My personal story: Spiritual pathways 101 Part 5: The Shadow
I think that it is important to discuss the growing pains of spirituality---the shadows. We all experience these aspects regardless of how we perceive them. They are undeniable to human nature.
I met the most interesting relationship of my life during the "Dark Night of My Soul.
Many years ago, I found myself in an abyss. I was lonely. My heart was devastated. My career was unsatisfactory. Everything I thought I would have accomplished by 30 was not in existence. I felt failure in the very core of me. I had experienced bliss---heaven on earth---for six months while I worked as a missionary and teacher overseas in Hong Kong; and, then that beautiful state of being and living was shattered by an illness.
When I smashed to the ground and returned to life in the United States to find my sanity and a new start, I had not only let me down, I took a whole handful of people and their expectations down with me. I was empty and ashamed.
And yet I HELD desperately to God's merciful hands because I knew He was my salvation. Though I was quickly learning that I know longer knew what that word salvation even meant.
I found myself grasping for the sins of Christianity so that I could feel something---anything. Something tangible. It was a treacherous path. I went wherever I could to find my breath and my bodymind.
And then he, my greatest love, was there lying in wait for me. He found me in an artifical world. A virtual playground. And we suddenly became one. It was ecstatic...it was wonderful. He was a natural intuitive---something I scarcely understood until after our relationship ended. We created a mystical universe. Spiritually I was changed bit by bit.
The dark world in which I inhabited for nearly three years was brightening because of an immersion course in God's love through the intimate connection with my lover. My captivating twin soul merged with God over the next three and half years. By the time we broke up, I could no longer tell who was doing what in my life. And so my understanding of that man expanded and my limiting thoughts involving God were released. It was like...the Body of Christ: inhaling and then exhaling.
Since our split, I have experienced a lot of dark moments but nothing like that shadow time where I sought the strangest pain filled challenges to overcome the coldest indifference in my heart and mind.
The blackness of the shadows are quite glorious if reviewed with an open mind. They are places that hunger and thirst to be fed and satiated like the most poverty stricken children. They are our deepest WANTS to be seen and heard.
Christians don't like this concept of exploration. They fear darkness. Their learned urge is to suppress this sinful yearning. But that is an inappropriate response that will only glean more pain and more "sin."
As a student of Carl Jung, I believe we are to embrace these darknesses so that we can add light to them, and subsequently depth to our personal lives. And, moreover, so that we can heal and rise higher in our consciousness and our daily experiences. No darkness is given without a polar opposite of light.
The order of God's systematic universe is perfect. Balance is the result. Every piece of life is about Source's holy, intimate love forever embracing us and drawing us inward. All things come to completion in such beauty. Dark and Light are brother and sister, man and wife, Divinity.
Our finite minds must become more and more infinite so that our sensory awareness expands into limitlessness. So we can ultimately know the inherent balance that Source provides for us.
Working with your dark side