The cat has been domesticated for more than four thousand years. The ancient Egyptians associated them with the goddesses Isis and Bastet, and worshipped them. Tens of thousands of cat mummies have been discovered, showing just how revered they were. In Egypt it was a capital offense to kill a cat, even accidentally. In the East, the cat is traditionally considered a sign of bad luck and danger. There are a number of reasons for this. It is believed that cats are able to see spirits in the dark. In parts of China, they are believed to get onto the roofs of houses and steal the moonbeams. In Taiwan it is believed that dead cats should not be buried, as they might turn into demons. If a cat jumps over a coffin, it is believed that the corpse will haunt the area. Consequently, to dream of a cat is considered a warning of problems and hostility. However, dreaming of a cat can also be a sign of longevity, as the Chinese words for "cat" and "octogenarian" are homophones. Consequently, to dream of a cat while you are ill is a sign that you'll recover and enjoy a long life. Fortunately, cats usually fare better in dreams in the West, as they are considered a sign of good luck, playfulness, contentment, intuition, femininity, fertility, independence, and new beginnings. Some of these associations come from Bastet, the ancient Egyptian goddess of love, fertility, and the home. She had the head of a cat and the body of a woman. Cats have also been associated with witches, and this probably dates back to the medieval superstition that Satan enjoyed shapeshifting himself into a black cat. In fact, this superstition may be much older, because in Greek legend a woman named Galenthias was turned into a cat and became a priestess of the Hecate cult. The interpretation of a cat in a dream can be either positive or negative depending on how the dreamer feels about cats when he or she is awake. Someone who dislikes cats will see them as fearsome animals in dreams. The cat can symbolically reveal personal fears and weaknesses the person has. Conversely, someone who loves cats will see them as indicating positive aspects of his or her character. If the cat in your dream needs love and attention, it's a sign that you are not receiving everything you desire in your life. You should start paying more attention to your own needs.