“Flying in the sky” and “My teeth falling out”: the psychological hidden meanings of 5 dreams

“Dreams” are a part of our consciousness that tell mysterious stories or represent some kind of symbol. Across cultures and eras, dreaming have been the subject of constant interest and interpretation. Through psychological research, both academics and the general public hope to elucidate the meaning of dreaming.

Psychological perspective on dreams

``Flying in the sky'' and ``My teeth falling out'': the psychological hidden meanings of 5 dreams

Dreams are perhaps one of the most elusive fragments of our unconscious. It is known that we dream during the stage of sleep when rapid eye movement (REM) occurs. Although their exact purpose and meaning has been debated for years, researchers estimate that the average person experiences four to six dreams per night.

During this nocturnal adventure, our minds go on a thought-provoking journey. However, as well as the purpose of dreaming, their meaning and origins remain controversial.

・Freud’s perspective

``Flying in the sky'' and ``My teeth falling out'': the psychological hidden meanings of 5 dreams

Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, believed that dreaming were ” the royal road to understanding the unconscious .” According to Freud, dreams are a gateway to our deepest desires, fears, and conflicts, which are usually hidden from consciousness.

He proposed the theory of manifest content (the story of a dream) and latent content (hidden symbolic meaning). Through psychoanalysis, he attempted to decipher these hidden meanings and reveal how unconscious conflicts influence waking life.

・Jung’s perspective

``Flying in the sky'' and ``My teeth falling out'': the psychological hidden meanings of 5 dreams

Carl Jung, another pioneer in psychology, offered a different perspective on dreaming. For him, dreams are not simply random manifestations of the subconscious mind, but rather exploratory activities that accompany our search for spiritual wholeness. Jung advocated the concept of archetypes, universal symbols that pervade human experience, and dreams were the channel through which these archetypes emerged.

Jung believed that confronting one’s dreaming can lead to self-discovery and confront the dark side of one’s personality.

・Modern perspective

``Flying in the sky'' and ``My teeth falling out'': the psychological hidden meanings of 5 dreams

Modern psychology has a variety of theories regarding the nature of dreaming.

Cognitive theory proposes that dreams are a byproduct of the brain’s information processing and serve to consolidate memories and enhance learning. Neurological research focuses on the complex mechanisms underlying dreaming and often emphasizes the role of brain activity during REM sleep.

Although modern psychological perspectives provide valuable insights, they often avoid seeking personal meaning in dreaming.

Various dream shapes and their meanings

``Flying in the sky'' and ``My teeth falling out'': the psychological hidden meanings of 5 dreams

Dreams come in many different forms, each with their own meaning. According to a study published in the journal Motivation and Emotion, our dreams have several common motifs. Interpretations vary, but certain themes recur across cultures and countries.

・Falling dream

Probably one of the most common dream motifs. To dream of falling represents vulnerability and loss of control. Psychologically, these dreaming may symbolize fear of failure or falling into chaos. On the other hand, falling can also indicate the need to let go of inhibitions and embrace change. Freud interpreted falling as an expression of sexual desire or anxiety, reflecting the temptation to release or surrender.

・Dream of flying in the sky

In contrast to falling, dreams of flying represent the exhilaration of being freed from the bonds of earth. Psychologically, dreams of flying symbolize freedom, strength, and transcendence.

Jung saw flight as a metaphor for spiritual ascent, and thought it signified a journey toward enlightenment. These dreams are often accompanied by feelings of elation and euphoria, and offer a glimpse into the potential of the mind.

・Dream of being chased/attacked

The feeling of being chased in a dream evokes primitive instincts of fear and avoidance. Psychologically, these dreams represent an attempt to avoid facing unresolved conflicts or emotions. It may also reflect feeling overwhelmed by external pressures or internal turmoil.

Jung interpreted these dreams as a confrontation with the shadow self, the dark side of one’s repressed personality.

・Dream of teeth falling out

Although strange, dreams of teeth falling out are surprisingly common and often evoke feelings of anxiety and vulnerability. Psychologically, these dreams symbolize fears of aging, loss of vitality, and concerns about self-image. Or it may indicate a need for renewal and rebirth, to let go of old habits and beliefs and pave the way for growth.

However, Freud interpreted it as a reflection of sexual anxiety and fear of castration, and associated it with feelings of helplessness and loss of masculinity.

・Dream of being naked in a public place

To dream of being naked in public can convey a deep sense of vulnerability and exposure. Psychologically, these dreams symbolize fear of judgment, rejection, and social scrutiny. It may reflect insecurity about one’s self-image or a desire to hide perceived flaws or weaknesses.

Jung interpreted nudity as a metaphor for removing social masks and deceptions and revealing one’s true self.

From classical psychology to modern psychology, the study of dreams opens a window into our unconscious. In the dream world, the unconscious speaks to us. By listening to it, we may be able to learn about the true feelings hidden beneath our conscious awareness while we are awake.


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