Catching Up With Our Shadows
“It is one thing to talk about the subject of mindfulness or to “do” meditation as a means to an end and it is another thing to actually practice mindfulness as a state of being and doing. Nina is one of those who walks her talk.” ~ Jacqie B.
As spirits and humans embodied in Soul:
We innately know unity consciousness and live in duality consciousness.
We innately know ourselves and have forgotten upon coming into this life. We are seeking to remember and to know and return home to ourselves, once again. We are beings of unity that find ourselves with an ego – a new sense of identity – apart from others.
And we each have a Shadow Side: This the side of all of us that society turns a blind eye to, that we deny we have, that we call ugly. It’s what we hide from others – and even from ourselves. Yet, our shadow side is important to our health and authenticity, wholeness, healing, power and freedom.
“Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains ……..Within the sound of silence”
~Simon & Garfunkel
What is the Shadow Side?
According to Carl Jung, the shadow side or shadow self includes all the elements of our unconscious personality. Usually, they are the least desirable elements that society rejects or judges as bad. Can be tough to read, I know. It doesn’t feel good. Confidence feels good, love feels good, gratitude feels good, security feels good. These are our lighter traits.
Our shadows are an integral part of each of us and crucial for our development, health and wholeness as a human being.
We all have a ‘shadow’ side. Our personal ‘shadow’ is made up of the parts of ourselves that we do not accept, are undeveloped, or that we do not want to see. Our shadow is rooted in shame, by our sense of being basically unworthy or deficient as we are. Shame is a rooted foundation on which many of our original institutions are built (eg: choose to sin and you will suffer).
When we run from our shadow, it then becomes an unhelpful force in our psyche because the more we try to hide from certain parts of ourselves the more it ramps up the feeling that we are unworthy and deficient.
And it is these rejected and unseen parts of ourselves that are the source of much of personal human suffering.
So by running from our shadow it prolongs our suffering, keeps us stuck in unhelpful conditioning and stops us from tending to the parts of ourselves that most need our attention and healing.
BRINGING THE LIGHT OF AWARENESS INTO THE SHADOW PLACES
Through meeting our shadow side with mindfulness and compassion we can learn to stop running from it and rest in self acceptance, wisdom, and inner strength.
In this way we awaken to greater self awareness and we respond to our life with more authenticity, intention, compassion and courage.
It is only through seeing our own unconscious biases, assumptions, and prejudices that we can overcome them.
It is only through seeing the ways that we shut down that we can learn to open our hearts again, and it is only when we shine light into the dark places within and see where we are stuck in fear, defensiveness, hate or ignorance that we can finally have a choice to rise above them and embrace true freedom and peace of mind.
You have an energy template in our energy field. . The human energy system is the foundation of health, wholeness and wellbeing. Understanding how to support your energy means being able to support your physical health, your spiritual, mental and emotional health and your vitality, resiliency and constitution so you can feel amazing and experience the fullness of your life. We are each born with an energetic template that holds vitality, energy, connection, joy, abundance and radiance.
This means that your body, your energy, your soul KNOWS how to be healthy. You know how to be vibrant, joyful, expansive, abundant. This is hardwired in your very physicality and being.
Your energy is the bridge between your conscious mind and your subconscious mind. By understanding it, and knowing how to balance it, you begin to experience more and more choice about how to respond to anything and everything in your daily life. The more you learn about energy the more you keep your energy systems coherent. And how do you feel when your energy is coherent? Amazing!
Your energy system holds the balance between you thriving or just surviving.
Each one of your energy systems is involved with keeping you alive and allowing you to live your most balanced, vital experience. They hold the balance between your ability to survive and your ability to thrive; a balance that is dynamic and changes with every thought you have or situation that you find yourself in.
You are not only here to survive, you are here for far more than that. When you are in survival mode then you are living the most constricted existence that you are capable of. Surviving is having to fight for your place. Surviving is having to continually make an effort to be heard or respected. Surviving is that feeling you get some days when you wake up and the only thing you look forward to is being able to go back to bed at the end of the day. Surviving is stress. Surviving is joyless. Surviving may reveal that you are living in the unexplored dimensions of your Shadow side.
The good news is that there is a lot you can do to help change your energy patterns from that of survival to that of thriving. So let’s have an exploration of what it feels like to thrive; Thriving is living the most expansive existence you are capable of. It is that feeling that nothing is insurmountable, even if it is challenging. It is seeing the magnificence in all of creation. Thriving is being able to burst out laughing with no hesitation. It is being able to live from your heart center with trust and openness. Thriving is being able to say, ‘I love myself. I love all of creation’.
THIS WEEK’S INVITATION: DON’T AVOID OR GET STUCK IN THE SHADOWS; RESIDE IN LOVE
So my invitation for this week is to not let shame or fear keep you running from your shadow. Bring mindfulness, compassion and unconditional acceptance to it instead. Know that it’s safe to stop and to acknowledge and embrace ALL of your humanity. All the crazy, all the flaws, all the beauty, all the weird stuff and the wounded parts. See if you can embrace it all in an unconditional loving awareness.
It’s not always comfortable or easy looking at the parts of ourselves that we’d rather not see but it’s well worth the effort because in doing so we stop the battle with ourselves, let go of so much unnecessary suffering and finally find a place of mental strength, balance, calm and ease.
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