Money, good luck, energy. Ancient unconscious knowledge you have brought to the surface. Such wisdom needs to be unfolded from the symbol by exploring the feelings and ideas connected with the image. It can also indicate warmth, or the possibility of warmth or fire.

Coal can also depict parts of yourself – memories or experiences – that were deeply buried but are being, or have been brought to the surface, perhaps to be burnt out and therefore cleansed. There is usually great wisdom in such coal and it needs to be unfolded from the symbol by exploring the feelings and ideas connected with the image. If the coal is burnt and small stones are left in the ashes, this signifies the parts of your deepest self that are beyond time and change. They are influences from your long past that are great lessons and influences from past life experiences.

The coal and coal mining are therefore an analogy for a deep delving into oneself, or an emerging from being deeply lost in darkness. Mark Block in describing his slow return to consciousness after a terrible car accident, writes:

My journey to consciousness was like that of a coal miner’s journey from deep within the mine, getting closer and closer to the surface. As I climbed closer to consciousness, I was able to sense the fresh air, like that of a refreshing summer breeze on the coal miner’s face when he reached the surface and gathered in the warm sunshine of the day.

Useful Questions and Hints:

Am I digging this coal – and if so what in my life reflects this inner uncovering and discovery of the long past?

Does this dream coal in any way link with warmth or the promise of warmth – if so what am I needing or giving in regard to love and warmth?

If the coal is burn are there any stones left in the ashes – if so imagine yourself as the stones and describe what you feel and experience in your body and feelings? For help doing this see Stand in Role.

See Being the Person or ThingTechniques for Exploring your Dreams

What we Need to Remember About Us


-cansu 2018-06-19 9:58:16

I was swimming in the sea with my ex-husband. It was night and completely dark. we were trying to reach a little island. because I thought the island was such a great place I wanted to show him. But when we arrived there I saw that the island was made of coal. completely coal. My husband climbed the island and I just hold on the island because I didnt want to be all black due to coal. Then I saw the sky and it was amazing full of stars shining and I told my husband to look at the sky. This dream was both amazing and a little scary.

    -Tony Crisp 2018-06-22 12:56:42

    Cansu – Swimming in the sea in dreams represents your inner world – the world you enter when you close your eyes and live only in your thoughts, emotions, dreams and imagination. But in swimming you are part of an immense living process, the deeps of which you have not explored because you wanted to get to an island – above the surface of the water, which is like individual waking self-awareness in dreams is an island. In this there is a sense of separate existence, with definite boundaries where the shore meets the sea. Beneath the surface however, one island is connected to all other islands. The land stretches away under the waves and rises here and there into other islands. So, it is that, personal awareness, beneath our everyday consciousness, shades off into a connection with a collective unconscious we all share. Through this connection we may be able to arrive at insights into other people otherwise denied to us.

    Black in dreams and also coal indicate, as you read, indicates Coal parts of yourself – memories or experiences – that were deeply buried but are being, or have been brought to the surface, perhaps to be burnt out and therefore cleansed. There is usually great wisdom in such coal and it needs to be unfolded from the symbol by exploring the feelings and ideas connected with the image. But most people have no idea of this unconscious part of them, but no plant or creature grows from a dead seed, and each living seed carries within it all the past gathered from all its forebears. So, the seed in your mother’s womb is as old as and even older than human kind, and you carry that wisdom or memories in you. But in this life you developed a new brain, and the memories you gathered this time are what you built your personality from, but beneath that is a very ancient self.

    You avoided involving yourself with the black coal, but you have absorbed some qualities from your husband and so you as him climbed. From that you glimpsed the wonder that you were unaware/unconscious of before. You have that immense wonder within you, but we have to remember that having a personality with self awareness is a very new thing and has only existed for a short time. Before that we were like animals that lived only in the Life Will – what we usually call instincts. So the development of self awareness was an immense step, and left us very vulnerable, and still does.
    Many people as their awareness reaches beyond what they feel is their normal self feel scared. Such resistances cause us to create awful dreams and fears as a means of avoiding our own inner world and its wonders. We feel that we will be swallowed up and we will die. It is important to say that when we meet the experience of powerlessness through becoming aware of the hugeness of your Life, which we are usually unaware if, it feels like something alien or attacking and it is a shock. See

-May 2017-12-27 1:34:48

I had a dream that i was travelling with my father by car (he drove the car) and we stopped at some place where my father bought a handful of coal. He also lights it in the car even though i tell him not to. In the dream i could smell and feel the heat of the burning coal well.

