The Shadow 1.0
It was C.G. Jung who defined the term “shadow” as it is currently understood in psychology today. That understanding we might call version 1.0. Before Jung, the shadow was mythologized in the west as the Devil and demonic forces.
According to the Jungian understanding, the shadow is the sum total of all unconscious material such as emotions, impulses, images that are repressed and unable to make their way into our conscious awareness. Shadow material is often said to be feelings of guilt, rage, grief, lust, greed, power strivings and other socially unacceptable material. It can be the effects of personal and intergenerational trauma. Shadow material is not objectively“bad”, but is those impulses that we deem to be unacceptable and that we wish were not a part of our minds.
Jung also identified a light side of the shadow – this repressed material can be the source of human genius, held back because the individual or society cannot see themselves in such a positive light or because they cannot imagine that behind their internal “evil” is universal energy that gives rise to greatness.
Because shadow material is totally unknown to the observing mind, it cannot be organized or dealt with in any way – until it is laboriously sought and brought to light. This is the goal of Jungian Individuation which is essentially a form of alchemy. Western alchemy also dealt with the shadow. Symbols such as the raven, the Orobouros dragon and the term “nigredo” stood for the shadow of the psyche.
“Everyone carries a shadow, and the less it is embodied in the individual's conscious life, the blacker and denser it is. At all counts, it forms an unconscious snag, thwarting our most well-meant intentions.” – C.G. Jung
Mental illness and pathologies of all types are so often linked directly to the shadow. Social ills such as wars, mass poverty, destructive race relations, rape, incest and the like are also directly linked to the shadow. But in our culture, we have not yet come to understand this. Jung’s work on the shadow is deep and wide, and yet on the whole, it has been ignored by our society. Like Jung and the Jungians, the authors believe that unless and until we come to terms with the reality of the shadow of the psyche, we will continue to be unconsciously compelled to act out its archetypal patterns in highly destructive ways.
“We carry our past with us, to wit, the primitive and inferior man with his desires and emotions, and it is only with an enormous effort that we can detach ourselves from this burden. If it comes to a neurosis, we invariably have to deal with a considerably intensified shadow. And if such a person wants to be cured it is necessary to find a way in which his conscious personality and his shadow can live together.” – C.G. Jung
Jung believed that the oldest, deepest shadow material, left over from our animal heritage was collective in nature and probably would always be repressed to some extent. But the shadow in the greater unconscious continually leaks into the psyche, which must metabolize its energy somehow. Unless the individual is aware of the existence of their shadow and works to mitigate its effects, it will find its way into personal and social life in destructive ways. It could be said that evil, as we commonly define it, is the effect of shadow material being displaced into the world.
“It is a frightening thought that man also has a shadow side to him, consisting not just of little weaknesses- and foibles, but of a positively demonic dynamism. The individual seldom knows anything of this; to him, as an individual, it is incredible that he should ever in any circumstances go beyond himself (e.g. act unconsciously). But let these harmless creatures form a mass, and there emerges a raging monster; and each individual is only one tiny cell in the monster’s body, so that for better or worse he must accompany it on its bloody rampages and even assist it to the utmost. Having a dark suspicion of these grim possibilities, man turns a blind eye to the shadow-side of human nature.” - C. G. Jung
We typically deal with shadow material in three ways. We repress it, project it or displace it.
We repress the shadow by denying those dark impulses that exist within us, our families or even in society. We often deny the existence of cultural darkness such as organized crime and real world conspiracies, the underlying impulses behind wars or the sources of human suffering of all kinds. By denying this cultural shadow material we protect ourselves because to accept that the culture has a shadow is to accept that we also have one. Such an acceptance could be a devastating blow to our egos.
We also project our shadow material out by demonizing others. We paint others with a brush dipped in our own evil. We see them as the purveyors of hate, intolerance, violence, lust or greed. We fail to see that those whom we demonize are acting as mirrors for our own repressed shadow material.
“A man who is unconscious of himself acts in a blind, instinctive way and is in addition fooled by all the illusions that arise when he sees everything that he is not conscious of in himself coming to meet him from outside as projections upon his neighbour.” – C.G. Jung
The third way we deal with shadow material is to physically displace it. In physics there is the concept of “displacement of entropy”. All systems or organisms must expel their internal chaos to maintain internal order. Humans do this as well. Healthy ways to displace our entropy (shadow) might be sports, constructive work, laughing, dancing, healthy sex and play. In pre-modern times, rituals existed as ways to displace shadow material. Unhealthy ways might include road rage, fighting, arguing, addictions and any activity that is compelled by an “intense need”.
