The meaning of the dream symbol: Kiss

In a dream a kiss is nearly always a kiss of life, symbolizing bringing to life the neglected side - masculine or feminine - of your personality, or other hitherto unemployed parts of your psyche.


Symbol of joining together and of mutual adherence, which took on a spiritual significance from earliest times. ‘In the Zohar we find a mystical explanation of the word “kiss”. The source is of course a commentary upon the Song of Solomon (1: 2), but there is another, deriving from the rabbinical notion that some righteous persons, among them Moses, were spared the agony of death, leaving the earthly world in the ecstatic rapture of God’s kiss’.

In support of this, Georges Vajda quotes a passage from the Zohar referring to the divine kiss:

‘Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth’ - Why should Scripture employ this phrase? In fact kisses mean the joining together of spirit to spirit. This is why the bodily organ which administers the kiss is the mouth, through which breath is inhaled and exhaled. Then again, kisses of love are given with the mouth [thus] inseparably linking spirit with spirit. It is for this reason that he whose soul goes out in a kiss, sticks fast to another spirit, to a spirit from whom he will be separated no more. Their joining together is called a kiss. When they say ‘Let him kiss me with kisses of his mouth’, the People of Israel calls for this sticking fast between spirit and spirit which will never be separated.

Both the early Fathers and medieval commentators on the Song of Solomon explained ‘kiss’ in precisely identical terms. William of St Thierry regarded the kiss as a sign of unity. The Holy Spirit might be considered as proceeding from the kiss of the Father and the Son; the Incarnation was the kiss of the Word and human nature; the union between the soul during its earthly existence and God prefigures the perfect kiss which will take place in eternity. St Bernard of Clairvaux, too, in his commentary on the Song of Solomon, writes at length about the kiss which results in unity of spirit. The soul-spouse alone was worthy of it. The Holy Spirit, St Bernard was to say, was the kiss of Father and Son, mouth to mouth, equal to equal and theirs alone. The kiss given by the Holy Spirit to mankind which copies the kiss of the Triune God, is not and cannot be a kiss, mouth to mouth, but a kiss which replicates and is communicated in the form of another kiss. The ‘kiss of the kiss’ replicates in the human being God’s love, the love of God becoming the love of man for God, similar in objective and mode of loving to the love which God has for himself. St Bernard held that in some peculiar manner the human being was involved in the embrace of Father and Son, the kiss which is the Holy Spirit. Mankind was thus united with God through a kiss and even deified by it.

A kiss was given by adepts in the Mysteries of Ceres as a sign of concord, submission, reverence and love. It bore witness to their spiritual communion.

Formerly the feet and knees of kings, judges and those enjoying a reputation for sanctity were kissed. Statues were kissed to beg their protection.

In the Middle Ages, under feudal law, vassals were compelled to kiss the hand of their Lords. In the old books of ritual which relate to the ordination of priests and the final vows of nuns, the bishop’s kiss is mentioned. For reasons of decency, the nun was absolved from the duty of giving the kiss on the mouth and had only to touch the priest’s hand with her lips. In feudal society, the kiss raised many problems when a lady gave or received homage. As a symbol of joining together, the kiss, in fact, preserved the polyvalency and ambiguity of the countless different meanings of the term.

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