The Ouroboros, also sometimes called the Uroboros, is the symbol of the snake eating it's tail. It's also a part of our logo. In this video explanation I discuss what the Ouroboros means, it's relations to dreams and dream interpretation and why we chose it to compliment the image and mission of Philosophy Of Dreams.
I’ve titled this episode, “What does the Ouroboros mean?” Upon seeing our logo for Philosophy Of Dreams, many people have asked me what the ouroboros means, why we chose it as our logo and what it’s relations to dreams and dream interpretation are. I am going to quickly address these questions now.
First the ouroboros signifies the idea of rebirth. It has been suggested that the snake in the image swallows himself, devouring and completely eliminating himself from plain sight, only to be born again and eventually it reappears. Psychologically this could be compared to that of the practices of Christian baptism and the initiation ceremonies of primitive tribes. While Christian baptism and tribal initiation practices are quite different from each other, both embrace the core idea of recognizing one’s psychological flaws or spiritual immaturity and facing them in an attempt to successfully overcome and eliminate them. Upon completing these rituals an individual is perceived as being born again so to speak.
While the ouroboros has many different mythological meanings, and even has tribal meaning today among indigenous populations of South America, It’s most commonly known universal meaning is that it represents the perpetual cyclic renewal of life; however it has 2 notable meanings that are specifically relevant to the ideas of dream works and the human psyche.
This idea could sarcastically be associated with the popular saying, “swallowing one’s pride” or “shrinking one’s ego”. In Jungian Psychology and dream works this is also known as the process of individuation, which is one of the main underlying goals of therapeutic dream analysis and interpretation.
The second meaning of the ouroboros associated with dream works and dream interpretation are the ideas associated with the practice of an individual learning to routinely embrace his or her whole consciousness. Slightly similar to the meaning I previously just described, this is the process of formulating a safe habit of associating ones self with his or her unconscious contents. To better help you understand this think of the snake’s head as your conscious mind’s awareness and the tail as your unconscious mind’s contents. By constantly being aware of one’s dreams one can learn to maintain what is called whole conscious awareness, or whole consciousness. This again is a very rough extension of the base ideas behind the works of dream interpretation and the practice of dream alchemy. In my previous studies as a professional dream analyst we referred to this psychological state consistently being aware of ones dreams and their meanings as the Dream Consciousness Circuit, a term coined by Dr. Barbara Condron, in her book The Dreamer's Dictionary.
I hope I was able to explain the idea of an ouroboros well. More so I wanted to explain its implications in dream studies and dream interpretation.
Keywords: ouroboros, uroboros, dream interpretation