Actually, a great deal of our impulses to “make the world a better place” are actually efforts to displace our entropy. Political goals are so often driven by the need to displace our shadow material. We project evil onto our political enemies and then take action to stop them from acting out their evil. In the process we all too often end up creating the very evil we wished to stop.
Every political mass movement which ended in genocide began with a sincere belief that the movement was an effort to do good and stop evil. Because the individuals in the movement could not separate out their shadow material from their genuinely good impulse to protect and serve society, “the demons” were given a terrible sacrifice. Conscious activism is community service that continually turns the mirror around to face ourselves and corrects our action accordingly.
The Shadow 2.0
Although the Jungian model of the shadow is wide and deep enough to explain its nature and the general method of integrating it, we wanted more clarity and a more up to date picture. Our preference is a systems based approach. We can overlay many fields of study to get a deeper picture of the shadow and therefore take more effective measures to balance ourselves.
We have correlated the shadow with evil in philosophy and theology, with demonism in archaic belief systems, entropy in physics, parasitism in biology, malicious scripts in information systems, crime and conspiracy in culture, and with its role in the overall construct of duality consciousness. In the book Shadow Tech, we examine the shadow through these lenses, and on this website, each of these lenses is summarized.
When all are combined, the reader may begin to see the shadow the way we do.
The psyche (mind), like the body and every ecosystem is a community of interacting organs organisms or complexes. We have envisioned the psyche as a cell, where the ego constitutes the membrane, the greater cell body the unconscious, and the shadow as any unmetabolized energy in the cell body that needs to make its way into the ego membrane but cannot.
All shadow material, just like any psychic material organizes into systems or complexes. Shadow complexes are unassimilated into the greater structure of the psyche. They are not friendly to the overall functioning of the ego. They are formed in several ways.
Shadow material -
- Is passed intergenerationally through our DNA
- Manifests as an effect of personal, familial and intergenerational trauma
- Manifests as a reaction to societal norms which block its integration into ego and society.
Shadow material is communicable in real time through human communication, body language, cultural media of every kind, and in all likelihood, other forms of communication we are presently unaware of.
The shadow can be seen as a form of psychic disease sourced in communicable energetic pathogens. Jungian author, Paul Levy makes a similar case to ours. Spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle does as well with his very illuminating concept of the Pain Body. Even Jung himself alluded to the shadow being disease-like and communicable.
“The gigantic catastrophes that threaten us today are not elemental happenings of a physical or biological order, but psychic events. To a quite terrifying degree we are threatened by wars and revolutions which are nothing other than psychic epidemics. At any moment several million human beings may be smitten with a new madness, and then we shall have another world war or devastating revolution. Instead of being at the mercy of wild beasts, earthquakes, landslides, and inundations, modern man is battered by the elemental forces of his own psyche.” – C.G. Jung
Shadow material is sourced in human archetypal energy and is made of the same psychospiritual stuff that all human energy is made of. Jungian archetypes (which can be correlated to actual physiological states in the body) can be seen as the pure original form of shadow material. But when that material is blocked or discordant with the greater psyche, it becomes cancerous.
Like criminals, elements that are shut out, ostracized and scapegoated become enemies that parasite off the greater community.
Shadow material, if undealt with, metastasizes and grows. Like an unattended wound, a fracture in a developing child’s personality will become the site of infection. If the parents and greater community do not recognize the infection, often because they are infected, it is forced down below the threshold of consciousness where it festers and lives “underground”. Mythological correlations between the shadow and Hell, an underground lair of universal evil, are actually accurate when seen in this way.
Shadow complexes are parasitic to the greater community of the psyche. They learn to trigger the personality to cause behavior which feeds their life cycle. They cause the individual to fall asleep so as not to recognize their influence. We call this the victim-victor cycle. It’s personal, relational and cultural. When a shadow complex is powerful, it will literally “take over’ the personality and cause the individual to act out the destructive, addictive behavior as an effect.
We might assume that only highly pathological individuals are subject to being “taken over” but a close examination of any addictive or compulsively reactive behavior in any individual will reveal the tell tale signs of influential shadow complexes.
