Monday, July 26, 2010

The Snake

The Dream: Later that night, after the dream of the malicious masks (last post), I dreamed of a snake.

Interpretation: In our culture the snake has connotations both negative (the Garden of Eden provocateur) and positive (the doctor’s caduceus, a healing symbol). By its ambiguity this image warns me that good and evil can and do co-exist: as Solzhenitsyn says, if you want to rid the world of evil you must rip out half your own heart.

Jung has a different take: “The idea of transformation and renewal by means of a serpent is a well-substantiated archetype. It is the healing serpent, representing the god. . . . Probably the most significant development of serpent symbolism as regards renewal of personality is to be found in Kundalini yoga.”*

*Carl Gustav Jung, Dreams, Translated by R.F.C. Hull, (Princeton: Bollingen Paperback Edition, 1974),  218.

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