Often people dream of a bear coming to attack them, but because all the images, people, animals, places we see in our dreams, are simply your own feelings, fears, hopes and wonder projected onto the screen of your sleeping mind as images, there us nothing to be afraid of. So, it makes sense to take the image of your dream person, thing or animal back into you and own it. In that way, you are actually meeting and dealing with the things about yourself you are not owning or conscious of. That is why dreams are often difficult to understand, because we are hiding things from ourselves. To do this you can use - Being the Person or Thing and it is helpful to read Levels of the Brain
Whenever we dream its images are not like real life, because a dream is nothing like outer life where things could hurt you, but is an image like on a cinema screen, so that even if a gun is pointed at you and fired it can do no damage – except if you run in fear; so, all the things that scare you are simply your own fears projected onto the screen of your sleeping mind.
So the angry bear is an image of your own angry feelings that have not been expressed and are attacking you. We now know that such inturned anger can cause illness or depression.
Example: A huge black panther chased me. I fell and it clawed my back. It was about to chew my back to bite me. I didn’t know whether to relax or struggle. After being floored by the Panther I managed to get up. I later imagined being the panther. I allowed the panther to eat me, and I thus became the panther. Then I, as the panther, noticed feeling enormous temper – anger – hate. And I was amazed to see that my cousin Sidney was the cause of such powerful emotions. He was older than me and had mercilessly teased me as a child. The panther was my own feelings of anger, at last released.
But here is a very different example:
Example: I was standing on my patio and there was a bear inside the fence also there were children taunting the bear. I yelled at the kids to stop teasing the bear. Then all of a sudden the bear came towards me; it was a brown bear with its massive size and it stopped and looked at me. Although I was frightened I was courageous enough to pet the bears head, reaching over his large mouth to reach his head. Then, all of a sudden the bear lay on his back and I begin to brush my hand on his chest as to pet him in a downward motion, the bear just gazed at me.
A bear can have a similar meaning to elephant in the eastern countries – a tremendous force or energy, that if met badly can lead to conflict with your own nature and ill health, or if met well can be a tremendous protector and force for good.
Sometimes said to represent a possessive mother, and the feelings this has aroused. But in many cases the bear will represent a meeting with dangerous emotions such as fear, anger or being easily aroused. There might also be associations with independence, or strength. See: Dreams are Like a Computer Game; Animal.
Through television and the many ‘nature’ films which are now a part of our wider education, we can see that the bear is largely a solitary creature, capable of living alone and surviving. This, and its human way of standing and holding its arms out in a hugging posture, may be the major factors from which a ‘bear’ dream arises. In many dreams the bear is not at all harmful, and can be treated as a friend.
Through these we can also see the bear as a wonderful mother and protector.
We may therefore associate the bear with feelings about living alone or surviving by our own strength; it can refer to the confrontation with feelings we have about independence, or the meeting with strength and independence in someone else. It can confront us with massive or dangerous rage, such as ‘the bear with a sore head’. The bear can also depict your massive or dangerous rage, such as ‘the bear with a sore head’. In this case it might represent your relationship with someone who is touchy or grouchy, powerful, possessiveness or smothering, as a parent or lover might be.
In this case it might represent your relationship with someone who is touchy or grouchy; powerful, possessiveness or a smothering relationship, as or by a parent or lover; it could suggest a desire to withdraw or hibernate; the ‘animal’ side of our relationship with our parents; a play on words, such as ‘bare’, bare facts, bearing with something or someone, ‘bearing’ ones soul, bearing in mind, a ‘bearer’ of tidings, come to bear, overbearing, getting ones bearings, bear fruit or bear-hug.
If the bear is felt as aggressive and dangerous, ask yourself what in your own inner feelings do you feel is aggressive and you don’t want to let it get out into what you express. In other words. what is it that you habitually repress from being expressed – your anger?
It is best to let the angry bear be expressed in you imagination. You can do this by being the angry bear and let it loose – see - Being the Person or Thing
But the bear can also be like the Beauty and the Beast, in which the dangerous beast is tame with the influence of kindness. So the bear relate to person who can be tamed by kindness, but could also be a dangerous when roused.
