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Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Dream Symbols 11: The Spider

Black Widow Spider. Photo Credit
The spider has always fascinated me in its diverse symbolic meanings in dreams. What does a spider do? It enmeshes its prey in a silky web of death. It appears to do so gently, because the web is silky, but of course, in the end, it strangles.

There is something of the gorgon, the medusa, in the spider, and similar to those, it also implies some of those symbolic meanings with regards to its relationship to its offspring in real life. In other words, dreaming of a spider, may frequently imply the real-life mother, and the dreamer's relationship to her.

There may be something in that relationship that is perceived (whether it truly is so, is another matter, but the mere perception of it being so is enough for the dreamer), by the dreamer to be suffocating, enveloping, deathly. Perhaps the real life mother wants to control the offspring's life, or a sector of the life, such as the marital relationship of a son, or the studies that a daughter pursues.

The dreamer may come across a dream spider that threatens to kill, that is highly frightening, that will annihilate, if one does not find a way to get around it in the dream, or to avoid crossing paths with it. That may imply that the dreamer needs to proclaim some kind of independence from the real life mother, and I have seen instances where the dreamer has several dreams in a series about spiders, and where in each consecutive dream, the dreamer is able to remove him or herself more and more from the dream spider, and in so doing, is able to achieve something similar on some level with regards to the real life mother.

As always, I urge you to acquire a book or two on symbols, not necessarily dream symbols, as books on symbolism per se are rich in cultural and mythological content that will often lead you to the renowned aha that we seek when we are trying to understand dreams, and that tells us that we have hit on some kind of meaning that may help us unravel the dream. Many of such books are listed in the recommended books section on my website.

Previous posts in this series are:

Dream Symbols 1: Pregnancy and Birth
Dream Symbols 2: Death
Dream Symbols 3: The Snake
Dream Symbols 4: The Butterfly
Dream Symbols 5: Flying
Dream Symbols 6: The House Part 1
Dream Symbols 7: The House Part 2: The Kitchen
Dream Symbols 8: The House Part 3: The Bathroom
Dream Symbols 9: The House Part 4: The Bedroom
Dream Symbols 10: Marriage


  1. last night I dreamed that a spider killed me. A spider cord appeared suddenly and I saw the spider coming down to my neck within a second... I woke up hitting around me! this is not the first time I dreamed something like this... about 3 times in the last year. what does ths mean???

  2. What in your real life is suffocating you - threatening to annihilate you in some sense? Look at the symbolic aspect of this in your real life, rather than being afraid of the "real" spider in the dream.