Tag Archives: dark side

Shadow Sides and Fun House Mirrors

 

“Be silent and listen: have you recognized your madness and do you admit it? Have you noticed that all your foundations are completely mired in madness? Do you not want to recognize your madness and welcome it in a friendly manner? You wanted to accept everything. So accept madness too. Let the light of your madness shine, and it will suddenly dawn on you. Madness is not to be despised and not to be feared, but instead you should give it life…If you want to find paths, you should also not spurn madness, since it makes up such a great part of your nature…Be glad that you can recognize it, for you will thus avoid becoming its victim. Madness is a special form of the spirit and clings to all teachings and philosophies, but even more to daily life, since life itself is full of craziness and at bottom utterly illogical. Man strives toward reason only so that he can make rules for himself. Life itself has no rules. That is its mystery and its unknown law. What you call knowledge is an attempt to impose something comprehensible on life.”
― Carl Jung>

 

I offer little resistance to my dark side. I let my madness move within me like a snake crawling and flexing where it will. Oh that’s not to say that I will randomly start harming people. How I express my insanity is up to me. I can let it move through me in odd thoughts or wild imaginings or I can turn it into art. Still in meditation I let myself feel it all, the torrents of emotion well up and subside and the dark mirror shows me my face. Occasionally it is a hall of mirrors where through the distortions I can see the me’s that never were or that might be but not yet. As an artist and writer I value these trips of both light and dark. It offers both inspiration and lessons in tolerance. How can I have problems with anyone else’s shadow if I can accept the darkest parts of my own. If the question comes up, which it does about who I really am at my core, the only honest answer is “All of this and more yet to be revealed”.
Blessings, G

 

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6-ValefarValefar (#6 in Goetia Series) by G A Rosenberg

 

DreamscapingDreamscaping by G A Rosenberg

 

Courage in the Dark

“Creativity takes courage.”
― Henri Matisse

 

I’ve done a lot of writing about shadows and personal darkness. Yet looking at the vast majority of my art, conversation and writing it all verges on brightness and aspiration and positive energy. When I get into discussions where I disagree with people I tend to pull my punches. Part of the reason for that is that usually I can see where they’re coming from. Part of it is to avoid conflict. I have some fear in that area. Not only what amount of anger or negativity may come out of the other when I’m talking to them but what I may reveal to them about my own negative side.
My temper tends towards the sharp and vicious. When I was younger and much less discriminate and I grew angry at someone, all too often I would clue into their area of greatest personal insecurity and attack them there. I had almost a preternatural instinct for where that was. I hurt a few people deeply and ruined a few friendships and relationships before I gained anything like control. Now if only I could learn a way to combine that control with the insight I could / can help people a lot. To do that I have to not be afraid of my own shadow.
In art and writing as much as I love beautiful things that inspire, I also have a fondness for horror. Oh not so much the slash, slash splatter serial killer Friday the 13th type (tho Freddie who dwells in Nightmares can touch some interesting triggers for me) but the more psychological gut-pulling horror of Edgar Allen Poe or Stephen King. Stephen King has this ability to show the dark side of human beings. The side made even uglier because it is repressed. I also have this enjoyment for stories and art that show the underside of creation, the type of art that H. P. Lovecraft wrote about and Hieronymus Bosch drew.
Yet aside for the occasional picture full of eyes I’ve resisted that in my own art. Part of that it’s been dawning on me has had to do with the same type of fear that keeps me in the ‘nice guy’ role in discussions. Am I that worried what people who enjoy my art may think? That is partly it. Partly there has been a fear of what may happen when the bottle is uncorked and the genie come out. I have a strong suspicion tho that it may just unlock further creativity and growth in me. Facing one’s fear and leaving one’s comfort zone tends to do that.
Blessings, G

 

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SalutingSalute by G A Rosenberg

 

He Lives There TooHe Lives There Too (DarkSide) by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – March 16 2012

“You may never understand
how the stranger is inspired
but he isn’t always evil
and he is not always wrong”
–Billy Joel, The Stranger

Who is the stranger that Billy refers to in the song? He is our shadow self. The unexpressed side of our being that many of us keep a tight lid on out of fear. What am I so afraid of? I used to ask myself this all the time. Occasionally I would examine my fears. I am afraid that people will see me for who I am and they will reject me? It took me a long time to realize that what I was afraid people would see was that stranger, that shadow side of myself. The side of myself that sometimes disapproved of others or who got angry or demanded attention. I was so afraid that I kept throwing myself into situations where I was forced to either acknowledge those parts of myself or bury them deeper. Far too often I did the latter.
That’s the thing about repressing our shadow side however.The more we repress it; the stronger the shadow becomes and eventually if we don’t acknowledge it, it breaks free around the edges and causes all kinds of potential harm. Where does this fear come from? We all have this hidden side and if we can see it in ourselves then surely we can give others room to show theirs as well. If repressing our shadow makes it stronger, what happens if we bring it into the light?

‎”To confront a person with his shadow is to show him his own light. Once one has experienced a few times what it is like to stand judgingly between the opposites, one begins to understand what is meant by the self. Anyone who perceives his shadow and his light simultaneously sees himself from two sides and thus gets in the middle.”
Carl Jung
“Good and Evil in Analytical Psychology” (1959). In CW 10. Civilization in Transition. P.872

Somewhere along the way, after finding myself in situation after situation where i was forced to confront myself both what I showed and what I tried to hide away, I grew tired of trying to force the genie back in the bottle. These days when some new aspect of myselhe pops up, I find it interesting rather than frightening. I know that acknowledging that these parts of myself exist doesn’t mean that I have to act on them. I can just say “Hmmm, look at that” That doesn’t mean that I have a perfect handle on it. there are still parts of myself I don’t necesarily like. It has just become a bit easier to acknowledge them.
Blessings, G

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