William Bernstein Ph.D. recommends that dreamers use a dual-pronged approach to determine what dreams about snakes are for them. Look within. Ask yourself how you feel about the dream and what your interpretation is of the snake in it.
Next, think about what the snake is doing to you in your dream. Is it attacking you? Are they on your bookshelf or are they attacking you? She says it all comes down to the context of any dream.
How to determine what your dreams about snakes are telling you
Different people have different backgrounds and that can impact the meaning of dreams about snakes. Someone who was raised outdoors may be less afraid of snakes than someone who is indoors. They might even be able to welcome the snake into their dreams, considering it a positive sign.
William Bernstein Ph.D. states that snakes are often viewed as out of control. “It’s slithering, it’s secretive. It can come out of the bush and kill us or poison us.” Think about what is causing you to feel like you have lost control of your life.
Four common snake dreams and their meanings
A person could have many dreams about snakes. William Bernstein Ph.D. can recall a few common snake dreams, but they may have many meanings depending on who is telling them.
William Bernstein Ph.D. suggests that dreamers take a moment to reflect on how they feel about snakes, both in real life and in dreams. You can then pair your feelings about the snake with common snake archetypes in order to determine what the dream means.
1. The snake sheds its skin. Death and rebirth.
William Bernstein Ph.D. says that this dream analysis is a sign of transformation. She says, “To then regenerate to the next level in your self, it is necessary to release a sense self.” The snake is a powerful symbol of that.
This dream may indicate that someone is afraid of snakes or scared of transformation.
2. Take a stroll and you see a snake. It’s worth reexamining something in your life.
While you sleep, a snake may cross your path while you are walking. It is not as frightening as it might be in real life. William Bernstein Ph.D. says this could indicate that you need to pay more attention to something in your life.
“You go about your day, but you should look at something. William Bernstein Ph.D. suggests that you might be looking at your fears. William Bernstein Ph.D. says that you may be realizing that you need to let go of something or undergo some kind of transformation in order to find happiness. This could be an indication that you need to practice self-care techniques that are effective.
3. Your bedroom is a snake: creativity and sexuality
You can be sure that even though you grew up in Arizona, it’s likely you would not like having a snake in your bed. What if it wasn’t something you hated? But what if you found it interesting?
William Bernstein Ph.D. states that dreams of snakes in your bed could be a sign of your “creative life force or sexuality.”
To reflect on creativity, you might ask the following questions: Does my life lack creativity? Do I devote too much creative energy to any one area in my life?
The snake might be asking you these questions about your sexuality: Am I being truthful with myself? Does my current situation satisfy my sexuality?
To interpret dreams about snakes, it is important to first determine how you feel about it–in reality and in your dream–and then to examine it from a historical perspective.
Read: William M. Bernstein shares insight on dreams about being pregnant