Everyone says it. If you want to be whole, if you want to be free, if you want to be healed, let go.
Easier said than done, don’t you think?
The other day, someone posted this question on Facebook: “How do you let go?”
I was in the middle of something else and didn’t comment. When I got back to Facebook the post was gone, but it’s a question I think all of us have faced at one time or another. Most of us face it time after time after time, because there are so many levels to letting go.
Personally, I recently hit another of those levels. I’m being guided to let go of everything and everyone: parents, children, ex, past lovers, potential lovers, people who have annoyed me, people I have annoyed, expectations, outcomes.
Not easy. Not easy at all. In fact there were a few in there that had me at a loss.
“How do I let go of THIS?” I asked my guides.
And by grace, I was given a solution.
“Be grateful,” they said.
They explained that attachments of any kind—whether it’s to people we love or people we’d rather not have to deal with—ultimately come from fear of loss. Either fear that something of ours will be taken away, or fear that we are somehow not whole without that person or situation.
In truth, all people and situations that come into our lives do so to help us learn, grow, and come back into ourselves.
Simply presencing each one with deep gratitude for the gifts and lessons they have brought helps to heal the belief in separation behind the attachment—whether it be perceived as love or as animosity—so that one can truly let go, heal, and be free.
Is it easy? No. But once they explained that letting go is not the same as abandonment, it became much easier.
I understand now that when I acknowledge and thank a person for his or her gifts and lessons, and release them to Spirit, if they have no more gifts and lessons to bring, they will drop away and it will be painless. And if they do have more to bring, maintaining a spirit of gratitude makes everything go smoother.
Also, they tell me that true soul mates bring limitless gifts, and open the door to unlimited gratitude, love, and abundance.
On New Year’s Eve, I was guided to finish a painting I’d started about a year ago based on a sketch of Archangel Haniel. As I did it became clear that it was no longer Haniel, but a beautiful goddess.
A little research into the symbols showing up here pointed me to the Celtic goddess Brigid – goddess of childbirth and new beginnings, agriculture, fire, healing, and unity.
To me her symbolism is profound and very appropriate for the times we are in. She is a manifestation of the great Triple Goddess, representing all phases of life (Maiden, Mother, and Crone or Grandmother) brought into wholeness.
To me, these three aspects of the Great Goddess reflect the Threefold Flame, or sacred trinity of the heart – Power, Love, and Wisdom. This is the essence of the Divine nature within us. When it is activated within us, it empowers us to go forth and truly start to enact our higher purpose in the world.
I really like that she came forward in the season of Capricorn, which has a lot to do with practicality and getting things done. I suspect that for many of us, this may be the year when all the inner work we’ve been doing begins to bear fruit in the outer world. Let’s hope so, anyway! 🙂
But that doesn’t mean things will change overnight. Brigid’s message to me was one of hope and keeping the faith:
“This is the dawning of a bright new age. We have crossed the threshold and are the keepers of a new covenant. It is our job (now) to tend the fires, to keep the hearth, to stand guard over newly planted fields and to stand firm against those who would trample them down…Though the fields may be barren and blackened with flame, yet below the soil life quickens. Gaia is very much alive and we are called to be the stewards of her beauty.”
(To hear her full message and more insights on her meaning, click over to YouTube to watch my video on Goddess Brigid.)
So as you move into 2019, don’t be discouraged by challenges.
You are here for a reason; whatever you feel called to do IS important. Keep your eye on the changes you want to see in the world, and just keep taking practical steps towards them. However small and unimportant they may seem at the time, your actions DO make a difference.
Collectively, we’ve got this!
(If you would like to order a print of Goddess Brigid (or purchase the original), contact me here.)
Seems like a lot of people these days are transitioning, purging, and/or going through some kind of awakening process. So it’s no wonder the Snake spirit animal has been coming up big time, not just for me personally, but for the collective what’s-happening-on-the-planet-right-now as well.
