The only one way to kill it: hold a mirror before its eyes. When the snake sees its own reflection it will die of fright.
How I loved the scene from “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” when Harry’s spell casts Dudley head first into the snake’s den, freeing the snake. The snake slithers out, fixes an intense gaze on Harry and says, “Sssssthanks.” Harry replies, “Any time.” The snake in this scene bears no resemblance to the evil basilisk in later Harry Potter adventures. The Yin and Yang of life seems to be ever-present. “You can’t have one without the other.” The legend of the Basilisk, the King of Serpents relates only one way to kill it: hold a mirror before its eyes. When the snake sees its own reflection it will die of fright. So perhaps the best spiritual practice is not so much to focus on eradicating evil, as much as to focus on revealing it for what it is. Unmasking the evil which nips at our heels is a process of self-realization. That is where our energy is more profoundly effective, for in bringing our potential as human beings to realization, we also release the hold that evil can have on us. To be fully human is to be a spark of the divine, Meister Eckhart tells us. The most positive symbology of snakes is that of regeneration. The sloughing off of dead skin becomes a kind of resurrection for the snake. Changing our focus to self-realization promises a more vibrant spiritual life for us. Guardians of sacred spaces is a common symbol for snakes throughout the world. Countless sculptures of the Buddha have him sitting on the coils of a snake, while the snake’s head rises above the Buddha with hood flared.
In dream symbology snakes can be interpreted as guardians as well, but as guardians of the underground, the unconscious guardians of our consciousness. For profound and interesting treatment of animal symbols in dreams, including snakes visit my friends at http://www.dreamrly.com and http://www.thedreamwell.com. Our unconscious is indeed a sacred space which we need to guard and nourish. It holds the key to un-masquing the basilisk. Pay attention.