Below the threshold of ego consciousness lives an entire ecosystem of destructive complexes, programs, or as they would be called in earlier times “entities”. Just as the 70 trillion cell community of the body harbors a wide range of pathogens and parasitic organisms, the psyche is similarly infected. It’s not a matter of if we are infected, but only a matter of susceptibility. We all carry any number of dangerous pathogens in our bodies, but we have immune responses to keep them in check. To the degree we are not immune, we are diseased. The same logic can be applied to understanding psychic health. To the degree we have active and unassimilated shadow energy, we are incapacitated and thwarted from our highest purposes.
Treatment of shadow material is not dissimilar from the way we dealt with biological pathogens starting 150 years ago. Hygiene and sanitation practices are responsible for the large majority of our societal resistance to disease. This is a call for much greater attention to psychic hygiene and for dedicated practices to integrate shadow material.
Vaccination technology can also be applied to understanding psychic shadow hygiene. When we are introduced to personal and cultural shadow material slowly, in a measured way we learn immunity and are from there capable of metabolizing its destructive effects.
As the reader views each of the slides and articles on this site, we hope a holistic and useful new view of the shadow will emerge.
The Archetype of the Virus
In ecology, there is a spectrum of relationship profiles which extend from predation on one end to mutualism on the other. Parasitism, is a type of symbiosis which exists on the predation side of the spectrum. It’s a way in which organisms survive by taking advantage of other organisms against their knowledge or ability to reject.
Well known parasites include ticks, fleas, leeches, tapeworms and also microscopic parasites like viruses. But in the planetary biosphere, it is estimated that actually 40 percent or more of all organisms are parasitic – including humans. Like predation, which we are generally more familiar with, parasitism is an archetypal pattern in living systems.
Parasites use trickery and subterfuge as their primary methods for attaching themselves to a host and gaining energy from its life cycle. Except for the most extreme form of parasitism, called Necrotrophic Parasitism, parasites do not kill their hosts, but dwindle their energy over time as they feed.
Parasitism has always shown itself in our mythology. The Christian Devil is essentially a parasite.
“No wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. “ – Corintians 11:14
“and he threw him into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he would not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were completed; after these things he must be released for a short time. “ - Revelation 20:03
The devil lives in darkness and presents himself in many forms tricking his victims into behaving in ways which dwindle human life and “goodness”, while gaining energy for himself in the process.
Folklore in all traditions speaks of demons, goblins, vampires – tricksters and impersonators which hide in darkness and live off of human life energy. Its no wonder when we realize how prevalent parasitism is in nature.
“The Devil of this world might be more properly described as a virus” – Shadow Tech
Viruses are the most populous organism on the planet. A virus survives through either the Lytic Cycle or the Lysogenic Cycle. Either way it uses trickery and subterfuge as its primary mechanisms. A common way a virus enters a cell membrane is to attach a false protein mask to its outer shell to trick the cell’s input cites into letting it in. Once in, it penetrates the cell’s nucleus and either sits quietly in darkness, waiting for the cell to reproduce, along with its toxic code, or it actively manipulates the DNA into making the cell hospitable for its own life cycle, and then it breeds furiously.
Besides being a Trickster, the archetype of the virus is also related to the Scapegoat. When we go back to the early history of life, single celled organisms made the jump to multi-cellular organisms, but when that occurred, some organisms stayed on the outside of the emerging communities and instead thrived through parasitism. Those were the viruses. From the point of view of a virus, they were excluded, left out, unassimilated.
Like Cain in the biblical story of Cain and Abel, one child was included and the other was rejected and marked. The correlation between evil and exclusion is clear. Those on the inside are friendly and good. Those on the outside are evil and often the scapegoats of the society – those banned and sent outside the tribe.
In human societies, criminal behavior is related to parasitism. Career criminals almost always begin as traumatized children who are left out of the family or the community. They survive on the outside of the community membrane, using trickery and subterfuge to meet their needs.
The work of Carl Jung and Jungian theorists has also shown us the relationship between the shadow of the psyche and demons and devils in folklore. One Jungian, the late Robert L. Moore, even made the connection between the shadow of the psyche and vampirism and modern fictional stories and movies like The Thing, Invasion of the Body Snatchers and Alien. Each of these is telling a story of parasitism.
Looking more closely at the shadow of the psyche, the authors have found a close correlation between destructive psychic complexes and parasitism. When a psychological element is wounded or unable to develop coherently it can become autonomous, split off and parasitic to the greater mind-body. The shadow is not just a passive domain where we store away our fears and unwanted impulses. It’s a domain of active parasitism.
