Snake Symbolism and Meaning: Are They Really Vicious or Pose Good Luck?

Snake Symbolism and Meaning

Snakes have several interpretations in several mythologies, beliefs, and cultures.

It’s noticeable how we all tend to relate these creatures highly to some stipulated symbolisms and that their appearance is never termed as just an incident or coincidence, rather, people are always looking for the meaning behind its appearance.

So In this article, I’ll explain snake symbolism and meaning in detail. I’ll cover all the good and bad symbolism of this animal.

Understanding Snake Symbolism and Meaning 

In a general context, a snake is a symbol of rebirth, transformation, fertility, and healing. In western culture, the snake symbolizes life and death, healing, and rebirth. While in eastern culture a snake is represented as a god with good and evil powers.

  • Snakes stay closest to the earth as every inch of their skin stays in touch with the earth while they move. This makes them largely symbolic of Earth and soil and are often referred to as a part of soil and earth and believed that they have emerged from under the ground.
  • Snakes, as we all know, represent negative notions in almost all cultures except a few. Not only negative but snakes are also referred to as a sign of evil or bad omen and signify the dark shadow of viciousness.
  • As these creatures tend to shed their skin, they also represent rejuvenation, rebirth, and transformation as an essential sector of the  life cycle. This symbolism of regeneration is however extended up to the belief of immortality as well in certain civilizations.
  • Snakes are also worshiped as Serpent God in some cultures and are believed to carry the news of fertility and birth. However, this belief is also prevalent in certain cultures that perceive snakes as a demon omen.
  • Just like they symbolize creation, they definitely represent destruction too. It is their venom and predatory skills that stand responsible for its demonic interpretations. The beliefs root deeper into the theory that snakes can be both creator and destroyer and hence are embodiments of God Himself.
  • Snakes also are believed to be aware of every peril taking place in the underworld and in Hell. They are hence also referred to as mystical and symbolize conspiracy, betrayal and sins.
  • Snakes however in several cultures also represent sexual intercourse.

Snakes Symbolism And Meaning In Different Civilizations 

What Does Snake Symbolizes In Native Americans Culture?

The Southwest has been largely noticed to associate flashes of lightning and speed of evil power with Snakes and their speedy, smooth, and rapid movements.

The Hopi tribes of Native Americans have their own clans called Snake Clans and use the water snakes as their emblem of symbolism and are carved in many rocks.

They also conduct a ritual of the Snake to protect them from predators while on a hiking or hunting mission.

The Navajo on the other hand firmly believed that the white snakes indicate towards the East or dawn, yellow snakes direct towards the West or dusk.

The black snakes are representatives of the darkness and hence are directed to the North as the darkest direction with the North star and the blue snakes direct the South as in the blue sky.

What Does Snake Symbolizes In Eastern Culture?

In the country of India, natives worship the Snake Goddess during the sacred month of the Hindu calendar, named Shravan.

They tend to feed these reptiles with a mixture of milk and bananas as their offerings.

They religiously believe that it is the month when the Goddess herself descends on Earth to reside in every snake and hence killing them would make sin an attempt to challenge divinity.

They believe that serpents rule Hell and the underworld of darkness.

Even the oldest Harappan or Indus Valley Civilization has traces of serpent worshiping cultures, like in ancient songs, manuscripts, myths, etc. in all the origins of Hindu culture with the essence of life and soul.

Japanese however are firm believers of the ideology that snakes are creators and worship them in agrarian worship of rice and the God of water.

For women who are suffering through emotional troughs and physical illness are believed to have been propitiated by the dreams of serpents by Kinashut Kamui, the ophidian deity of Ainu of Japan.

Chinese however see snakes as an absolute sign of cunning, evil and deceptive intentions. They believe that when good transforms into evil, they disguise themselves as snakes.

Snake Symbolism In Christianity

The Bible has a lot of verses that mention snakes, and undoubtedly all of them symbolize Satan and vicious motives in human minds.

It is a clear sign to refer to someone as a snake that they are harmful and have wicked intentions underneath the sugar-coated faces, and are here to take advantage of the ones who are worthy.

Snakes Symbolism In Celtic Civilization

Even though these reptiles do not indigenously belong to Ireland, Irish ancient literature has parts of snakes associated with treasures.

They are also said to have been in a fight with the Gods in which they were defeated in the high seas.

Celtic literature also states that Perseus, the water beast, ordered all serpents to leave Ireland except the pests and smaller serpents, and hence they still dwell on their land.

They treat Snakes highly as multifaceted symbols of the creation process and rebirth.

They also are symbolic of male reproduction and signify the appearance of offspring. Their deadly venom is used as medicine, and hence also displays healing.

Snakes also represent protection in their culture and hence are treated as guardian angels.

Are You Seeing Snakes In Your Dreams? Here’s The Meaning 

  • Snakes in your dreams, chasing you, or biting you might mean that your fear of the dreadful is going to occupy all of your mind and soul if you don’t stop it from eating you up inside. You need to shrug off the fear and move on.
  • Snakes shedding off their skin in your dream brings the message of transformation and you can expect that your lifestyle is going to change for the better in the near future.
  • When you see a snake dancing in your dream, it symbolizes fertility and good luck. You are soon going to receive the good news that will make your heart and soul content.
  • When you see two snakes in an sexual intercourse in a dream, it might mean that a significant other is going to come into your life soon and is going to fulfill all your sensual desires.
  • Native Americans believe that dreaming of a snake simply means that you have earned some enemies who have an eye on you ready to bite you with their venomous fangs just like a snake. You must beware of these pretentious people before they try to harm you.
  • If you see a dream of killing a snake, you are devoid of all enemies now that you have defeated all of them and you can finally brace for peace, happiness, and positive energy around you.
  • Snakes wrapped around your body however might mean that you are caged in a situation that you are trying to escape. It asks you to hurry your way out before the knot gets tighter.

Totems and Omens Realted To Snakes

  • It is believed that Snakes are a form of male reproductive organ and that engulping them in the form of a worm can impregnate a woman.
  • Snakes are referred to as sensual temptations and that if a couple witnesses them together, they are going to involve in an excellent sexual intercourse in the near future.
  • It is considered sinful to kill a snake that resided within the boundaries of your property for a night and might lead to destruction of the property.
  • Buying a snake and setting it free into the woods is considered a good omen and can bring good fortunes into your life.

Is Snake Your Spirit Animal? 

  • If you encounter snakes as your Spirit Animal, you undoubtedly are an epitome of transformation. It depicts that you will continue to grow and learn new things throughout your life with the constant hunger and curiosity to know more.
  • Also, a snake is a healer for its venom that has highly effective medicinal properties. So if you have it as your spirit animal, you are a helper who extends hands towards the needy and heals them with your grace.
  • You are introspective, have high affinity to feminine traits and definitely a strong personality with a protector and fighter mindset. You are well aware of who you are and you won’t let others harm your individuality. Your boldness is beautifully feminine and inspirational.
  • You are here to explore yourself and the world and you will definitely accomplish your dreams!


Hence, snakes are symbolic of all aspects of life, be it their positive impact or negative impact, they always manage to make a mark in the lives of humans.

Besides all its evil sides for which they are quite famous, there are traits to them that are educational and inspirational.

These cold-blooded reptiles vividly reflect how just like everything that’s good has some hints of evil in it, everything that’s evil also comprises hints of goodness and healing in it.

Their indomitable spirit and self-awareness are of greater worth than any of their other traits and humans should definitely incorporate these traits in themselves to strive with pride and authority!

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