Caduceus

The caduceus, or wand of Hermes, is typically depicted as a short herald’s staff entwined by two serpents in the form of a double helix, and sometimes surmounted by wings.  It was often depicted being carried in the left hand of the Greek god Hermes, the messenger of the gods, guide of the dead and protector of merchants, gamblers, liars and thieves.

Another tale suggests that Hermes (or more properly the Roman Mercury) saw two serpents entwined in mortal combat.  Separating them with his wand he brought about peace between them, and as a result the wand with two serpents came to be seen as a sign of peace.

Some occultists and New Age practitioners see it as a phallic symbol of power.  To others the staff and snakes represent the energy channels of the body.  It can also be related to the Kabbalah.

 
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