The Shadow Side

The Shadow SideI wrote a post a while back called, How Real Do We Want To Make It? I was referring to the impermanence of our physical reality and how caught up we get in what amounts to little more than illusion. I hear about the shadow side, or the dark side, of self all of the time, and how our unconscious aspects influence our conscious awareness. Notions such as the long dark night of the soul lead me to ask once again, how real do we want to make it? Because I know I’m capable of making all of it far too real. I become caught up in all sorts of drama that I have a difficult time letting go of, so I know all too well the pain it causes. But then there’s the rub. It causes nothing. I choose my focus and my reaction. I could always notice and simply leave it at that, but no. I jump in, feet first, or ass over teakettle if I were truly honest, because I’m fairly certain I do that as well.

So when we talk about healing the shadow side of self, this is when I become confused. I’m not sure how to reconcile something that I believe actually reflects our lack of alignment with Higher Self instead of a quality we truly possess. Because it’s really only when we’re not aligned that we experience all the drama around us. Otherwise, we probably wouldn’t even notice it. We’d be too busy creating this or that instead of looking to the past to hold our interest. So I’m not sure what I’m supposed to be healing.

Changing our focus..

Instead of healing the shadow side, it would seem that we only need to change our focus. We’re our true, eternal Self when aligned. Anything else and we’re off kilter, easily distracted from our creative expression. We either align with our Source within, or with an illusion based upon perception and reaction. It’s one or the other.

If we describe something, by that very description, we limit its expression, if only from our own perspective. Focusing on the shadow side of anything gives it life it doesn’t need and may, in fact, draw those experiences to us. It’s not that we don’t honor our own process, but I think it may be better to not judge it either way. Light and dark could return to what they used to be, light and the absence of. Any drama could be reserved for loving creation, instead of revisitation of past hurt. There’s really nothing to move past, because it’s past. Because if it’s not happening anymore, why hang on to it? Could it be that some of us want to stay there? Drama can be exhilarating, so some of us return again and again, evidently finding purpose there.

Focus in with intention..

If you believe as I do that we focus in to physical form with an overall intention, then the serious things we experience in life were agreed upon before hand. It can play out in many ways, but the overall theme was a choice we made. Knowing that sort of throws the whole victim identity out the window. I’m an abuse survivor, but I have the feeling that instead of this being my lesson to experience, this one was for others. No idea for sure if it was for my parents’ growth, or perhaps for someone else from a chance encounter, but I believe that I was just a player in someone else’s life experience. Not the easiest conclusion at which to arrive given I was the child who experienced the abuse, but since I did so, I’ve been able to move forward without feeling that burden anymore.

Although I viewed myself as a survivor, it was still an identity to fulfill. And fulfill it is what we do. We grow into that identity and never seem to move beyond it. Survive what? What I agreed to participate in? It’s a tough one, I know. For most of my life I’ve suffered serious damage from those experiences. But after realigning my views on what happened, I don’t experience flashbacks or PTSD anymore. I no longer attach the significance I once did, and what a blessing that has been.

How can there be a shadow side to heal if we come here with intention? Can we see that we’re not these bodies we temporarily inhabit? That life is something to experience, understanding that it may not always feel positive to us? Can we learn to align ourselves with what does feel positive and keep our focus there? We let situations and people end us, and we’re far too hard on ourselves. We become stuck in fear or sadness and we wallow there, instead of letting go the drama and living our true creative purpose. A Course In Miracles teaches that we give everything the meaning it has. Maybe it’s time to give the shadow side no meaning at all.

~Blessed Be