Losing a loved one is an experience that everyone goes through at some point in their lives. However, the loss of a particular loved one can have a greater impact on us than we anticipate. For instance, have you ever dreamt about someone who has passed away? You may not have thought much about the significance of their appearance in your dreams.
People grieve differently after losing a loved one; some cry their hearts out, while others withdraw inwardly. Some people try to avoid thinking about it or act as if nothing has happened. However, many people remember their departed loved ones through their dreams.
Our subconscious decides what we dream about at night, and if you have ever dreamt about a dead person, it could imply something. According to Patrick McNamara, an associate professor of neurology and psychiatry at Boston University School, dreams of the deceased are called visitation dreams. These dreams aid in the process of healing from emotional trauma.
A study published in the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Care in 2014 analyzed the effects of mourning dreams. The study concluded that dreams of the deceased are frequent and can be highly meaningful, leading to further healing from the loss. The themes in the dreams included past memories or experiences, the deceased being free of illness, the deceased in the afterlife appearing healthy, comfortable, and at peace, as well as the deceased communicating a message.
Canadian researchers examined the dreams of 76 middle-aged people who had recently experienced significant loss in 2016. Of those who had lost a loved one, 67.1% said that dreaming about the deceased strengthened their faith in an afterlife. Moreover, 70% felt like they were having visits from the dead in their dreams, and 71% said that dreaming about the dead strengthened their sense of connection to the departed.
Jennifer E. Shorter, a psychologist at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in Palo Alto, California, has studied the links between our waking lives and our dreams. Her findings suggest that visitation dreams occur either shortly after death or years later, and they have four distinguishing features: the deceased appears as they did in real life but healthier or younger, they often say something about how they are doing now, the dream’s meaning is felt less as a tangible presence and more as a telepathic one, and the dream state is usually peaceful and well-structured.
Have you ever dreamed about a loved one who has passed away? Can you explain the significance?
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