The Opossum, a small marsupial native to North America, embodies traits of cunning, strategy, and adaptability. It’s best known for “playing possum,” or pretending to be dead when threatened – a survival strategy that confuses predators. This act of deception has given the opossum a symbolic association with trickery and intelligence. It also represents life and death, duality, and balance due to its nocturnal nature and unique survival tactic.

  • Symbolism: Cunning, Strategy, Adaptability, Trickery, Intelligence, Life and Death, Duality, Balance.

Opossum in Dreams

In dreams, an opossum can represent a situation in your life where you may need to employ cunning or deceit to get out of. Alternatively, it could symbolize a need for better balance or adaptability in your personal or professional life. The appearance of an opossum in your dreams may be a sign that you need to be more cautious or develop a better strategy for dealing with challenges.

  • Dream Symbolism: Cunning, Deception, Balance, Adaptability, Caution, Strategy.

See also our Free Dream Interpretation Tool

Opossum in Myths and Folklore

The opossum holds a place of respect and admiration in Native American mythology. The Cherokee, for instance, have a myth about the opossum obtaining a beautiful, bushy tail from the Creator. However, due to its vanity and pride, the tail became bare and skinny – a symbol of the dangers of excessive pride.

In Australian Aboriginal mythology, the opossum is seen as a trickster figure. Stories depict the opossum using its cunning to outwit its enemies, reinforcing its symbolic association with intelligence and trickery.

  • Folklore Symbolism: Vanity, Pride, Trickery, Intelligence.

Opossum Spiritual Meanings

In a spiritual context, the opossum symbolizes the need for clever tactics and strategies in life. It teaches the importance of adaptability and the ability to navigate through difficult circumstances with grace. The opossum spirit guide encourages us to be versatile and flexible, reminding us to remain balanced amidst changes and to use wisdom in our decisions.

  • Spiritual Symbolism: Strategy, Adaptability, Versatility, Balance, Wisdom.

Opossum Tattoo Meaning

An opossum tattoo is a unique symbol of survival, strategy, and adaptability. It can represent overcoming difficult situations through intelligence and trickery, similar to the opossum ‘playing dead’ to evade predators. Moreover, due to its nocturnal nature, an opossum tattoo could symbolize the duality of life and death, light and darkness, knowledge and ignorance.

  • Tattoo Symbolism: Survival, Strategy, Adaptability, Intelligence, Trickery, Duality.


What does the opossum symbolize?
The opossum symbolizes cunning, strategy, adaptability, trickery, intelligence, life and death, duality, and balance.

What does it mean to dream of an opossum?
Dreaming of an opossum can represent a situation where you may need to employ cunning or deceit. It could also symbolize a need for balance, adaptability, caution, or a better strategy in your life.

What does an opossum tattoo symbolize?
An opossum tattoo symbolizes survival, strategy, adaptability, intelligence, and trickery. It may also represent the duality of life and death.

What is the spiritual meaning of the opossum?
Spiritually, the opossum signifies the need for clever tactics and strategies, adaptability, versatility, balance, and wisdom.


Encyclopedia of Symbols

About the Author

Symbolopedia is a comprehensive guide to the meanings of symbols. Our content is crafted by professionals in psychology and symbolism, striving to maintain a balance between scientifically proven data and insights derived from myths, legends, and folklore. While our approach leans towards scientific interpretations of symbols, we acknowledge the significant role of the subconscious in their understanding, allowing for a blend of rationality and creativity.

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