So, you’ve had a dream about bugs. Maybe it was scary, or annoying, or just plain disgusting. Whatever it is, you’re not alone. Although bug dreams don’t always get the most attention, I can say without a doubt that our insect friends are one of the most common animal teachers that come to us in our dreams. So, what does it mean??
My first dream teacher used to say that in dreams, bugs meant shame. Meaning, if you discover an infestation of bugs somewhere in a dream—behind a curtain, under a bed, etc., that meant that there was shame lurking somewhere.
At this point, any generalizations about dreams rankle me, but thinking of bugs meaning shame as a general guideline has been useful for clients of mine in the past. I.e., having it on the table as a question—does it fit in your dream to think of the bugs as some kind of shame that may be lurking?
Of course, to really dig into what the bugs might be revealing to you, you have to first ask yourself how you felt about the bugs in the dream, and second, if you’ve had any experiences with that particular insect in the past. I think one of the main reasons my teacher would often associate bugs with shame is because disgust is a very common reaction we have towards bugs. It can be difficult to admit, but when it is present in a dream, it’s worth asking yourself—do you ever feel that way about yourself? Disgusted?
It’s a dark place that I know I have been in many times. It’s sometimes so effortless to feel disgusting and worthless—at times it has felt like this voice in my mind was just waiting for me to make the slightest mistake to pounce on me. And, since it was such a consistent refrain in my mind, it all felt very true. Nothing that those who loved me told me could break my convictions that I was bad, deep down in side.
Something else I have done with clients in the past with these reactions, however, is to turn the feelings of disgust around, back on the voice that is so mean and judgmental. In the same way that you may feel grossed out by the insect you find in your dream, feel into what it would be like to feel that disgust when a shaming, judgmental voice comes into your mind.
Because of course, that voice truly is disgusting. It actually becomes quite clearly gross whenever it sees the light of day, which is why it is so powerful and healing for us to share our insecurities and self-judgments with others. But in order to master this voice, we have to become fierce warriors. You can’t just wish a bug infestation away. You have to fight back with resolution, focus, and determination.
And the reaction of disgust can be a very strong tool for this. When we are disgusted by something, we don’t want it anywhere near us, and we’ll do what we have to do to get rid of it. Think of the harsh and shaming voices in your mind like this. Consider them like cockroaches lurking in your bed. Would you just let a cockroach share a pillow with you? Of course not. So why do you let that mean ugly nasty horrible voice take up any real estate in your beautiful little head?
Kick it to the curb—it’s DISGUSTING!!
All that said, I don’t think bugs only represent shame in dreams by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, I’m incredibly inspired by insects and bugs and think they are some of the most divine creatures on our planet. The way that they are disregarded by humans reminds of the ways we turn away from the possibility of divine love, especially when it comes in forms that are unpalatable to us.
So keep your eyes peeled to this blog as I continue to explore these powerful creatures that come up so often in our dreams! And if you are as intrigued by bugs as I am and are in the New Orleans area, I encourage you to attend my upcoming Dream Ceremony, which will take place on Wednesday, May 25th at 7:30pm. The theme of the night is going to be Bug Dreams, and I know it’s going to be really special! I’m so looking forward to combining the power of ceremony with the delicious medicine of your dreams.