Dreaming in Patterns

In interpreting dreams, a very common theme I come across is patterns. Stripes, camouflage, spots, dots, zig-zag patterns just to name a few. These patterns can show up on clothing, accessories, on buildings, or on vehicles. And then there’s those times when we’ll see patterned insects or animals show up in our dreams too. What does all this mean? For example, why would someone appear in a patterned shirt as opposed to just a plain colored one? Is there more meaning behind the patterns we see?

Let’s think about this for a minute. Patterns require deciphering. They are numeric and rhythmic in nature. They represent something we must “look into” a little more closely or more intently to see what is really there. Because sometimes, patterns will involve multiple facets. You can have a pattern involving several different colors or different sizes of objects or shapes. We recognize patterns through looking closely, and through repetition.

So when it comes to dreams, patterns typically point to something that is not going to be immediately noticeable. Or it may be that it stands out at first, but it will require additional examination or inspection in order for us to fully make sense of what is there. We can’t simply glance at it and know. We may have to decode it, or be patient while the details of the pattern emerge.

But here’s another key factor to consider – especially as it relates to dreams: predators are confused by patterns. It’s been said that’s one of the reasons animals such as zebras are born with them. Their stripes serve as a defense mechanism to protect them from would-be predators. However the good news is that we, as fearfully and wonderfully created beings, were born to see patterns and not be confused by them.

As you all know, my approach to dream interpretation is a biblical one. So when I think of why God would use something patterned in our dreams to communicate to us? He may be doing so to alert us, or to catch our attention. He may be saying, “Don’t simply take this at face value, but look into it more intently.” Or, He may be sending us a message that to others would be undetected or uncodable, but that we will be able to decipher with the help of the Holy Spirit.

What dreams have you had involving patterns?

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