A couple of years ago I kept hearing that I needed to explore and integrate my shadow. I had no clue what that really meant. I went in search through books and the internet to discover what I could. I found this great piece "The Long Bag We Drag Behind Us" by Robert Bly (A Little Book on the Shadow p.17-21). This is a small bit from that piece,
"Let’s talk about the personal shadow first. When we were one or two years old we had what we might visualize as a 360-degree personality. Energy radiated out from all parts of our body and all parts of our psyche. A child running is a living globe of energy. We had a ball of energy, all right; but one day we noticed that our parents didn’t like certain parts of that ball. They said things like: “Can’t you be still?” Or “It isn’t nice to try and kill your brother.” Behind us we have an invisible bag, and the part of us our parents don’t like, we, to keep our parents’ love, put in the bag. By the time we go to school our bag is quite large. Then our teachers have their say: “Good children don’t get angry over such little things.” So we take our anger and put it in the bag. By the time my brother and I were twelve in Madison, Minnesota we were known as “the nice Bly boys.” Our bags were already a mile long."
I discovered excavating my shadow didn't just mean looking at the things I don't like about myself, but at things I had "put in the bag" because it made other people uncomfortable such as my creativity. I have pulled my creativity out of the bag. I now lovingly and playfully explore creativity through art, beads, yarn, fabric, collaging, and just about anything I can try. I am so glad I dared to look into the shadow.
May you journey into your shadow with courage and rejoice at your integration.
Much love and blessings,
Magdalene Althea Morgan - Dancing Shamanic Priestess -
Facilitator, Creatrix, Multi-Dimensional traveler, Transformative Bodywork Therapist. Dancing the Sacred & Creation into being.