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Life began in the sea, at the depths. Our blood is salt in the same degree as the ancient sea, and thus we have an inner sea. In your dreams it represents the universal and fundamental processes of life in you. Awareness of these processes are not easily accessible to your conscious mind, but are nevertheless constantly influencing you and what you do.

When you do at times have some consciousness of this level of yourself, it is often experienced as a huge ocean of mind, the collective unconscious as Jung called it. It feels like nature’s memory, where all experience is stored. So in your dreams about the sea, you may be accessing some aspect of this immensity.

Most of the activities that underlie our physical and mental life are beyond our awareness. For an immensely important period of development your being existed in a pre-conscious, pre-verbal state as it grew from the single cells of sperm and ovum to the foetus and new born child. But even after birth there was a timeless period before speech and self-awareness were achieved. Therefore a great deal of your experience and drives lie outside of, or underneath, the clear conceptualisations gained with speech, and your sense of self. Occasionally something – an ache in the chest, a strange emotion that unsettles you – may emerge into consciousness, then disappear. The sea, with its surface and hidden depths, lends itself to depicting this human experience of known and unknown regarding yourself. The enormity of the sea is also a visible image of the enormity of your own inner world – much of it unknown and lying in pre-birth or pre-speech – and also the relationship you have with the processes underlying your existence, that you exist in yet know so little about. The sea holds vast treasures, curiosities, and your history. Not simply because life emerged from the sea, or your blood is as salt as the ancient sea, but because so many ships and shorelines are now beneath the waves. Sometimes these can be recovered, and this too is an image reflecting your relationship with your own deeps.

Therefore the sea may depict a strange environment in which you might have no skill in surviving; something new or strange that confronts you; the boundary between unconscious and conscious; the processes and the origins of your life; the wisdom, still unverbalised because locked in process rather than insight, of your existence; source of the huge life drives, such as that urging you toward independence, mating and parenthood; a symbol of infinite energy, potential or consciousness, in which human existence is only a tiny part; The waves of experience we face in life, some acceptable, some threatening.

Although some writers say the sea may represent ones mother, and the situation one meets in becoming independent of her, it is probably better to think of the sea representing the state of being and awareness we emerged from in our mother’s womb. That is, a non striving, non demanding existence in which our needs were usually met without a personal struggle or without any defined sense of self. Therefore a sinking into the sea could be seen as a sinking back into this loss of personality or personal striving and independence. A struggle to survive could be partly a difficulty with existing by ones personal effort and work – the difficulty of ‘keeping ones head above water’ in life and being independent.

Going under the sea: Bringing internal contents to consciousness; remembering the womb experience; letting our ego surrender a little; looking at death.

If there is a sense of hugeness or depth: Going beyond the boundaries of experience usually set up by our conscious self or ego.

Learning to swim: Learning to survive in a new environment, such as happens when we emerge from childhood into adult sexual drives, or the school or work environment. At such times anxiety or uncertainty may threaten to engulf us just as it does when we learn to swim. Dealing with life needs us to be able to meet such feelings without turning back. See: swimming.

Rescued from the sea: See: air sea rescue.

Sea shore: This is similar to beach if you are on the shoreline, the border between everyday life and your unconscious sources of motivation energy and life. But if you are looking at the beach from a distance, it could suggest a different way of life, somewhere you haven’t reached yet, or are leaving behind. So it could depict change or somewhere you are trying to get to or reach.

Tide: Rising and falling of feelings such as love, pleasure or sexuality; may refer to ageing when going out; tide in our affairs. See: beach; fish; water.

Tidal wave: Any release of emotional or sexual energy. The reason this image is used is that when we feel enormous release of emotions such as might happen when we fall in love, have a baby, or are publicly condemned, our ego often feels carried along by the experience rather than in control. We may have learned how to ride such waves as surfers do. This requires confidence, daring and balance. If we can do it we can open ourselves to much greater range of feeling or change than if we felt threatened. Even happiness may be repressed due to feeling threatened. Anxiety or depression is one of these enormous waves that may threaten to engulf us, and so is one of the human conditions the tidal wave represents.

As a tsunami it is saying that some tremendous change has happened deep in you and in the world. Tsunamis are caused by earthquakes on the sea bed. So many people are dreaming about them at the moment because of the enormous change going on around us and within us. So learn to face them without fear and be ready to meet change in your life and in your family.

Waves: Impulses, feelings and emotions, such as sexuality, anxiety, anger.