A lot of people don’t like snakes. They can be scary. They are cold blooded, which creeps some people out (although I met a woman once who loves snakes and insisted they feel “warm and velvety.”) On the trail, snakes have a habit of suddenly shooting like lightening from under your feet when you least expect it, which can be rather disconcerting. They devour their prey whole, sometimes squeezing them to death first (ugh.) And not only can they bite, but many species are venomous—some even deadly.
First, the Dark Side of Snake Symbolism
So it’s no wonder that the Snake spirit animal comes with a highly developed shadow side. The dark side of Snake meaning includes such things as:
And so on. I’m not going to spend a whole lot of time rehashing the negative spirit meaning of Snake or Serpent because I think we’re all pretty familiar with it. But, that doesn’t mean we should take it lightly.
In other words, a word of warning: don’t underestimate the dark side of serpent energy. As an expression of the shadow side of the feminine, it can be exceedingly devious and quite malevolent, especially in its efforts to undermine the divine masculine. (I’ll write about that topic some time.)
For now, just keep in mind that this is a power animal that demands both respect and vigilance. In its darker aspects, serpent energy is expert at worming its way into your energy field and striking when you least expect it. In this, it is an excellent teacher because it reminds us of the importance of staying alert and aware to what is going on within and around us.
However, my intention with this article was to focus more on the positive meanings of Snake as a power animal, because these are not only many, but very powerful. So if Snake is coming forward for you, don’t be alarmed. Instead, respectfully embrace it for its healing potential.
Serpent: The Ultimate Spirit Animal for Healers
Snakes are actually an ancient symbol of healing. You are probably familiar with the caduceus, the winged staff encircled by two snakes that has come to symbolize the medical profession. This symbol dates back to ancient Greece and is also associated with Archangel Raphael, the archangel of healing.
(Just as a quick aside, if you feel you’ve experienced a psychic snake bite of any sort, call on Raphael to help you bring in the positive aspects of snake energy to help in the healing. You may also want to look for antivenom of some kind – something that calls in lots of love energy. For example, gardenia essential oil used as aromatherapy.)
Then there is the biblical story in which God instructs Moses to erect a bronze serpent on a staff that healed those who looked upon it. Interesting that we don’t hear much about that these days.
But why should the snake, of all creatures, appear as a healing symbol? For that, we need to dig a little deeper and look to an even more ancient understanding of serpent symbolism (or alternatively, simply take a look at any living snake and intuit it.)
Snake Spirit Animal and Life Force or Kundalini
Take a good look at a snake. What other vertebrate has no legs, no wings, no feet, no fins? The thing is basically a head, a spine, and a digestive tract. Nothing extra. Nothing extraneous. This is animal at its most basic.
But holy cow – watch it zip across the ground like a living bolt of lightning!
Stripped down and powerfully focused, Serpent is an embodiment of the power of the life force itself. It represents kundalini energy, the prana or chi that yogis say sits coiled at the base of the spine, and can travel or even explode upwards at the time of spiritual awakening.
(So yes, if you’ve begun or are deep in the throes of an awakening process, Snake spirit animal can be a powerful guide for you!)
And here’s another thing: take a look at the caduceus – remind you of anything? If you ever took biology in high school, you can probably see the resemblance to the double helix of DNA strands. Yes, the building blocks of Life itself. I’m telling you, the power animal symbolism of Snake is PRIMAL, associated with fertility, creativity, and life’s vitality.
That idea of Snake as life force also comes forward in the symbol of the Ouroboros, or the snake swallowing its own tail. This symbol is first recorded in ancient Egypt (although I suspect it may be even older) and represents the cycles of renewal, the Circle of Life, and eternity.
The Serpent, Resurrection, and Masculine Power
But as if that wasn’t enough, there is another trait of the Snake that really serves to underscore this whole idea of renewal and immortality.
Snake is a reptile, and like most reptiles it sheds its skin periodically as it grows. This makes it a powerful symbol of renewal, regeneration, and even resurrection – enough so that Jesus even compared himself to Moses’ brazen snake.
