If you ever had a dream of a gorilla, you probably wouldn’t know what to think of your nighttime vision.
After all, most people don’t dream of this type of ape at night.
Many are scared, others are more confused.
But if you are looking to get to the bottom of your gorilla dream meaning, you have come to the right place.
It is actually more complicated and nuanced than you expected.
The General Meaning of the Symbolism of a Gorilla in Dreams
Gorillas as a dream symbol indicate one’s growing awareness of one’s personal inner strength.
This is a very powerful message that a lot of people need to understand.
You are stronger than you have given yourself permission to think.
A lot of people believe that their strength comes from other people.
Maybe it’s your personal connections or group membership.
Whatever the case may be, we have developed at some level or other a form of learned helplessness.
It’s as if we won’t lift a finger to change big issues in our lives until and unless we get a go-ahead from other people in our lives.
It’s as if we have given them a tremendous amount of power over the changes and decisions that we ourselves should be responsible for.
This happens for a wide variety of reasons.
Some people are just slaves to their families.
Maybe it’s an obligation.
Maybe it’s a sense of duty or responsibility.
Whatever the case may be, they all too eagerly delegate or even outsource personal self-responsibility to these other people.
Others are simply giving themselves excuse after excuse not to go after the life that they want for themselves.
They know they have problems.
They know that they are frustrated.
They know that, with everything else being equal, they’d like things to change for the better.
But they can be counted on to come up with all sorts of excuses why change is impossible or inconvenient.
Some have even tricked themselves into thinking:
“I understand that I need to change, and I accept it.
But I’ll start tomorrow!”
Tomorrow never comes.
Your family is there to encourage and awaken this inner strength.
It is not there to substitute for it.
Know the difference.
So many people eagerly use family ties as an excuse not to make the hard decisions that their life requires.
You may be unhappy in your relationships, unhappy with your weight, unhappy in your career choices, or unhappy in your business.
Whatever it may be, do not abuse your family by waiting for it.
You have to step up!
At the end of the day, it’s your call because it’s your life.
When you keep dreaming of gorillas in your nighttime visions in a wide range of contexts, the major theme that your subconscious is trying to get across to you is that you have the strength to do it.
It’s not convenient, and it definitely may not be comfortable.
In fact, it can be very painful.
But you have to do it!
You have to make the right choice.
You have to make the right move.
While your family can encourage you in a wide variety of ways, at the end of the day, it’s your call to make.
Stop hiding behind excuses.
Stop waiting for the world to come to your rescue.
What Is the Meaning of Dreams of Gorillas in Cages?
If the main theme of your dream involves a caged gorilla, this indicates that you feel that your inner strength is somehow suppressed.
In many cases, the context of a caged gorilla has a sexual connotation.
Maybe you feel that you can’t demand from your partner certain sexual experiences.
Maybe you feel that just because you’re a woman, you’re not entitled to experience the same kind of sexual fulfillment a man is supposed to enjoy.
All these are excuses you give yourself for holding yourself back in claiming an equal voice in your relationship.
Please understand that this inner strength the gorilla symbolizes has a sexual connotation, but at the root of that really is power in a relationship.
Women control the sex, men control the relationship.
That’s how it works!
Use your power in the right context.
You can say no.
You can say how much.
You can say how far.
It’s your call.
If you’re a man, please understand that even though you don’t control the sex or access to sex, you control whether there is a relationship after the sex.
So at the end of the day, it balances out.
When you see a gorilla caged in a dream, your subconscious is telling you that you have all this conflicted energy about sex, and it is eating into a lot of the areas of your life.
You’re not focused.
It’s all about trust.
If you trust your partner, you can be confident that they will at least listen to you.
That is the beginning of mutual understanding, which leads to better sex and more importantly a better understanding of each of your roles in the relationship.
What Does It Mean to Dream About a Friendly Gorilla?
You’ve seen friendly gorillas in TV documentaries.
In fact, some gorillas even appear to learn sign language.
Some are even housebroken, cute, friendly, and also domesticated.
What do these dreams mean?
When you’re seeing a friendly gorilla in your dream, your subconscious is trying to get across to you that you are beginning to master your inner strength.
You are beginning to master your sense of intuition as well as the tremendous amount of willpower and focus that you have under your control.