This is explained more fully in “The Shadow 2.0”. The correlation between parasitism as cultural evil is described in Cultural Parasitism. This article is also based on the chapter “Parasites Abound” in Shadow Tech.
The Zero and the One
The following is excerpted directly from Shadow Tech
"...It's become obvious that every domain in the universe is constantly dealing with this destructive force. It is ever present, from the subatomic level to natural ecosystems, to human relationships and culture. And we have to ask ourselves why this is. There must be a very good reason why universal darkness is as powerful and as prevalent as it is. Ultimately what we came to find was that the force behind what we call evil is an effect of creation, and is an integral and necessary partner to the evolutionary force in the universe. Creation and destruction are actually partners and equals, and are effects of each other in the master game we call the universe, reality or life. The destructive force in the universe happens to be the very mechanism that makes creation work and creation is the mechanism behind the destructive force. I believe some of our cultural predecessors knew this, but in our present state we have not yet come to understand this dynamic.
The master game
In order to arrive at the above conclusion, we had to become familiar with a number of ideas that contributed to this realization. This first concept is that of duality itself. To break this down to basics, if we go back to the eastern Yin-Yang symbol, or to the fundamental math that relates to the creation of the universe, we get a binary equation. 01 We get a fundamental formula that we call duality or the Zero and the One. Anything that we can put our finger on, or put our minds around, manifests within this context of polarity.
All the world’s mythologies have an explanation for how this came about. Many explain that there was an original pre-creation state, an ocean, a feminine chaotic entity or 0 that ruptured with a masculine creative energy, or 1. Out of this splitting process came a dual natured god or gods and the birth of the cosmos.
The duality principle is fundamental, and we can’t even perceive of anything outside of it with our cognitive minds. We might temporarily leave duality consciousness, perhaps in a meditation or peak experience, but at least in our present state of consciousness, we always return to duality. Duality is a master script that we always come back to.
Because of this, we obviously perceive in terms of positive and negative, masculine and feminine, active and passive. Everything in the universe from the cosmological down to the sub-atomic is dealing with dark and light, left and right, in and out, good guy and bad guy, war and peace, pain and pleasure, success and failure, and so on. These are the poles of duality and the game of life is played between these two poles.
As creation manifests, with increasing diversity, each new manifestation comes through this filter and we end up with all kinds of novel ways of witnessing this binary polarity game. One new way of seeing this dynamic is the way in which physicists look at the wave-particle problem. Matter can be seen as a wave (negative-passive-feminine), or a particle (positive-active-masculine), depending on the method used for interpretation.
Many are already familiar with the active and passive attributes of creation through the eastern Yin-Yang symbol. The active or Yang side of creation is associated with light, with masculine energies, with the ordering process, boundary making, solar images, the sky, seeds, language, and all seeking and explorative functions. The passive or Yin side of creation is associated with dark, with feminine energies, with nurturance, opening boundaries, the ocean, the earth and with inclusiveness and relationship. It’s the archetypal feminine force of acceptance sometimes called Faith, associated with the heart. These motifs are everywhere in our mythology.
We also see the feminine form associated with destruction and chaos in many mythological motifs. From the perspective of order forming creation, feminine boundary dissolution is indeed destructive, but the destructive force is not limited to a passive, feminine attribution. Like everything we perceive, destruction is dual natured.
Dual natured shadow
On the passive side of destruction, entropy is the tendency for everything to degrade, to erode, to fall apart. It’s chaos. It’s every time things just don’t fit together anymore. It’s the various causes and effects which lead to degradation of any relationship or thing. It’s our material possessions and our bodies falling apart. It’s our careers or intimate relationships shifting and degrading over time. And entropy is not passive as though it’s unmoving. There appears to be an actual inward pulling force to entropy.
Destruction also has an active, masculine, component. There appears to be a seeking, creatively inspired form of destructive agency. Destructive agency is actually what we focus on more commonly when we think of destruction. We focus on the demons, the devils, the Hitlers, the criminals, the viruses and parasites. We focus on the agents. This is Agent Smith in the movie The Matrix. Melissa and I often call this active destroyer force The Virus. It’s literally an active force of destructive agency. An agent in legal language means one who acts on behalf of a principal. As we will see, that principal is the creative process itself.
This all works the same on the light side as it does on the dark side. On the light side we could see the active force of creation as Will. It manifests through doing. Creatures, entities, systems, which do creative things are manifesting the active side of creation. Equally, the active side of the destructive force manifests as entities which do destructive things. It's Will in its destructive form. The dark side of the universe has attributes which look like mirrors of the creative side.