Many other spiritual traditions also refer to the snake in this capacity. Take Lord Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction, for instance, who wears a cobra around his neck.
Shiva is actually highly regarded by devout hindus as a benevolent being. How is that? Because his is not vicious wanton destruction. Like the shedding of a serpent’s skin, the destruction he brings serves the purpose of clearing away that which is not of service to life, so that new growth can occur. it’s destroying, cutting away what no longer serves you, so you can more clearly see your purpose and start anew with a higher focus – in fact, he works very similarly to Archangel Michael. And can you see where the resurrection theme shows up here?
Another very masculine archetype that invokes the snake and resurrection is the Green Man of Celtic lore. Green Man carries the power of new life, and is connected with the cycle of the year – continually being born, dying, and rising again to new life. And yes, he is associated with the ouroboros.
Snake as a Symbol of Feminine Power and Wisdom
For all its masculine qualities (phallic shape and focused energy), the snake has huge connection with feminine energy as well. (In fact, this probably is at the core of why snake spirit animal energy is so powerful: it strongly embodies both masculine and feminine in one, making it a symbol of unity and integration.)
Yes, there are plenty of stories and archetypes that point out Snake’s manipulative or destructive dark side as pertains to the feminine. Adam, Eve, and the Serpent, for one (and yes, there are many ways to interpret this myth, but let’s save that political morass for another day.) There’s also Medusa and the Gorgons; and so on. Kali, too, the Hindu goddess of destruction, is often depicted wearing a necklace or girdle of snakes.
But there are also TONS of snake goddesses who have been revered over the ages (and in fact, there’s a lot of evidence to suggest that many of the horrific snake goddess archetypes we are familiar with are actually the remnants of ancient feminine snake deities, subverted and distorted through the lens of patriarchy. But again, let’s not get political here.)
In its positive aspect, the feminine side of Snake represents fertility; nurturing. encircling, and wholeness (ouroboros); and receptivity.
Let’s take a little closer look at that receptivity angle, because I believe that touches on one of Snake’s greatest lessons.
Snake Lesson: Receiving the Light With Humility
If you enjoy hiking, you have probably observed snakes sunning themselves on rocks on cool afternoons. (Unfortunately they especially enjoy doing this on blacktop, which is why snake roadkill is such a common sight in spring and fall.) They do this because they’re cold-blooded and get their energy from external sources of heat. Exposed rock is ideal because not only do they receive the sun’s rays directly from above, but they can also soak up the radiant heat from rocks that have been absorbing heat from the sun. The snake’s legless body gives it optimal exposure to this life-giving energy from both above and below.
Just like the snake, our little human egos don’t have the ability to create their own spiritual “heat” or “light.” The ego’s attempts to go it alone always eventually wind down into darkness, destruction, and death – often in very cold-hearted, cold-blooded ways. Snake shows us how to hold ourselves to divine Light to energize and animate our spiritual essence (you can actually imagine yourself as a snake, and feel the warming rays of light soaking into your entire being from above.)
Snake also tells us about the importance of humility. Belly to belly with Gaia, Snake stays grounded in its essence, and in return is sheltered and warmed by the earth. (Unless, of course, it ends up on a highway – which is another lesson: to always be discerning about the spiritual guidance you receive.) 😉
One last little tidbit: as a Snake prepares to shed its skin, the clear covering over its eyes begins to cloud. Snake reminds us that in the midst of change it can be hard to see clearly, but holding ourselves to the Light brings power to move forward.
Snake Spirit Animal Meaning in a Nutshell:
Let’s recap some of the positive spiritual meanings of Snake:
Circle of Life
Eternity (as ouroboros)
Respect (“Don’t tread on me”)
Even if you’re experiencing the shadow side of snake totem, realize that it’s only coming forward to bring your attention to what needs to be healed. Once you’re aware of it, you can work with the positive aspects of this power animal to help to transmute fear and suffering into wisdom.
As long as this post is, it is actually a brief encapsulation of Snake meaning. If this is resonating with you and you would like to explore Snake wisdom in even more depth, please check out my video on the Spirit Meaning of Snake.
