Snake Dreams


Lately I have been waking or woken with a flood of new insights about human life and living it. It involved my sons snake dream and my own snake dreams, because two days ago I dreamt I saw a medium sized python crawling along beside me. I immediately caught hold of it behind the head and held it at the same level as my head. I carried on involved in whatever I was doing, and occasionally forget and let it go. When I realised I was no longer holding it I caught hold of it again, but realised after about three times that the snake no longer tried to escape, and its head remained at the position I had left it, so I took my hand away and the head remained at the same place and level as I carried on moving about.

It is interesting that my sons snake also lifted its head and spoke to him. The lifting was seen as important by the insights I had.

The importance of this is emphasised by several snake dreams experienced over many years.

Here is the first one that I think is important.

Dreamt that a snake – a huge python—had raised me. I had the sense that it had cradled me in its coils when I was a baby, and that it had taught me without words how to survive. This was a sort of jungle/life wisdom.

The snake I have come to recognise as an expression of the reptile brain we all have, it is the fundamental biological energy – our life source. See Reptilian Brain

This basic part of our brain still deals with fundamental need food, procreation, survival and the fight or flight instinct – i.e. dealing with fear and threat. Such basic behaviour is looked after in babyhood by this brain. MacLean was early in demonstrating this brain but prior to MacLean’s findings it was assumed that the highest level of the brain, the neocortex, dominated the other, lower levels. MacLean, and since him others (Earl K. Miller), have found this is not so. In fact Miller was recently able to demonstrate that the older brain learns fast, and it gradually ‘trains’ the prefrontal cortex. So the dream is spot on, our first learning is from our reptilian brain. Such instinctive learning is, as suggested, probably a form of  jungle or basic life skills.

My second example was dreamt sometime in the 1970’s.

“I was in a huge cathedral, the mother church. I wanted to go to the toilet / gents. As I held my penis to urinate it became a snake and reached down to the urinal to drink. It was thirsty. I struggled with it, pulling it away from the unclean liquid. Still holding it I walked to a basin and gave it pure water to drink.”

This I see as an expression of a new life skill. I say this because it was a real struggle to pull the snake/penis up.  I had to do something new with my sexual feelings which had tormented me, even possessed me, so I had to learn to develop another relationship with them. The struggle lifting up the snake was an expression of the struggle that began the process of liberation. I realised over the years that there was nothing wrong with sexual feelings, but many humans remain simply as a spark of awareness dominated by their animal – reptilian – instincts. Many become sexaholics, alcoholics, poweraholics, moneyaholics, gobbleaholics, and all the other human traits many of us have no control over.

I see my sons snake being able to stand up and speak as a sign that his long years disciplining his appetite for food broke the hold the reptilian instincts had on his consciousness, and opened the door for consciousness to explore other levels. That it spoke to him shows his awareness had opened the ability for him to be aware of this primal level of his being and understand it in fuller degree.

The mother church I see as exactly what he has done; personal self awareness, our personality, becoming aware of the process of Life in him. We often feel it like a religious experience because it is – in other words a meeting with the Creative Forces of our being.

The writers of the New Testament understood this when they wrote. “…it will flow rivers of living water.” The pure water the snake/penis drank is, as far as I can understand it, the amazing new understanding and insights that flow through you as you open to it.

Later still I dreamt: “The last few nights I have experienced being very awake. It is again like being more awake in sleep. Or like it was as if I were experiencing intense cleansing or integrating activity, most of it connected with femininity. I can remember several of us walking down a road. We came to a church, on the left. Instead of entering we walked past to another church, this was the original or Mother Church, much older. We went into this church.

Just in the door was a raised platform – or rather, the church proper was lower than this balcony. We stood looking down into the church. It was of granite throughout. There was no furniture, all solid rock. The floor and the end of the church was massive granite. I cannot remember anything being where the altar usually is, only the impression of massive rock, polished smooth. The floor did have designs and words etched in it deep though.

I became filled with the spirit. It was like an intense emotion and power flowing through me, and it led me to sing and pray and speak.”

This I feel is an extended view of the basic meeting with the Creative that is within us, not an external God – neither male or female, but the basic rock or foundation of us. Into the rock are designs and understanding etched deep into our being, for we all have such understanding of our place in creation if we are humble enough to bow so low – looking down into the church which is our body – “don’t you know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit.”

To sum up, our body is your experience of Life itself. Life is the Mystery, and you are partaking of it or in it. We are seeds of that Mystery, but are still growing in our understanding or awareness of what we are. The basic level of our awareness is our basic instincts – the reptilian. Older cultures knew this and gave it various names such as kundalini the snake, chi the life force, shakti the primordial creative cosmic energy and many other names.