It could suggest a desire to withdraw or hibernate. Because of traditional cultural associations, and its ability to hibernate, the bear can represent the ability to die and be reborn.
In some dreams it is powerful, possessiveness or represents a smothering relationship, as or by a parent or lover. So it could suggest a desire to withdraw or hibernate. As such it is often a mother figure, and can be the ‘animal’ side of our relationship with our parents.
There can be a play on words, such as ‘bare’, bare facts, bearing with something or someone, ‘bearing’ ones soul, bearing in mind, a ‘bearer’ of tidings, come to bear, overbearing, getting ones bearings, bear fruit or bear-hug. Because of traditional cultural associations, and its ability to hibernate, the bear can represent the ability to die and be reborn.
Bear attacking: It could mean that you are feeling or dealing with anger in yourself or another.
But many people dream of being chased by a bear and maybe run in fear or terror from the bear. Not only in your own dreams, but other people’s, it is obvious that we take into our sleep and dreams all the fears, terrors we carry within us. The huge bear, tiger or frightening person they are terrified of is actually fears either inherited or are frightening experiences from the past. They are purely mental things that you haven’t faced, and are therefore the victims of – victims of your own fears. But in dreams in you cannot die – or drown, or burn or any other threatening thing. We make the mistake of taking our very real values from our outer life into our inner life of dreams. If a bear or critter is chasing you, it is only a dream image and so what are you running from? If you drop the image if the bear/critter what you have is a feeling or emotion such as fear. And why are you running like crazy from an emotion? Remember that nothing can hurt you in your dreams, but you can feel fear. See The animal in my dream
And do not think, “That monster is bigger and stronger than I am, and it is frightening!!” It is our thoughts and fears that create the monsters inside us. So of course you are stronger unless you cower in fear.
But that only refers to outer bears, not dream bears. In some northern towns a bear or polar bear can be a real danger, so in your dreams it may be about a threat you need to keep watch for – although it is a bear in your dream, it could be any threat.
It can also, like the following dream, show a fight against disease.
Example: I dreamt that I was my older brother. As him, and yet at the same time myself, I was trying to fight off an attacking bear. I was doing all I could to defeat it but there was no let up.
Two days later my brother suddenly died from a vicious virus he had contracted while doing his job as a taxi driver. I feel as if I were fighting the disease with him in the dream, but we both lost the battle.
Baby or toy bear: Often represents a child or a young dreamer.
Tame or loving bear: Many people have no fear of animals in their dreams but are like the examples below. Fear is caused because we mix up our dream life with our outer life.
Example: In my dream I was actually happy to see bears lying down at the entrance of my parent’s old house. They were all lying down there as it waiting for me. When they felt my presence they woke up. They were happy and groaning amicably when they saw me approaching them. And there were babies too! I never felt fear or any threat but happiness to see them … and I knew it was mutual.
Example: My dream was not frightful. My Bear dream and I were walking, he put his nose in my hand and nuzzled, we walked home, I went up to my door and Bear went next door and rolled around in the neighbors driveway and rested.
But as people are educated in the modern paradigm, many of us are totally out of touch with the animal that we are, and have never been able to raise it to love and protect us, and instead are often frightened of it when it appears on their dreams. As a child we are often told not to do things – such as do not get angry, or told to be nice to everyone, but the intuitive animal side of us feels and act on its superior insight – that would allow them to mature with our animal self intact so we grow up repressing it, and often miss the natural curiosity of our inner mammal.
Three bears as with father bear, mother bear etc.: Family situation or parental relationship.
If hint of money in the dream: might refer to ‘bear market’.
Useful Questions and Hints:
What were your feelings and interactions with the bear? (For instance were you avoiding, running from cooperating with, watching from a distance – and where does ‘avoiding’, ‘running from’, ‘cooperating’, or ‘observing’ enter your life at the moment?)
If you imagine yourself as the bear in your dream, what do you feel and experience?