The first step to this is to acknowledge it.
Recognize that it exists.
So many people can’t even do this.
They always define themselves based on their membership in a group or based on their family.
They never ever get to claim personal power over their lives because they failed to recognize it in the first place.
You don’t have that problem.
Your subconscious is showing you through the images of this friendly gorilla that you are now in touch with this inner power.
This is a good sign!
If you want to enjoy more good fortune in your life where the right things happen at the right time with the right people to produce the right feelings, you have to be in control of your capacity to make things happen.
There should be no excuses or justification for games.
And when you see this type of image, this indicates that you are waking up to your ability to make things happen.
What Does It Mean to See an Angry Gorilla in Your Dream?
When you see an angry gorilla — maybe rattling in caged walls or just growling incessantly — this is a reflection of the inner conflict you have.
You are struggling with the question of what your real identity is.
Is your identity defined by whose child you are or what your last name is or where you were born or which group you’re a member of or maybe what religion you are in?
Or is it based on something else?
And if it is based on something else, is that identity clearly defined enough that it leads to a higher level of clarity and personal power?
These are the conflicts that you’re struggling with so don’t underestimate the roles people read into you.
You may be somebody’s son, somebody’s father, somebody’s husband, somebody’s friend, somebody’s employee, or somebody’s boss or superior.
All of these roles have demands on your attention.
They place limits on you just as they give you power to a certain extent.
If you’re not clear as to where these lines begin and end, and if you focus primarily on drawing your sense of meaning or purpose from other people or group membership, there will be conflicts.
It is very easy to blame our personal frustrations and failings on the past or put them squarely at the foot of other people like our parents.
But there comes a point where you just have to realize that you are living the kind of life you have because you chose to.
The incentives are strong enough, however pathetic they may be in the long run, for them to keep you going.
You have to get your ego out of the way, and this is what causes conflicts.
The good news is also the bad news.
The good news is that you know the answer all along.
The answer is self-ownership.
The answer is taking personal responsibility.
But if you’re like most people, you don’t want to hear that.
It is so much comforting to say that the life that you have now is the product of your bad upbringing or somebody else dropped the ball or you were simply just disadvantaged or just unlucky.
Don’t worry; wait for the world to get its act together and come to your rescue.
That’s a very comforting lie, and it’s precisely the kind of deceit and moral fraud that leads so many people to lead powerless lives.
That angry gorilla is angry because of frustration and desperation.
It’s not angry at you.
It’s angry at your mindset because he is you.
What Does It Mean to Dream Of Chasing a Gorilla?
There are problems in your waking life — you probably don’t need me to remind you of this — but there is a growing sentiment or sense in you that the way you’ve been doing things all along hasn’t really been working out.
Of course, this grates against your ego.
Nobody likes to be wrong.
Nobody likes to stare their shortcomings in the face.
But you feel that you have no other choice so you’re beginning to tap into your ability to respond to the reality around you.
You’re also tapping into your personal power over how you perceive the world’s stimuli, which then leads to you perceiving a certain reality.
You’re definitely on the right track!
And that’s why you’re chasing the gorilla, which represents your inner strength.
See this as a good sign.
I’m not just talking about encouraging you although this is a definite encouragement.
I invite you to look at the problems that are pushing you to do this, not as negative things to be avoided at all costs.
Instead, they are your friends.
I know that sounds unusual because that’s not how we are programmed.
We’re supposed to run away from pain and run towards pleasure.
This is seared into our DNA as a species.
But the truth is that your problems are opportunities.
The more difficult they make it for you and the more you feel that you’re back is against the wall, the easy options are outside of your grasp as they should be.
If you had easy options, you would not definitely do the heavy lifting.
You would not reconnect with your ability to turn things that you dream, wish, and hope for into realities that you can see, hear, touch, taste, and smell.
In this context, your problems are your greatest blessings.
Change your attitude about them, and you’d be surprised as to where you could go.
And with this new attitude, you welcome each problem not as something that can crush you and lead you humiliated and wall you off from the good things in life.
In other words, you’re no longer gonna deal with them the way you used to.
Instead, you’d look at them as gateways to the kind of victories that you need to live your best life.
That’s how you chase the gorilla, and you’re definitely on the right track.
