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Every Night I Have the Same Dream Again and Again:

What is the Meaning of My Dreams about Spiders?

Dear Dr. Matt,

My name is Mollie and I live in Mississippi.

Please read my situation below and see if you know a solution to it. Recently I've been having spider dreams. Though it's of medium importance, these dreams occur every night, and I really need help getting rid of them.

When I researched the reoccurring theme of spiders in dreams, I found that spiders symbolize my feeling "trapped in a web of deceit or entangled by emotions and fears from which I cannot escape." This actually seems scarily true. However, this web is not one that can be unwoven or solved by any means. How can I rid myself of the spider dreams without solving the problem causing them?

Thank you for your time,

Related Articles: Spiritual Roots of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: Cause & Cure for OCD
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Dear Mollie:

Some sources on the topic of "dream interpretation" are not credible; they often smack of horoscopes and tarot card readings. They are not scientific; instead, they are mystical -- like a fortune telling.

Sigmund Freud wrote much about Dream Interpretation. As you probably know, Freud was an atheist who assumed that human life began from a big-bang explosion, and then eventually evolved from simpler life-forms. But here's the glaring question surrounding the big-bang assumption: What "caused" the Big Bang in the first place? Did "something" CAUSE the explosion, or did "nothing" cause the explosion?

Can NOTHING really cause SOMETHING? And if "something" CAUSED the Big Bang, . . . then how did that "something" come to exist in the first place? Here's how the beginning of the universe, and living beings within it, is explained via Big Bang theory:

Who believes this theory? Stephen Hawking! And I intentionally use the word "believes" because the pre-existence of "Quantum Fluctuations" is not a beginning from NOTHING, but a beginning from SOMETHING. So how did Quantum Fluctuations come to exist in the first place?

Stephen Hawking holds to an assumption parallell to "faith" in a Creator. But in Hawking's case, his "creator" is Quantum Fluctuations that existed when there was allegedly NOTHING -- nothing except QFs -- and then from these QFs, the universe and the beginnings of life were created with a Big Bang.

In his explanation of the Origin of the Universe, after he reviews (mocks) the admittedly curious beliefs of the Boshongo people of Africa, and how the god Bumba vomited up the universe, and man too, Stephen Hawking points to Quantum Fluctuations as the pre-existent "god" from which his universe was created:

Quantum Fluctuations -- the changes in amounts of energy at a point in space -- is SOMETHING and not NOTHING. So to repeat: how did the Quantum Fluctuations of Energy come into existence?

And here's another assumption that further strains the bounds of big-bang credibility: Our ancestors were first Fish before they were Monkeys. The Big Bang theory assumes that life evolved from the water, before land creatures appeared; this means that our human ancestors were supposedly sea creatures. Our ancestors were allegedly fish, long before they became monkeys.

 Evil-ution from Fish to Monkey to Man: Fish loses Gills and Grows Legs, no problem!  Fish Evolves from Gills to Lungs and Becomes a Gator  Evil-ution from Fish to Monkey to Man: from Tuna to Gator to Monkey to SuperModel, makes sesnse to me! NOT

But what does this have to do with the interpretation of "spider" dreams?

A Key Concept to Remember. The Psychology that flows from assumptions of Big Bang and Evolution is far different from the Psychology that comes from the assumption that human life was created by a Creator. So by assuming a creationist beginning point: this means that human beings are not evolutionary machines trapped in a Cause & Effect world. And it means that mortals were created to Be Innovative Choosers and Meaning-Makers.

In terms of dream interpretations, there is no reason why symbolic dreams should have a universal meaning common to all humanity; thus there is no reason why spider dreams should universally mean that a person feels trapped by a spider web. Because each human being is uniquely individual, thoughts or dreams of "spiders" have a meaning that is personal to you. So, Mollie, your Spider Dreams are understood within the context of your personal world experience.

I've never had a dream about spiders, but for 2 years I was haunted by the reoccurring image of a large spider every night before I went to bed. How did this reoccurring thought start in the first place?

During my college days, while returning home from school, I walked along a path near were I lived and there in the middle of the path, to my surprise, was a huge spider, a tarantula. The memory of seeing that spider so close to home haunted me every night for two years.

Today, I understand that tarantulas are harmless; some people even keep them as pets. I personally don't like the look of them. On the other hand, black widows are poisonous, but the thought of them does not bother me a bit. So because of my unique life experience, I make meaning about spiders in a way that's a little illogical I fear the harmless spider, and do not fear the dangerous spider. Of course, "size" of the spider may have something to do with how I've come to my personal interpretation.

But if "size" alone causes people to fear more, then we should all fear horses more than dogs, and that's clearly not the case! In the end, I make meaning about spiders, and every other facet of life, according to my unique life experience, and so do you.

To understand the most fundamental meaning of your spider dream assuming a Creationist Beginning, we can apply a teaching from the Bible. Here's what the Apostle Paul wrote:

"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but ...
against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world,
against spiritual wickedness in high places." (Ephesians 6:12)

What is the "meaning" of your spider dream? Simply put, it means our mortal world includes interaction with an Unseen Enemy wanting to bring you Down, as well as Invisible Angels wanting to lift you Up. It means that the Powers of Darkness are trying to divert your time and attention away from the most important question you might ask.

Here's a superior question that you should give your time and attention to:

How can I love God and my love my Neighbors
in the example of Jesus?

Angel on your Right Shoulder and a Devil on your Left — that's Mortal Life!

It pleases our Father in Heaven when we give our whole self to this question; Jesus taught that we should love God and Neighbor will all Heart, Mind, Soul, and Strength. As you and I waste time wrestling with thoughts of spiders, we are NOT giving our whole "Mind" to the aim of Loving God and Loving Neighbor and that's precisely why the Powers of Darkness "haunt" us with thoughts (and dreams) of unimportant things.

The Powers of Darkness are very real, and very aware of the small details in your life that can be used to divert your attention away for the Highest Priority. Again, every moment we dwell upon unimportant questions, these are moments that you and I are NOT focusing upon the highest and best question: How can I Love God and Neighbor with all Heart, Mind, Soul, and Strength?

After two years of being haunted at bedtime, how did the thought of a huge spider finally come to an end? I prayed it away! In my prayers to Heavenly Father, I asked Him to take away the Useless Care of thinking about a spider. What a simply solution! Why didn't I think of that superior solution in the first place? Here's the answer:

I didn't KNOW that the Powers of Darkness were literally the reason why my thoughts were continually haunted every night before bedtime. But today I clearly understand that we "wrestle not against flesh and blood, but . . . against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world." Happily, you believe in Jesus, so this means your "spider dreams" are soon going to cease!

Again, the foundational meaning of your dream is this: Satan is real and will tempt you in any way that can divert you from God's Truth; further, the ending of your haunting dream means that God is good, that He is your loving Heavenly Father and will do exactly what He has promised 100% of the time:

"If anyone lacks wisdom, let her ask of God who gives to all liberally" (James 1:5).
"Ask, and you shall receive, that your joy may be full" (John 16:24).
 "And in all things, whatsoever you shall ask in prayer,
believing, you shall receive" (Matt. 21:22),

As you read the previously Bible verses, realize that 75% of Americans believe in some form of Christianisty -- they Believe IN Jesus, but do they actually Believe Him ... if they don't live like they believe His promises in the Bible? This is precisely why the verse after James 1:5 cautions:

"But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven
with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing
of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways." (James 1:6)

Dr Matt

Matt Moody, Ph.D.
Social Psychologist

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