Oneiromancy-The Interpretation of Dreams

We all remember vivid, strange or frightening dreams we have. Do those dreams contain a message or are they revealing our subconscious thoughts? Dreams have always fascinated us. They have been interpreted as warnings, premonitions and channels for instructions from a higher being. One thing is for certain, we all dream! Apparently, we dream more in the winter than the summer and our dreams are strongest in the week preceding a full moon!

What Are Dreams For?

Where do they come from? Do they have a purpose? What is their meaning? Modern psychoanalysts were not the first to ask these questions. In Babylon, in ancient Egypt, in Israel, in Persia, in India, in China, in Japan, these questions were asked, long before the emergence of writing. The therapeutic effects of dream interpretation were already known by the people of the ancient world. They gave or found meanings to their dreams by using the language of signs, symbols, myths and beliefs. Later on, in all Islamic countries, oneiromancy was the only divinatory science chosen by the Prophet, and used by the people.

Why Do We Dream?

Neurophysiologists tell us that dreaming is the result of cerebral and organic activity. Freudian psychoanalysts believe that dreams are compensatory effects and fantasies caused by the libido, a latin word for desire. Jungian psychoanalysts explain that our dreams carry symbolic messages, and that interpretation is a good way to get to know ourselves, to guide us when we meet up with mental problems or moments of distress.

Interpreting You Dreams

Hypnos, god of sleep, used to send messages to men. A simple method of traditional oneiromancy is to keep a dream diary. Every time a dream makes an impression on you, write it down in detail in your diary and analyze it. First you have to discover what kind of dream you are having. Dreams can be classified under three main headings: Clairvoyant or visionary: this is the most unusual of the three and happens only rarely, if at all. The dream is on a much larger scale and brings with it an awareness, while you are still in the dream state, that you are being given insight, understanding and realisation.

Precognitive: this type of dream gives you some knowledge about the future, a glimpse into what could be. These dreams usually feature other people. Recognitive: these are the most commonly experienced dreams. They feature fragments of your recently experienced life, often in a different format but still recognisable. There are certain types of dreams commonly experienced which have symbolic meanings:

Direction dreams – if you are going up then you are moving in the right direction. Going downwards means you are tackling a situation in the wrong way. Turning left means you are following intellect and reason, going right is the path of intuition. Going round in circles means you’re not getting anywhere.

Snake dreams are about power and power struggles. Chase dreams mean you are running away from your problems. If you are rooted to the spot, then it means you must confront your fears. Money dreams symbolise change. The larger the amount, the bigger the change. Death dreams signify literally the end of an old situation and time for something new.

What Do The Places We Dream About Signify?

A foreign country signifies a fortune being left to you or future happiness.

An asylum – dreaming you’re in an asylum is a good omen – it indicates a way out of difficulties.

A restaurant – if you are eating with people this can signify you are about to be the innocent victim of someone else’s actions.

Dining alone, particularly if there is hardly any food on the table, indicates that after initial difficulties you will have cause to celebrate.

A factory can denote a change in health or news of a relative suffering an accident. This could involve fire or water.

A fairground – if you are alone at the fair in your dream, then a so-called friend is about to cause you pain. If you are with your lover it can signify a situation caused by jealousy.

A market in your dream is a sign that you will not want for anything.

A field or meadow – if you dream of being in a field then it can mean business problems. Walking through a field in your dream is a good omen particularly for job interviews.

A road that is broad and even means good luck. A twisty, narrow lane is a bad omen. Several roads meeting means that change will come into your life, particularly related to where you live.

A farm – working on a farm is a sign of steady improvement in a situation. Staying on a farm could be a sign of fighting within your close family.

A jungle signifies that you must be careful who you speak to. Someone may be trying to lead you astray! If you meet a wild animal, that person will pester you.

Do We All Dream?

Scientific studies have shown that we have at least three dreams a night and possibly as many as nine. Some people remember all their dreams, some small snatches and others nothing at all. Dreaming is a natural process like breathing that cannot be stopped, and we all do it.

In fact, it has been shown that it could be bad for us not to dream. In our dreams we can act out fantasies, behave badly and madly and generally run riot in safety. Some researchers who have worked on trying to prevent people from dreaming, believe that if we didn’t dream at night we would have to act out our ‘dreams’ during the day. Can you imagine the mayhem that would cause!


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