Dreaming in black and white tends to give dreams an old movie-like appearance in the dreamer’s mind. While this may seem unusual to some, black and white dreams have a spiritual meaning and symbolism that goes beyond their lack of color.

Symbolic Meaning

According to some dream analysts, dreaming in monochrome suggests that the dreamer is experiencing a spiritual awakening in their life or coming to an important realization that will influence their future. The absence of color represents a “black and white” view of a situation – where things are seen in absolutes and the truth is clear. This clarity often comes after a period of confusion or not seeing a situation for what it really is.

Messages and Insight

Black and white dreams often contain messages and insight about:

  • The dreamer’s life path and soul purpose
  • Making important life choices
  • Struggles between good and evil; right and wrong
  • Situations which require the dreamer to see the truth clearly

The symbolic meaning varies somewhat depending on other circumstances in the dream:

Dreaming of a past event in black and white

  • This suggests the dreamer needs to revisit something from their past to find closure or gain a new understanding

People appearing in black and white

  • Indicates their true selves/intentions are not yet clear

Objects or scenes appearing colorless

  • The dreamer feels emotionally distant from them or needs more clarity around their significance

No matter what black and white dreams contain, their general spiritual meaning relates to truth, insight, and seeing clearly. By analyzing the context and details of the dream, the dreamer can uncover a profound message about their life.

Common Black and White Dream Themes

Some themes commonly occur in black and white dreams as part of their spiritual symbolism:

Good vs Evil

Dreaming of good characters dressed in white and evil characters dressed in black depicts the dreamer’s struggles to reconcile good/bad parts of themselves or choose the right path in life.

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A colorless dream vision indicates the dreamer is evaluating the morality of their choices and actions. There may be feelings of guilt over wrongdoings or a desire to make amends.


Dreaming of police officers, judges and lawyers in monochrome relates to feelings of injustice or a desire to see fair outcomes in the dreamer’s waking life.


The appearance of a deceased loved one in a black and white dream often carries the message that the dreamer is ready to confront their feelings around this person’s death. Seeing them colorless and ghostly may depict the dreamer struggling to let them go.


Dreaming of vintage black and white scenes symbolizes the dreamer’s relationship with time. They may feel unable to move forward from the past or sense time is running out to accomplish something important.

Jung and Black and White Dreams

According to Carl Jung, black and white dreams represent the psyche’s urge to achieve wholeness and equilibrium. The colors represent opposing forces within the dreamer’s psyche which need to be integrated:

  • Black = the shadow self/unknown unconscious aspects
  • White = the enlightened/known conscious self

The dream is compensating for one-sidedness in how the dreamer views themselves or their life. The presence of both colors suggests they need to accept and harmonize their shadow side with their conscious identity.

Common Archetypes

Jung also associated black and white dream symbolism with these archetypes:

  • Wise Old Man – Authority figure dressed in black or white who provides important advice
  • Trickster – Appears in black and white garb when the dreamer needs to watch for deceit/lies
  • Magician – Colorless wizard figure signals the dreamer needs to tap into their own magical potential for healing/transformation
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Dream Interpretation Tips

To fully interpret black and white dreams, keep these tips in mind:

  • Note your emotional reaction upon waking – do you feel fearful, confused, elated? This provides clues to the dream’s significance.
  • Recall if any colors briefly appeared in the dream. Temporary color suggests things will be clearer to you very soon.
  • Pay attention to any numbers, letters, signs or printed words appearing in monochrome. These may be messages from your subconscious that you need to research or decode when awake.
  • Don’t ignore information or warnings contained in black and white dreams, no matter how dark or distressing. These often relate to aspects of yourself or life situations you’ve been avoiding.
  • Keep a dream journal to notice recuring black and white dream themes and track your progress in learning the intended message.

Common Black and White Dream Examples

Here are some common black and white dreams and their interpretations:

1. Running from danger in an old black and white nightmare

Meaning: Avoiding confrontation of fears residing in the unconscious mind which need to be faced in order to grow as a person. The colorless, vintage appearance of the dream landscape symbolizes entering a realm of distorted truth and false perceptions around this fear.

2. Having a significant conversation with a deceased grandparent dressed in black

Meaning: Needing closure with this grandparent’s death in order to resolve current life issues. Their black clothing represents something unsettling or unknown about their death which requires further investigation by the dreamer when awake.

3. Finding yourself naked on a black and white movie set trying to cover up

Meaning: Feeling uncomfortably exposed in some area of life. The public movie set symbolizes a fear of being harshly judged. Black and white suggests a concern over appearing socially acceptable or maintaining a perfect image.

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4. Visiting a colorless, abandoned home from your childhood

Meaning: Connection with your former youthful innocence and playfulness which has been lost through life’s difficulties and disillusionments. The dilapidated home represents neglected aspects of self that need to be reintegrated to restore vitality of spirit.

5. Seeing people with animal heads in a black and white dream vision

Meaning: Black and white indicates the dreamer’s struggle to reconcile their animal instincts with their conscious self-image. Each animal depiction symbolizes a different primal urge, fear or insecurity waiting to be confronted.

Hopefully these example dreams provide further insight into the mysterious symbolism of black and white dreams. By considering the entire dream context and emotional resonance, we can decode their spiritual messages for greater self understanding.


In summary, dreaming without color represents coming into deeper spiritual clarity, gaining wisdom from the unconscious mind, and integrating opposing aspects of oneself to achieve psychological wholeness.

Black and white dreams often unfold like old films to alert us that we are entering a realm beyond physical existence – a timeless domain revealing profound insights about who we really are.

If we have the courage to watch a black and white dream unfold while quieting our conscious mind, we may discover vital truths about our life’s purpose that can transform our future in miraculous ways.

The next time you find yourself in a colorless dreamscape, consider it a fortuitous invitation from your soul to heal, awaken and rediscover your authentic self. Allow the mysteries of this symbolic realm to reveal their hidden teachings without fear or judgement.