Yes, it was an attack the hostile forces often take the form of this or that person to get through the physical association a more concrete grip on the physical consciousness.

These dreams are quite symbolic of the vital forces that come and attack you. If you face them with courage they are reduced to helplessness. I don't think that it is at all your father and brother that you meet, although something of their hostile feelings may be taken advantage of by those forces to take their figures, also they may do it in order to create sympathy in you and prevent you from acting against them. But apart from that the figures of the physical mother and father and relatives are very often symbolical of the physical or the hereditary nature or generally of the ordinary nature in which we are born.

The adverse forces take advantage of any perturbation of that kind, for it opens, as it were, a passage to their action. Fear is the one thing that one must never feel in face of them, for it makes them bold and aggressive.
Moreover, fear, as you justly say, calls the thing feared it must be thrown out altogether.

He heard the grisly voices that deny;
Assailed by thoughts that swarmed like spectral hordes,
A prey to the staring phantoms of the gloom
And terror approaching with its lethal mouth,
Driven by a strange will down ever down,
The sky above a communique of Doom,
He strove to shield his spirit from despair,
But felt the horror of the growing Night
And the Abyss rising to claim his soul.
Then ceased the abodes of creatures and their forms
And solitude wrapped him in its voiceless folds.