As we walk through life we experience the rawness of duality and what that brings to us. Rarely are we encouraged to embrace the shadow within. Instead, we are encouraged to ‘perform’ for society in a way that ‘satisfies’.
Unconsciously, running a race that has no end. Eager to win, to please, we run – missing many experiences available. At some point, we stumble yet rarely does this ‘almost moment’ take us to a space we see the reality; and so we continue. Eventually we fall, the pain slowing us down forcing us to focus on something other than the race in which we run. If we are lucky this fall will bring us clarity and we will bring in new supports to aid us – until the next fall. The greater the exhaustion, the heavier the fall.
At any time we can consider what it looks like to step out of the race – or, continue on our own terms. Our greatest blessing in this life is that of free will. Please consider this question, do you honor your free will?
Now consider this, are you truly honoring your free will if you are avoiding aspects of yourself?
Have you named in your mind something you avoid? Are you now talking yourself through your excuses? OR, did you think ‘Jo has no idea she really has become naïve/ self-righteous/ downright airy fairy’. If your response was reactive or condescending, congratulations you’re still in the race.
We all fear, and I am no different. Yes, I am optimistic in my focus. Yes, I do believe everyone is capable of more than they believe they are. Yes, I am open to others, their views and feelings; and so, I am vulnerable. I am vulnerable because I believe that I what the world needs, what people need and what I need.
I grew up seeing myself as a disappointment; seeing turns to thinking, thinking to believing, believing to knowing. This connection with disappointment didn’t end when I broke free from my story. Sure, disconnecting from my story enabled me to feel invigorated and empowered, however time found me once again within the vices of frustration. Recently I’ve come to the realisation that I have been harbouring subconscious belief systems and patterns that are connected to this old way of being. My goal in this life is to grow fully into self-love and be Love for others so that they may too stand up and embrace what is theirs. Now I feel resistance pulling from within me and the time has come to stand and face it.
Shadows that we suppress can hold aspects of an externally perceived ‘positive’ nature, our shadow self is all what we deny and attempt to exile from our lives. Our experiences teach us what it is that we are to hide. Those of us who have spent our lives defending will have a ‘softer’ shadow side than those of us who have spent more time within experiences of relative comfort.
Finding that suppressed shadow self isn’t as difficult as one may think. With exceptions of justifiable reactions, every moment we grit our teeth in anger, cringe with distaste and yes, laugh uncomfortably we are revealing to ourselves something that we have repressed. Some examples:
- When a compliment is offered and instead of taking a moment to let it warm your soul, you straight away deflect – is your uncomfort caused by a disbelief of their words? Or are fearful of coming across ‘cocky’ or similar?
- On the highway you meet a car travelling at 75kms in a 100kms zone, your reaction will most likely reveal many intense shadows – are you angry because they are inconsiderate? Or with every second you are stuck behind this vehicle you are without control?
- Hearing someone speak and disagreeing with their opinion – are you disheartened because in your heart knew that you should have ‘added’ a new perspective yet chose not to?
are you annoyed that the person is speaking that way because it solidifies ignorance or inability to let be within you?
- A person you meet ‘just, gets on your nerves’ you cannot explain it, everything about them presses your buttons – what is it that this person represents? Do they represent Love, anger, fear, inability, confidence, power; consider them because there is something within you reacting to the essence of them.
Bring consciousness to your thoughts, feelings and reactions – bring curiosity without judgement. Ask yourself questions like:
- What frightens me about this? How is this fear grounded?
- Can I see aspects of myself in ……?
- What do I feel wrong with this?
- What is this trying to show me?
- Why? Why? Why? – You’ll find the heart of the matter, keep digging.
Acceptance of our shadow allows us to harness what wants to emerge with purpose and presents us with a choice as-to how we use it. That is freewill. The conscious decision to act within unconditional Love is its most powerful if it can be seen from all angles; the greater the awareness the less that we act from our subconscious. Judging the shadow self inhibits our ability to explore it and in turn disconnects us from being able to use it in a way that serves us and our purpose.
The weight of words are heavier when spoken with intent and I believe people can ‘feel’ the power of words spoken from a place of authenticity. Stepping into greatness has a cost, but the reward itself is greatness. Duality holds balance, within balance we find knowing and peace – we no longer need to run. Cast your shadow on the world, you are here to experience this life and all you can be throughout it. Don’t dim your light in the hope of losing your shadow, for in doing so you will experience darkness.
As Rumi once said “Beyond the notion of right doing and wrong doing there is a field. I will meet you there.”
Sending each of you Love, Light and whatever you need at this time.