Dream of killing: What meanings?

Dream of killing: What meanings?

What does it mean to dream of killing? Is this an indication of a bad attitude that is taking place? Or is this dream fulfilling the need to end something that is oppressing the dreamer? This article considers the dream levels related to objective and subjective reality and the most common dream images in which murder appears.

Dreaming of killing does not reflect a real wish to kill the person who appears in the dream, but responds to inhibited impulses and desires which find an outlet in dreams: feelings of aggression, anger, fear and disgust which, repressed by consciousness in the real world, are concentrated in a dreamlike act of pure violence.

For this reason, dreaming of killing and becoming a killer in the dream world reveals the taboos and moral rules that strike the dreamer with a very strong impact: the emotions that precede the act: anger, hatred, exaltation are transformed upon waking into worry, anxiety and feelings of guilt.

Many wonder how it is possible to perform such heinous acts in dreams when in reality one is tolerant and peaceful, willing to forgive and spiritually “evolved”.

The answer comes once again from the principle of compensation which balances a situation of internal tension which generates situations opposite, in terms of characteristics and energy, to those experienced in reality.

The more anger and aggression are suppressed and controlled during the day, the more dreams become brutal scenes filled with violence and blood. 


Dreaming of killing: The meaning of the gesture

Dreaming of killing is a symbolic gesture related to the reptilian brain, the archaic nature of the human being and the primary aspects of the personality; think of how a primate thinks and how it acts in the face of what bothers and embarrasses it.

To dream of killing is equivalent to suppressing, eliminating. It represents the "end" of something: a feeling, an idea, a habit, it is an extreme and imperative response to a situation of conscious or unconscious internal struggle.

Dreaming of killing is related to the denial of instinct and the domination of parts of oneself that control social image. It can also represent the transformation of feelings of anger or becoming a way to confront one's inner demons or to analyze and rework what is disturbing and frightening in reality. Dreaming of killing aims to eliminate:


Situations, problems and people who are a burden

To dream of killing is equivalent to erase everything that has become unbearable and that we may have to face. From this point of view, killing in a dream becomes a kind of symbolic victory and self-affirmation that recalls archetypal energies: the dreamer is the hero who must face the enemy and fight against the "dragon" of fear and evil. unconscious darkness.


feelings of guilt

Dreaming of killing has the function of eliminating feelings of guilt that emerge with respect to the dreamer's behaviors that are condemned by his primary self-system. It may represent the need to go beyond (or kill) the rules to grow and mature without being conditioned by the past. But it can also be related to the attempt to eliminate remorse related to an event that torments the dreamer.


Aspects of self that are scary

Dreaming of killing responds to the need to deny or eliminate a part of one's personality that is perceived as unacceptable and shameful, or obsolete, useless and in need of transformation.

Conflict and struggle then takes place between two aspects of the self (usually an accepted and social part of the self and a denied and hidden part that is part of the Jungian Shadow), or between two known and accepted Selves that have equal power in the dynamics. psyche of the dreamer.


Physical and emotional tensions

Killing in dreams may represent the release of physical or emotional tension. This reflects the need to eliminate instinctive urges that frighten or cause negative feeling.

The dreamer is unaware of the strength that the repressed instinctual energies have within him and how they can bring him discomfort and anxiety. 



Dreaming of killing: Most frequent dreams


1. Dreaming of killing a famous person

The dreamer should think about the characteristics of this person (in reality and in the dream) and the influence it has on him. Maybe he feels crushed and oppressed by an authoritarian or stronger personality, maybe feelings or responsibilities prevent him from making a decision, thinking about a separation and the dream represents a symbolic attempt at detachment.


2. Dreaming of killing an unknown person

The dreamer must ask himself: who does he remind me of? Who does this look like? Who acts the same way or has similar physical characteristics? The stranger in a dream can also represent a part of oneself, a characteristic of one's personality with which one has created a conflict or which has become useless and heavy like a ballast to drag. Killing it is equivalent to removing it from your life.


3. Dreaming of killing an animal

It can indicate the domination of rationality over instinct or, on the contrary, the need to know and control the instinctive drives that emerge from the unconscious and which frighten the most conformist and civilized aspects of the dreamer.

