scarab vs spider
Throughout this dream I am flooded with a barrage of thoughts and questions about good and evil, life and death, and natural order – from my own point of view as well as that of the scarab beetle and the spider.
I rescued a green-golden scarab beetle that had become caught in the spider’s web outside my bedroom window. I used a pen inscribed with ‘Health by Choice’ to separate the two creatures. The spider retreated under the window and the beetle fell into the grass. When I found the beetle it was covered in sticky web, unable to use its wings. The beetle spoke to me distressed and confused before dying. I marked the location with a twig and went back inside the house.
Some time later I returned to find the beetle’s body still in the grass and the spider looking down from the window. Again, I was overwhelmed by the barrage of emotions and moral questions that flooded me as I watched the spider hunt and as I watched the beetle die. I was so saddened; there was an intense ringing in my ears and my heart began to beat faster and faster when I suddenly awoke feeling very agitated.
The scarab beetle is revered as a symbol of rebirth in ancient Egypt. The young beetles emerge from dung balls; a natural example of discarded matter sustaining new life. The beetles were also associated with the rising and setting of the sun (moving the sun across the sky like a dung ball). A green heart scarab was an important mummification ornament to assist the deceased during the ‘Weighing of the Heart’ ceremony.
Spiders too are sacred. They are weavers of dreams and fate. By creating a web, a spider creates its own world – a home, a trap, a nursery, a pantry… In common with the scarab beetle, due to the spider’s association with the figure 8 (which turned on its side is the symbol for infinity), the spider has also come to symbolise eternity.
It is interesting that you intervene between the spider and the beetle with a pen. After all, the pen is mightier than the sword. I believe this is the key symbol in your dream. There are risks associated with putting things down, or merely thinking, in black and white. The big questions that you ask yourself (as a human, as the scarab beetle, and as the spider) show that the choice between good and evil, right and wrong, life and death are not as easy as perhaps they first appear.
Everyday choices play a part in the bigger picture. We all contribute to the dance of life. Inside each one of us is the predator and the prey. It is not a question of who wins. Life is not a battle, or even a game; it is a dance. Through everyday choices – big and small – each of us plays a part in the bigger picture. Sometimes we lead, sometimes we follow but we all contribute to the dance of life.