You can’t walk a spiritual journey and keep avoiding your dark side because it’ll eventually kick in.
Let’s say that you try to stay positive under all conditions. Perhaps you have set up a background with affirmations at your computer and phone and try to avoid any negativity. However focusing on what you want to experience has its place, it doesn’t make your dark side disappear. No matter how much you try.
One day, you get fired, or your partner leaves you. Suddenly you go into the victim mode, and the fears kick in full speed. The mind goes crazy, and all you think of is how you’ve messed it up. Again. You start to believe that you can’t be happy. If you didn’t embrace your dark side before, it’d get stronger once it’s triggered.
It’s like sitting on a volcano and trying to choke up the crater before the eruption and pretend that the lava won’t come. You can’t change the matter by ignorance. But you can accept the fact that the lava is there and think what you will do about it.
Ignoring your dark side
Another example of ignoring the darkness is the eagerness to be somewhere (better) than you are at the moment. It’s the unspoken desire to be a better human – there is nothing wrong with that – but you’ll never find inner peace and love for yourself as long as you don’t accept the totality of you – the dark and light aspects within.
The avoidance of darkness makes us ignore one part of us – the unpleasant feelings and aspects of us.
It’s the avoidance of inner shadow that limits you.
Many times, I’ve witnessed that some of mine coaching clients are out of touch with their shadow aspects. The society inbuilt an impression that we should always be kind, obedient, and not to display any weaknesses such as sadness or anger. This is one of the ways to form a compliant society, but as you can see from any news, it doesn’t work.
Suppressing doesn’t make anything to dissipate. It pushes it deeper into the subconscious and gives it more control over our lives.
Being good should be a natural result of recognizing and mastering both aspects – the dark and light – and then transcending (and integrating) them.
However, when we want to be kind without knowing the full potential of our being then it backfires to us. It’s like trying to force yourself to love the pink color. You only wear pink, and your home is painted pink too. You never look at different colors of the spectrum, and you’re not aware that there is also green, red, golden, etc.
One day, someone crushes your bubble, and you notice different colors. You feel fascinated and realize how much you’ve been restricting your options. On the other hand, if you’re free to experience any colors, eventually, you choose the favorite ones.
And then you don’t need to wear black color (dark side), for instance. Even if you see someone wearing black, you feel neutral (it doesn’t take you off balance anymore), and you think oh, I’ve tried black too, but it doesn’t suit me. This is the freedom of choice – choosing out of the palette of options. Instead of being handed only one or two possibilities and forcing everyone to like them.
How to embrace your dark side
Unless you learn to embrace your dark side, you’ll not understand your potential. As long as you need to flip from one side to another, you’re not a free person because one of those sides will control you.
To liberate yourself and find inner balance, we need to rise above the dark and light. But how can one do it without consciously working with both?
To embrace your dark side, you need to face it and accept what you see. Understanding your dark side takes time. It’s a process that can take however long it’s needed. You’re in control over that process because you decide whether you’re ready or not. And you decide how much you commit to finding your true self.
Some of the ways to embrace your dark side are to write a list of the unwanted aspects of you. You can also connect with them (one after another) in meditation and feel them.
Your awareness is the key.
Since you’ve suppressed those unwanted parts of you for a long time (if not whole life), you’ve also deprived them of your awareness and love. They are like abandoned children of yours who yearn for your love and attention.
As you embrace the dark side, you’ll understand better who you are. You’ll recognize the areas of self-sabotage and when perhaps you also hurt those around you by your words. You may even realize that maybe you’re not as far as you wanted but you’re more grounded, balanced, and free.
Embracing your inner darkness is the necessary step to light. Without it, you can’t understand the light and yourself. When you find peace with your darkness, you’ll transmute it to the light. It’s a natural by-product of embracing your shadow.