10 Snake Symbolism, Myths & Meaning: A Totem, Spirit & Power Animal

Most people dislike Snakes so much that they miss out on the helpfulness of the Snake’s symbolism. Snakes could perhaps have the oldest mythological symbolism — even the Bible’s Humankind origin story included a Snake. The Snake’s representation here may be evil but not everyone sees the Snake as such. In general, it is mostly representing infinity.

Snake Symbolism Facts & Meaning: A Totem, Spirit & Power Animal

Snake Symbolism & Meaning

The Snake’s shedding of their skin have represented change, rebirth, and transformation since the ancient times. Because the Snake is usually seen crawling on the ground, it is also linked to the earth and life itself with its toiling, dragging itself using its belly. It is also said that they symbolize the umbilical cord that joins all humans with Mother Earth. This Great Goddess or Mother Goddess of animistic or pantheistic religions has a couple of Snakes as her familiar, entwining themselves around her sacred staff, much like the well-known Caduceus staff.

Another well-known symbol is the ouroboros. This symbol depicts a Snake eating its own tail which represents eternity — the continual renewal of life. When it is coiled upon itself, it is the sacred spiral symbolizing growth and spiritual healing.

Top 30 Snake Spiritual Meanings

Temptation Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are portrayed as symbols of temptation and the allure of material wants in certain religious myths and legends. This is particularly relevant in Abrahamic religions such as Christianity, where the Snake is linked to Satan or the devil. The Snake, for example, tempts Eve to eat the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden myth, signifying the lure of earthly wants and the temptation to reject heavenly precepts. However, views may differ between religions and civilizations.

Rebirth Spiritual Meaning

A Snake peeling off its skin indicates rebirth or regeneration. The Snake’s skin tightens as it grows, which leads it to shed the old skin and emerge with a new one. This process represents individual growth, change, and the chance for a new beginning. We may let go of outmoded ideas and practices in the same way that a Snake removes its old skin, accepting transformation and setting out on an endeavor of growth in ourselves.

Spiritual Awakening Spiritual Meaning

The presence of a Snake might be considered a symbol of spiritual enlightenment or travel. It indicates that a person’s awareness is growing or becoming more attentive to spiritual things. An encounter with a Snake may signal the starting point or progression of this awakening, which leads to a better awareness of yourself and the spiritual universe. It serves as a reminder to listen to our inner direction, seek greater truths, and start on a transforming spiritual journey.

Duality Spiritual Meaning

The dual nature of the Snake, which encompasses both deadly and benign aspects, represents the simultaneous presence of light and darkness inside humans. It serves as a reminder that we all have good and bad sides. We can attain balance and fullness by acknowledging and appreciating such conflicting characteristics.

Healing Spiritual Meaning

With regard to both physical and spiritual dimensions, Snakes are linked to healing energy. Snakes are deeply linked to the capacity for healing across many civilizations. The ability they have to shed skin signifies rebirth and regeneration. The serpentine movement of a Snake is considered a flow of energy that may reestablish balance and boost wellbeing. Snakes are regarded as symbols of metamorphosis and renewal in various cultures, providing knowledge about the healing process.

Energy Spiritual Meaning

Snakes signify the harmonious flow of life force within their bodies and beyond. They illustrate the balance of different forces and the interaction of energy. Their sinuous motions remind us to keep our energies in balance and aligned for good health and harmony with God.

Primal Instincts Spiritual Meaning

The primitive characteristic of Snakes symbolizes the need to join with our primal urges and inner selves. It encourages us to delve into our natural knowledge and basic signals, which can lead us to genuine and spontaneous choices. The significance of the Snake stresses how crucial it is to follow our instincts, believe in our impulses, and appreciate our basic selves.

Balance Spiritual Meaning

The capability of the Snake to move across the earth’s surface and above represents harmony among the earthly and heavenly realms. It signifies the perfect union of the two separate components of existence. The Snake’s attachment to the earth denotes its relation to the physical world, while its upward journey into the sky denotes its union with the greater spiritual realms. The imagery acts as an indicator to seek equilibrium between material things and the celestial in our worldly lives and spiritual development. We may create an extensive and equitable perspective on life by appreciating both domains.

