Reflections on Which Dreams May Manifest in Waking Life

Dreams can help keep us healthy.

Hippocrates of Kos taught about dreams indicating illnesses.


If you faithfully keep a dream journal you will notice, over time, many things and events that you dream about come true in waking life. It may be the sequence of events that particularly manifest or it may be that you see a person in dreamtime you never met before–but several months after the dream you meet that person in waking life. Then there are some dreams that don’t appear to have any relationship to current reality or seem so bizarre and surrealistic that it doesn’t seem they could ever be making a true statement about anything.

This raises the question of how do you know if a dream might manifest in waking life? From nearly forty years of dreamwork, I have made these observations about my own dreams. You might see if they apply to your own.

  1. Very realistic dreams tend to manifest in waking life. If I have a dream that is realistic and probable, i.e., I am driving my own car and not some fantasy car, then it probably has something to do with manifesting something in waking life. For example, any physical ailment which I knew about ahead of time in dreamtime presented quite literally and showed up later on a medical test as when years ago I had a dream in which a voice said I had blood in my stool. A medical test actually concurred with that even though a later colonoscopy proved it was nothing to worry about. This rule applies also in cases where the symbolism is present but there is a clear resemblance such as dreaming of having overflowing pipes and end up having diarrhea. This is possible because there is a close proximity to the symbol and waking reality. In fact, Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, said much medical and diagnostic information of this sort could be gained from similar dreams.
  2. Somewhat surrealistic or unrealistic events may be relating events in the far off future. Years ago I had a series of dreams in which I was traveling around Hawaii with my brother. At the time I was living in Massachusetts, and so the possibility of this happening seemed a little far-fetched. The island’s scenery was stylized in my dream, not being typical of a specific place on any of the islands. Yet, as I read my dream journal years later, I found that after I moved to Hawaii, we did travel around the island of Oahu as we did in the dream, and we shared certain concerns that showed up in those early dreams.
  3. Very surrealistic dreams tend to be making a statement about the interior world of the dreamer. Really bizarre, odd or unusual objects in places they don’t usually belong, such as a rare or extinct species of owl in a refrigerator, are most often aspects of the dreamer and need to be looked at as such by asking, “What about me is like this owl?” or “What about me is like the refrigerator?” In this type of dream, I personally have not seen a close or frequent connection to events or objects manifesting in waking life such as opening the refrigerator and finding a rare spotted owl perched next to the orange juice.

When Someone Says, “I Had a Dream about You.”

What does it mean to dream of someone being Superman

Superman by Ross
Fair Use
Scan made by the original uploader User Tgunn2.

Chances are someone told you, “I had a dream about you.” All of us dream during sleep and we often dream about people we know personally. Since many people remember their dreams, they may mention a dream about you, even if it is weird, sexual or frightening. In these cases, the dream conversation can be unsettling to both the dreamer and the one dreamed about. For example, let’s say that Tom is a project manager who supervises a technician named Raymond on a big project.  Tom has the following dream which he relates to Raymond:

Tom sees Raymond wearing Superman’s attire and flying over tall buildings.

Responding to Dream Information

On hearing this dream, Raymond, on one hand, feels happy about the dream because it seems to reflect that his boss holds him in high esteem, feeling he can do anything. On the other hand, it makes Raymond uneasy because they both are about to start a really challenging project, and Raymond wonders if he can live up to his supervisor’s unrealistic imagery of his abilities. If Raymond is interested in pursuing this remark to get better insight into his boss and their relationship, he might say something like, “It sounds like you think I am very capable. Thanks for your confidence in me. While I always try to do my best, remember I’m not Superman. ” That’s probably as far as most people would take the conversation. Added insight can be gained, however, if the person being dreamed about understands:

    • You Can’t Interpret Another Person’s Dream
    • The Dream is About the Dreamer
    • The Dream Has Many Levels of Meaning

Raymond needs to understand that you can’t interpret another person’s dream. The dream is about the dreamer, in this case Tom. The key to understanding the dream is to understand what Raymond means to Tom, and if Tom isn’t willing to share this perception, Raymond really can’t know the real or full meaning.  Raymond may get clarification on the dream by asking, “Do you really have such a high opinion of what I can do?”

While the dream may mean that Tom does have a high opinion of his technician, Raymond, and thinks he can tackle many tasks; however, on a deeper level, it may also mean that Tom has been feeling uncertain about tasks he needs to accomplish and he is using Raymond’s abilities as the standard for excellence. At a still deeper level, and taking the dreamwork method of all things in the dream are part of the dreamer, the dream may also symbolize some issue or new awareness that only belongs to Tom, having little to do with Raymond personally.  Perhaps Tom realizes he is getting better at tackling the technical aspects of his own job.  Tom’s perception of Raymond may have been the catalyst to awaken this new and powerful energy within himself!  By comparing himself to his able employee, Tom realizes he, too, can soar.

So while Raymond may take his supervisor’s dream as a compliment, Raymond should not make too much of his supervisor’s dream in thinking it pertains just to him. More than likely, it also has to do with something new happening within Tom, and if Raymond is sharp he will be on the lookout to see changes in his boss.