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 The Spiritual Journey: The Shadow as Divine 
 

Befriending our Contradictions Unleashes our Creativity
Trying to regulate some part of ourselves we see as "wicked," "immoral," or "wrong" can cause us great trouble leading to a barbaric backlash. As long as the denied side remains unacknowledged, and therefore unexpressed, it builds up a tension that becomes the explosive, shadow emotions that stew around in a cauldron of repression denial, self-hatred, and misunderstanding. And it's only the lack of recognition as a legitimate part of us that the shadow grew into such potent force. When we can learn to live within this tension, meaning we acknowledge the paradox of both sides having purpose, the drama of enantiodromia will not have to take us over.

Sometimes people try to simulate equilibrium, but they are, in reality, sleepwalking. Balancing the tension between Opposites may appear as "being positive" or as a state of passive nonmovement. But balancing the tension of the Opposites is not like that at all; it is a pleasurable state of tension that doesn't pull us into a one-sidedness. When we are in this state the conscious and unconscious minds meet one another in harmonious play. We notice that our inspiration comes more freely into a creative expression. The healthy, creative person uses this tension for nurturing one's talents. This transmutation of energy, from being blocked and denied to becoming openly expressed, is how our shadow heals and becomes the active dynamism of passion in our process of co-creation. Our passions and true calling merge.

For you to become consciously creative, you must learn to bear your inner contradictions. Consciousness flourishes through contrasts--by separating figure from ground. When you explicate something by your focus on it, you are making it conscious.

Learning to live from center creates the contrasting deign. We can move any which way, however the energies of the moment sway us. We can flow this way and that in open-mindedness, not becoming rigid at any point. There is no longer anything to get rigid about! For we are no longer trying to prove anything. Like riding a rainbow, we allow whatever colors are pouring through to have their natural expression. We are just being ourselves, with total acceptance of what is, and never are we experts on one side of the equation! Once we become this self-accepting, we can learn to love and accept others. But not before! The degree of our healing will determine the degree of our loving nature.

We can enter into the dance of the opposites, or we can remain aloof and nonattached. From the center, we see that we don't really have to hook into everything that's going on around us. We can remain The Onlooker, and become more selective about when to play ourselves into life or when to remain uninvolved. Whatever we focus and give our passion to will become our reality. We want to conserve our precious energy for the Sacred Work and not waste time on melodrama. As conscious beings, we have free choice.

But when we don't get the point, the psyche sets up a different way to present the discrepancy. Our errors then, and obstacles along our path, become great gifts, if this is the only way we can learn. That is, if becoming conscious is our goal. Once something is made conscious, it settles back into the pleroma of oneness, but now we possess a deeper sense of self-reflection, which is very pleasing, apparently even for God.

(Excerpted from Embodying Spirit: Coming Alive with Meaning and Purpose ISBN: 0062552783)
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