When I first began studying and researching dreams, I was surprised how often snakes slither into the collective dreamscape.  All these years later it still amazes me how many snake dreams are reported to me daily, and the majority of them are rather frightening… with good reason.  Snakes evoke fear in most of us, even to the point of phobia!  They have sharp teeth, a demonic forked tongue.  They can strike at lightning speed and inject you with their poison.  Shudder.

Because of these widely-feared characteristics, the dreaming mind often uses a snake to represent the dangerous, venomous behavior of  someone close to you, and most often, of someone who is typically male.  Yes, the phallic shape of the snake plays a big role in its meaning.

I recently dealt with a snake dream in my nationally syndicated newspaper column The Dream Zone. This is a really good example of how the low down people in our life can show up in our dreams as a low down, slithering snake…

Dear Lauri,
Last night I dreamed there were lots of snakes in the carpet and they were fighting spiders.  I was watching from another room.  I could see hundreds of them.  I knew that during the day they hid in the room but at night they took over the rug. I could see hundreds of them, not lethal, just swarming. – John, Chicago, IL

Lauri:  You’re a spectator in the dream so it may be connected to an issue in waking life where you are watching things go down, so to speak, rather than getting involved.  Or perhaps you are feeling disconnected from something you feel you should be a part of.

Snakes can represent health issues but more often they can represent someone with lowdown poisonous behavior. There were lots of snakes so that can mean that the waking issue is either multifaceted or that this issue involves lots of people that you feel are toxic.  And sometimes, the more there is of something in a dream, the more space the issue is taking up in your head.

The spiders suggest that this is something that has really been “bugging” you and that you may even be conflicted about since the snakes and spiders were in a conflict.  The snakes and spiders only coming out at night makes me think that this is about people you feel operate in a dark and shady manner. Since you had the dream last night, something from yesterday triggered it.

I think the main message from this dream is that the snakes weren’t lethal, which is a good indication that this seemingly poisonous situation – while unsettling – is not going to kill you so do not feel threatened. Be at peace.

John replies:  I am in the media and I talked to a friend yesterday who is also in the media. We were discussing our frustrations with how people operate in this field of work and how we are in the same boat, sort of in limbo, as we were both recently passed over for respective opportunities.  It really bugs me the way the media is and it’s so easy to take it personally. I am so over it and do feel I should disconnect from it. That is a daily feeling, actually. Thank you.

The snakes in John’s life are the people in the media he’s been dealing with for quite some time, which is why there were so many snakes… lots of poisonous people over many years (as there are in practically every industry). I love how his dream was showing him two important things: Detach yourself (emotionally) from the situation and it will not harm you.

dream-on-it-smOur dreams are full of comfort and advice, and when you can understand your dreams you will be able to obtain that made-for-you advice, advice that is best for you because it is coming from you! It’s not that hard to figure out your dreams. My latest book  Dream On It will give you all the tools you need to understand your dreams. You’ll wonder why you didn’t get this book sooner.

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