Idioms: All at sea; plenty more fish in the sea; lost at sea; stranger things happen at sea; between the devil and the deep blue sea.

Example: ‘My husband, and I were standing looking at the sea’s surface. It was just falling night. I saw a mass of dark shapes, thought it would be a school of fish. Then we were looking at water birds, maybe ducks, again dark shapes as the light had almost gone. Then there was a hole in the sea, like a belly button, I was wondering what it was, how was it being made, was there something under the water? Something very big was coming up to the surface very close to me. It shot me to wake.’ Ginny Q.

Ginny and her husband had been exploring the content of their dreams. The image of the sea shows Ginny sensing there are enormous depths to her own being, and something big – a previously unconscious complex of insights and feelings – is becoming conscious.

Example: ‘A small speed boat was at sea. But the sea dissolved anybody who fell in. One man fell in but held himself together as a blob of water and jumped back to the speedboat. I remember the words ‘The sea is a great solvent’.’ Tim P.

Tim is aware of his unconscious sense of being a part of the huge ocean of life or energy. In it one might lose sense of identity. In the end, identity is ‘held together’ by ones own belief in oneself.

Example: ‘I am either standing at the edge of the sea or near, when suddenly enormous tidal waves appear in the distance and are coming closer. I know they will engulf me, I turn and run away. Sometimes they do overtake me, other times I wake up.’ Mrs A. V.

We can run from pleasure and wider insight, just as much as from pain or fear.

On the first night I slept with my present wife I noticed she struggled with her breathing. While she was asleep I spoke to her suggesting she would relax and allow her breathing to be easy. Within moments she responded. This encouraged me and I suggested her whole body would relax, and the barriers within her dissolve, allowing healing and well-being to be experienced. Within ten minutes she suddenly awoke and told me a dream.

She was at the rear of a house sunbathing with her family, feeling very relaxed and happy. As she sank into the enjoyment waves, like a tidal wave began to roll up her body. The pleasure was so intense she couldn’t take any more and woke up.

. See: Fish; Water.



-Amit manwani 2014-05-14 9:20:51

Today In my dream I have seen my fathers death and I kept him in my building garage what does it means?


    -Tony Crisp 2014-05-15 7:59:01

    Amit – This is not saying that your father will quickly die – although obviously he will die sometime.

    I believe it is a way of facing feelings you would feel when he dies. Dreams often do this so that we can get used to losing someone to death. But there is the part about keeping his body in you garage. I believe this means you want to keep a reminder if him near you, so you can look at him often.



-Siddhita 2014-05-18 2:21:32

I saw a dream today in the night. I went to an amusement park. Its entrance was near a sea shore. I was with my father and mother. As we were just about to enter a flat wave came in and our feet got wet. I was frightened [But there was nothing big to be frightened about :-) ]. Then i entered the park and was just wandering there, not enjoying a singe ride. What is the meaning of this dream?


    -Tony Crisp 2014-05-18 14:27:53

    Siddhita – I can only give you my opinion of your dream.

    The amusement park is probably an indication of your desire for new experience and escape from routines of everyday life. There was an influence from you parent – your inner parents – to enter the sea. But the sea – the inner sea – is a huge experience and many are frightened of it. That is because the sea in dreams indicates something that we are only aware of the surface of. Like our mind, which we are only aware of a tiny part of, our awareness has tremendous depths. Because we are not aware of what is under the surface of our mind we are naturally cautious. See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/questions-2/#Summing

    The reason you found no enjoyment in the rides afterwards was because there is nothing as satisfying as knowing the wonders of the sea/you inner world. Nothing can compare with that adventure.



-Siddhita 2014-05-20 6:36:09

Thnq for the guidance :-D Doing good work.. Keep it up


    -Tony Crisp 2014-05-20 12:58:16

    Thanks Siddhita.

    You keep on keeping on too.



-dream 2014-06-02 13:23:38

I saw my late father in my dream , distributing his property , with me &my 2 elders sister , among them my fathergiving me extra , I was shockingly looking his face ? I refuse to take my share , bt he is asking me to keep it .in this time I can’t. See my mom &younger brother in this dream?


