The cycle of darkness and light
Life is full of cycles. The tides come in and out and the sun rises and sets. You cannot say that the point at which the sun is up is better than when the sun is down – or vice versa. Both points of the cycle are necessary for balance and health. Many of us have been taught into thinking that light is always better than darkness – the lighter the better, the more spiritual, the more righteous. But in truth, the whole universe contains both light and darkness and both of them are beautiful, healing, necessary and purposeful. Darkness is not bad and neither is light. By running from darkness we run from our own humanity and create unnecessary pain and suffering in the process.
Possible signs you run from your own darkness and the darkness of others:
- When you have a negative emotion or see it in others you immediately try to cover it up
- You think that you are a bad person if you feel bad
- You do not understand your emotions
- Your life is full of distractions and you can feel anxious if you don’t have them
- You are afraid to be by yourself
- You have many unhealthy coping mechanisms
Most of us have been socialized into thinking that “negative” emotions are bad and that if your life is not a rollercoaster ride of success then something is wrong with you. Some of us have even been traumatized into thinking that if we show bad emotions then we will be punished somehow.
We are not taught that lessons are cyclical and that our shadows reach out to us for healing no matter where we are in life. Life is a beautiful cycle of you learning about yourself in the solitude of darkness then expanding that newfound part of you into the light of the physical world. The light points in life can be known as the expansion phase, and dark points can be known as the shadow phase. This has my personal experience so please only take away what resonates with you.
The shadow phase
This phase can also be called the dark night of the soul. Many people can enter this phase when they begin a spiritual awakening. Some of the turmoil experienced during this phase could be referred to as “ascension symptoms.” These symptoms could be confusion, outbursts of emotion, strange new sensations and longings, a feeling of emptiness or a void, a feeling that you need a large change, no longer wanting to do the same things or feeling like the way you have been doing things is pointless. You could also run into a series of triggers or old issues from years ago. It is extremely important to know yourself and know the difference between something that is happening because of the growth of your soul and something you need to see a medical professional for – please use discernment!
This is an inward-oriented phase. During this time you are called to face the unhealthy beliefs and patterns in your subconscious mind (your shadows). During this phase you may find yourself feeling sad, lost, depressed, or feel like you have no motivation to do anything. It is important not to be hard on yourself when you are experiencing these emotions because it is a part of being human. It is however very healthy and beneficial for you to pay attention to the emotions, thoughts, and experiences that come to you at this time because they are showing you what your shadows are.
While I am going through a shadow phase it feels like a lot of things come to a halt or slow down so that I can focus on working on myself. It can be harder for me to see energy fields, hear non-physical beings, and do other psychic work. I also have a hard time meditating, remembering my dreams (unless they are related to the particular shadow aspect), and doing inter-dimensional work.
During a shadow phase in your life you can also have multiple experiences that point you to a shadow aspect of yourself that is trying to be integrated. For example, you may start having dreams about gardening, plants, and being outdoors. You may think that these dreams are irrelevant and not understand them because you really do not like the outdoors – though you really do not know why. You may have picked up a fear of the outdoors when you were young and got a serious injury outside – this could be a forgotten memory which is why you do not consider it could be a reason for you not liking the outdoors. You also may have had many adults in your life tell you that outdoor activities are only for a certain gender or other group you are not a part of and so you developed a belief that you were not supposed to enjoy being outside. Perhaps when you were younger you absolutely loved being outdoors but got punished many times for getting dirty – causing to think that being outdoors is bad or even that you following your joy and being happy is bad. Many different things such as these examples could be contributing to a fear of the outdoors that is coming to the surface to be healed.
These beliefs, traumas, and shadows related to the outdoors are still there subconsciously but so is the desire for you to want be outdoors. So you are now constantly having multiple experiences that involve outdoors- shows, magazines, and even hearing people have conversations about being outdoors even though you are doing everything in your power to avoid it. You are wondering why the topic of being outdoors keeps showing up in your life even though you hate it. You can become irritable and frustrated with everything. However, when something shows up over and over again in your life, especially in your dreams, it is time to be honest with yourself and pay attention.
The whole point of a shadow phase is to dive into the darkness of your own being and discover what resides there. There are amazing treasures within the depths of your soul that you may not even know are there – gifts, talents, skills, and personality traits. Fears, traumas, beliefs, and emotions point to and give us clues about what may exist within our subconscious shadows and help steer us in the direction of integrating them into our conscious mind.
What to do during a shadow phase:
- Shadow work
- Quiet alone time
- Set a timer (once every 3 hours or whatever works) and check-in with your body to see how you feel. What doesn’t feel good that you keep doing?
- Relax and let yourself feel however you feel and know it is okay
- Spend time outdoors
- This is a great time to work with oracle cards
Shadow aspects of ourselves are always trying to reintegrate and heal with us but during a shadow phase it can be a lot more intense and pressing. Shadows will not come up until you are ready to deal with them. The reason why all of this stuff is shoved into the back of your subconscious mind is that you simply cannot deal with all of it right now, so parts of your being come to your conscious mind piece by piece until you have integrated them all. These shadows are like veils within your consciousness. When you discover and begin working with one shadow part of yourself, you are catapulted into a new phase of growth (the expansion phase). It is like a veil is lifted from your life and you are more open, conscious, and aware about yourself and many things around you.
The expansion phase
The expansion phase occurs after you have discovered another shadow and torn down another veil separating your idea of yourself (your ego) from your true self. When you come into this phase it can feel like you are experiencing life like it is something you have not really experienced before, as if you had just been born. In a way this is true because during the shadow phases of life you experience death after death of shards of your ego until one day there is nothing left.
Your ego is simply your idea of who you are, your personality. Your ego enables you to distinguish yourself from other people and objects in this physical realm. But it can also hold you back by keeping you in a box of who you think you are. Your true being is limitless and cannot fit into a box and so life sends you experiences in shadow phases to cause you to turn inwards and examine yourself until you find everything that does not fit within the definition of who you really are.
During an expansion you may also have urges to try many new things. You may feel very open and connected to everyone and everything around you. You may experience many synchronicities and find it easier to use your intuitive and psychic gifts. During this phase you will be taking actions based on what you learned on in the previous shadow phase – like if you learned that you really do love being outdoors.
These phases repeat each other endlessly throughout your life and even within a single day you will go back and forth inbetween each cycle. The shadows you experience keep showing up in your life in different ways and on even deeper levels. You are on a continuous learning spiral so not only are you having ups and downs, but you are running back into the same shadows over and over until you reach new levels of understanding and expansion. This means that you are never truly finished learning one things but as time goes on you get deeper and deeper into the learning experience of the lesson your shadows have taught you. Having an awareness of this cycle of forward moving energy and inward moving energy can help you accept where you are in life and how you are feeling. It is important for you to embrace both sides of your reality because both are equally important and necessary to your growth.
How do you feel about your own moments of shadow and expansion?
None of these statements or products have been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This products and/or statements are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. This is for educational purposes only and it is not meant to replace the care or advice of a medical professional in any way.