If I were exploring a natal chart for indications of a person’s deeply hidden shadows, I’d start with the position and sign of mysterious Pluto. It’s this planet that might give me clues to someone’s unevolved darkness, just waiting to erupt. This isn’t an astrology post per say, but it’s an interesting place to kick off the underlying theme of darkness and shadows in our psyches. After all, Pluto was deemed the Greek God of the Underworld and it’s in our own tangled ‘underworld’ that we find the power to transform ourselves.
Pluto represents the polarity between life and death, and between light and dark, and we cannot have one without the other. We could not recognise what light is, without its opposite dark. Pluto asks us to dance in the dark and face all that we are, in order that we can birth the light within. It is a life and death cycle, darkness is birthed from the light and light birthed from the darkness. We must all die in order to make way for new life on planet earth. Plants and bodies rot into the earth to create conditions for new life. Babies leave the dark womb to be birthed through the light at the end of the tunnel. In this way, the dark underworld serves as the very creator of life itself.
The Underworld represents all that’s hidden from plane view, and all that’s hard to find. The murky waters of a stagnant lake don’t seem very appealing. Our social structures don’t welcome or make room for our shadows; and if it does – it is tentatively and only in the safe confines of the therapists’ office or a secret diary. Bring those shadows out into public social life and you’re likely to find that people avoid you. It’s OK to be mad, we’d all like an invitation to the Mad Hatter’s tea party, but madness is oblivious. Shadows and darkness are calculated and intended.
In every arena of life we are asked to ‘put on a show’, with our jobs, families and friends. This only serves to drive our collective shadow deeper inwards as we see only the more acceptable parts of others and believe our own shadows do not fit in with that picture. We become so convinced that the majority of the people we interact with are ‘normal’, shadow-free humans that we start to believe that we ourselves are also free of inner darkness. Life becomes a mirror, what we perceive around us becomes a reflection of how we think our own lives are. Rarely do we stop looking outwards and look deeply inwards to see what the truth is. What I see in the mirror is the truth of who I am – right? No, it is only your reflection. The truth of who you are is deep within and cannot be seen in a mirror.
Our childhoods play a monumental part in conditioning us to hide our shadows. From an early age we are shamed for being bad or naughty. When I was very young my parents said we had to buy a birthday present for my very old Nan. I said ‘What’s the point of buying her a ‘thing’ if she’s going to die soon?’ Of course, one can’t say that! Though it was the truth for me. We express what is totally true and natural for us, and are repeatedly told that it’s not appropriate. Then we feel shamed, rejected, excluded from the group and we record in our subconscious that the way to avoid shame and rejection is to hide those parts of ourselves away and put on an acceptable display. Religion has also perpetuated this shaming of our darkness, teaching us that we must repent our sins and ‘behave’ if we are to win a golden ticket to Heaven.
There is of course a perfectly good reason why we need to tame our wild behaviour and fit in. Otherwise we might run rampant murdering everyone and breaking laws. Civilised society would become uncivilised and we would return to the animal kingdom. But we should ask ourselves two questions;
- Do we all really believe that ‘civilised’ law-abiding citizens have no sinful darkness within them? Even Saints?
- As an advanced, intelligent race, why is it that darkness exists inside of us? For what purpose?
Personally, I do not believe the first point – for the simple reason that I know I have sin, darkness and shadows within me, and I cannot be the only law-abiding, [most of the time] respectful citizen that does! We are fooling ourselves to the point of utter delusion if we believe the façade of ‘goodness’ that society presents, because we are pulling a blindfold over something we can clearly see – because it is also within us! Mad people exclaim calmly that they are not mad. Dark people exclaim very calmly that they are not dark. We know that ALL people are filled with hidden shadows because what is in us is also in them. Why is there darkness at all? If we are such a special species, made in the likeness of God, why can we not be 100% light and love?
It all comes back to opposites; you cannot have or understand up, without down. One cannot exist without the other. We good citizens of earth could not identify or recognise ourselves as ‘good’ if we did not have Hitler reflecting its opposite back to us of bad. And what would a Universe without opposites look like? It would be empty, meaningless and silent because nothing at all can exist without its opposite. Hitler is an extreme example I know, but he might not have done what he did if earlier on his shadows were seen and acknowledged in a healthy way instead of suppressed.
Life exists on the basic principle of vibrations. Astral travellers know this all too well, as they have mastered how to tune in to different frequencies in order to separate their astral body from their physical one and surf the vibrations of the universe! Our light and dark aspects of ourselves, and the entire subtle spectrum in-between exists on a continuum of core vibrations. The lower the vibration, the denser the manifestation of that vibration. With the highest possible vibration buzzing to the frequency of God and universal love. There are many complexities to this seemingly simple system, but if we master the basic principle then we can master our lives. Mystics who live in secluded mountain areas meditating all day, attune to the higher vibrations, and Shamans tune into the lower frequencies when they transmit healing energy.
It matters not whether you tune up, or down; but it does matter that you tune ‘in’. For without tuning in, you are blind to the system and its laws and stumbling through life reacting to this and that. By tuning in you can begin to see how the law of attraction works. And no, the law of attraction is not endless positive thinking and visualising. If you are imagining great things but vibrating to a lower frequency that doesn’t ‘match’ those things, then they will not be attracted to you. Our darkness and shadows vibrate to the lower frequencies until they are seen, matched and raised. This is evolution.
If light cannot exist without dark, and both sit on a continuum then it is all one and the same thing. We are not separate, nothing in the universe is separate as everything and every expression of life sits on a continuum; therefore we are all One. If we are all One, then all aspects of life are a fundamental part of who we are. The light is us, and also the dark IS us. We cannot separate ourselves from the darkness any more than we can separate ourselves from the universe we are born into. Our light and dark is the totality of who we are, and both are meaningful and important. When we stop hiding our shadows and bring them out into the light of day, we are acknowledging the whole of ourselves. If we want to find enlightenment, awakening or even just wholeness, then we cannot just embody only parts of ourselves and not others. In embodying the whole self, we see that we ARE the universe, and we are God. God manifests him/herself as all things, even the darkest sins are Gods own expressions of life.
Like the Greek God Pluto, we must dive into the underworld of ourselves, find the frequency of our shadows and match that frequency like for like with our attention and awareness. In doing so, like the black hole that falls into its opposite when equilibrium is reached, our shadows will fall into their opposites of light. By seeing and becoming aware of our inner demons, we are shedding light on them – and light means ‘vibrations’. We are vibrating to our shadows and in doing so we create balance and equilibrium and in this balance we find wholeness and perfection.
Our darkness becomes us, because it IS us.