Transformation Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are associated with metamorphosis given that they discard their outermost layer, a sign of personal development and change. The removal process represents letting go of old habits, opinions, and habits to create a place for new starts and individual progress. Like the Snake shedding its old skin, we could let go of anything that no longer benefits us and acknowledge transforming events. This symbolism inspires us to accept change, pursue personal development, and set out on an avenue of self-improvement.

Awareness Spiritual Meaning

An encounter with a Snake may teach you a lot about the need to be vigilant and aware of your surroundings. When we see a Snake, we might grow more alert, pushing us to pay attention to obstacles and possible dangers in the area surrounding us. It reflects our need to be aware of our environment and pay attention to how we interact with individuals. We are motivated to pay attention to our environment, sharpen our awareness, and handle our situations with greater insight after seeing a Snake.

Facing Fear Spiritual Meaning

A Snake interaction could serve as encouragement to face fear or negative feelings. The appearance of a Snake functions as a trigger for reflection, enabling us to face up to our innermost anxieties and feelings. It represents the possibility of one’s own advancement and release from the constraints created by fear. We can conquer our worries, build resiliency, and experience inner power by recognizing and accepting this transforming experience.

Cycles Spiritual Meaning

Snakes stand for the repetitive rhythms of being born, dying, and reborn. It reflect one’s comprehension of life’s cycles. They inform us of the underlying cycle and motion that define living creatures as creatures that slumber and arise. The removal process of their skin is a physical reflection of life’s cyclical cycle, as old phases expire and new ones arise. As we acknowledge that evolution is a necessary component of our path, the appearance of a Snake teaches us to understand and appreciate the rhythms in our own lives.

Sexuality and Fertility Spiritual Meaning

The Snake’s shape and movement, with their phallic looks and serpentine motion, have long been linked to sexuality and reproduction. Snake phallic iconography is frequently linked with male-oriented sexuality and vitality. Furthermore, their serpentine motions invoke pleasure and the periodicity of the reproduction process. Snakes are frequently associated with reproductive ceremonies and practices, reflecting primeval life energy and the imaginative potential of reproduction.

Esoteric Knowledge Spiritual Meaning

The image of a Snake is frequently linked with spiritual or esoteric knowledge. Snakes have long been recognized as prehistoric emblems of intelligence and secret understanding across various civilizations and ideologies. Their sinuous form and capacity to travel across worlds are viewed as analogies for acquiring hidden or holy truths. The Snake is usually seen as an intuitive guide in esoteric customs, signifying the path to knowledge and discovering oneself.

Transcendence Spiritual Meaning

The presence of a Snake can represent the ability to transcend constraints and achieve higher realms of awareness. Snakes have traditionally been connected with spiritual enlightenment and transformation. Their capacity to remove their old skin and develop anew is a strong illustration of human progress and liberation from restrictions. Snakes serve as a constant reminder to liberate ourselves of the limiting habits, attitudes, and actions that hinder us from realizing all that we can be.

Hidden Aspects Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are often associated with the uncovering of concealed or hidden elements of oneself. Their presence stands for a chance to go deeper and discover the undiscovered parts of ourselves that might become rejected or neglected. It signifies a method of finding oneself when we encounter and reconcile pieces of ourselves that were previously concealed or suppressed, much like a Snake creeping into concealed regions. We acquire a better awareness of ourselves and stimulate individual growth by uncovering and loving these concealed characteristics.

Enlightenment Spiritual Meaning

The picture of a Snake is richly symbolic of the road to higher consciousness and self-awareness. Snakes are frequently viewed as mystical beings who represent old wisdom and spiritual development. Being able to remove their outer layer and endure change represents the soul’s path towards waking and greater awareness. It indicates the possibility of overcoming routine and reaching an experience of deep comprehension and self-awareness.

Intuition Spiritual Meaning

Snakes have a close connection with sensitivity and improved vision. They represent intuitive strength and their ability to travel to concealed regions. Snakes’ sinuous form, along with their sharp sensations, symbolizes the value of following our instincts and delving into our inner knowledge. Snakes are thought to have an in-depth knowledge of the secret and obscure parts of life, which inspires us to nurture and hone our perceptive talents.

Wisdom Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are regarded in many cultures as smart beings, symbolizing old wisdom and understanding. They represent the building up of significant ideas and the capacity to access greater levels of comprehension. Snakes are associated with knowledge as a result of their believed ability to negotiate the complexity of life and provide assistance with rendering educated judgments.

