A dream about having a baby can have many different meanings. Babies appear in the dreams of women of all ages, even those well beyond child-bearing age. They can also appear in men’s dreams. These last two points in particular tell us that dreams of babies are not simply images of the desire to bear children. They are far more than that.
In every adult there lurks a child— an eternal child, something that is always becoming, is never completed, and calls for unceasing care, attention, and education. That is the part of the personality which wants to develop and become whole.Carl JungBabies in dreams can be an image of vital qualities forgotten or left behind in our childhood. In times of deep crisis or suffering, baby dreams suggest the possibility of new life ahead of us. A baby can also be an image for a person’s soul, especially those who have suffered trauma or abuse. And as an archetypal symbol, babies are divine images of spiritual rebirth and hope for humanity.
What's your current mindstate?
As with any dream, the first step to interpreting dreams about babies is to really examine your present life situation, and more importantly, your current state of mind. A baby in a dream is a reaction from the unconscious to something that is happening in your life right now. Many times it is in response to a chaotic situation or a lack of equilibrium in your attitude or direction in life. The dream is an attempt at restoring psychic balance.
This article was supposed to be one article about many different baby dream meanings. In order to give dreams about babies their due justice, I will have to write an article for each one. Dream babies have a lot to say to us.
Baby Dream Meanings
A resolution to a painful inner conflict
C.G. Jung analyzed over 100,000 dreams in his lifetime. What he noticed about the image of the baby in dreams was that it appeared when people were in the throes of a seemingly irresolvable conflict. The baby dream in this case is the possibility of resolution.
Jung called the image of the child “a uniting symbol with redemptive significance.” First, we are going to look at redemption in psychological terms. By psychological redemption, I mean the possibility of release from an intense personal struggle.
Sometimes we find ourselves in almost unbearable situations where we feel like there is no way out. It could be a job, a place, a state of mind, or a relationship. Whatever the circumstances of the situation are, you have the feeling of being absolutely trapped. You cannot move forward, but yet you know that you cannot stay in the current situation. You alone are powerless to change it. This situation feels utterly desperate and it can cause us extreme anxiety and depression.
Dream babies: bringers of light
A conflict-situation that offers no way out, the sort of situation that produces the child. They are “bringers of light” and “enlargers of consciousness.Carl Jung If you have had this dream during this kind of intense conflict in your life, this is your sign of healing and hope for the future. Often in this kind of dream, the baby will captivate your attention. You want to care for it and you know that you have to. You may even wake up with a strange sense of relief.
Again, in this case the child would represent the possibility of a solution. And whatever the solution, it will be one that your conscious mind could never imagine. My first advice is to trust the feeling that you had in the dream. Believe me, I know that when you are in a state of sheer hopelessness or life-consuming fear, the hardest thing to access in yourself is a sense of trust that you can get out of it. But you can trust the image of that baby.
Your challenge here is to start shifting your attitude and trust the feeling of the dream. It isn’t easy. This is why we often see the child of mythology born in unusual or dangerous conditions. He or she is often abandoned, left alone to its seemingly imminent doom.
In the myths, someone usually rescues the child. That rescue is now up to you. Only, you are saving yourself.
fear, hopelessness & healing
In every adult there lurks a child–an eternal child, something that is always becoming, is never completed, and calls for unceasing care, attention, and education. That is the part of the personality which wants to develop and become whole. Carl Jung
About 10 years ago, I was caught in the mindtrap of fear and hopelessness. Everything around which I had built my self-concept had crumbled. The family-friendly neighborhood I lived in turned into a drug-lord haven. Two close friends betrayed me. The job I loved was gone. And to add to that, my longtime clients faded away for one reason or another. All of the energy which I had once directed to my life and work, turned inward. I was under attack by inner forces of darkness and despair.
My life felt like a complete mess. We were trapped in an upside down mortgage, living in a deteriorating house and neighborhood, and our finances were in shambles. In my mind, there was no way out of that situation. It was hell. After 8 months of darkness, I had a dream:
The dockside village
I am living by the water in a dock-town. The waters around the docks were rising, threatening to spill over in the houses. I was watching the waters rising toward our lanai and then I realized some commotion. There were dolphins and whales swimming up to the center dock, which was situated like a sort of “main street” circle. Some of them were jumping out of the water, others were swimming up to greet onlookers. Then some tension mounted. I noticed a shark’s dorsal fin in the water. The citizens of this water city began to systematically “draw in their forces to action.”
Everyone knew just what to do. At one point, I saw a neighbor - a woman with snorkeling gear - swim by. She was headed to a near-by community to get more help. She came back with a bunch of people. I had some fear that the shark was going to injure one of the other water animals. People were jumping in and diving down into the water. They had a plan that seemed fail proof. I watched with amazement.