These are the oldest instincts related to anger, hatred, sexuality, aggression, but each animal killed in a dream will have its own particular quality, symbolizing what the dreamer has to counter, balance or what is repressed by his psychic system.

The following list shows, in summary, the meanings linked to the killing of some of the most present animals in the collective imagination:

To dream of killing a dog - repression of anger, aggression, sexuality. Feeling of oppression which can come from the partner.

Dreaming of killing a cat: repression of independence, sexuality, freedom, oppression that comes from a female figure.

To dream of killing a snake - repression of libido, fear of sexual intercourse, distrust of a person, fear of change.

To dream of killing a lion - repression of natural authority, the need to eliminate aspects of strength, dictatorial, oppressive, pride.

To dream of killing a bird - repression of ideas, dreams, ideals.

To dream of killing a spider - awareness of a threat or problem, fear of a consuming and oppressive person.

Dreaming about killing cockroaches by getting rid of what is considered dirty, ugly and invasive. Reaction to the harshest reality.

Dreaming of killing a dolphin suppresses joyful and free aspects, the need to deal with more materialistic and responsible parties, the need to keep your feet on the ground.

To dream of killing a crow - to get rid of fatal thoughts, fears of pessimism.

Dreaming of killing a mouse, controlling mental work, getting rid of heavy, invasive and "dirty" thoughts, controlling the surrounding environment. reports. stealthy people.

To dream of killing a scorpion repression of aggression and wickedness, to defend against danger and a dangerous person.

Dreaming of killing a puppy represses vulnerability, the most tender and defenseless parts that are at the mercy of reality.


4. Dreaming of witnessing a murder

This dream of murder indicates a conflict between two aspects of oneself, the tension between two equally active energies that can manifest in the dreamer's reality as indecision, hesitation, inability to make difficult and urgent choices.


5. Dreaming of killing children

It is a dream linked to renunciation. The dreamer sets aside and abandons his ideals, dreams and projects due to a lack of self-confidence or to devote oneself to something else (or to others). It is a typical dream of women who have put aside their desires to devote themselves to family and childcare.

The dreamer's inner child is crushed by his adult characteristics.


6. Dreaming of killing a newborn

This dream form is related to repression of any novelty and new idea, to the fear of a change that could radically change his habits. As above, it relates to the countless dream abuses perpetrated on the inner child.

This dream image in particular causes great panic and anguish in the dreamer who can, on reflection, become aware of all that he neglects about himself. The dream can become the beginning of a change.

The meaning of dreaming about a baby can give you additional clues about this dream.


7. Dreaming of killing boys

This may indicate the need to overcome infantile and immature ways that influence the dreamer and which must be overcome to access a new phase of life, to grow.



8. Dreaming of killing your own child

This causes great anguish and may be related the renunciation of a symbolic child (a project, a creation), to the fear of the most agitated and irrational impulses in oneself, but also to the fear of being underestimated, put aside, fear of aging, and of dying but above all, indicates the need to devote oneself to oneself and live in adult relationships.

The dream can highlight the need to renew the couple relationship through this symbolic murder of the child. Often, children monopolize parental attention and love and undermine understanding within the couple.

Maybe the dreamer feels the need to get closer to his wife by finding a partner and not a "mother", maybe he feels the desire for greater intimacy and passion and is unable to communicate his feelings .


9. Dreaming of being killed

This indicates the inability to defend oneself against an oppressive and violent outside influence. The inability to react and emerge in the midst of others, feeling overwhelmed by others or overwhelmed by a problem.

The dreamer may wonder WHO is killing me? Is he a known or unknown person? What characteristics does it have? Answering these questions will help him to draw the best interpretation.


10. Dreaming of committing suicide

This form of dreaming is almost always negative as it relates to the inability to cope with the situation and a lack of confidence and hope. It is the symbol of a violent and painful change not supported by the force necessary to react and renew itself. It is a symbolic retreat and a look back from life's opportunities and challenges. Sometimes it can indicate the need for change.


11. Dreaming of killing your parents

It is a liberating gesture of independence and growth, it shows the need to free oneself from family ties to go out into the world and walk in one's own footsteps.  This is a dream that may reflect oppressive parental bonds or overly cautious personality aspects that, like overly worried parents, limit any new experiences.