What Does It Mean to Be Scared Stiff of Gorillas?
If you find yourself in a fetal position because a gorilla is menacing you, this image is your subconscious screaming at you for your lack of personal responsibility.
You’re letting your fear get the better of you: your fear of failure as well as your fear of looking bad in front of your friends and family.
Whatever the case may be, it’s fear that rules the day.
What do people do when they’re fearful?
It’s not what you think!
When people are afraid, they continue to do what they have been doing all along.
They bitch and moan about many things in their life, but nothing really changes because their actions don’t change.
That is a life of fear.
They focus on preservation instead of innovation; or, better yet, creative destruction.
When you are gripped by fear of a gorilla, you are essentially being afraid of your awareness that only you have power over your life.
This scares the hell out of so many people because it’s so comforting to blame your evil boss, your abusive parents, or even the horny pervert priest at your parish church.
Whoever the authority may be, it’s so easy to just point the finger and blame them.
On a factual basis, you may be absolutely correct, but here’s the problem.
That happened in the past!
Facts are facts.
It’s not like you can jump into a time machine and change the facts.
So the more you blame them, the more you rob yourself of the ability to move on or come up with something more constructive and productive in the here and now.
Do you see how this works?
Do you see how this cuts against you?
Your fear of gorillas in your dreams ultimately speaks to your fear of your ability to move on and reframe your reality.
No matter how much you agonize over the abuse that you have faced or the humiliation that you may have experienced in the past, it’s not going to bring back the confidence or the innocence that you long for.
Instead, you make yourself even powerless in the here and now.
Think about it.
If you are convinced that other people are to blame for whatever it is that is troubling you, logically speaking, they are also the solution.
But if you were to look up those people, a lot of them have moved on.
In fact, some of them have died!
It’s physically impossible to get that closure that you are yearning for so you’re stuck.
Take back that power and say to yourself:
“I own my life.
I am the owner of my destiny.
The past may be the past, but I am in control of how I respond to the past because how I respond now sets the future.”
If you’re sick and tired of being sick and tired, now is the time to look at the past the right way.
Draw power from it, and start the change that you need so you can have a more fulfilling life.
I’m not talking about being rich necessarily.
I’m not talking about finding the absolute best partner or looking like a Greek god when you look in the mirror.
I’m just talking about being happy in your own skin and feeling like your life has meaning.
Let’s start there!
What Does It Mean to See a Gorilla Hurt Someone Else?
If you see a gorilla manhandle a zookeeper or some attendant, this is your subconscious telling you that your old trick of blaming your family for your personal issues is no longer cutting it.
You’re running out of excuses.
You have to reconnect with your ability to control your life.
You have to reconnect with your ability to order your reality.
You have to rediscover your sense of personal power because the old methods are no longer working and it’s spiraling out of control.
This image or mental projection of you seeing a gorilla, 400 lbs full of energy, hurting somebody perhaps fatally, is your growing consciousness over the consequences of your mental coping mechanisms.
What you’re doing, whether it’s denial, avoidance, sublimation, projection, or whatever else besides taking full control and ownership, is ultimately going to, not just, hurt you but those around you.
That gorilla that you see is you!
And eventually, your issues are going to hurt other people.
There is such a thing as intergenerational curses.
Break the curse in your generation.
If your grandfather is an alcoholic and your father is an alcoholic who loves to beat his wife, you can break the chain.
It’s not easy.
It definitely won’t happen overnight, but it is worth attempting.
Just as you are not your family, you don’t have to live under a curse.
And that pattern of abuse that I used as an example is just one tiny example.
There are tons!
Maybe the issue is sexual.
Maybe the issue is financial or involves telling the truth.
Whatever the case may be, if you do not take control over this inner power symbolized by the gorilla, eventually, you will hurt somebody else, or maybe even your children.
If you can’t control the problem at your level — maybe you have an issue with spending money too easily — they’re gonna suffer.
And guess what!
They’re gonna pick up on your habits and repeat that process again, generation after generation.
I got to admit.
There is something kind of humorous about watching a dream of a gorilla manhandling somebody else.
But the reality is that your issues if you let them fester you, will spread to other people around you.
Be the one to break the chain!
And to go with the ape metaphors, there is such a thing as the 100th monkey.