Resurrection Spiritual Meaning

Snakes have a connection with rebirth and eternal life, owing to their exceptional ability to shed their skin. The act of peeling indicates an act of rebirth and regeneration, in which the Snake appears with new, refreshed skin. The metaphor is strongly entrenched in the belief in resurgence, highlighting the life-death-rebirth cycle. The removal of old skin represents a release from restrictions and the likelihood of transformational advancement.

Kundalini Awakening Spiritual Meaning

The Snake has a connection with Kundalini awakening, a process in which repressed divine power rises from the base of the spine to the head. This life-changing adventure leads to a state of spirituality and increased perception. The Snake represents the rebirth of this energy, which cleanses and stimulates the chakras. It makes us aware of the immense capacity we each possess to uncover our true abilities and set out on a meaningful journey of self-discovery. We can achieve spiritual enlightenment and open secret levels of awareness through Kundalini.

Shadow Work Spiritual Meaning

Snakes encourage us to face and embrace our secret fears and shadow sides. They implore us to go into the deepest parts of who we are and merge all aspects of ourselves. We grow into something fuller by accepting our anxieties. We attain confidence and more awareness of who we are by accepting this meaning.

Transformation of Obstacles Spiritual Meaning

According to the Snake emblem, an opportunity exists to face up to and surpass problems or barriers in life. Adversity may help us grow into something stronger, much like Snakes lose their skin. The appearance of a Snake serves as a reminder to accept evolution and learn from adversity. By addressing problems with bravery, we can convert them into possibilities for individual development and accomplishment.

Connection with Nature Spiritual Meaning

A Snake informs us of our close relationship to the environment. We have an unbreakable connection to all life on earth and the surroundings in which we live. A Snake’s existence inspires us to form connections with nature, enjoy its splendor, and take ownership of its upkeep. We can promote an impression of peace and ecological consciousness in our lives by appreciating our intimate relationship with nature.

Creative Power Spiritual Meaning

The Snake’s tendency to molt its skin is an analogy for the creative power of releasing things and welcoming fresh starts. By getting rid of anything that no longer benefits us, we allow space for fresh thoughts and ideas to flow. The enigmatic nature of Snakes tells us to embrace the possibility of rebirth and growth in our artistic undertakings. It stimulates us to tap into our inner potential for creativity and go on a path of expressiveness and artistic discovery.

Divine Feminine Energy Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are often linked with the divine feminine, indicating the dominant and intriguing traits that define female gods. Intuition, knowledge, intimacy, and transformation are all emphasized in this imagery. The relationship of Snakes with the divine feminine urges us to rekindle our inner knowledge, look into our senses, and accept the transformational energy of the goddess.

Inner Strength Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are often viewed as representations of inner strength and determination. Their capacity to adjust and conquer obstacles acts as an illustration of our individual intrinsic strength. The representation of a Snake motivates us to find our own internal power, believe in ourselves, and endure in the face of adversity. We can promote endurance and learn more from life’s challenges by accepting this meaning.

Protection Spiritual Meaning

Snakes are considered defenders in particular cultures, defending them from evil energy. They are said to generate a sense of safety and protect us from adverse effects. Accepting the safeguarding metaphor of Snakes allows us to develop consciousness and immerse ourselves in promoting energies for our health and religious safety.

Life Force Spiritual Meaning

Snakes have a common link with Kundalini, the immense source of life energy. All of this emphasizes how they are related to the basic spirit that circulates inside every living thing. Snakes significantly inform us of our inherent capacity and ask us to discover the latent forces necessary for our advancement in faith and realizing oneself. Accepting this meaning helps us connect with our own inner vigor and realize our full capacity.

Divine Guidance Spiritual Meaning

Discovering a Snake can be interpreted as religious guidance or a communication from something greater. It indicates esoteric interactions, urging us to stay alert and receptive to the universe’s instructions and wisdom. We are encouraged to follow our instincts and pay attention to coincidences and indications that a Snake is around.

Snake Spirit Animal

As a spirit animal, the Snake slithers into your life to change your focus in life. It wants you to give up the past and focus on the present. As the Snake sheds its skin, it invites you to give up your old perceptions of things. Since it also wants your spirituality to grow, the Snake will watch over your journey towards better aspirations. Expect the Snake to warn you when you’re moving too fast and to steer you to the right direction when you are lost.

