford Research Institute and other research labs and the rock solid evidence for ESP and psychokinesis in the research from Princeton University.

Dream Symbols

Understanding Dream Symbolism

Nonetheless it is circumspect not to assume that all dreams are psychic dreams. Nobody knows what dreams are for but most psychologists agree that dreams are a link between your conscious mind and your unconscious and that they use symbolism to express thoughts, feelings and emotions. Your dreams are an emotional safety valve and without them our frustrations and anxieties would overwhelm us. Your dreams about disasters for example may be less to do with the world at large and more to do with the emotional disasters and disappointments that have been happening in your own life. They speak the hurt and shock you feel when things go wrong now or may recall the emotional pain you have known in the past.

Dreams may also have something to do with our ability to learn. They help us to assimilate what happens to us and the events of the day are organised and re-assessed. Dreams show us solutions to our problems and prepare us for the future. In doing this they expose our deepest fears and signposts ways to inner peace. Dreams may sometimes speak literally and give us a direct glimpse into the future but in most instances they are a representation of our thoughts, ideas, worries, hopes and fears that they represent by symbols, metaphors and images. So use discernment when you interpret a dream as a portent for the future. Some are of course, but first consider if your dream has a symbolic meaning before assuming it is paranormal.

Prior to modern psychology people used to believe that the images from a dream wee portents for the future. Many dream books today still draw upon these superstitions. I have included some of these old prophetic meaning in some of the themed sections of this book and explained their origins in more detail in the oneiromancy section. Needless to say these old superstitions need to be taken with a very large pinch of salt! Also many of the ancient dream interpretations may be lost on modern people. For example some ancient dream interpretations were based on punning, or verbal connections between similar words. In ancient Egyptian the words for “donkey” and “great” were homonyms, therefore a dream about eating donkey meat meant good luck. Some of these old ideas -many of which date to the library of the Egyptian Scribe Kenhirkhopeshef- have been passed down through the generations and still appear in modern dream books.

Many people still believe that the ancient dream books were right and that all dream images have specific messages about the future. It is my belief that most of these are nonsense but I include them for those who believe these things and as an amusing distraction from the serious content of this book. Touch wood I am right.

Signs, Stories, Experiments and Symbols:

Although every dream is unique to you there are nonetheless many dreams that we have in common. These dreams usually highlight the things that are worrying you. Below are listed the Top Ten of the most common dreams and have to included their symbolic meaning and what they may be saying about your potential future.

1. Dreams of Being Chased

This very common dream usually occurs when there is an issue that you do not want to face. You are literally running away from a problem. This dream may be a metaphor for insecurities about circumstances closing in on you or you may be at the mercy of feelings that get out of control.

Psychic Dream Meaning: This dream is most likely to be dealing with issues that are already a problem for you. It may relate to worries from past hurts or traumas from childhood. To have a successful future you will first need to deal with the issues that you refuse to address today.

2. Dreams of Falling

As a symbol, falling highlights a loss of emotional equilibrium or self-control. You may fear ‘letting go’ in real life. This dream may represent your insecurity, a fear of failure or an inability to cope with a situation. In relation to your career this dream may show that your anxiety is preventing you from progressing. Sometimes this dream can be triggered by a drop in blood pressure as you ‘fall’ to sleep.

Psychic Dream Meaning:  You may have anxieties about your ability to cope with future situations. This dream may also be the onset of an out of body experience. Most people describe a sensation of rising above the body when this happens, though I have spoken to people who say that an OOOBE begins with falling through the bed. 

3. Dream of going to work partially dresses or naked

This dream shows your anxieties about feeling vulnerable. This may because you are feeling emotionally sensitive. The dream can show that you have a big secret of something to hide. The dream may show the ‘naked truth’ about you. You may have feelings of being exposed or ridiculed. In relation to work this dream may show that you feel that you are not up to the job.

Psychic Dream meaning: This is most likely to be a symbolic dream so don’t expect to find yourself nude in public. People who are training to become more psychic may find that as their sensitivity increases they may at first feel vulnerable to negative vibrations and be easily drained by the people around them. Eventually this feeling will disappear as you gain control over the gift and understand how to shield yourself from unwanted vibration influences.

4. Dream of having to address a big audience

Often you will dream of suddenly discovering that you are to give a speech just like in the film The Third Man. This is another anxiety dream showing that you feel you are unprepared. It is a similar theme to exposed feeling in the naked dream above. You may be emotionally unprepared for what is happening in your life or a work issue may be worrying you. These issues are in the spotlight.