-nikita arora 2014-06-12 8:53:15

Two three days back I saw in my dreams that I am in the middle of the sea in a slow moving boat and the waves are so high that I fall from the boat..I was about to drown when I got up from my.sleep..then today I saw again myself on the boat but it was a fast moving one where the waves were again high and the boat was in high speed..everyone was falling from other boats but I was moving ahead..I want to know wat my dreams mean…


-Abigail 2014-06-16 5:20:50

Today I had a dream of becoming a nun in training. At first, it was fun as I kept on seeing my friends and families. Then, the setting changed and all of us were at a beach house having something like a picnic (in the house). At some point, I remembered running along a road that leads to total darkness. I was terrified so I ran back to where I came. After that, the tides kept getting higher and higher that the sea water splashed into our beach house. That time I saw that sea water was crimson red and many incidents happen to my friends. None of them died in the dream though, just injured. It would help me so much if you can give me your opinion on my dream.


-David 2014-07-02 0:57:54

recently I dreamt I was in prison and some of us were allowed to come out for a while,I looked around and noticed the prison was in the middle of the sea.2 days later I dreamt that some people were walking on the sea to land n I was on top of a storeybuilding,I looked down only to see the sea turned into green color.I was told to jump down but fear gripped into me,at last I jumped and i was landing slowly whilst walking fast in the air.I awoke from the dream and i slept again.In the dream i saw some of my high school gradutates talking about what’s happening at the sea.We went there and I saw that it was now light green and an uncompleted quarter building on the sea and not a storey building so I told them of mine dream in the dream.As we stood there for sometime it started drizzling some of us took to our heels,the rain rained on us.After it’s stopped I realized I was almost home.


-Triple.s 2014-07-06 14:50:23

i would like to know what my dream denotes.
i dream that me and my boyfriend was walking by in a hotel but all a sudden i lost him so i went to look for him but i had to pass and step in a sea with a lot of small fishes and sea this water like aquarium and i was afraid to step certain places cause im afraid of snakes. but finally i meet a friend and i told her she could make her back porch like a pool with a bar inside the water and a foot spa so the fishes could give foot massage. but by the end of the dream i finaly meet my boyfriend in a car accident but nothing happen to him. we get in a bus and the bus driver went all arround with us again on the opposte direction. and at the end of the dream i find my self sending kiss for my boyfriend but which appeard to be a woman with mustache. the end. (a strange dream to me)


-Amit 2014-07-07 8:48:39

My mom seen in her dream that she found a gold stick of my Bhabhi (aunt)
While everyone was searching for the gold stick my mom think in her dream that should she giver or hide it and she woke up what does this means?


-Michael 2014-07-08 18:48:04

Hi Tony,

Last night, I experienced what felt like a rather complicated dream that I was hoping you could help me with. It seemed that I was on vacation with my mother and brother somewhere exotic. We were situated on a metal platform 300 feet above the ocean on a small sand beach. The views into the ocean/sea were beautiful. The water was a deep, azure blue. It seems the island of sand divided the body of water into two. One side was calm and the other side some breakers that I could see from above, but I wouldn’t describe it as “rough.”

There were other people on the platform as well – strangers, but friendly. (I never actually saw anyone in the dream only heard voices/sensed their presence) Anyways, the problem was an issue of balance. The platform seemed wobbly and it seemed like I couldn’t find the right place on the platform to stay balanced.

This caused the platform to somehow tip over. However, before the fall the strangers were able to lower to platform down to about half its original height so its severity was mitigated. I don’t remember falling, but I fell with the platform landing beside it in the wet sand on the edge of the sea that had the breakers. At first I was holding onto the platform, but then I sensed that it was sinking into the wet sand and I let go. Once I let go, I began to be carried out to be carried out to sea. I was still in the shallow portion of the water, but I could see the deeper waters and the surf was the same as it was when I was above, but now it appeared more intense because I was at eye level with it looking into it.

At this point, I felt completely powerless/helpless to prevent myself to be carried out to sea, which seemed dangerous. The voices strangers appeared again and they urged to grab back hold of the platform, which I did. I don’t think the platform ever fully became submerged in the sand, it just sank a little. And was it.

Right after that I had another dream about losing my car and being late for a job because I was with my family. I am not sure if that was related, but thought I’d share it briefly. Actually, that dream seemed bring me more anxiety then the dream about the platform and water. Thanks for your time Tony. I appreciate it.


-Christina 2014-07-19 14:45:44

I had a dream and woke up this morning in tears. I went on a family vacation with all of MY side of the family and my husband was there as well. We were all in the house because of a storm and the water rose and broke the foundation and the house went under water. A lot of people were found dead but my husband was missing. All that was found was a journal I gave him and a blue coat he was wearing. Can anyone tell me what this means?


-joseph 2014-07-21 5:02:04

my dream is, I found sand of gold in the sea and at the end he came a person for the gold with his wife.


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