Be the 100th monkey.
According to the Hundredth Monkey Effect, a practice can be passed on from monkey to monkey, generation to generation, and then it takes the 100th monkey to break it.
And then from there, a new tradition happens.
This was vaguely based on a researcher who worked with monkeys in Japan.
She noticed that one female monkey, for whatever reason, started washing the fruits that she ate.
The researcher didn’t think much about it until she came back later and noticed that the troop of monkeys that the female monkey was a member of also started washing their food.
And after that female monkey died, generation after generation of those monkeys up to this very day still wash their food.
There is of course a genetic advantage to washing your food.
The incidence of infection are probably gonna be less likely.
The increased hygiene would probably lead to better health, which can lead to a higher chance of making it to reproduction age and having more monkey kids.
Do you see how this works?
Be the 100th monkey!
You know what will work.
You know what you need to do.
Find the courage to do it.
What Does It Mean to Dream of a Dead Gorilla?
All the power and possibility that you have inside of you are gone.
That is the meaning of a dead gorilla.
And by “gone,” I’m not talking necessarily about being physically dead.
I’m talking about sweeping it under the rug, containing it under an elaborate prison of excuses and justifications.
And the most common way to kill your inner gorilla is to just simply say “later.”
How many times have you said this to yourself:
“I know that I need to do this.
I know that I need to get a better job or get a better business or demand better communication in my relationships.
But I’ll do it tomorrow.
Right now, I’m too busy.”
As I mentioned earlier, tomorrow never comes.
This is a very powerful way to kill the gorilla.
Bury it in an avalanche of “tomorrow.”
Stop fooling yourself!
Either you do it now, or it will never happen.
What Does It Mean to Dream of a Large Number of Gorillas?
This is an image that speaks to your family.
There is at least one person in your family who has a strong will.
They cast a long shadow, and whatever they say goes through.
If they feel hurt or slighted, you best believe those around you will feel it.
That’s how strong they are.
It has nothing to do with how much money they have.
It’s their influence and strength of character.
Sadly, such strength can also turn into toxicity.
You are also a strong gorilla.
And if you’re feeling conflicted emotions regarding this person, you are in a great position to change them for the better.
The Bible talks about iron sharpening iron.
Iron cannot be sharpened by brass.
It’s not gonna happen.
Brass is too soft.
Lead is definitely out of the picture because it’s a soft metal.
Gold is a lousy metal to use in sharpening any other metal.
It’s just too soft; precious but malleable.
Iron can only be effectively sharpened by another piece of iron.
You’re a strong person!
And the best favor you can do for the other strong person in your family is to show them another way.
You can do this respectfully.
You can do this by even appealing to their own interests.
But at the end of the day, you still have to do it because that’s the kind of change that they need to go through to avoid always giving in to their toxic habits.
Mothers can be overbearing and overcontrolling.
Fathers can be abusive and too authoritarian.
Older brothers and sisters can be too selfish.
I can go on and on.
You probably already know this.
So stand up on your own emotional and psychological feet and push back.
Let iron sharpen iron, and you’d be surprised as to how big of a gorilla you can grow to be.
And when you do that, you get respect.
When you do that, you have arrived.
Because the more you give in, the more they will believe that you agree with them; even if you protest the fact that you’re giving in, this gives it all away.
Dig in your heels.
Stand up for what you believe in.
Assert your personhood.
If you’re gay, you’re gay.
If you don’t want to marry this other person that they want you to marry, then so be it.
You are your own person, and you’re the one getting married.
If you don’t want to take a particular degree program or career that they want you to take, then it is you who have to stand up.
Do you see how this works?
It applies to everything: from people borrowing money from you, or you borrowing money from people; from jobs, businesses, health, relationships, or love.
Stand up for yourself!
Be one of the gorillas.
Stop being another face in the crowd.
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Dream interpretation and symbology have fascinated me ever since I read Freud’s classic, “The Interpretation of Dreams.” Ever since, I have explored Christian, Jewish, Hindu, and Buddhist as well as Jungian psychological ideas about the meaning of dreams. Thanks for joining me in my exploration of the amazing intersection between our conscious waking world and the rich expanse of our subconscious-the home of our intuition, instincts, and hidden potential.