12. Dreaming of killing your father

It is a symbolic image linked to the need to go beyond the rules and values ​​introjected into the family, the need to free oneself from the authority and influence of the family and the need to bring out the "inner father", the authoritarian and responsible part of oneself that knows how to protect, nurture, support the family and the children.

It is possible that this self hinders the desire for adventure or independence, that there is a permanent conflict between responsibility-duty and desire-pleasure.


13. Dreaming of killing your mother

This indicates the need to eliminate or set aside the "maternal" part whose aspects of generosity, sense of sacrifice and unconditional love make the dreamer an easy prey to the demands of others. This may highlight the need for break free from maternal hegemony and, more rarely, a real conflict with it.


14. Dreaming of killing an uncle, aunt or other family members

It can indicate a real power dynamic with these family members., a feeling of being oppressed, but it is common for these characters to symbolize someone else.

An uncle, for example, could represent the father with whom there are tensions and conflicts, an aunt a loved or hated mother. The idea and action of killing one of his parents is unacceptable, therefore the gesture and the relative violence are transferred to another nearby figure.


15. Dreaming of killing your brother or sister

As above, remembering that the brother or sister is often the symbol of their partner. It may be easier to kill your brother or sister in a dream than the person you are in love with, attached to, addicted to and who maybe oppressing a part of you.


16. Dream about killing a religious person

It highlights the need to overcome family hegemony or religious beliefs to become intellectually and spiritually independent.

The pope in a dream represents an authority and power that may also belong to the dreamer and, perhaps, manifest itself in an oppressive way both towards others and towards the parts of oneself that desire larger and freer experiences.

Dreaming of killing a priest is also linked to the need to go beyond one's own values ​​which may have become inviolable rules, even dogmas.


17. Dreaming of killing a monster

It is an image that has an archetypal value, it shows the dreamer struggling with his fears of all that is unknown, different, apparently hostile. The monsters of the unconscious are the representation of the denied self that emerge in dreams and nightmares to remind the dreamer of how important contact with the Shadow is and how much creative and vital energies they can bring into their life.

Killing the monster in dreams is a victory of the adult and civilized ego over the most chaotic and irrational parts buried in the unconscious. It can also be connected to the warrior energy that awakens in the dreamer bringing courage and the ability to confront even the most distant and buried aspects of the psyche. All of the creepy and hostile characters fall into these meanings, but each will give a different imprint. 


18. Dreaming of killing a vampire

This dream might indicate the need to limit the invasive influence of a close person, its demands, its time and its "sucking" energy.


19. Dreaming of killing a zombie

This zombie dream draws attention to aspects of oneself that are exhausted, lacking in strength and vitality, or aspects of one's past that "come back" and with which one does not want to compare the present. Killing them comes down to them. drive back into the depths, to suppress and limit their influence.


20. Dreaming of killing during war

This dream of war is linked to the feeling of living in the midst of difficulties and pitfalls, it is linked to a pessimistic view of one's own reality and protective part of oneself, related to self-defense, namely to defend one's idea even in a hostile or unfavorable environment, to an internal conflict in which unknown and frightening unconscious contents are suppressed.


21. Dreaming of killing with a weapon

The type of weapon used to kill in dreams can also affect the meaning. In general, the more primitive the weapon, the stronger the unconscious impulses to action and murder in dreams.. The expression of the most archaic and instinctive feelings seems to require tools that are as rudimentary as they are primitive.


22. Dreaming of killing with a stick or a stone

It is the expression of a great anger not exteriorized by reason and education. It is the archetype of Cain, the murderer buried inside every human being who takes over when the inhibiting brakes of consciousness are released.


23. Dreaming of killing with bare hands

It shows just as much anger and above all highlights a pent up physical and sexual energy which discharges on direct contact with the person killed.


24. Dreaming of killing with a knife

It indicates anger, aggression, the desire for oppression (including sexual). It can emerge as a desire for revenge and as a reaction to a humiliation suffered (see the article dreaming of a knife).


25. Dreaming of killing with a gun

These are all weapons that are classified as phallic symbols and that, putting space between oneself and the attacked; avoiding direct contact and delegating the task of killing to bullets, these dreams correspond to a more mental, reasoned and civilized action.


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