The Shadow in Integral Life Practice

“A spiritual life can’t save you from shadow suffering.”
- Suzanne Wagner

From Carl Jung to Debbie Ford to Ken Wilber, at the leading edge of our development we are all talking about it­­ – The Shadow, what it is, how we meet it and what are the benefits of working with it.

Within these pages I want to offer you a view of The Shadow that will help and support you as you enter The Shadow Lands.  Begin…

The Shadow Effect Movie

Shall we bring our understanding of The Shadow to life? The clip below of the movie ‘The Shadow Effect‘ will do so.

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Please note, there is nothing particularly exclusive to the Catholic Religion about The Shadow.  The film makers simply happened to use this as just one example.

About The Shadow

Whole Life Whole World’s Gary Hawke introduces The Shadow…

Welcome to The Shadow Lands
To deal with the pain of the wounding, psychologically speaking, the infant sets up defences against the world.  One defence is to repress anything that might bring dis-ease.  Repressed aspects are stored within an unconscious space in the infant’s psyche, a space in which repressed energies can be forgotten about.

“The Shadow”
Robert Bly offers a great description of The Shadow as a process;

“As a child we have a 360º ball of energy, but as we are told by our parents to; “Keep still!” – “Smile!” – “Not speak until you are spoken too!”, we put the parent-offending activity into a bag that we drag behind us.”

Working with The Shadow
That which we have repressed we tend to see in others, we PROJECT the repressed characteristic on to other people, so other people become a mirror in which I see my Shadow energies.

As we reconnect with a repressed energy, we free up a little bit more energy, energy that we can use in supporting our life’s growth and development.

Benefits of Shadow Work
As Suzanne Wagner said at the top of these pages – it is hard and painful work dealing with The Shadow; it is so much easer sitting in silent meditation deep in the arms of the divine at one with the Causal Self.

No one wants to enter the land of shadows but once you have made the journey you will find gold and wonder… and yourself.

And in the end as you work through and release the repressed energies, slowly, step by step, you return to that simple feeing of being.

A Shadow Example Video
This following short video excerpt clip from a Tony Robbins / Cloé Madanes event presents a clear way in which Shadow can take effect, and the kind of subsequent release and expression that can be possible.