Shadow work is a term that's been coined to describe the task of facing and integrating the lower vibration characteristics and personality traits that our ego has suppressed deep within us.
When shadow emerges, we're referring to those aspects of ourselves that we've refused to acknowledge and thus hidden in darkness.
This process of suppression took place over the course of our lives, over the course of our family lineage (generational) and also as the result of traumas held onto from past lives.
What we suppressed was based entirely on how we and our ancestors learned to survive in the world, based on the feedback of those closest to us/them - parents, peers, authority figures, tribe, community, the media etc.
Most of what we suppressed were/are considered to be ‘flawed’ qualities that we 'shouldn't' harbour, as dictated by others. Instead of integrating these so-called ‘fl’awed qualities into our human psyche - with the conscious intent to transmute them into beneficial energies that serve our highest good and greatest good of all - we hid them behind a veil of darkness.
FAULT DISCLAIMER: Hiding these characteristics, personality traits and aspects was all we knew to do! Knowing that we did this is sufficient enough to proceed. No need to judge yourself for doing so!!
Why Do Shadow Work?
These shadow aspects that we ignore, have been the subconscious motivators of the majority of our thoughts, feelings, reactions and actions over the course of our lives. This means that they are directly responsible for who and where we are right now.
Furthermore, these shadow aspects have played a major role in diminishing our power and opening us up to manipulation and tyranny.
When we refuse to acknowledge our shadow at work, especially when particularly dense feelings and thoughts come to surface, we end up projecting those feelings and thoughts onto others - blaming them for the situations that we find ourselves in and for the ways in which we are fairing.
In doing this, we give away our sovereignty and disconnect from our fellow brothers and sisters.
When we acknowledge and integrate the shadow aspects of our humanity, as they come up in our life experiences, we empower ourselves to sit-with, acknowledge and integrate every aspect of our holistic personality - as humans and spiritual beings.
In doing so, we empower ourselves to take accountability for our personal reality.
This means shifting from blaming and pointing fingers, to understanding our role in the co-creation of our lives.
Why Blame and Judgment Don’t Serve Us
Every characteristic that you possess as a member of the human race - deem it good or bad - is a characteristic that every other human being is capable of also possessing, if they had undergone the specific conditions that you traversed to bear that characteristic.
In the same way, every characteristic that another human being possesses - deem it good or bad - is a characteristic that you are capable of possessing, if you had undergone the specific conditions that they traversed to bear that characteristic.
What this means is that you are in no position to judge or blame another, and also that they are in no position to judge or blame you.
When we begin to recognize the role that conditions play in the development of our personality traits, we enable ourselves to see where we are giving away our sovereignty.
And when we begin to recognize where and how we are operating from conditions, we are empowered to see where we are operating automatically.
Once we are aware of where we are operating from auto-pilot, we may begin to change the auto-pilot responses that are no longer serving us.
This is why shadow work is an important process for ascension.
How Do I ‘Do’ Shadow Work?
A great way to embark on shadow work is to stop and be with your emotions and thoughts, as soon as judgment and blame show up - ideally before reacting but it’s ok if the fuse goes off first.
CRYSTAL TIP: Work with Rose Quartz and Rhodonite to amplify self-love and compassion, remembering that you are retraining your brain to align with your heart in this process. Be easy on yourself.
Ask yourself a few questions;
1 - What characteristic, personality trait or aspect am I judging this person for utilizing in this situation?
2 - Where in my life have I demonstrated this very same characteristic/personality trait/aspect - even if on a 'less impactful' wavelength? and
3 - Where in my life have I been unwilling to demonstrate this very same characteristic/personality trait/aspect, where it may have/may serve me well?
And if the characteristic/personality trait/aspect that you're judging is so horrific that you cannot bring yourself to answer questions two through three for this lifetime, then you may work with these questions in their place;
2 - Do I have a thorough understanding of the conditions that would need to be in place for another individual to utilize such a characteristic/personality trait/aspect? and/or
3 - Can I imagine what potential conditions would need to be in place for myself as a human being, to identify with and utilize such a characteristic/personality trait/aspect?
More Tools for Supporting Your Shadow Work
Obsidian is also an amazing stone to work with on your shadow journey. It's powerful properties ground and protect you, while also calling forth your shadow. Obsidian, though, can be an intense stone to work with given it's highly scrying properties. As such, we suggest it in moderation and only to those who've been doing the work already, and are looking to take it to the next level.
Smokey Quartz is a favourite grounding stone for shadow work and works well for beginners and novice shadow workers alike.
The ability to anchor ourselves to the earth enhances our capacity to face the unknown aspects of who we are as individuals and a collective with fortitude and strength, and Smokey Quartz offers us that grounding connection.
It relieves our fears and brings us into a state of emotional calmness, both of which are necessary for traversing the shadow and integrating it into our whole being.
Shop Smokey Quartz, Rose Quartz, Rhodonite and Obsidian (if you dare) via our online Shop!