7 headed In many cultures, including the Christian, say there are seven levels of our being – in the Christian they are the seven churches, in Judaism it is represented by the seven candles, but often the kundalini is shown as a snake with  seven heads. It is expressed as energy, which if only allowed expression at the lowest level may never open up the other dimensions of our possibilities; for at the base is infinite potential.

Each level is opened, as depicted in the dream, by pulling or lifting up the basic energy or drives of our body. Often it is describe as a massive denial of our natural urges, but I feel that it only needs a discipline as shown in the Ox Herding pictures, where our natural urges, the buffalo, is gradually tamed.

ox1 ox2 ox3
 1  2  3


ox4 ox6
 4  5

The first image shows the person wandering through their life experiences without any awareness of the animal they are. The second image he sees traces of another part of himself. The third image he actually is aware of his animal influence. The fourth illustrates the struggle he/she has with it. The fifth shows it is no longer a struggle – but there is more because the series has ten stages. See Ox Herding Pictures

I believe the first stage is the awareness of the inner animal that has been dominating us. The second is taming it and so on. It need not be a terrible fight.

Basically the snake needs to go in the hole and stay there without moving.


“When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner as the outer, and the upper as the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male shall not be male, and the female shall not be female: . . . then you will enter [the kingdom].” Quoted from ‘The Gnostic Apostle Thomas

The Curious Mind

We have been told again and again that the Life Force or Kundalini, when released from its old patterns of instinctive animal expressions such as the urge for sex, the urge to over eat, or even to grab as much of the worldly treasure as we can and hold onto it, rises up the trunk awakening other centers until it reaches the top of the head.

Example: As I did so the colours got lighter and lighter. It felt as if something was going faster and faster. Yes, kaleidoscopic patterns were moving and changing faster, speeding up and getting lighter. First of all just colour, movement and intensity, then it burst into a direct awareness of energy in my being vibrating faster and faster. I could feel it moving upwards each side of my spine, actually vibrating. It got more and more intense until suddenly it felt like the energy had cleared all its pathways and was vibrating at tremendous speed without barriers. It was an incredible experience yet at the same time not at all strange.

Example: Then the landscape changes. There are trees, plants and animals in brilliant colour. I wonder what this means, and the landscape begins to spin until the colours blend and shimmer. Suddenly my body seems to open to them, as if they are spinning inside of me, and with a most glorious feeling, a sensation of vibrating energy pours up my trunk to my head.

But because we are all dual creatures and so live in a dual world, ‘upwards’ is always balanced with ‘downwards’. Even our brain has two halves with different functions which balance each other. We as human beings are deeply involved in such duality and often are lost in struggles to balance it – it is sex, female and male.

So the downward flow of the Life Energy is as important as the upward flow, but is generally overlooked. Strange because it is firmly rooted in Western culture.

Snake Bird3 Matthew 3:16: “And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water; and lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting upon Him; and lo a voice from heaven saying: This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.”

Both the rising and the descending are shown in the quote, “… when He was baptised, went up straightway out of the water.” He was down in the water and so rose up out of it. Then came the descent of the dove.

The quote is lost in symbolism, but because patterns are repeated in all levels of life we can see the same in plant life. In a seed its energy is latent until placed in the right conditions where it potential can express. Then from a fundamental place it first roots into its source of nourishment, in the human seed into the wall of the womb through it roots/placenta. Then it unfolds upwards and eventually seeks another source of energy to complement its potential which it has gathered from the past gathered from all its forebears. No plant or tree grows from a dead seed, and each living seed carries within it all its gathered experience.

But that is its past, it’s potential, but to grow it needs the energy it receives from the sun, the descending energy, enabling it to gather new experience and hold in any seeds it produces. That is plant growth, here is an example of human growth.

Example: I began to realise, or be shown, in my inner world, what had happened. My past practice to grow had unbalanced my Sun and Moon. My moon that had predominated. This was the Life Energy I had released in a past session, the vegetative God of the moon. That is, one aspect of the one Life expressing through evolution – expressing from deep within matter and the body. This is like the energy locked in a seed which grows it until it reaches up above earth. I could see why Reich called his method vegetotherapy – because the energy released was that bound up in the vegetative system of our body, in our emotions, muscles, sexual organs and glands. And although I had released this to a fair degree, I had hardly touched my Life of the Sun god or released it. This was the descending power of Light.

