Home » Monkey Dream: On the Train to the Deadly End – Japanese Urban Legend/Creepypasta

Today, we introduce you to the Japanese urban legend of Monkey Dream (猿夢).
Once you stray into that dream, a gruesome death will never miss to catch you…

What is Monkey Dream In Japanese Urban Legends?

Monkey Dream (猿夢) is one of the most well-known Japanese urban legends/the name of the dream described in the story. The name derives from a cymbal-banging monkey toy that appears in the dream.

Monkey Dream story was first posted on the Japanese message board website 2channel (often shortened as 2chan) in 2000.

Monkey Dream Urban Legend Story (podcast)

Terror announcements in a dream

In 2000, there was a post from a user (presumably a woman) on 2chan. Here is a story from her.

She was suddenly alone in a dimly lit, unmanned station. That was when she realised she was in a dream.

Then, an announcement was made:
“A train will be coming soon. If you get on that train, you will have a scary experience”.

The train was coming into the station.
However, it was not a regular train but rather a roller coaster with a cymbal-banging monkey toy, like the ones you used to see at amusement parks. The passengers were several men and women, all looking pale.

She thought it was strange but decided to board the train as a test of his fears. “If it came down to me, I could just wake up easily.” She sat in the third seat from the back, and then the train started moving.

As soon as the train left the platform, it entered the tunnel, which was suspiciously illuminated by a purplish light.

After a while, another announcement was made:
“Next stop is Ikezukuri, Ikezukuri.”

Ikezukuri (活け造り) is the preparation of Sashimi (raw fish) from seafood while it is half alive. “What does it mean? Are they going to have a sushi party or something?”

As she was thinking this, she heard a scream from behind…

When she turned around, she saw a man sitting at the very back of the train, and his body had been ripped open with a blade by four evil-looking dwarfs. The man’s internal organs had been removed from his body, and bloody organs were scattered around him.

While she was panicking, a pale woman with long hair, who was sitting right behind her, seemed unconcerned as she silently looked forward.

Then another announcement was made again:
“Next, gouging out, gouging out.”

Then, a woman sitting behind her had eyeballs gouged out by two dwarfs with a spoon-like object… Her face turned into a terrible expression of pain, and she screamed so loudly.

Minced Meat? and the Fear continues…


In terms of order, it was her turn next.
While she was ready to wake up from the dream at any time, she decided to check what announcement would be played for her before waking up.

Then came the announcement:
“Next is minced meat, minced meat.”

From what occurred after the earlier announcements, it was easy to imagine what would happen. Even though it was a dream, she didn’t want to be scared anymore.

“Wake up, wake up, wake up!” But she couldn’t quite wake up.
Next, a mechanical ‘whirring’ sound came closer and closer… Probably the sound of a machine that grinds her into minced meat. A dwarf got on her lap, bringing the machine closer to her face.

When the sound got louder, and she began to feel wind pressure, she finally woke up from the dream. She managed to avoid being minced, but her whole body was drenched in sweat and tears.

Four years had passed since the nightmare, and she had forgotten all about the monkey dream. But one night, it suddenly started with the announcement.

“Next, gouging out, gouging out.”
She immediately realised that it was a continuation of that dream.

Unlike the previous dream, she was already on the train. As in the first nightmare, she saw the woman’s eyeballs being gouged out behind her.

She tried to wake up from the dream but couldn’t wake up easily this time.

Then, that announcement was made: “Next is minced meat, minced meat”. Last time, she woke up just before turning into minced meat, but she couldn’t escape this time yet.

The sound of the machine was getting closer and closer. She begged in her mind, “Wake up, wake up, wake uuuuup!!!!!!”

Then, at last, she was able to wake up.

However, just as she was about to open her eyes, she heard an announcer’s voice in a playful tone.

“Are you going to run away again? The next time you come, it will be your last time…”

Monkey Dream Plus+ (the sequel to the original)


Fear begins with a dream of a bullet train

In 2003, three years after the original post, a man posted a story on 2chan. According to him, the dream he had was a continuation of Monkey Dream. His story, which would later be known as Monkey Dream Plus+ (猿夢+), went something like this.

On the fourth night, after he had read the original Monkey Dream story in 2chan, he had a dream.

In the dream, he was initially on a slow coaster at an amusement park. But when he went through a tunnel, the scene suddenly changed. The coaster turned into a train, and he was on cart No. 5 of a shinkansen (Japanese bullet train).

The train was unusually quiet inside. Looking at the seats on either side, there was only one person sitting in every row, and they all looked very pale.

The bullet train then started to slow down. The station’s name was announced, but he failed to catch it.

The bullet train stopped at an unknown station, and suddenly a scream echoed through the car. It seemed that something had happened in the back seat.

But despite the terrible noise, no one reacted. What happened? No one got on or off the train, and the train started to run slowly again.

Within five minutes or so, it slowed down again. He could hear the name of the next station this time.
“The next is hanging up, hanging up.”

