The serpent is a long time symbol of healing. The rising energies of the serpent are known in other other cultures as Ki, Chi, Kundalini. We use the symbol of the rising serpents in our healing iconography – the caduceus. The central staff of the caduceus is a representation of the world tree and the rising serpents on each side cross at significant points until they rise to the top and sprout wings. The symbol of the serpent on a pole/world tree as an agent of healing appears in the Bible:
And the LORD said unto Moses
Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole:
and it shall come to pass, that eery one that is bitten,
when he looketh upon it, shall live.
And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole,
and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man,
when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.
Serpents as energies of healing is are truly multi-cultural symbols. The image above is from the cover of my book One Gods: The Mystic Pagan’s Guide to the Bible. It is in the Museo Nacional De Antrolopología in Mexico City. Its accompanying description says scholars consider it to be a rising snail. The description also depicts it as an Aztecan symbol of life. This makes it possible, even likely, that it is actually the emblem of Quetzalcóatl the feathered serpent. In this image he is rising from a feathered or rayed symbol of the sun.