Dreaming of Colors: A Dream Dictionary of Colors
Before Interpreting Your Own or Another’s Dreams, It Is Important to Remember the Following:
Dreams are a reflection of the dreamer’s inner world. While each individual is greatly influenced by the world around them, dreams reflect the dreamer’s mental, emotional, and physical state. Many dream symbols and contexts reflect the dreamer’s beliefs and cultural influences. In other words, dreams are as unique and as individual as dreamers. So, although only the dreamer truly knows what his/her dream means to them, this article explores what each color might typically symbolize to people.
Dream interpretation is most effective when the dreamer takes an active role in exploring and discovering the personal meaning of his/her dream and the symbol is analyzed within the context of the dream’s content, what emotions were evoked in the dreamer while he/she was experiencing the dream, and the current day-to-day influences of the dreamer. It is important for the dreamer not only to recognize what meanings resonate most but what meanings produce a strong response. If a dreamer is deeply offended or annoyed by an interpretation, this may hint at a possible issue the dreamer is attempting to deny or repress. Incorrect interpretations help the dreamer eliminate the possibilities of what his/her dream means and are still useful.
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The Meaning of Color in a Dream
This article contains a list of possible meanings of each color in a dream. It cannot be emphasized enough that the meaning of the color in the dream is related to the object(s) that have the color, the quality of the color (is the color vibrant or muted?), and the dreamer’s own unique thoughts and feelings about the color. How each individual views a color is greatly influenced by the dreamer’s culture, personal experiences, beliefs/religion, gender, age, and aesthetic preferences.
A dream of bright pink lipstick would have a much different meaning than a dream of a bright pink knife. Dreaming of bright pink has one meaning if it is your favorite color and an entirely different meaning if you absolutely despise that hue.
It is important to note that dreams can mean so many things to each individual and could even mean more than one thing within the same dream. It is common for dreams to be layered; a symbol may relate to something that occurred during the day, to our subconscious, to our spiritual growth, and to events in our childhood influencing our beliefs, thoughts, and behavior now. In other words, dreams rarely have only one specific meaning.
Interpreting one's dreams can be a powerful way to gain insight into a world the individual may be to too busy to explore during waking hours.
Dreaming of Red
Red typically represents feelings of passion, anger, aggression, power, impulsiveness, or a sense of danger.
Red is typically associated with blood. It could symbolize life for some while others may view red as a symbol of death. It is important to determine if the dream is showing high energy or loss of energy.
In Hindu/Chinese cultures, red is worn by brides and may be associated with weddings, celebrations, and the dreamer’s ideas of a bride or marriage. Red is also associated with the root chakra located at the base of the spine. For some, the color red may relate to chakras and symbolize earth, grounding oneself, the physical body, survival, and physical health.
Maroon is associated with warriors, heroism, strength, bravery, and courage.
Dreaming of Pink
Pink is a combination of red and white. It is an innocent version of red. Pink represents love, sweetness, happiness, kindness, romance, compassion, softness, and affection. It is associated with femininity and could also be associated with being in young love or the healing powers of love and friendship.
Hot pink or magenta may represent feelings of lust and have a sensual undertone, like the color red.
Pink may also have negative connotations, especially if the dreamer dislikes pink. It can be a color of immaturity and weakness. Dreaming of pink consistently may represent issues of dependency or unresolved issues with parents. Finally, some may associate pink with getting a pink slip or getting fired from a job.
Pink is associated with the heart chakra or the fourth chakra. Some may associate pink with universal love and caring for others.
Dreaming of Orange
Orange is typically associated with warmth, friendship, and other positive sun-related symbols such as a new dawn. Orange is a stimulating color. Bright orange gives a sense of vitality and optimism; it is the color of newness due to its association with the sun and a new day, new outlook.
For some, orange symbolizes the sacral chakra located in the lower abdomen. This chakra is associated with sexual desire, pleasure, procreation, and fertility.
Peach is similar to orange but is much softer. Peach may be a symbolic pun describing things as “peachy,” associate with peach the fruit, or represent feelings of love/friendship, caring, and helping others.
Dreaming of Yellow
The quality of yellow and the context in which this color appears is important. It could have a negative or positive meaning, depending upon the dream. Yellow can be seen as unpleasant, symbolizing cowardice (have you heard anyone call someone else “yellow”?) deceit, betrayal, indecisiveness, and sickness. In a more positive light, yellow can symbolize awareness, happiness, energy, intellect, harmony, and a positive mood/outlook. In general, yellow is found to be a mentally stimulating color which is why many offices and classrooms use this color. Most individuals connect yellow with the sun.
Yellow may alert the dreamer to a dangerous desire to please others at the expense of the dreamer’s own needs and happiness. This meaning may also show that the dreamer has a weakness in areas associated with the third chakra.
