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The Meaning of Dreams About Cannibalism header image

Did You Dream About Cannibalism? Here's What It Means

When a colorful dream-concept like cannibalism makes an appearance in dreams, it can have several potential interpretations.

Here are three interesting explanations of dreams about cannibalism from our dream analysis experts.

Which explanation best explains your dream?

What does cannibalism mean in dreams?

1. The traditional interpretation

Mary headshot
Mary Leyen
Dream Expert,
Contributor: "3 of Dreams Book of Dreams"

A dream about participating in cannibalism can symbolize a desire to gain the skills, knowledge, or abilities of others. But the interpretation can be more multifaceted than that.

It's not about literal consumption, but metaphorical absorption of qualities you admire. Witnessing cannibalism, on the other hand, can reflect feelings of horror or disgust at the violation of societal norms. It may indicate witnessing behavior that is morally repugnant to you, or feeling forced to partake in activities against your principles. Both dreams can be intense and disturbing, but they often reflect internal struggles rather than literal events.

Cannibalism is a very complex and fascinating dream symbol to to give you a single meaning for. To know without any doubts, I would have to get more information about the dreamer's life and current circumstances.

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2. The psychoanalyst's interpretation

Ernesto headshot
Ernesto Andrahi
Contributor: "3 of Dreams Book of Dreams"

Dreaming of participating in cannibalism, in Freudian terms, may represent an unconscious yearning to internalize the attributes of another, a form of identification.

Some additional thoughts on this: It's not about physical ingestion, but a symbolic assimilation of admired traits. Witnessing cannibalism, contrarily, could signify a confrontation with the id's primal urges, which are often at odds with societal norms. This could be a manifestation of witnessing or being coerced into actions that conflict with your superego, the moral compass. These dreams, while unsettling, are typically a reflection of internal conflicts and the struggle between the id, ego, and superego, rather than literal desires or experiences.

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3. The spiritualist's interpretation

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Liz Morrison
Shaman and Spirit Guide,
Contributor: "3 of Dreams Book of Dreams"

Dreaming of participating in cannibalism may symbolize a spiritual hunger, a yearning to absorb the essence or power of another. This is not a physical act, but a metaphysical one, reflecting a desire for growth or transformation. Witnessing cannibalism, however, could symbolize a spiritual crisis, a witnessing of actions that violate your inner moral or spiritual code. This could indicate a struggle between your higher self and lower instincts, or a sense of powerlessness in the face of societal or personal transgressions. These dreams, while disturbing, are often a call to introspection and spiritual growth, urging you to reconcile your actions with your beliefs.

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Whose dream explanation works the best for you?

Which of the above interpretations for cannibalism best matches your unique situation?

Only you can say for sure. Keep in mind that our subconscious mind can be a complex landscape. Just about any dream concept can represent a long list of things — or symbolize multiple themes from our conscious lives.

Have a better analysis on a dream about cannibalism you can add? Please consider adding your own analysis in the comments at the bottom of this page.

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