I’ve noticed that many spiritual traditions and teachers seem to only deal with the “Light” and tell us the “Dark” or “Shadow” side is wrong. They ask us to be the embodiment of Jesus or Buddha….hmmm…trying to live up to that seems like setting ourselves up for failure. But, being only “Holy” isn’t, I believe, being enlightened. These figures only represent one part of ourselves, they are just one kind of energy, we also possess dark energy. The shaman or medicine woman knows both the “Light” and the “Darkness” are valuable. Working with both these energies with awareness and respect IS enlightenment.
I believe we do not have to make any part of ourselves wrong or bad….not our “Egos”, our “Pain bodies”, our “Shadow sides”, all we need is awareness. Awareness, of what is trying to happen in every given moment, with every person, in every situation. There is not one way to “Be” with everyone. Each situation we find ourselves in calls us to find out “What is trying to happen” (Dr Arnold Mindell, Founder of Process Orientated Psychology). This is the Shaman’s or Medicine Woman’s way. This is the path that follows the universe, the Tao, Gaia. This means we do not need to adhere to someone else’s teachings but we feel what is true for ourselves. Sometimes, we need to show someone who is attacking us verbally, emotionally or physically, the compassion of Jesus, Gandhi or Buddha, we need to embrace them. Other times we need to find the courage of the Dark Goddess, the Tiger, to tell someone to “STOP”. We will know which of these energies are needed not by thinking about what we should do, but by feeling into what needs to happen. A shaman might feel that he or she “needs” to throw someone off the edge of a cliff for the safety of his or her tribe, rather than try to heal them! I’m not suggesting you throw someone off the edge of a cliff, tempting as it might be! But, you can do it by refusing to listen to someone’s criticism and judgements of you or taking responsible for another person’s issues. Sometimes, walking away from that person is for the highest good of all.
Loving someone and showing them compassion does not always mean letting them walk all over us. If we believe we all have soul contracts and come to earth to help each other learn, then when someone comes into your life and starts “Pushing” you and continues to do so, even after you kindly and gently say “Stop”, then that person is asking you, on a soul level, to be firmer or more direct. Maybe, your own soul path is to become more firm and direct. Sometimes, the only way to wake someone up to themselves is to SCREAM at them. Some people will even thank you for showing them their “issues”, others will leave or continue to believe they don’t have a problem and it is all your fault….this might be the time to throw them off that cliff! (No, don’t do that!)
I’m learning, if any spiritual teachings, relationships, work feels like a struggle or makes me feel like I am not “Holy” or “Enlightened” enough, then it is leading me away from being in the flow of my own process or soul journey. It is leading me away from the natural flow of the universe or nature. When we are connected to our bodies, we feel what needs to happen next and sometimes it takes great courage to turn away from other people’s teachings to follow our own path, our own intuition because along the way we will most likely make mistakes, hurt people maybe, but this is how we learn and strengthen our own intuition. Dr Arnold Mindell speaks of following our Dream-body. Our Dream-body is the part of us that is connected to the “Flow of life”, it knows what we need to be happy and healthy and sends us messages through our body symptoms when we are out of alignment with OUR truth, not someone else’s.