There was little girl, about 2, who rose out of the water. She had blonde hair. It was in little, bound braids with beads. She looked like an “island child.” My first feeling was worry that she was going to be hurt. I soon realized that she was fine on her own. This baby knew exactly where she was and who she was. She had a big, round belly and looked pregnant. I said to her, “Are you going to have a baby?” She said, “yes,” in a tiny voice.
Dreams about babies: interpretation and healing
You can see in the dream imagery the state of my psyche. The water was rising and getting very close to my home. Water, especially ocean water, is a symbol for the unconscious. The rising water is symbolic of the possibility of me drowning in the state I was in. A shark fin pops up, again symbolizing danger of being torn apart by forces much stronger than my ego. If we translate this imagery into psychological language it says: you are in danger being pulled under the water and torn apart by your state of mind.
Now, we look at everything else that is happening around this imagery. My dream ego feels like the waters are receding. Already this is a sign for me to release the pressure on myself. Everyone in the dream knows what to do and I watch in amazement, as the citizens of this water city began to systematically “draw in their forces to action.”
If we translate this into psychological language it tells me that the forces in my unconscious are taking matters into their hands. Fear not. This is the mobilization of inner forces.
We like to believe that the only way to solve our biggest problems is to take immediate action, but this is just not the truth. Sometimes we have to wait it out. We must bear the seemingly unbearable tension of an uncertain situation.
Interpretation of baby dreams
At the time of this dream, I lived on the Gulf Coast of Florida. I spent a lot of time on the beach. Seeing dolphins in the water always reminded me that being in the right place at the right time requires attention and awareness. It is easy to spot a dolphin once, when it shoots out of the water. But to see it again and again, “porpoising” along a path, requires relaxing one’s focus, rather than sharpening it. The harder you try to see it, the more likely you are to miss it.
For me, this association was crucial. I knew that I had to relax my worry and fear about needing to know what my next step in life was. I had to trust that everything this massive force of energy depicted in the dream. Whatever it was knew exactly what to do.
Now, we see the shift of my attention and a change of action in the dream. I am no longer focused on the chaos. As I allowed the others in the dream to take care of the situation, the child emerged. As Jung says, a “conflict-situation that offers no way out, [is exactly] the sort of situation that produces the child. They are “bringers of light” and “enlargers of consciousness”.
integrating the message
In the dream, this baby has now captivated my attention. Her divine nature is immediate. She rises up out of the water, like some kind of shining jewel. She is colorful and radiant. Talkative and fine on her own. Even more interesting, she’s pregnant! A new possibility pregnant with more possibility! Yet another sign of her other-worldliness. Now that I knew that someone was taking care of the situation, I could focus my attention on this new potentiality.
This dream moved me deeply. Now, a new challenge faced me. I had to find a way to rise up out of the state of anxiety and hopelessness. I had to integrate this dream information into my daily awareness. This is no simple task. The shark-infested waters can rise up and pull us back in. This is the constant battle of any newly emerging shift in consciousness. It’s also why we see the image of the child in so many dangerous situations throughout myth, fairy tale, and dream imagery.
If you are in this kind of situation and have had a baby dream, now it’s time for you to focus your attention on the child. Remember, this image is an attempt to separate you from the conflict and direct your attention toward the vision of a solution. You can see this so clearly in my dream image.
learning to trust your path
Most of all I want to repeat that it does not matter that we don’t have an actual solution already in mind. If we can trust the image, the solution will show up. I have seen it happen way too many times to count. What we have to do here is hold our attention to the image of the baby. To do this you can draw it, paint it, or print out images and put them on canvas. Make a baby mandala – anything! Do something that keeps this baby image alive in your awareness. If you don’t, the turmoil of your conflict will suck you right back into it. Both you and the child will be delivered to the shark-infested waters.
When I started directing my attention toward the future this child implicated, suddenly I had energy. I could see a new light on the horizon. I had no idea what was in store, but I could feel the shift in my soul. In less than two years, my whole life entirely changed. We escaped that horrendous house in the crack neighborhood completely unscathed financially. We were able to make our way to a beautiful rental home in the mountains to recover from our experience. And now, I am living in Switzerland doing the work I love and sharing it with you on this site.
I’m not just speaking about dream interpretation theory. I am speaking from my experiences. Let your dreams guide you. Trust what they say and your life will change.
Want to learn more about working with dreams or Jungian Psychology?
- Dreams of Father Dying: A Symbolic Rite of Passage - February 15, 2020
- Dreams About Dead Fathers: It’s Time to Re-Think or Update Your Conscious Attitude - February 14, 2020
- Nightmare Meaning and Nightmare Disorder:A Jungian Perspective - January 22, 2020
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