Have you ever dreamt about a loved one who passed away, and now you’re unsure how to process it?
I understand. I had a lot of those dreams. Some of them had even sent me into an existential spiral.
And while it can trigger mixed emotions, please know this experience is more common than you think!
Are you ready to glimpse into the Great Beyond?
Here are 5 spiritual meanings of dreaming about dead relatives.
What does it all mean?
The experience can be confusing, comforting, and even a bit unsettling. I remember my first time. I cried when I woke up and was a bit shaken throughout the day.
When you lose someone, it’s hard to let go. Even when you have come to accept the fact that it was time and that there’s nothing you could’ve done to change that, letting go and moving forward is probably one of the most difficult things to do.
So, seeing loved ones again wasn’t easy in the beginning, but as the dreams got more frequent, somehow, they gave some relief.
And everybody who has ever experienced it has stopped and wondered:
Why is this happening? What does it all mean?
One of the most popular theories is that dreaming about them is a way to deal with the fact that they’re no longer here.
Our dreams can serve as a way to keep them close and keep our memories of them alive.
Another theory is that seeing them could be a sign from the universe!
5 spiritual meanings
1) They are trying to send you a message
Dreams are a way for our subconscious mind to communicate with us. When our loved ones who passed appear in them, they may be trying to reach out to us and remind us of their love and support.
Some even believe that the subconscious mind is connected to the spiritual realm, so these dreams are also taken as signs that they are trying to deliver us a message of comfort, guidance, advice, or a warning.
Once, I dreamt about my grandparents in a field of white butterflies.
It was vivid and bittersweet. They just stood there, basking under a bright sun, without speaking.
When I woke up, I felt a sense of calm because the night before that dream, I had been thinking about changing courses at the university.
Growing up, I had a very close relationship with them, and they always advised me on school decisions. I lost them both when I was in high school.
So I took the butterfly dream as a sign that I should embrace growth and adventure. Maybe they were there to remind me that I’m bound to have a “metamorphosis.”
It’s important to pay attention to the details of your dream, as the message could be hidden in symbolism.
2) They want you to take a hard look at your life
Apart from wanting to get through to you to send a message, your loved ones might be reaching out to you to give insight into a current situation or tell you something about to come.
I know someone whose mother passed away at a very young age. She had no recollection of her mother and the things she liked when she was alive, but she said she remembered feeling safe in her presence.
This person struggled with depression and alcoholism from her late teens until her early 20s. And during those years, her mom consistently appeared in her dreams.
She said her mom would usually sit with her in silence on a bench under a large cherry blossom tree.
But one drunken night, she said her mom appeared under the same tree in her dream, but this time it was wilting. Her mom suddenly grabbed her hand and started crying.
She was overcome by so much emotion when she woke up and sobbed too.
Without hesitation, she quickly made an appointment with the doctor for a general check-up. And after a series of tests, she found out she had liver issues, but fortunately, they caught it early.
Since then, she decided to live the way she believed her mother would have wanted.
She has been sober for five years now, doing yoga, eating properly and living her best life!
Sometimes, these dreams remind us that our loved ones still look out for us even though they’re already gone from this earthly plane.
3) They are helping us heal from our grief
And if they’re not trying to help us figure out life, hopefully, you can find comfort in knowing that maybe they’re helping us move forward without them.
Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross proposed that there are different stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.
People grieve differently, so some may go through these stages in this exact order, while others may not. How you deal with grief depends on how you cope with the loss, and sometimes, it’s not a linear process.
In most of these stages, you will experience different kinds of emotions, mostly unpleasant ones.
When the loss hits you, it’s normal to refuse to believe what happened and do everything necessary to avoid feeling overwhelming pain and sadness. This is your survival instinct.
But eventually, you will have to face reality, and this is where anger creeps in – a rage that’s unlike anything you’ve ever felt. You would also go through feelings of guilt, hopelessness, and regret.
Losing someone takes a toll on your mental health, so dreams about your loved ones can provide you with moments of comfort.
Perhaps they’re showing themselves in your dreams to help you accept their passing and come to terms with the loss.
Better Sleep said the experience happens more to people with loved ones who passed away unexpectedly.
If they pleasantly visit you in a dream, you can take this as a sign that their soul is at peace. Something that’s incredibly reassuring, especially if you are struggling with grief and loss.
