We’ve all had bizarre dreams that seem so real they shake us up, and witnessing dream murders often symbolizes something deeper happening in our subconscious.

Having these nightmares doesn’t mean you’re disturbed or deranged. Dreams are symbolic, and murder dreams tend to represent transformation, anger, or fear. With some reflection on what’s going on in your life, you can get insight into what your subconscious is trying to tell you.

Murder Symbolism

In dreams, murders often represent the “death” of something in your life – like the end of a relationship or job. Maybe you just went through a breakup or got laid off. Your mind is processing this loss in your dreams by showing you a symbolic “murder.” It’s a way of coming to terms with the change.

The murder could signify the death of an aspect of yourself. Perhaps you’re going through a transition in life, and your old way of being is fading away. Witnessing the murder of your former self is a graphic depiction of that internal change and growth.

Murders in dreams can also represent rage, aggression or powerlessness in waking life. If you feel like you’ve been wronged or lack control over a situation, your mind may express this in the form of violence while you sleep. The good news is, once you identify the source of these feelings, you can start to resolve them.

Common Interpretations

Loss of Control

If you see a murder in your dream, it usually means you feel out of control in your everyday life. Things might be spiraling in some area or you feel powerless over something. The killing represents the loss of power you’re afraid of. It’s your subconscious way of dealing with that feeling of not being in the driver’s seat.

Suppressed Anger

Dreaming of murder can also signify anger you have suppressed. The rage and violence in the dream reflects anger you cannot express openly in your daily life. Your mind conjures up these disturbing images to release the pent-up emotions.


Witnessing a murder in your dreams may indicate that there are changes happening in your life that you find frightening or disturbing. Our minds often use dramatic metaphors in dreams to highlight shifts we are grappling with consciously or unconsciously. The murder represents the threat of change, even if the change itself is not necessarily negative.


Feelings of helplessness or vulnerability can also trigger dreams of witnessing a murder. In the dream, you are powerless to prevent the killing, reflecting your waking sense of inability to influence situations. These types of dreams often recur until you find ways to empower yourself and gain more control over your circumstances.


The murder in your dream may not represent an actual act of violence. Instead, it could be symbolic of ending a relationship or transitioning to a new life stage. The victim could represent an old “part” of yourself that needs to die to make way for new growth. Look for clues about what the victim and murderer symbolize to better understand the dream’s meaning. Often, they represent aspects of yourself or your own experiences.

Traumatic Experiences

For some people, violent dreams can actually relate back to traumatic experiences they had in the past, whether they saw something traumatic happen or went through something themselves. Your brain might be trying to work through unresolved feelings about the trauma while you’re dreaming. Talking to a counselor or therapist about what happened could help reduce how often you have those violent dreams.

Dreams about murder and violence usually say more about what emotions you’re feeling than about how aggressive you are as a person. Look closely at the details in the dream to see if you can figure out what’s really bothering you or what things in your life the images represent.

Think about where the murder took place, who did it, and what methods they used. Analyzing those finer points could provide insight into what’s really on your mind.


Dreams about murder often symbolize the death of something in your waking life, like a relationship or a career path. They can be unsettling but try not to read too much into them. The subconscious mind works in mysterious ways. Maybe your dreaming self just has an overactive imagination!

Either way, don’t let a bad dream derail your day. See it as a sign to make some positive changes, then get up and go live your best life. Whenever something stops, something new will start. That’s probably the message your dream was trying to send.