The Shining Serpent.
Many people are fascinated, but also fearful. Snakes have always played a special role for humans. The fear of snakes is innate, babies as young as six months react with stress to snake motifs. It is assumed that this has evolutionary reasons. It makes sense to spot a snake early, as some species are dangerous. Nevertheless, in ancient cultures primarily positive meanings have developed. The snake embodies knowledge and wisdom not only in ancient Greece, Rome or India, but also in Inca mythology and many more. The role as protector and as a connection between the worlds is also found again and again. It is a highly symbolic animal, godlike or with divine attributes. I can well imagine that this inborn fear has contributed significantly to the myth-making. You see this wondrous animal and you automatically feel something. "Where does this feeling come from?" In the past there was no concept of evolution and no scientific connection to instincts as it is possible to understand today. Of course, coupled with the obvious characteristics (kills rodents, legless, skins in one piece) this certainly captures the imagination. We deal with our environment, how we perceive and evaluate it. We recognize patterns and make assumptions. Inevitably we intervene and have to be aware of the consequences in order not to end up harming ourselves. Snakes are important, so are our instincts. But whoever kills a snake takes on a force stronger than oneself. Be it nature, be it God. Only a part of all snake species can be dangerous to humans, but almost any rodent can make you seriously ill. We are somewhere between monkeys playing with sticks and trees growing on our ruins. Snakes have been around for at least 167 million years. Humility.
Species in this post:Corn snakePantherophis guttatus
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Creator of this post is Frederic Hilpert
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