4) They are trying to remind us of our mortality
If you don’t feel like they’ve appeared to comfort you and bring some relief, perhaps their presence can serve as a reminder from the universe of our mortality.
World-renowned psychiatrist Carl Jung said that “the symbol in the dream has more the value of a parable. It does not conceal. It teaches.”
So what do you have to learn here? What do their deaths have to teach you?
Across cultures, different groups believe that souls live on after death, a philosophical concept that has been constantly explored, known as “the fate of the soul.”
The British anthropologist Sir Edward Burnett Tylor once discussed that “the vividness of dreams of dead kin or distant friends were proof of the existence of souls.”
So, if souls exist outside of the physical realm, then the dream world could be their way of connecting with us to remind us of our mortality and that there might be a level of awareness that we all experience after death.
It could be an invitation to reflect on our lives and think about what we want to accomplish before we inevitably pass away.
No one lives forever. Maybe they’re trying to remind us again of this fact of life.
After all, when they died, it was also a painful and stark reminder that people come and go, and we have no control over when it happens and how it happens – ultimately, the spiritual significance is up to the individual to interpret.
Our loved ones may be using our dreams to remind us that life is short and that we should live our own to the fullest and make the most of it.
5) They are trying to tell us something about life after death
If your loved ones are not trying to remind you about your own mortality, then maybe they’re appearing to tell you that death is not the end of life.
As psychologist and dream expert Rubin Naiman, Ph.D. told MindBodyGreen, it’s all about “decoding” the dream.
“It enlightens us and expands our awareness psychologically, [offering an] expansion of consciousness,” Naiman said.
And if our consciousness is expanded, it could help us have a spiritual awakening, and somehow grasp the concept of an afterlife or a world beyond what we could ever imagine.
And if there is a world where our loved ones still exist, can we connect with them?
I really believe that death isn’t our souls’ last destination. Major religions around the world all say that we transition to a higher realm when we die, one that psychic mediums can reach.
For many years, those of us who are still on earth and seeking to contact with loved ones who have passed on to a better place have found comfort and answers from psychic mediums (also known as channelers).
I spoke to a psychic after going through the painful waves of grief and loss.
I expected smoke and mirrors, but what I got were real answers and mind-blowing insights into my situation.
The gifted spiritual medium I spoke to at Psychic Source gave me so much valuable wisdom about my loss which had been keeping me up at night.
Let me level with you:
I’m still skeptical about most psychics, but the ones at Psychic Source are the real deal, and I can personally attest to that based on my own experience.
Don’t know what to ask? Explore some powerful questions to ask a psychic.
What should I do if I receive a spiritual sign from a loved one?
When we dream about family members who passed away, it can trigger a lot of emotions, and it’s normal to dwell and ponder what it could all mean.
After all, when you experience something that shakes your entire existence, searching for answers is actually the most practical thing to do!
So, now you understand that these dreams may be a sign from the universe that something significant is taking place in your life.
It can also signify that your loved ones are with you in spirit and watching out for you.
It could also mean that you need to make a change in your life or that you need to pay attention to specific clues that are being offered to you.
It’s important to take some time to reflect on the dream and make sure that you are listening to your intuition. Trust your instincts and take the time to explore any ideas or feelings that come up.
But as you know, dreams aren’t exactly the same as meeting them in the physical realm – most of the time, when visitation dreams happen, our loved ones barely talk and only leave us with a feeling or an emotion that would stay with us until we wake up.
Think and consider that maybe they’re visiting you so you can keep remembering them.
So what can we do then?
Do something to honor your loved one and ensure their memory lives on.
Whether that is visiting their gravesite, meditating, making a donation in their name, or simply taking some time to reminisce on your memories together.
I like lighting candles at the makeshift altar with their pictures and praying silently for their peace. I also have a journal where I write about our fondest memories or about the dreams I have about them.
By honoring our deceased loved ones and listening to the signs they are sending us, we can ensure that we can maintain the connection even after they’ve long gone.
Can a gifted advisor help you too?
If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to someone with special intuition.
I know this from personal experience…
A few months ago, I reached out to Psychic Source when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into what my future holds, and the confidence to make the right decisions when it comes to love.
If you haven’t heard of Psychic Source before, it’s a site where gifted advisors help people through complicated and difficult life situations.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a highly intuitive psychic and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my psychic was.