Psychic Dream meaning: Learning the right strategic and tactical techniques you may be able to address you worries about being the centre of attention- particularly if this relates to a work issue. The dream may be triggered by planned events that you are not ready for. Look to other content in the dream to see if solutions to the problems are also hinted at. Your dream may include people and scenarios that give a clairvoyant hint about who to ask and what to do.

5. Dreams of computers, cars and equipment going wrong

These dreams are more common nowadays. They are a symbol that your life may be going wrong. Perhaps you have had an emotional upset. Or the dream may be literal. Your subconscious may be struggling to solve a software problem that you could not fix while at work.

Psychic Dream meaning: I have had these dreams and then found that the car will not start or there’s a software crash. So they are not always symbolic. In one instance a dream about a computer crash also gave me the way to fix the problem. Dreams are an incredible tool for working out problems and sometimes they draw on information that can only be accessed using clairvoyance.

6. Dreams about taking exams:

This dream says that you feel the same anxiety as you did when you were at school taking exams. This may be a dream that expresses a fear of failure. This may originate in childhood and stem from fears of punishment or withdrawal of love.  Similar related themes may include dreams about missing trains or being late for work.

Psychic Dream meaning: The Psychic Edgar Cayce advised that a person should act upon a dream even if it was symbolic. So brush up on your skills and set the alarm a little earlier if you have an important date scheduled.

 7. Teeth Falling out

This dream is a symbol for insecurity that often comes at a time of transition in a person’s life. It expresses similar feelings to the insecurity children feel when their milk teeth fall out as they approach maturity. It may show your anxiety about a new job or relationship. You may be preventing yourself from becoming happy and  successful.

Psychic Dream meaning:  This dream means that you are going to wake up one morning with a set of gums instead of teeth and flipper where you foot was. Sorry just joking. This is a symbolic dream. Chinese superstition says that to dream about teeth falling out is an augury that money is coming to you. To become successful you must let go of fear and allow changes to come into your life when necessary.

8 Snake dreams

In dreams snakes often symbolise fear and are associated with the Christian symbol for evil. They are also a phallus symbols and may represent a fear of sexuality. Yet the snake may also represent spiritual transformation. They shed their skins and in some cultures are believed to represent rebirth. Medicine’s snake entwined staff called the caduceus comes from the ancient Greeks’ belief that snakes had healing powers.

Psychic Dream meaning: You have the power to transform your life. This dream shows the need for change. Consider whether this dream may include medical prognosis. From a spiritual/psychic standpoint this dream may show the awakening of your spiritual powers. In the East they speak of the Kundalini energy from the base of the spine that rises through the charkas to the crown of the head. The Kundalini energy is represented by a coiled snake. When it awakens so do spiritual powers.

9. Death

Dreams of death are symbolic. They represent the ending of one phase so that a new one can begin. The person who has died in the dream may represent and aspect of yourself. For example, if someone you love has died it may show that you have lost touch with the romantic part of your own nature. If you see yourself as the corpse then this may show that you can’t cope with your problems. In relation to work this may show that you are ‘buried’ under a mountain of work.

Psychic Dream meaning: These dreams are usually symbolic and are not a cause for concern. The theme has been covered in detail in the Death entry of this book.

10. Dreams of Flying

These dreams are generally very pleasant. Sigmund Freud, the father of modern psychology, saw ‘flying’ dreams as a symbol of sexual release. The dream also shows release from problems and anxieties. When your dreaming spirit soars it means that you’ve been liberated from an obstruction in your life. It may show that you have high hopes and are overcoming obstacles at last.

Psychic Dream meaning: This shows that you are overcoming your problems and tensions. It may also show the onset of an out of body experience. See Out of Body section.

This is a copyrighted extract from my book  Psychic Dreaming  by Craig Hamilton-Parker ( ISBN 1-4027-0474-7 Sterling Publishers 2004 )

This is an extract from my new book

Article Name
The meaning of dream symbols
The meanings of common dream symbols including dreams about snakes, death, teeth falling out, flying, falling and being naked in public. Top 10 common dream symbolism explained.
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Meet the Author

Craig Hamilton-Parker

CRAIG HAMILTON-PARKER is a celebrated psychic medium who has confounded skeptics by the uncanny accuracy of his readings. Craig is the author of 15 books and together with his wife have their own TV series.

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