The Alchemical Path of Expressing the Shadow Self

image.jpegI know many of you can relate to those moments of feeling dark, cloudy and out of balance. We all find ourselves feeling out of synch with life, and completely deaf to the wisdom of our inner voice. I personally fall off-kilter when I forget to be in the moment.

Slipping out of awareness and balance is something that society has programmed us to do oh so well. Put your nose to the grind. Get to work. Be seen not heard. Shut up and don’t ask questions. Never cause a riff. Be normal. Do as you’re told. Work, then die. On and on it goes. A fierce pursuit to distance our spirits from our waking life. No wonder most of us walk around unhealthy, unhappy and confused.

I don’t want this to come off as some kind of blame game or a declaration of martyrdom. I wrote this because it is (all too) real life for most people. But it can be changed when you decided to face your fears and take back your power! 

So how do you battle the long, dark shadow when it comes around?

Stop battling it! That’s the first step. When you are in the dark about something, completely confused, or even depresses, look at it as a gift of insight, not your enemy. These dark, off-kilter moments are your spirit’s way of saying, “Hey, you’ve disconnected from your goodness and grace. Come back now!!”

Like a fish out of water, you begin to feel every fiber of your being shrivel up with pain and deprivation. Starving from a lack of love. You find yourself ravenous from the need for spiritual, and emotional sustenance. Because our natural state is to be in grace, in the moment, in fluidly. Not in this dense, dark, disconnected and rigid reality we have claimed as the truth.

Begin asking, why?

Once you befriend your shadow parts, your pain, you find yourself dancing in the dark. You move into the sacred communion with your light and your shadow. Born of rhythm and fluidity. Because the shadow is not bad, rather it is the unwelcoming of the shadow that causes pain.

Take some time to express to your shadow all that you feel. Be open, honest and candid with your shadow. Express your deepest feelings of pain, disappointment and even resentment.

What do you feel about your shadow? What has she done to you? Where have you felt held back in your life? What have you missed out on? Why, and how do you feel small in your life? Openly express this to your Shadow self.

Really reach out to your shadow with bravery and curiosity. Accept that she is here reminding you to go deeper, love harder and flow more gracefully.

Gently ask her: why are you here?

Listen for her answer. What does your shadow tell you? Ask why you have been afraid? Or angry? Or lonely? Ask your shadow how she has grown so big? Ask your shadow how you can help her heal?

Then look again with new, softer eyes and ask yourself: Why have I neglected my shadow?

This process could take on any form. You can imagine your shadow as a figure sitting next to you. You could even pull up a chair in front of you for a one-on-one, verbal conversation. Just let out how you feel in response to your shadow…she will listen. Or write letters or journal. Finger paint with your shadow. Collage. Dance. And, as your shadow listens to you, you must listen to her.

Be Brave and Boldly Expressive

You have begun a sacred healing process. Your shadow work will heal the fragments and the lost parts. This is a life long journey. Not something you accomplish and that’s it. Life is a dance between the light and the shadow, it is the contrast that creates the whole of existence.

Go into the world and express yourself. The shadow is born from a lack of love and unwelcoming for all of your parts: the perceived good and bad. As you communion with your shadow, you will find she is nothing more than the beautiful parts of you that want to be seen and heard. She wants to be real in the world.

Live life as art. How can your life be a form of sacred expression? Here’s a little secret…your life is always sacred expression. You are a creative force by nature, you just have to get onboard with the Universe.

To get onboard just ask yourself:

What holds you back? Makes you afraid? What seems like a big risk? What calls to you with excitement, but fills you with fear?

I have never (….) because I fear (success, failure, ridicule, etc)?

What feeds your spirit? Makes your heart sing? Gives you joy? What do you close your eyes and dream of doing if “everything” was “perfect”?

I feel so light and alive when I (…)?

Declare a radical gesture of self expansion.

Go out into the world…TODAY! And declare a radical gesture of self-expression. Pick something that feels a little dangerous, but makes your heart sing. Choose something that is completely out of your comfort zone, outside of the walls of what is expected, yet makes you sing and smile inside when you dream on it. Go do it!

This can be a small or large gesture. It could be ordering a fattening drink at Starbucks rather than a healthy one. It could be wearing red lipstick to work when you usually wear no makeup. It could be saying no to your boss/friend/partner even if it means disappointing them. Whatever you do…DO IT FOR YOU!!

You are making your first steps into creative, authentic, spiritual living. The path to healing is the path of self-expression. Being in communication with the creative unknown. This is a shamanic journey, a path of alchemical transformation. 

With each step you take, whether backwards or forwards, always rock out to this sacred mantra: I am a spark of the Divine light. Magically creating a life of living beauty, color and sacred expression. 

© Shaheen Miro 2016

2 thoughts on “The Alchemical Path of Expressing the Shadow Self

  1. Pingback: How to Work with Your Shadow Self | Shaheen Miro

  2. Pingback: How to Work with Your Shadow Self | Paths I Walk

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