When people refer to “shadow selves,” our minds may jump to hoodoo or witchcraft. Before judging, remember these practices are rooted in Black history!
But no matter your spiritual practice, elements of “shadow work” are necessary to achieve spiritual liberation.
Your “shadow” is a subconscious alter ego – a version of yourself you hide from others. Your shadow consists of guilt-inducing feelings like jealousy, anger, fear, insecurity, desire, depression, or judgment.
We’re taught to bury these feelings – so they become our “shadow.”
Like our literal shadow, we can’t get rid of our “shadow self.” It’s part of us! Confronting your shadow is hard, but can lead to discovering your authentic self and examining where you self-sabotage within your life.
While your shadow self is often associated with “negative emotions,” you could also be suppressing “positive emotions,” like love. If you believe you’re unworthy of love, all the love you have to give or receive slowly becomes a part of your “positive shadow.”
If we believe we’re unworthy of love, how can we expect to experience divine love?
Within her show Insecure, actress Issa Rae does shadow work whenever she speaks to her alter ego in the mirror. There’s comfort in knowing even more Black people are beginning to identify as spiritual, meaning there’s more freedom to explore within your faith practice!
How might you engage with your shadow self?
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