Power, anger, sexual power, inner anxiety or terrifying urges. Fear of another person’s anger or forcefulness. Sometimes the power of a mother’s protectiveness. A woman’s anger or sexual craving.
Although similar in many ways to the lion, the tiger has a more feminine quality. It can therefore represent an angry woman; ones mother/a woman as a protector or destroyer; anger; spitefulness; the power and authority of ones animal strength; anxiety or fear, flight or fight. Often children have recurring dreams of being chased by a tiger (or lion), and this is about anger that they have been told is bad to express. So this is why they are running from it when they should have made it their friend. This is probably also why most people are still running or hiding from tigers in their dreams. Instead they should have been taught to direct their anger – a natural part of our defense system - effectively.
Do not to be afraid of the animals you meet in your dreams. They are only symbols of your own inner nature, your animal self. See http://dreamhawk.com/dream-encyclopedia/brain-levels-and-dreams/#mammalbrain
The tiger represents your own power as a woman, the power that can protect her family and any children. Feel the power of that by imaging yourself as the tiger. Yes, actually imagine yourself in its body.
When we call someone a tiger we either mean they are fierce, capable of defending themselves, or very successful at what they do. But we also say a woman can protect her children or loved partner like a tiger. So it is also about strength and passion to protect and care. This aspect of the tiger depicts the primeval and passionate power of motherhood and the love and care of nature itself emanating from the unconscious. Tigers are individual creatures and are not, like lions, part of a group less it is a mother with her cubs.
Like any other animal, the tiger can also represent aspects of sexuality, depending upon how it is presented in the dream. As a symbol of sex it would most likely include elements of uncertainty – will I be attacked or overwhelmed – power and instinctive responses. It has to be remembered also that the tiger is a top of the food chain predator, and so can represent the predatory facets of human nature. See animal for an explanation of the role dream animals play in our life:
But it has to be remembered that every image in our dreams is an aspect of ourselves, and being an animal the tiger represents the wonderful strength we have as our heritage – if we claim it. Many people are frightened of their own strength and so run from their dream tiger, but as the following dream shows it can be your strength.
Example: An adult tiger was at my bed with one of my old high school buddy holding him on a leash. When I saw him I was furious what the fuck is such dangerous animal doing on my bed. Went to load my AK (the imaginary one, don’t actually own one), but when I pointed the gun at him he ignored me with calm and assertive look. I dropped the gun and in my admiration for him just felt his strong and firm energy. Since then I started to really think of Tigers as the ultimate alpha animal!!
The tiger can represent many things however, and below is another important aspect of a tiger.
Example: While in a basement a person approached me holding quite a large animal. As they handed it to me I saw it was a tiger cub, large and very well built, with a thick neck. I was surprised, but even more surprised and disturbed when a huge tigress came through a doorway above us at ground level and came down the stairs to us. I thought she was going to attack us, but she took the baby cub and placed it down. She then came with something in her mouth, probably money, and placed it near me. She gave off a powerful feeling of not wanting the cub, and with the money handing it over to me or us for our care. There was an atmosphere of irritability about her. Peter G.
In this example the tiger has an obvious connection with the mother. The dreamer had often been threatened by his mother that she was going to give him away, or put him in a home. So the dream probably dealt with his need to confront these feelings of abandonment which, like the tiger, were threatening. Interestingly, almost exactly five years later, in the same month, Peter dreamt the following.
I am in a house. There is a feeling I am sharing it with a number of people, as if there is a connection with a friend Mike. Suddenly I notice there is a tiger cub running around the room. It is a large room and empty except for myself and the cub. I realise this must mean there is a mother tiger about and worry that it will be angry or aggressive because of its cub. I go to walk through a doorway, but the mother tiger walks through. I stand still, not daring to move. But she brushes against me in a friendly way and strolls over to look at her cub. Peter G.
Interestingly the dreamer sees himself as a young tiger in his dreams.
Example: There is alarm that a wild tiger is about. I am concerned to find a place out of sight, behind a desk, in case the tiger sees me. It comes in, and, although there are many other people, it comes directly to me. As it comes towards me, I see it is small, and young, and un-coordinated in its random, flailing movements (rather like Tigger in Winnie-the-Pooh). Its body is like a pipe-cleaner twisted into a tiger shape. As it comes to me, I see it is full of energy but also shaking uncontrollably with fear, drenched in sweat. It is furiously wagging its tail, which may have a white bow tied to it (or is it the shape of the tail? – the latter I think), as if it is desperate to please. So from within my fear I say to it “Good tiger, there’s a good tiger,” to calm it down. I think, or say: “This tiger is terrified, because it is quite out of its element, in a classroom with humans.” I look up and see there is no one else in the room – just me and the tiger. JH.
JH says of his dream: “This seems to me to be a very revelatory dream. Clearly I am the tiger, and so I am frightened of my own fear in trying to hide from it. But the clarity of the dream is in the basic fear of existence the tiger exhibits.” Here the tiger is clearly about the fight and flight instinct in us all, and the struggle JH has in dealing with this in his life as a teacher.
Idioms: Fight like a tiger; paper tiger.
Am I dealing with anxiety or anger in this dream?
What relationship do I have with the tiger, and what does this say about the way I deal with the ‘tiger’ aspects of my life such as fear, anger, aggression and dominant strength?
Does my dream tiger show any signs of motherhood in this dream, and if so how does that reflect on my mother or motherhood?