Sacred Journeys: The Sacredness of Shadow Work

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As we head into what will likely be a snowy winter solstice, it is interesting to look back and see what we manifested in our personal lives that helped us grow in the past year.

Likewise it is interesting to see what we experienced collectively that hopefully did the same. We have clearly been on quite a journey and I imagine many of us could say it has been a very challenging twelve months.

A dominant image this year was of our personal shadows and societal secrets being released from hiding, leaving us some days with the energetic impression that we were walking in a fog of ‘disappointment’. Lets face it, the world is not the way we want it yet, and to create a new world paradigm we need to expose the muck that is sustaining the status quo. We have been doing such a good job of exposing the muck, but we all felt overwhelmed by it at times.

Sometimes it felt like we were taking two steps back, but in actual fact, it was a year of leaping forward. We have bravely opened locked doors, and exposed deception on all levels of ourselves, and of society. It is these hidden secrets that are steaming up from the foundations. Their release is slow and full of layers of collective hypnosis, so the fog seems endless.

We have centuries of beliefs that no longer serve the greatest good, or our higher path, so it requires our patience and continued diligence while we examine all the corrupting shadows around us.

It is this ‘work’ that will change the world, and we have to do it together it seems: a year of revolutionary release, hand in hand with evolutionary shifting.

Jian Ghomeshi is a good example. We admired and trusted him. It now appears he had patterns of behaviour that were cloaked in shadow and needed to be brought into the light. In part because he was part of the CBC, which in many ways is our collective voice, his shadow became part of our consciousness. It became a personal betrayal. As individuals we processed our piece in it – the times we gave away our power; the times we hurt others; the times we felt victimized; the times we were too aggressive, and felt shame at our aggressive patriarchal past; the times we kidded ourselves about what was really going on. His secret was meteoric, and it touched a shadow in each of us that we could bring to the surface as well.

Not that long ago, in cases of sexual violence, we would have blamed the woman for what she was wearing or how she was acting – implying that she brought it on herself. But public awareness has shifted. This time, what could have taken months of ‘reaction’ resulted in days of ‘response’: from the police changing how they accommodate people coming forward, to individuals thinking about how they could have responded differently within their own lives to situations where they gave their power away. It was a fiery pebble in our national pond, that is continuing to ripple, and it changed us. Our sharing was honest, profound, and intelligent. We spoke to each other from our hearts, with a new language that has evolved out of life in these revolutionary trenches and the wisdom we have acquired.

A Hopi elder offered this wisdom for these times:

“There is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore. They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly.”

“Know that the river has its destination.  The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water.   And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate. At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves.  For the moment that we do, our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.”

“The time for the lone wolf is over.  Gather yourselves! Banish the word ‘struggle’ from your attitude and your vocabulary. All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.” (For more information visit:

Likely we will still have more ‘challenges’ next year, but as we do our work, it will get easier as the fog burns off. It is helpful to remember that we are vast beings, and that inside us is everything we need to do the job. We are just rubbing off the tarnish and stains and for every released shadow there is an opportunity to shine more light from our hearts into the world.

Next year we will notice real changes, especially now that we are doing the work together. Visualize wonderful changes for 2015 as we dream in a beautiful New Year!

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