Death is something we all know about and yet, none of us fully understands it.
Throughout ages, religions and traditions of the world, people have been trying to unravel this everlasting mystery about death and about what comes after it. From the most fantastical explanations to scientific approaches, no one can tell for certain.
We know that physical body decays, but what happens with the soul, if there was such a thing separable from the body?
This mystery is perhaps the greatest reason why people are afraid of dying and why everything related to it awakens somewhat unpleasant feeling, at least, if not terrifying.
There is also the emptiness that stays behind the deceased; while we have no actual idea of what happens with the soul of the deceased one, the loss, grief and sorrow of those left behind is undeniable.
On a more positive side, death is just an inevitable part of the cycle of life. Many philosophies, religions, spiritual systems and scientific disciplines have been trying to answer whether it is in fact an ending or not.
Well, in any case, it is an ending to something; physical existence, at least. Symbolically, death is a metaphor for any other kind of ending.
In poetry, literature and art, death is a common allegorical motif. It represents a breakup, an end, something that is gone for good and not to be retrieved. Death, as a motif, represents and illustrates the imminent ending of things, but as a part of ongoing process of life and creation.
We say things such as ‘the death of an era’ or the death of this or that value, when we want to express the graveness of an ending.
Death represents the point of no return, to some point. Speaking of dead people, the deceased, it always gives us chills. Even if you have fond memories of someone, the very fact that the person was gone awakens this strange, somewhat unpleasant cognition of loss.
Cults of ancestors are amongst the oldest ones in the world; people try to reconnect whit the deceased, for numerous reasons.
Dreams about the dead
In all cultures around the world there are rituals and customs and beliefs related to dead and the deceased. They are very different across the globe, but all come up with the same essential purpose.
All of them are meant to ease our anxiety related to the very idea of death, the breakup with the earthly life. The very belief in life after death, the life of the human soul eases this final division from the worldly realm and makes it less final.
Dreams about dead people share the same purpose, for a great part. These dreams often serve as a channel for too strong emotions related to one’s loss. This applies if you dream about a deceased familiar or much loved person.
Sometimes, grieving in waking life is simply not enough; emotions of sadness related to someone’s passing could be overwhelming.
Dreams helps you channel these emotions, process them and make peace with the fact that someone is gone. This is the most common cause of dreams about dead people.
However, maybe nothing happened and all are alive and well, but you dream about someone being dead. This type of dreams is especially disturbing, but usually not for a big concern.
Dreams in which someone you know or care for very much was dead suggest you are worried about that person’s well-being. Maybe you are overprotective of them or maybe you feel dependant on the connection you have with them.
You feel as if your world would fall apart without them and those fears reflect in your dreams in the most dreadful scenario.
In different cultures, people believe dreaming about someone who is well and alive being dead means you have actually, in some magical way, prolonged their life. Dreams about unknown people being dead could mean various things.
It could mean you are losing support in your social circles. It could mean you are lost connections and communication with the people from your surroundings.
If you dream about talking with a dead person whom you knew in your waking life, especially if it was someone dear to you, means this person protects you from the afterlife. His or her spirit is a guiding, protective spirit, like a guardian angel.
If it was someone you were not in a good relation with, the dream is a way to exercise this unsettled argument and make peace with the spirit of the person.
Now, the meaning of the dream about a deceased person depends on how this dead person looks like and what is happening in the dream. We will focus on the phenomenon of dreaming about a dead person smiling.
There are two variations of the category. It could be a dream about a dead body smiling or a dream about someone deceased in reality, but alive and smiling in your dream.
Dreams about a dead person smiling
The first one is a grim category and it could really appear like a horror movie scenario. This is not a very common dream and it is surely a disturbing one. In this dream, a dreamer sees a dead person, an actual dead body with a smile on its face.
The meaning behind this disturbing scenario depends on who the person was and what the smile was like.
If you dream about a person you knew, a deceased one, was smiling, it all depends on the smile. If his or her expression was calm, a smile subtle and kind, it is a dream that only reflects your own feelings about that person and all the good times you had with them.
It could also be one of those protective spirit dreams.
The lost loved one still cares about you and wishes you all the best. He or she also suggests you should not worry about them, although they understand your grief. They want you to be happy and to continue with your life.
This is a dream of acceptance; it should help you deal with sad feelings related to loss in an easier way. If you dream about a dead person smiling in a wicked way, the dream has entirely different meaning.
This dream greatly depends on actual experience with the person while he or she was alive.
Well, if it was someone who always annoyed you, this dream might be the channel to process your mixed feelings about their passing.
Maybe you feel guilty because you feel as if it is wrong not to be much disturbed by the situation. Relax, it is a normal thing and it does not mean you are a bad person.
If you dream about a complete dead stranger smiling, it is a more metaphorical dream. The dead person smiling calmly represents the acceptance as well, but the acceptance of certain ways things went or being in peace with choices made.
Something is gone and even if it was good, time is to move forward. This smiling dead person kind of ‘allows’ you to be at peace with an ending and pursue new horizons.
Now, if you dream about a dead person smiling in any kind of ‘wrong’ way, which is definitely a disturbing scenario, think about choices you made in your life and about things that trouble you in your current state.
It is as if something has more power over you than it should have. The person is dead, so it could be a metaphor for something from the past that still troubles you.
It is as if you are burdened with someone’s mocking that has already taken place or it continues to happen, but you are doing nothing about it. It could be something long forgotten by everyone else, except for you; in this case, the dream suggest you are poisoning your own soul with it and you should let it go.
If something corrupt, rotten and bad is present in your life, you should face it and end it for good.
Dreams about a deceased person smiling
An entirely different category, but still related to the phenomenon of dreaming about dead people smiling is that of dreams about a deceased person smiling. It means the person who is dead and gone in reality is alive in your dream and he or she smiles.
If the person was familiar and loved one, the dream revives your good feelings towards the persona and the relationship you had.
It is a good dream; it is a stronger one in a protective sense. It represents the guidance from the other side. The person is smiling onto you because they wish you all well and they still care for you.
In your memories and your dreams, they are strongly present and they want you to move on with your life. This dream is also the one about letting go.
Sometimes, even for years and years, people think that they have let go of the past, but they remain stuck in it. The good, smiling person in your dream, one that you know and care for, tells you that all is well and that you should let it go.
If someone whom you did not like in reality is smiling in your dream and he or she is dead in real life, it means the bad relationship you had still haunts you.
This is most likely not a reflection of feeling wrong about not being particularly sad, but about this person having power over you, even now when they were gone.
You should let go of the burden of the past.
Possibly, deeds and words of that person have affected your life to a great extent and not in a good way. However, now the time is to turn it the other way.