Well, here we are, at the end of a new year, and about to launch into the next! Are you with me in wondering how the heck 2018 went by so fast? (Or in being glad it didn’t linger any longer than it did?)
So, thought I’d do a little forecasting for the year ahead, with the help of our animal friends.
Watch the video above for the full 2019 New Year spirit animal reading (including to find out which animal came forward for your astrological sign in 2019.)
Otherwise, here’s the Cliff’s Notes version for the year ahead:
2019 New Year Spirit Animal Reading Highlights
2019 is the year many of us are being asked to step into our purpose.
may see some real shake-ups this year (politically, geophysically,
economically etc.) – either they will happen this year, or seeds will be
sown for it
We’re being asked to step into our power
with discernment – pay attention to your body’s signals, especially, and
do your best to distinguish between thoughts and feelings that are true
to your soul and those that are based on fear or anxiety.
We’re being encouraged to really listen for that still small voice of guidance.
to look back at past experiences, dreams, readings, etc. and learn from
them so we can avoid repeating the same mistakes, and start really
fulfilling our soul’s mission on earth
Teamwork is a big theme: look for any areas of shared vision with others and find ways to work together for common good
the sense is that this is the year we will, collectively, start really
standing in our power and taking positive steps forward to create a new
reality, in service to all of humanity.
What was that old Chinese saying about living in exciting times? 😉 Buckle up folks – we’re in for a ride!
One last thing – I keep getting this message over and over:
The human psyche doesn’t like change, so it tends to react with anxiety. But when we react to change from a place of anxiety, others pick up on that and will forward it and even amplify it to others. And that can actually make change harder.
So it will be really important in the coming year to do everything we can to ground ourselves and, at the risk of sounding cliche, to “keep calm and carry on.”
The more of us who are practicing deep levels of awareness, listening to our guidance and moving forward in faith that Spirit’s got our back, the easier will be the transition for everyone on the planet. We DO have influence over how things go down, so never think what you think, say, or do doesn’t matter.
Have a lovely and blessed New Year. We’ve got this!!
If I could sum up what 2018 has been for a lot of people, it would be The Year of the Big Purge.
Can you relate? Then you’ll probably love this: to me it feels like today’s full moon right here is a turning point.
But don’t kick away the purge bucket just yet. That doesn’t necessarily going to mean the purging will end, at least not right away. In fact, we may actually be asked to undergo even deeper levels of purification.
But what it does mean is that it feels to me like we’ve reached a higher vibration collectively.
This is a turning point
It reminds me of this mouse I have. It’s the kind where you can change the sensitivity of how fast the mouse reacts. At a higher setting, even very tiny motions will send the cursor careening around the screen. If you’re used to it being set at a lower sensitivity, it takes a while to adjust.
That’s what I’m feeling we’re dealing with now. If you’re on the Awakening path, you may start to notice that your words and actions pack a punch.
You may see things start to manifest quicker and more powerfully. Which, when you’re in alignment with your purpose, can be super awesome. If not – well, just keep in mind that challenges come up so that we can become aware of underlying balances and clear them—and gift ourselves with even deeper levels of love and forgiveness.
So yes, the purge continues. But it’s all for the good. 🙂
Don’t worry, though – there are awesome things on the horizon.
I’m specifically seeing a beautiful shift in energy happening right around the coming Solstice, or Christmastime. Like beautiful golden light coming in. (I actually saw it first as a goldfinch, which reminded me of the angel drawing above.) It’s feeling to me like an initiation of sorts. Like after this year, things are going to start to get serious on the ascension front. It could be a wild ride.
So for now, and especially while Mercury is still in retrograde, it’s a good idea to chill down, slow down, and really start getting serious about letting go of anything that is dragging your energy down. Because we’re all going to need to be on point and ready to go once the new year swings into play.
If you’d like to hear more about that, along with what came up in my Full Moon Spirit Animal Card reading around how to handle this intensified energy at this time, check out my latest video on YouTube .