Dreaming of Gold
Gold is similar to yellow and silver but is associated with richness in life or spirit and enhancing the true self (who you truly are beyond the conscious ego) or developing the psyche. When something is gold in a dream, there is an emphasis on the object's value. The object is important. For example, gold fruit in mythology is a hero’s prize for overcoming monsters. Golden fruit could symbolize the rewards we reap after facing our unconscious and taming those aspects of self that have become wild and aggressive through periods of neglect, ultimately integrating them back into our sense of self and our waking life.
Dreaming of Green
Green is commonly associated with nature, mother earth, good health, growth, fertility, healing, vitality, and serenity. Green is often associated with personal growth, new development in the dreamer’s personality, and healing. Many dreamers may also associate green with a traffic light, making green a symbol telling them to go or allowing them to make a move. Green may represent being new to something or lacking experience.
Green, especially dark green, is sometimes associated with money (especially for Americans since that's the color of their currency), wealth, materialism, deceit, greed, and envy.
Eastern religions associate olive green with natural wisdom, achieving peace within one’s environment, and Zen.
Green is also associated with the fourth chakra. This chakra is associated with love, compassion, and healing. Dreaming of this color may either mean the dreamer has a strong drive to help others and is socially connected or is overextended and taking care of others' needs at the expense of their own.
Dreaming of Blue
Blue tends to be a very spiritual color for most dreamers. Blue often represents truth, heaven, tranquility, peace, intuition, and whatever the dreamer associates with sky or ocean. Blue could even signify the desire for a vacation! The color can represent the collective conscious (see information on Carl Jung) or the subconscious. Blue is often associated with boys and could represent masculinity for the dreamer.
Different shades of blue can have very different meanings. Navy blue often means conformity and a lack of individualism since this color is typically associated with uniforms. Dark or washed-out blue may indicate depression and feelings of sadness.
Blue may also be associated with the fifth, throat chakra. This chakra is associated with communication, self-expression, thinking, and planning.
Dreaming of Purple
Purple often represents devotion, loving kindness, compassion, and healing abilities. In contrast, purple can also mean royalty, richness, highest rank, social power, and elitism.
Peep purple often represents mystery. Psychologically, this color could mean the dreamer is beginning to have awareness of an undiscovered dimension of self.
Violet is a shade of purple that can have a more spiritual meaning. It tends to still be associated with affection, charm, intimacy but is also associated with intuition, spirituality, religious aspirations, peace, and spiritual cleansing.
Variations of purple–indigo and violet–are associated with the sixth and seventh chakras located at the “third eye” and crown, respectively. The sixth chakra is associated with intuition, spiritual abilities, seeing beyond the physical, and psychic abilities. The seventh chakra is associated with our link to spirituality or God. It should be noted an active seventh chakra is associated with the color white.
Dreaming of Black
Black symbolizes mystery, the unknown, and the unconscious. These aspects can either be negative or positive. Negative meanings include danger, emptiness, evil, death, mourning, hatred, despair, deep depression, lack of energy, and lack of love. Positive meanings include exploration of the unknown, a blank slate, change, and hidden potential or possibilities.
Dreaming of White
White represents purity, innocence, cleanliness, new awareness, new beginnings, happiness, clarity, and peace. White could refer to a clean slate with creative potential (a blank canvas) yet it can also refer to covering up what embarrasses or disgusts the dreamer (“white-out,” whitewash, etc.). In Eastern cultures, white represents death and mourning. White may be associated with the seventh or crown chakra and is associated with connecting to spirituality and/or God.
Off-white or ivory may represent impurities or a blemish in something the dreamer one believed or expected to be perfect.
Dreaming of Brown
Brown represents the ground and the earth. It could mean practicality, domesticity, the physical, instinctual, or materialistic. Dreaming of the color brown may mean the dreamer needs to get back to basics, become more grounded, or explore their roots or the root cause of an issue. Brown may represent something negative to the dreamer such as depression, lack of clarity, or “muddiness.”
Dreaming of Beige
Beige might represent nudity, getting back to basics, being stripped, and seeing something or self in its barest form. The color could also represent having a neutral or unbiased position or opinion.
Dreaming of Silver
Silver, like gold, often means the object of this color is personally valuable to the dreamer. Silver is also associated with the moon, femininity, intuition, protective spiritual energy, and the unconscious.
Gray typically indicates fear, depression, old age, death, social isolation, feeling under the weather, indecisiveness, and confusion. Since dreaming of black and white tends to represent rigid, inflexible thinking, gray may represent blurred lines and loss of direction.
Exploring the Subconscious
Looking to gain further insight into yourself and cannot recall any more dreams? Try eliciting more content from your unconscious by taking a Rorschach Inkblot test.