What had been a conflict now resolved itself. I had been polarised in the negative side of the Life energy. The cold, inward, in drawn, lethargic, inactive aspect. I must now open to my positive, outgoing, hot, digestive, fiery Life. This I did, and the Sun was on top of my head, and the Moon at the base of my spine. For a while they were separate, but then I knew them as one Life expressing into two ways, and my Sun and Moon merged. Now I could surrender to the one united Life.

While we sleep our conscious self is largely or totally unconscious, and while we sleep and dream our voluntary muscles are paralysed – therefore another will or motivating force moves our body. So we have a Conscious Will, and what I will call a Life Will. The first one we have experience of as we can move our arm or speak in everyday activities; but the second will takes over when we sleep. See Sleep Paralysis

This Life will can cause us to spontaneously speak, to move our body, and in fact do things that we cannot do with our Conscious Will, all that while we sleep and dream. The duality of our two wills can work together to move the conscious personality to greater balance. See Self-Regulation – Homeostasis

The next is a man’s experience during a session in which he surrending his whole self to the life force. I understand such experiences to be the way our being works, again within its duality, as a self regu;ating process. I define it as follows:

Example: Gradually the moans subsided after my body had twisted and shook and struggled, crying out in the struggle. The moans stopped. A slow dance began in which my fire of life lifted up and the divine fire descended into my being.

And now a very graphic dream of the downflowing energy.

This morning I dreamt I was in a house. I believe other people were in it too. From beyond sight in the sky a thin crystal clear column descended into the house. It looked like water but it had the consistency of a gel. Also it did not flow down in a torrent as water would, but flowed slowly downward into the house. I felt it was the descent of some special influence or substance coming from dimension beyond our own, and connected with non physical beings. It was about three inches across and I stood underneath it at one point.

As I stood there the gel slowly covered me and I felt that when I was completely covered I need not breathe. I guess this was rather like being in the womb. I wanted to share this experience with other people so I imagined them standing under the column.

Then I became slightly lucid and for ages existed in a condition in which I experienced being in a wonderful condition of peace, receiving the down flow of influence of the column of gel.

On using the method of identifying with the column and ither if the dream images, the man experienced the following:

“I am a column that is flowing from way, way beyond here. My feeling is that in identifying with the column and touching this huge stillness. It seems as if it is trying to tell me something. But it is difficult for it to get the words. But eventually the words came, the words formed themselves in my mouth. They did not flow from my head as usual, but from deep in my body, thus the difficult for it to form the words:

‘I met life in you.’

There was again a struggle to say something here but it did not come out clearly.

“I am a flow. I am like anything that moves. I can give. I can love. I can touch. I am touching life in you. I touch – like that! I am touching your life. I am giving love.”

So, I am saying to life, “Flow into me. Be me. What the hell is my life worth anyway – I give it to you. It is yours. Have it! What is our everyday life anyway? We eat, with sleep, we work at tasks that are probably quite meaningless in the big picture, we have sex, and what is the point of all that? I would sooner my life was part of the meaningful whole. Here I am.”

Now a most extraordinary thing happened. I experience feelings of being made love to, but not through the genitals, but through my head right the way through my being down into my genitals. For a long time it felt as if I didn’t need to breathe, and in fact I seemed to exist without breathing for quite a long time. There was a feeling of tremendous quietness. Inside something gently moving through the openness in my head down my being, flowing to my genitals. Once there it was like it opened something. It changed something. Then, gradually, that influence of change started moving up my being. I could feel it particularly touch and change things in places like my solar plexus and my heart. When it reached my throat I could feel it tickling and opening something there. It really felt painful as it went through these places, particularly as it reached into my head. It wasn’t a physical pain, but it felt as if something deep inside me was being stretched and opened, and that stretching was painful at a subtle level. I cried out in the pain. I wept. I cried out in pleasure – the mixture of pleasure and pain, just as if I were being made love to in a wonderful and delicate and yet painful way. As it touched and passed through my head I cried out, “Why? Why?”

Then it said, “It is finished. I love you.”


Sri Aurobindo was one of the great explorers of the inner world of humans. His writings are prolific, but his thought and work are masterfully expressed in a smaller format by Satprem in the book Sri Aurobindo – The Adventure of Consciousness. It is well worth reading, but here is a quote that spells out the descending Divine Force.

In Aurobindo’s own words, “When the Peace is established, this higher or Divine Force from above can descend and work in us. It descends usually first into the head and liberates inner mind centres, then into the heart centre, then into the navel and other vital centres, them into the sacral region and below. It works at the same time for perfection as well as liberation. It takes up the whole nature part by part and deals with it, rejecting what has to be rejected, sublimating what has to be sublimated, creating what has to be created. It integrates, harmonizes, establishes a new rhythm in the nature.”

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