the cobra

Renee Sheppard's pave diamond cobra ring

Snakes have always basically freaked me out.  So why was I so drawn to this one piece of jewelry?  I had taken one look at the cobra ring in the case and decided that I needed to try it on.  It slid perfectly over my hard to fit knuckles (thanks Mom,) and it looked pretty amazing.  Sometimes jewelry just doesn’t feel comfortable and you keep having to adjust it.  Not the case with this piece.  I wore it as I walked around admiring all of the wonderful treasures in the store, waiting for that uncomfortable feeling to set in.  It never did, and I decided that I really wanted this ring.

But what about my dislike for the animal?  What about the fact that I was raised in a Catholic household? The serpent was a symbol of the devil!  How could I wear this object on my finger?  After wearing it for a while to ensure its comfort, I looked at my hand in the mirror and repeated one of my favorite quotes, spoken by Leigh Anne Tuohy of  The Blind Side

“Is this me?”

Then I went home and did a little research…

As an animal totem, the snake surfaces into our awareness with all the power of the symbolic attributes listed on this page (and more). Those who are drawn to the snake (that would be me)… are gifted at perceiving life through an uncommon lens. Other characteristics of those who are connected to snake energy include:

  • A natural ability to balance energies (you’re likely a gifted healer)
  • Diplomatic and eloquent in areas of speech and writing
  • Dynamically intuitive (often knowing other’s thoughts and emotional states without trying)
  • Impulsive, but not without careful consideration. This may sound paradoxical, but those with the snake totem know what I mean here.”      (

Interesting!  Perhaps I embodied all of these character traits…how wonderful!  

So after a read a bit about the symbolism of the snake in other cultures and religions (of which there is a tremendous amount,)  I decided to delve into my own knowledge base.  I thought about what I had learned through the teachings of the Bible.  In the book of Genesis the serpent symbolizes Satan. After some thought, I concluded that perhaps the real symbolism of the serpent may be that of free will, the idea that we are given the freedom to make choices in our lives, and we must try to choose what is good.  I came across this quote, which reiterated almost exactly what I was thinking:

“It is through the work of the snake that man is the only being on earth with the power to choose between this duality (harmony and disharmony,  good and bad,  truth and lies) to be given a choice and have a free will to choose.  The snake therefore symbolizes something very important.  It is a symbol to which we must work to rise above the material to a wider and higher knowledge of the world.  The snake helps us bring out our inner strength”
So with my new perspective on the snake and its meaning, I marched myself back to the store with my fingers crossed, hoping my cobra would still be there.  Yes, she was, waiting for me, and now she is mine.  So all in all I learned quite a bit from this experience.  With the hope that it doesn’t over-simplify my experience, I think I will conclude with this thought:
 “It’s all how you look at it!”

mine has pink sapphire eyes!

not me, but that's the ring

for more beautiful pieces:

Renee Sheppard


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