Snake Power Animal

As a power animal, the Snake will guide you through your transformation. If you want to bring about significant changes in your life, do not be afraid to call out the Snake for help. As the Snake sheds its skin to get rid of all the bacteria and filth it has accumulated, so can you. You have the power to shed off your past and your guilt, for a fresh new you to be reborn. 

Snake Totem Animal

The Snake as a totem animal represents the dualism of good and evil. People with the Snake as their totem have the tendency for both the ends of the spectrum. For this reason, Snake people should be wary of their decisions as it can always go both ways. An unplanned journey could be disastrous but could also be the most unexpectedly fun. As long as you plan out contingencies, you’ll be out of harm’s way.

Your friends and family sees your presence as a warm hug. People born under the Snake totem are very flexible. They can adapt to their situations quickly and can very much strive in it. You are born with the ability to rid yourself of guilt.

Snake Native American Symbolism

Kingsnakes are revered in some California Indian cultures. In Anishinaabe tribes, medicine bags are made from Snake skin. It was believed that the Snake’s venom could cure diseases so it became the symbol of healing.

Some Indian tribes associate the Snake with the lightning phallus symbol while other tribes associate it with fertility. This further supports the Snake’s duality of symbolism: phallic symbol vs. fertility; good and evil; creation and death — in short, the Snake wants balance.

Snake Celtic Symbolism

The adder can withstand the cold, which makes it the only kind of Snake the ancient Celtics observed back in the day. These Snakes burrows deeply unto the earth’s womb, so the Celts consider them forerunners of female power. However, since they have a phallic shape and are great hunters, they are also attributed male powers. This is said to lead to a mix of powers — coupling, if you may. This union results to an offspring that are not necessarily babies. Rather, a new energy is born, with which the triple Celtic symbols originates.

The Celtic “horned-god” Cernunnos holds a Snake and is said to indicate that he is the ruler of creation, fertility, and cosmic balance. As a creature of mystical origins, the Celts view the Snake as gatekeepers of the other side.

Snake Far Eastern Symbolism

The serpent is the most revered creature in Mayan symbolism. Its ability to swallow its prey whole is considered magic and a representation of metamorphosis. What we see as feeding, the Mayans saw as a transformation. These brings it closely similar to the Chinese culture, considering the Snake also as a symbol of mystery. Moreover, the Snake’s mouth is seen as a figure of the gaping void which connects the Snake to the mystical.

Although Ixchel is a jaguar goddess, the serpent in her hair translates to the complete transformation of the mind, soul, and body. This is said to encourage people to enter the unknown (serpent’s mouth), be consumed and come out deeply transformed.

Snake in Dreams

Since the Snake can open chakras, it represents Kundalini energy, where the Snake is the energy coiled at your spine. The coiled serpent, which according to Kundalini yoga is where creativity and emotions are seated. Hence, Snake dreams speak of your deepest desires and motivations.

The Snake visits your dream when it is signaling you to shed your habits. It is inviting you to seek self-improvement. If your dream is of a headless Snake, then it is warning you that danger is about and you are currently unaware. If the Snake in your dream is eating its own tail or devouring himself, much like the Ouroboros, it is reminding you that there is life after death, hope after failure.

Snake Encounters / Snake Omens

If you encounter the Snake, it is telling you to wake up and see the world around you. It wants you to be conscious of your soul and its desires. It is reminding you of your connection to the universe and wants you to do something about it.

Snake Mythology and Folklore

All through history, human civilizations have both revered and reviled Snakes. They are a common emblem of change, healing, and rebirth due to their venomous fangs, crawling bodies, and capacity to shed their skin. At the same time, they have inspired superstition and fear due to their nocturnal habits, cunning maneuvers, and devastating bites.

Below we identify certain incredible myths, folktales, and legends about Snakes from throughout the world. From the ancient Greek tale of Medusa to the Aboriginal Dreamtime epic of the Rainbow Serpent, these tales demonstrate the tremendous historic value that Snakes have preserved for countless years.

Snakes have historically been linked with origin and the beginning of existence in many cultures. For example, the Aztecs believed that their god Quetzalcoatl was a winged Snake who created the cosmos and everything in it. This feathered serpent, who is in a multitude of mythological stories, is also often associated as a symbol of death and resurrection. Quetzalcoatl was a member of the four Tezcatlipocas, or cosmic forces, in Aztec mythology and was linked with the cultural skills they needed.