-D 2017-07-17 4:15:55

I had a dream I was telling my sister that my dad made me rake my hands over coals.

My dad and I have a bad relationship, and I always felt like my sister abandoned me to save herself. He has never actually made me do that or physically hurt me.

-Lesley 2017-03-20 13:10:23

I dreamt that my former partner (we split up 10 months ago) had come into possession of some silver mines in Argentina and was off to live there. Selfishly, I found myself thinking: “damn, I should have stayed with him a little bit longer.” And then I felt ashamed and conflicted by my feelings. I have no idea how to interpret it.

-Lorena 2017-02-05 17:43:04

I don’t know where I was in the dream but I had little balls of coal coming out of my nose, not burnt or used in anyway. As the balls of coal were coming out of my nose I felt my breathing got better. I just felt confused in the dream as I didn’t know why coal was coming out of nose. Can you help?

-Claire 2016-06-21 6:54:42

I dreamt that I was in a desolate place. With a group of others we were trying to grow food make a life out of what we had. More people kept coming although not worried I knew there wasn’t enough to go round I was even thinking of eaten the grubs from the rotting potatoes. It was also quite bad weather keeping us in trying to stay warm .. I kept asking people to come for a walk across the fields wanting to do something to show we could still live half a normal life even in the grim situation.

    -Anna - Tony's Assistant 2016-06-25 9:27:11

    Dear Claire – Your dream may reflect the situation in your inner (and outer) world and how you are trying to deal with it in the best way possible with the means or tools you have available.
    Although I often experience that just being with the difficult, desolate feelings without resisting them is helpful – you cannot heal what you cannot feel – I also know about the urge to “wanting to do something to show we could still live half a normal life even in the grim situation.”
    What I perceive as a helpful combination of “being and doing” is
    Perhaps this approach will resonate in you too?
    See also
    Anna 🙂

-Davon isaiah 2016-05-27 11:37:03

Hello tony crisp i really need an interpretation on a disturbing dream please write me back !!!!!! this dream detailed things i found some little writing on that i knew not before….its wierd to dream of something that you were ignorant of and find as such in the world…..

-Des 2016-01-09 15:00:50

I had a dream that I was in my mother’s house on the porch, and there was a furnace. There was a man who was my friend or teacher and he asked me to put more coal on the fire. I found a bucket of coal, but it also had burnt up pieces of wood. I took a shovel and moved the coal into the stove, until it was filled. Tending the fire helped me feel like I had a purpose.

    -Anna - Tony's Assistant 2016-01-15 14:03:45

    Dear Des – An interesting dream! What I see in your dream – and please explore it yourself as well – and is that you meet a very important lesson in your life; symbolised by the teacher.
    You might need some time to “make friends” with what you are (un)learning as it is not always an easy process; apart from a furnace being an enclosure in which energy is converted to heat, a furnace is also a way to express a severe test or trial. See also
    The porch might reflect the personality and/or the social self you have developed while living with your mother – see – and the dreams shows that there IS a purpose to “clean it all out.”
    As you could read in this article the coal can depict these parts of yourself – memories or experiences – that were deeply buried but are being, or have been brought to the surface.
    Fire can show the process of growth or change in you that radically alters your old dependencies and viewpoints. Fire completely alters much of what it touches, so can depict big changes.
    Let me know if you have any questions so far Des.
    Anna 🙂

-mo 2015-09-18 10:08:25

What does two peices of shiny coal on a pure white baby basket indicate…

-Christina 2014-10-18 13:45:51

Thank you so much for this interpretation, Tony. It does make a lot of sense in my waking life.

I first had entered a word ‘charcoal’ in the search on your website and, of cours, it could not find a matching word. So, I went on to search the word from google – got loads of interpretation but honestly none helps me to learn and understand what the dream is trying to communicate with me!!

Because of your website, I’ve come to take great interests in dream interpretation and keep my dream journal. This has proved that it helps me learn and live better/happier life. I just want to say to you, “as ever, thank you so much!!”

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