Differentiating between symbols and themes can sometimes be confusing, as they both represent elements that appear in dreams, but there is a distinction we can make between both.


Symbols in dreams are objects, characters, or images that represent something else, often conveying deeper, unconscious meanings or emotions. Think of them as the individual pieces of a puzzle, each carrying its own weight in the story of your dream. Some examples of symbols:

  • A snake, which might represent fear, temptation, or transformation depending on the context within the dream
  • A locked door, symbolizing an obstacle, a secret, or an inaccessible aspect of your life
  • A bridge, representing a transition, connection, or a critical decision point in your life
  • A number that often appears in your dream in one way or another.


Themes, on the other hand, are the overarching ideas or motifs that run through your dreams. They’re like the big picture (of the so called puzzle) or the main message your dream is trying to communicate, often reflecting your personal life experiences, fears, desires, or issues. Some example of themes could be:

  • The feeling of being chased, which might indicate anxiety or avoidance in your waking life
  • Flying, which could symbolize freedom, escape, or a desire to rise above your circumstances
  • Family, which may reflect your relationships, dynamics, and emotional bonds with your family members, showcasing aspects of support, conflict, love, or tension
  • Being lost or searching for something, suggesting a journey of self-discovery, feelings of confusion, or the quest for a lost aspect of yourself or a goal you are striving to achieve.

To summarize with a metaphor: if your dream is a movie, symbols are the actors and props, while the theme is the genre or main plot.

Themes and Symbols in the Lucidity app

Lucidity can automatically detect the Symbols of a dream and categorize them into Characters, Places, Objects and Other. For that, when writing a dream, go to the ‘Symbols’ tab and click “Detect Symbols”.

Lucidity will also automatically detects themes when you analyze a dream. After writing down a dream, or when reading a dream in your dream journal, click “Analyze my Dream” to discover your dream themes!