The question about death in a dream often comes up from students I teach and people I meet. It can be very unsettling, especially in the form of nightmares and the death of loved ones. In the case of the latter, many people ask whether they should be worried about the people who they’ve seen die in a dream. While some dreams are precognitive, keep in mind that dreams provide timely and honest feedback on the dreamer’s state of consciousness. In other words, the subconscious mind chooses images in dreams that represent what’s going on within the mind. This is a universal approach to dream interpretation.
Death in a dream addresses a very important function in the mind. From an objective point of view, death is part of a natural cycle found in our waking lives. It marks a transition and transformation. Therefore, death in a dream represents change within the thinking or attitudes of the dreamer.
Early on in my dream interpretation studies, I had a dream of fighting an army of a hundred men. I was running for cover, tumbling, dodging bullets, and returning fire when I had the chance. After several minutes of this, it occurred to me that I wasn’t getting hit at all by the bullets. I stopped and stood there in a stupor, wondering if all my adversaries were poor at shooting. Then I calmed myself, slowly raised my guns, and shot the soldiers systematically until there were none standing.
There was a high frequency of death in this dream, stimulating me to reflect upon my own attitudes towards change. In the dream itself, I went from being entirely reactionary to being calm, centered, accurate, and systematic in the skirmish. This dream marked a milestone in my life. It showed me how I was beginning to approach change as something that I could choose at any time, versus something I had no control over. At the time, my ability to concentrate and quiet my mind at will was strengthening. Known as a very anxious person back then, I was learning to make choices in my life in that produced changes that I desired systematically. The attitudes of feeling victimized were slowly transforming into attitudes of self-empowerment. Studying dream interpretation largely contributed to this change.
Here are some things to consider when you encounter death in your dreams:
1. People in a dream represent aspects or parts of you. If you know a person who died in the dream, identify the most outstanding qualities you see in that person. If you describe the person as being charismatic, then look for ways that your own qualities of charisma have changed. If a person procrastinates a lot in your eyes, then their death in a dream signifies a way that your own procrastinating tendencies have undergone a change.
2. Was the death natural or forced? If a person dies naturally in a dream, look for ways that you’ve naturally matured in your thinking. If the death was forced, in the case of accidents or warfare, look for times in your thinking that you’ve attempted to force something to happen. Try to allow time, space, and experience to naturally cause change in your thinking and perspective.
3. Understanding death in a dream can give great insights into your own relationship with change. It can help you make adjustments in your thinking to produce the results you desire in life.
The art of dream interpretation provides a means for self-reflection and self-evaluation. As always, the steps that you take to apply your dream’s messages will determine how valuable dream interpretation will be in your life.