The Energy of Symbolism in Our Lives and its Healing Abilities
By: Stacy Cruikshank, RN, BSN, MSN, Family Nurse Practitioner, Reiki Master and Healing Touch Practitioner
What do certain symbols mean when they present themselves to us?
I recently attended my Level 5 Healing Touch retreat in Pennsylvania. Two weeks prior, and during my time at the retreat, snakes presented themselves to me multiple times in life, dreams and during a Healing Touch session. Snakes had presented themselves to me two years ago in life, in shoes, and in dreams during a time of transformation (which snakes are known to symbolize).
Recently while weeding and redoing a rock bed in the front of our home I found a snake living under a gutter splash. I jumped and covered him back up. I had awhile before I would get to his spot. I did however let him know that he would have to be moving soon. He didn’t move. I uncovered him again and asked him to move. When he did not move, I gentle encouraged him with my shovel. He moved right on top of my new bags of rocks. Even though he was a small garden snake, he made me very uncomfortable. I kept one eye on him and one eye on my weeding. I finished clearing the ground and placed weed barrier cloth down. I needed my rocks. Again, I gentle coxed the snake off the bags and he went right under the barrier cloth. I did not want to bury him under the rocks. I lifted up the cloth and picked him up with my shovel. He took a gentle ride into the wooded area next to our home.
Two years previously I met Mike, he was a preceptor for my nurse practitioner clinical course. Mike’s son had two corn snakes that he talked about frequently which made me squirm. Mike helped me to the view life differently, to stretch myself professionally and personally. Sometimes these stretches made me feel uncomfortable, but helped me to gain confidence in myself and my abilities of being a great nurse, nurse practitioner, mother and wife. The first day I met Mike I knew he had been sent to me for a reason. It was a long and very emotional day. After that first day of clinical with Mike, I went shoe shopping. I didn’t really need any new shoes. Although I had been wanting a pair of cow girl boots. I ended up buying three pairs of shoes that day. All off the clearance rack too. I love finding a good bargain. I realized later when I looked at the shoes that they all had some form of snake skin pattern on them. And yes, one pair was of violet cow girl boots with a foe snake skin.
So, why are snakes presenting themselves to me again now? Is it another time for transformation and growth? Is there another meaning to them or do I need to face my fear of snakes? The answers are yes and yes. I was lucky to be at a retreat which had a nature center with multiple animals, including three snakes. The snakes were Monty the Ball Python, Sheldon the Western Hognose and Houdini the Milk Snake. Hum? Someone has a sense of humor and a way to help others feel ‘happy’ around snakes. I know I laughed once I read their names. When I first walked up to their aquariums I noticed I could feel an intense fear of them coming from my heart chakra even though I was protected from them. There were all asleep, curled up under their make shift rocks. I took a step back and visited all of the other animals and then came back to snakes.
As I sat on a couch in the nature center, a bit away from the snakes I turned my body towards them, but they were still out of sight. As I sat there my hand instantly went to my heart. I thought I can come from a place of fear of a place of love. I choose Love. Walking into the nature center I never intended to complete a Healing Touch sequence on myself…I just went to “talk” to the snakes. I found myself completing the Spiral Meditation on myself and at each chakra I asked a question or allowed information to come to me. Spiral Meditation…how snake like.
I started with asking, “Why am I scared of snakes?” The reply from the snakes was, “We are just as scared of you as you are of us.” Interesting. Next I told the snakes that I am uneasy when I see that they have eaten a mouse and you can see the outline of them in their body. The snakes replied. “What is the difference? You just had chicken at lunch. Our body make up is just different and you can’t see you meal.” Me again, “Hum? You are right.” As I proceeded through the chakra connection I received several additional messages. We are similar in that we both shed our skin literally and figuratively. We shed about 500 million skin cells each day and we also shed our “skin” when it no longer serves us (habits, relationships, careers, and so on). I saw a snake happily slithering along and then sunning itself on a rock in the warm sun. I too like to sun myself and be warm. Next I saw a snake on the ground, hiding in a tree trunk, hanging from a tree limb and skimming across a body of water. I asked why are you showing me this and the reply I received is that snakes are all around us. I was told that I should be more aware of all my surroundings each and every day and take notice of the things I may be missing. Next I saw a snake with cloudy eyes and asked what it meant. The snakes replied we do not always see well so we rely on our other abilities and senses. We use smell, taste and most importantly vibrations. What are vibrations? Vibrations are energy. What do we do in Healing Touch? We sense and feel our client’s vibrations and energy field and patterns. How magical I thought.
After completing the opening of the Spiral I felt the need to complete the Heart to Heart Meditation with the snakes. I wanted to send love to them for all of the information they shared with me. The love I felt was very warm and comforting. As I sat there doing the Heart to Heart Meditation I found myself “petting” my leg. I envisioned petting and doing magnetic clearing on the snakes. Once the Heart to Heart Meditation was completed, I closed the Spiral. After closing the Spiral I went over to the aquariums to thank the snakes one more time and to my surprise Monty and Sheldon were awake and partially stretched out from under their rocks. I stood there and admired their markings and their beauty. I noticed I no longer felt fear as I stood in front of them. What an amazing experience and valuable information I received from these amazing animals.
The snake symbol has many potential meanings: healing, transformation, goddess energy, life force, spiritual guidance, grounding, healing powers, support for moving forward, protector and guardian, creative awakening forces, and many more.
Have you had a recurrent symbol show up in your life? Have you taken the time to sit with it and to figure out the meaning of the symbol for yourself and why it is in your life at this time? What energy does this symbol hold for you? The symbols that show up in our lives may have a purpose or a meaning which may be helpful in learning about ourselves, current or past situations or how to deal with a current life issue or pattern. What do you see in the world around you?