by finding the ancient light
Whether we like to admit it or not, we're all going to have to process our inner darkness at some point on the evolutionary journey - and almost certainly many times - it's an ongoing process. To me, darkness really relates to 'internal mis-representation of reality'. It happens as the soul forms a judgment - get's stuck in an opinion - about whether something is 'good' or 'bad', 'right' or 'wrong'. Every exploration is inspired by an original truth - what some call "ancient light". In helping people through darkness, I've discovered the key is to go fearlessly into the heart of it, not deny it, but let it wash over you, and then, at the height of the inner storm, look for this ancient light within it...
The journey of the soul
When we venture courageously into the depths of our soul, we ultimately realise its innate character is to explore every attachment we may have in order to initiate self realisation and thereby evolutionary growth. Early on in my journey, I had what (for me) was a very powerful realisation...
- "On the journey of the soul,
when a crossroads is reached
where one path leads to 'heaven' and the other to 'hell',
a soul yearning for liberation makes no judgment or distinction
about which one to choose.
Attunement to either path happens due to one 'consideration' only...
What can 'I' learn?"
At the time I found this immensely liberating and empowering. It explained why exactly I was experiencing so much darkness when I simply let go. Prior to this, I'd been temporarily caught in a 'spiritual identity' - an idea and opinion about "how spiritual people should be".
The opinion seems to be strongly prevalent within spiritual circles that a truly 'spiritual person' should be like this or that, they have certain behaviours and shine the light in particular ways. In this arena, I observe it often causes evolving people to ask..."how can it be right to experience such darkness?"
What can all-too-frequently happen next is denial! As the negative feelings and visions start welling up, the spiritual ego wants to either disown or suppress them. How often do you hear 'spiritual' people on facebook for example openly exploring their darkness? My observation is that there is a tendency to project only what 'wants' to be heard.
Such spiritual identities are strongly limiting - the soul yearns for completeness, but it cannot be that if it has not been forged in the crucible of life - the all of it. So the first key to dealing with darkness is not to deny it, but as the experiences begin to arise, fall fearlessly into the heart of it...
- "It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon.
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow,
if you have been opened by life's betrayals or have become shriveled
and closed from fear of further pain!
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own,
without moving to hide it or fade it, or fix it."
Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Blessings in disguise
All action in the physical plane, whether light or dark, subtle or intense arises from a higher co-creative (and mostly abstract) contemplation. So a group of souls may be drawn together to explore a question. For example: "what is the true meaning of compassion?"...
- If the purpose of each soul is to evolve beyond attachment,
and to be truly liberated is to be liberated by all things,
then everything 'I do to you' which causes the exposure and pain of attachment - our suffering,
must ultimately be a blessing.
Yes I know this one can be pretty tough! To accept that some of the most horrendous perpetrations against us are actually blessings in disguise. But if in the heart of our suffering, we can keep remembering this one vital truth, then it becomes possible to realise that...
- "I must have created it by my very attachment to it.
Otherwise there simply wouldn't be a need for me to experience it."
This is of course the Law of Attraction in operation - we draw exactly those circumstances to us through which we need to evolve and grow. Again, I have found this realisation to be immensely liberating whilst dwelling in the heart of darkness.
Looking for the ancient light
So souls come together to explore those areas that limit, contract and hold us back. We're here to expand the boundaries on physical and emotional expression: to walk the blade edge of life by continually realising we are not the experience itself, we are that which is beyond the experience.
So when darkness begins to happen and wants to draw us in, if we can feel the tightness of our own fear and non acceptance beginning to contract us down, then it's almost certainly a sign that we're being invited to let go and dive into what ever then comes up - however painful it may appear to be.
And when the experiences washes over us, I've observed it's vitally important to keep looking for the ancient light within it... "why is this happening? Why is it having such an effect? What is the outcome I'm either needing or resisting in this?"
- "And I found that I can do it if I choose to -
I can stay awake and let the sorrows of the world tear me apart
and then allow the joys to put me back together,
different from before, but whole once again."
Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Holding the pain
If we courageously explore our inner darkness in this way, then we will certainly find the reason why we're in it in the first place. At some point we'll notice our attachment. Take for example emotional pain. What happens when you're flooded by negative emotion? Are you owned by it? Do you give into it and react from that place? And if you do, does it serve you to do so?
Let's be clear, it is important to honour what wants to come up, but the point is to evolve beyond the attachment that causes such emotion. If we simply wallow in the emotion and let it define us, then it will keep recreating itself.
So in the case of excessive emotional release and external projection for example, it could be about bringing the centre of our attention into the heart and holding the negative energy within our field - as unpleasant as it may be - just holding that energy without immediate release can help us dissolve the attachment to it. In which case, a good part of the denseness may then simply ebb away.
- But this is far from a passive and suppressive approach.
It takes the fearless application of the inner warrior
to hold that energy and to work with it.
It's all about feeling it, letting it wash through you,
but then also finding a flow of light which is through it all -
the original cause of the exploration.
The only effective way out is through
I do observe it is often the case that without such a proactive approach to the darkness, people inadvertently subject themselves only to increased pain and suffering, by either resisting the darkness or getting lost in it and therefore being defined by it.
With a positive exploration however, fearlessly falling into it, looking for the ancient light, honouring our expression yes, but resisting projection onto others by holding the energy within, then the inner alchemy will cause the lost fragments of soul that are identifying with the event to reintegrate and the darkness will then wash away. We'll quickly find ourselves 'bobbing back up to the surface' once more.
For me then, dealing with darkness is something we'll all be invited to master. The amazing thing is, that when we summon the courage to work with it in this way, we find a natural aptitude for processing it. And ultimately, on the journey of the soul, the only effective way out is through.
For all those in darkness right now, my heart goes out to you.