Man stands in his own shadow and wonders why it's dark. ~Zen Proverb

So much is happening in the world in general and in our own private world lately. With the death of Osama. With the beating of Bryan Stow at a Dodger’s game in LA. With the indiscretions of Schwarzenegger bringing gasps from mainstream America. (It’s actually appalling to think that people are more engrossed in the life of Arnold than they are in knowing the outcome of a private American who was savagely beaten at a baseball game!) All these incidents are stemming from the “shadow” side of humanity. The “shadow” part of us has, for far too long, been the catalyst of “man’s inhumanity to man.”

Based on your perspective, you could say the “shadow” is a horrible reflection of how our world operates. You could also change your perspective and choose to see the silver lining in all the negative events caused by the darkest part of our souls. It’s not easy, definitely not easy.

If you have lived too many years in a state of darkness, sometimes, you have no clue where to begin your journey towards a more peaceful and centered way of life. Or you may have no desire to do such a thing. Some people choose to continue living from the “shadow” part of themselves because they either don’t know there is a better way or they don’t care enough to live a better life. Choosing the latter is what I call choosing to live in “comfortable misery.”

For those of you who do choose to find a more peaceful life, you have to delve deeply into the part of you that is Spirit. That’s different than the soul part of you. A long time ago, I learned that the soul is the part of you that makes up your personality. It’s the part of you that people remember when they describe what kind of person they have experienced you to be. Words like “funny”, “smart”, “cute”, “compassionate”, and “loving”, etc., are all part of your personality, your soul. In my understanding, the soul is the part of you that is reflected and acted upon because of your mind. Your thoughts and emotions flow from your mind and thus, create your personality. The Spirit part of us, on the other hand, is the part of us that is most like God. It is our Essence, our True “Being-ness”. It comes from a place deeper and far less tangible than our brain, where the mind conjures up thoughts and actions spring forth.

The Spirit part of you is beyond the ego part of thought or action. The Spirit part of you has the innate wisdom to know the difference between right and wrong. It knows that you “reap what you sow.” It knows you will eventually suffer the consequences of negative thoughts, words and actions that you dish out to others. The Spirit in you knows that it is futile and totally unreasonable to try to deceive, lie, control or mislead someone. It knows that when you are living from this “shadow” side of yourself that your entire life can never be complete, whole, peaceful, loving, accepting, or giving.

The “shadow” side of your life leads to nothing but physical “dis-ease”, emotional pain, and mental anguish. It leads to a life full of misery, self-loathing (in spite of defense mechanisms you may try to use in order to bury that feeling), anger, fear, a sense of loneliness, worthlessness and feelings of revenge, hatred, narcissism, apathy and hate.

The ironic thing about the dual existence of soul and spirit is: no matter what side you choose to live from – the “shadow” side or the Spirit side, the ultimate, absolute truth about all of you is that it’s totally a choice. You have the choice to live and suffer and die from living out of the darkest part of your existence. You also have the choice to wake up from your “sleep”, stop walking around with your eyes wide shut, and make every effort to exact a change in your life to live from your fullest authentic self. Your innate greatness – your Spirit – is the only indomitable and empowering existence that will grant you the one thing that every human being wants most of all – true, deep, unconditional acceptance and love of self as well as from another human being.

Shadow or Light, it’s your choice.

Author's Bio: 

Lene' has 30+ years of life experience in the Self-Realization field. From becoming a Peer Counselor as a High School Senior to staffing an experiential self-knowledge seminar in Phoenix, called Omega Vector. She has worked as a speaker/facilitator for support groups (Al-Anon, CoDa, Parents Anonymous and Women Who Love Too Much), sharing relationship techniques with others as well as helping them find ways to build higher self-esteem and empowerment.

Lene' wrote a book in 2001, which is now self-published, called Reality in Disguise. It speaks of the strength of the human spirit and is based on her life. She just completed a second book, which will be published soon online as an ebook. It is about the "rememberings"/awarenesses of who she truly is and the lessons she has learned through her journey in this life.
She is a freelance writer, motivational speaker, peer counselor and student of the higher consciousness movement.

Her goal and desire here is to reach out and help or share with anyone that needs a listening ear or a bit of guidance. If the need is just for someone who can empathize and understand where they're coming from, she can do that, too!

Lene' is working on creating her own business so that her awarenesses and realizations can benefit others locally as well as nationally and internationally.

Thank you, bless you and may your deepest dreams and most positive goals manifest themselves in your life! You create your universe with your thoughts, so let the manifesting begin!