The bullet train stopped again at an unknown station. And again, a scream.
He looked back in a panic and saw an elderly woman being hung up, hearing the sound of her limbs hitting the seat.

He finally realised what this dream was about. Perhaps it was Monkey Dream.
He thought he must wake up as soon as possible, but he couldn’t wake up immediately.

He wanted to know how many people had already been killed and what number he was.
It seemed that about a quarter of the back of car No.5 was empty. But in fact, there may have been people there who had been killed ‘Ikezukuri’ or ‘Gouging out’ like in the original Monkey Dream.

He was sitting sixth from the front. It was still early for his turn to come.
In the meantime, he heard a lot of screaming. Then he saw a woman, who was supposed to usually sell drinks and sandwiches in the car, smiling and pushing her trolly with human organs on.

“I can’t take it anymore. Wake up quick, wake up, wake up!”

The tragedy of a man sharing Monkey Dream

He looked back again to check his turn. Then some of the people sitting behind him disappeared with a swoosh, and the seats disappeared as well. His seat, which should have been sixth from the front, was now in the middle.

In his panic, a businessman sitting just behind him talked to him.
“You have to wake up soon. If you don’t, your turn will come anyway.’

I could see blood pouring from the seat eight seats behind him. “There’s still room for seven more, so I should have a little more time. Just wake up quickly and never have this dream again.”

The next station came.
“The next is skewered, skewered.”

He was in big trouble. He thought he had seven more people to go one by one before it was his turn, but at that station, five people were skewered and killed at once.

Next, it was the turn of the businessman behind him.

But he began to speak calmly through his seat. “I don’t need to wake up anymore. I got redundant from my company, and my wife also lef…”

While listening to his personal story, he finally woke up shivering.
He felt that it had been such a long dream, but when he looked at the watch, it seemed that only 20 minutes had passed.

Was it because the impact of the original Monkey Dream was so strong that he had this dream? Otherwise, reading/hearing the story of Monkey Dream itself may have been your ticket to get yourself into Monkey Dream…

What could Monkey Dream imply (dream fortune-telling perspective)?


What could be the meaning of Monkey Dream?
There are no detailed references in the two stories posted on 2chan, but let’s analyse them from the perspective of dream fortune-telling.

monkeys in dreams symbolise ‘cunning’.

Monkeys in dreams are said to symbolise ‘cunning’ in a spiritual sense. Especially dreams with black-coloured monkeys are often said to be warning dreams that signify cunning and malicious intent, which may negatively influence the dreamer.

Reset of life: transported to a different circumstance

Looking at Monkey Dream from the perspective of a ‘train dream’ or a ‘dream of being killed’, another interpretation emerges.

It is said that the train dream means “something that transports you to a different situation.” Dreams of being killed are also said to mean “a desire to reset, a suggestion of a time of rebirth.”

Combining these ideas, Monkey Dream may have implied a terrible ending that would lead you to another circumstance of death and make you reset your life.

Bari Bari: A Variation of Monkey Dream?


There is another Japanese urban legend called “Bari Bari (ばりばり)”.
Although at first glance, it seems to be a completely different story, it has many similarities with Monkey Dream. Let me share here the story that could be considered a variation of Monkey Dream.

In 2005, a guy posted his story on 2chan.

He was in a school toilet stall, knowing he was in a dream. He wondered why he was in the toilet when he was dreaming.

When he looked at the paper roll there, he saw a word written like “Bari Bari.”

“What does it mean?” As he was still thinking, he heard a sound coming from the other stall of the toilet.
“Bari, bari, bari, bari, bari…”

What is this? Then he saw a girl with a similar appearance to Hanako-san there, eating a human skull. The sound of bari bari was coming from her eating the skull.

He started running away from the toilet. Somehow, he knew the danger would be averted if he could get out of the school. At the same time, he realised he had had this dream before.
He continued to run away desperately.

When he turned around for a moment, Bari Bari girl was right there and said, “I thought I could kill you this time”.
That’s when he managed to wake up.

This Bari Bari story and Monkey Dream seem very similar in that they both tell of the fear that dreamers will be killed in a dream.

↓Check out Hanako-san’s deep dive


Hanako-San (Hanako Of The Toilet): Ghost Girl Haunts School Toilets – Japanese Urban Legend/Creepypasta

“The next stop is… MINCED MEAT!”

You may have experienced realising in a dream that it was a dream, but only in such dreams does the content feel real, and I think it is quite common that you want to escape from the dream but cannot.

As in Monkey Dream Plus+, by reading Monkey Dream, you might get lost in it too.
Anyway, I wish you a good night’s sleep tonight, but otherwise, hope you can escape the nightmare without being MINCED MEAT…

↓Check out these related articles as well to find out more about Japanese urban legends/creepypastas!


My Top 10 Japanese Urban Legends/Creepypastas of the Scariest


Toshi Densetsu – Japanese Urban Legend/Creepypasta Archives

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