The Tribune - Spectrum


Sunday, May 13, 2001
Dream theme

Dreaming of trains
By Vinaya Katoch Manhas

Travel teaches toleration—Disraeli

TO see yourself travelling in a dream is a very potent image. The mode of travel and other associated images reflect our feelings, the obstacles faced in our everyday life and the sceneries reflect that what we have seen or experienced in our day-to-day happenings. Travelling in a train or missing out on one are common aspects of dreaming. To Indians, seeing a train as a symbol in your dream is an indication of difficult journeys. But to see yourself drive its engine is an indication of your desires to be soon fulfilled. If you are travelling in a train and the route is uncomfortable then although you shall achieve your goal it shall be with lots of difficulty.

According to western theologists, seeing a train in your dream is an indication of a reason for you to undertake an journey. To see a train run smoothly but not seeing a track beneath it foretells worries over certain affairs which shall eventually prove a source of profit to you. To see freight trains in your dream is a good omen which predicts elevation in your life. To see yourself travelling on the roof of a train is indicative of your spending money on unprofitable projects.

Psychoanalytically, a train often highlights the dreamers’ attitude to social behaviour and relationships with other people. It also potrays his attitude to himself. To see yourself catching a train portrays success in being able to use external factors and circumstances to your advantage in achieving your goals.


On the other hand, to see yourself miss a train portrays your inability to succeed due to our carelessness or due to lack of resources. It also portrays your fear on missing out on an opportunity. To see yourself missing a train initially and then later on catching it portrays your ability to manage your inner resources in a better manner. It portrays your attempt to sort out your motivations.

Getting off a train before you reach your destination portrays your fear and uncertainity about succeeding in a particular project. It also takes on a sexual interpretation to signify premature ejaculation. Thus, the inability of the dreamer to have control on the self. To get off a train before it starts is an indication of change of mind about a particular situation or a relationship. Seeing railway tracks is signifiies a way of getting to your destination. To see the tracks running in front of you in your dreams is an indication of your being aware of the direction you’re taking.

A similar interpretaion is applicable to seeing the signals. Seeing a train get off the rails signifies having done something inappropriate. To see yourself on a train unwillingly portrays external forces unduly influencing you against your wishes. Arriving at the station indicates the completion of a particular stage or getting over of a particular situation in your life. It could also indicate the completion of a relationship. The tidiness or untidiness of a carriage you have boarded suggests the condition of a particular aspect of your life—is it running smoothly or do you have to ‘clean up’.

Consider this dream of an 18-year-old boy who often dreamt of reaching the station late to find his train leaving. But just a few seconds later, it meets with an accident and another train comes from behind. The missed train definitely portrays missed opportunity. The accident shows his ability to perceive his losses without regret. His optimism is portrayed through the appearance of another train from behind ie the existence of other opportunities in future.