In Hindu mythology, Snakes are also usually associated with creativity and the divine feminine. The coiled Snake known as Kundalini is believed to represent the cosmic essence dormant at the spinal column’s bottom, ready to awaken and ascend through the chakras for enlightenment. In this sense, the Snake symbolizes both the strength of transformation as well as the potential for personal development and self-realization.

In many civilizations, Snakes have also been tied to healing and medicine. For instance, the ancient Greek god Asclepius was often shown with a serpent-entwined staff, resulting to the emblem of modern medicine. According to legend, Asclepius learned the mysteries of healing from a Snake and was capable of healing even the most difficult diseases with his wisdom. Snakes are frequently used as a source of medicinal ingredients in traditional Chinese medicine, such as Snake venom, known for its pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties. Moreover, the ouroboros, an ancient symbol of the serpent, is said to inspire the endless knot. Also referred to as the Chinese Snake knot, it is said to be a representation of good luck.

Snakes, on the other hand, have been associated with danger, deception, and maliciousness. The Snake is pictured in the Bible as the tempter who convinced Eve to eat the forbidden fruit, bringing in the fall of humanity. Other than Eve’s serpent, the Bible also mentioned Snakes in other stories, like the illustration showing Aaron’s display of miracles, turning a rod into a Snake. When the sorcerers’ staffs became Snakes as well, Aaron’s rod devoured all of them, which according to some sources corresponds to death and affliction.

Jörmungandr, the giant sea Snake in Norse mythology, is a malevolent power that encircles the earth, ready to inflict disaster during Ragnarok, the final battle between both the gods and the giants.

Snakes are typically portrayed in African mythology as deceivers and shape-shifters, susceptible to taking human form and tricking the naive. The Yoruba people of Nigeria, for example, revere Oshunmare, a Snake deity associated with the rainbow and transformation. According to mythology, Oshunmare may have the appearance of a human or a Snake, and depending on his mood, he can use his abilities to bring good fortune or disaster.

Below are some instances of Snake mythology, folklore, and legendary stories from many cultures throughout the world:

Quetzalcoatl (ket-sul-kuh-waa-tl)
Jörmungandr (your-moon-gahn-dr)
The Rainbow Serpent
Mami Wata
The Garden of Eden

In conclusion, Snake myths, folklore, and legends are as varied and unique as the nations from which they emerged. From the creation tales of the ancient Aztec and Hindu cultures to the shape-shifting tricksters of African folklore, Snakes have played a significant role in shaping the popular mind and the way in how we perceive the world around us. Whether they’re considered interpretations of change, healing, or evil, Snakes manage to capture our interest and encourage us to dig deeper into the secrets of the natural environment.

6 thoughts on “10 Snake Symbolism, Myths & Meaning: A Totem, Spirit & Power Animal”

  1. b says:

    The snake was nice

  2. R says:


  3. Jennifer Bower says:

    Does excessive skin shedding, and I mean excessive, mean anything spiritually. If someone is constantly shedding but not peeling does it mean anything or symbolize or foretell prophecies?

  4. Lisifianna Kessel says:

    What would the meaning of a dream be where you are drawn to a blue and green snake, picking it up it wraps around your arm and squeezes it. This leaves a deep imprint on your arm with some spots bleeding. Would you know what this dream might be trying to tell me?
    Thank you.

    1. Reverend John says:

      It means your screwed

  5. Taliese says:

    I had a dream where I seen a snake in the distance head in the air slithering away so I was aware. But I get in my semi truck and my wife is sitting in back on the bed I’m fusing at my step daughter on the passenger side warning her get in close the door there are snakes out she gets in the truck closes door I then remember my door or window is open when I turn to my window my heart drops. Either my side mirror has a long extension or it was a branch with a cobra black an yellow diamond back sitting coiled in a tight slithering position next to my window. It quickly came at me through the window mouth open an bit my hand it moves across my lap looked at my wife then it left.I instantly said in my head cobra I begged her to take me to a hospital quickly instead someone came to me. He asked was I in pain he pressed on my shoulders which felt tender an swollen I told him yes but only a little he said you won’t die you will be alright I was worried he was wrong and why didn’t it bite my wife it just looked at her then I woke up. What is the meaning of this dream.

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