I met my family who has already died in my dream. He told me something bad about my partner. Should I believe him?

  • A few years ago, my uncle passed away. On the morning of his death, my mom said he came to her in a dream to say goodbye and she knew before the hospital called that he had died. I wouldn’t know if you should believe your deceased family member in your dream or not but it wouldn’t hurt to look into it.. IMO.
    – NuWin
    Jan 1 '19 at 1:05
  • No, don't believe it without examining your own attitudes. That would be superstitious. It can be that family attitudes influence the way you judge your partner (that would be a symbolic interpretation). Do not tell your partner the dream. That would be to lay an unfair burden on your partner, ascribing the criticism to a "ghost" instead of admitting your own attitude or suspicion. If you have a complaint about your partner, address it directly and honestly, without reference to the dream.
    – KayCee
    Jan 6 '19 at 18:54

According to the Milindapañha there are six causes of dreams:

  1. vātiko supinaṃ passati - one with winds sees a dream
  2. pittiko supinaṃ - one with bile sees a dream
  3. semhiko supinaṃ passati - one with phlegm sees a dream
  4. devatūpasaṃhārato supinaṃ passati - one possessed by a devata sees a dream
  5. samudāciṇṇato supinaṃ passati - I don't know what this one means, maybe something to do with memories?
  6. pubbanimittato supinaṃ passati - one sees a dream as a prophetic vision

tatra, mahārāja, yaṃ pubbanimittato supinaṃ passati, taṃ yeva saccaṃ, avasesaṃ micchā”ti.

Of these six, only the last type is true, the rest are false.

I think it is possible that possession by a devata could lead to dreams containing truth, but it is just as likely to be misleading. How would you know if your were being deceived? Much better to rely on waking experience. Nagasena says mostly dreams occur when one is kapiniddāpareta - afflicted with monkey sleep.

Source: milindapañha, anumānapañho, vessantaravaggo, supinapañho

  • 3
    "samudāciṇṇato supinaṃ passati" --> In Sinhala, this is translated as "පෙර පුරුදු කතාසල්ලාප ක්‍රියාදී විසින් සිහින දක්නේ ය." which means "One may sees a dream due to previous habits, talks, and deeds". And yes, Reverend Yuttadhammo, it's something to do with memories.
    – Damith
    Jan 1 '19 at 5:17

I was really surprised to find something that might help in my search for dreams. From SN25.132:

All is vain for someone who doesn’t guard the sense doors, like the wealth a person finds in a dream.

From the above advice of the Buddha, I'd say that you might be better off seeking a quiet place to reflect mindfully and peacefully on your relationship without grasping, aversion or delusion. The wealth found in dreams doesn't pay the bills. Nor does it offer clear advice.

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