We stated earlier that there must be a very good reason why the destructive force is as prevalent as it is. The answer we came to is that destruction, often known as evil, is here to make creation evolve. The destructive force is a creative, evolutionary force at its core. The destructive force is not an unfortunate accident that the creative universe has to deal with. It’s a fundamental aspect of creation itself. Without it there would be no creation. It is literally what is behind creation. There is a reason why no mythological god of light has ever destroyed its dark nemesis. They have always been partners, although some traditions have obscured this fact.
So how does it work? Well, this destructive shadow force takes down every system that cannot maintain high efficiency within its relationships. The destructive force is a tester of every relationship. Every organization in this universe is eternally challenged by this force of darkness. It doesn't matter whether it’s within an atomic element, a natural ecosystem, a human body, a family, corporation or political cause. Whatever it is, every single relationship is challenged by this dual natured destructive force.
The effect of this challenge is that life and creative activity must change, evolve and efficiently manage itself and its relationships in order to mitigate these destructive effects. Deep integrity and creative novelty are the universal results. The stability and creative evolution of the entire universe depends on the abilities of its entities to maintain maximum efficiency and integrity. A universal destructive opponent insures this through eternal challenges.
At some point in this challenging process, the destructive force can become so pernicious to an entity that only an evolutionary shift to a new form of organization will relieve the pressure. Ultimately, what transpires in this evolutionary process is that a quantum, exponential shift in the way systems work together transcends the dual natured destructive force. It leaves the Opponent in the dust - at least until it catches back up, and the game begins again!
For example, human beings are the collected manifestations of creative processes from 13.7 billion years of this kind of activity, and every one of the universe’s evolutionary successes is included inside of our minds and bodies. We are stacked organic technology, layer upon layer, upon layer, and the reason why we are here today is because of the incredible integrity in the organization of these systems that cooperate. The only reason why these systems have succeeded to the degree that they have is because of this challenge eternally being presented by the destructive force in the universe.
Within duality, darkness can swing all the way to one side or the other and it can almost completely overtake things for a time. It can get really, really dark and then the sun just pops up and the day begins again. This is all in creation myths, which are metaphoric ways of seeing physical principles and human experience. This dual natured 01 creation-destruction process is the base code of the entire energetic universe.
The trickiest aspect of this creation-destruction game is the subjective nature of the entire operation. This is truly an archetypal trickster formulation in our universe. There is a fundamentally subjective nature to all perception. This is because the universe manifests through independent entities or holons. Our universe manifests as atoms, molecules, cells, animals, humans, planets, galaxies and all kinds of particular entities. Each entity has a perspective that is subjective from its own point of view. No matter how a system or an organism interacts with its environment, every entity can only view its reality from its own internal point of view.
This subjective state of reality for all entities means that they ultimately create disorder, chaos or destruction for other entities. As each of us lives and creates benefit for ourselves, the result is chaos for other systems. Through our limited, subjective viewpoint, which is a natural state of perception for all entities, we each act on behalf of the dark side, unknowingly feeding it through our own creative acts. The universe gets us all to do its dirty work.
Destruction or evil appears subjectively to all entities in the universe who act as its viral agents, even us. Every entity in the universe is potentially a virus, a parasite, a predator to some other organism, and a creator and contributor to itself and to those it cooperates with. All perception of destruction is subjective by nature. One man’s evil is another man’s righteousness. The members of a culture may agree on what is evil, and this belief may even be very old and standardized, but from the point of view of another culture, or from the point of view of the entire evolutionary progress of the species, that evil is purely subjective to the perceiver.
In physics and other sciences, there is a concept called displacement of entropy. Every entity discards its own refuse into its environment. At a molecular level this might be very fine electro-magnetic energy, and at the level of a city, this will be millions of tons of garbage, sewage, and air pollution. Every entity pushes its internal chaos out, and it does this as the result of itself seeking what is good for its own benefit.
A gazelle definitely sees a lion’s predatory behavior as evil, but the lion does not see its destruction of the gazelle as evil. It sees this as a necessary factor in the continuance of its own life. In every single case, if we could see things through the eyes of a destructive agent, even an infectious virus, we would see that it’s just trying to get along within the master game. It has worked out a manner of getting along that may be destructive to us, but which gives itself life and purpose.
This also takes into consideration that organisms, including humans, generally do not consciously decide what they create or destroy. We are generally enslaved to the creation-destruction process outside of our awareness. As we become more aware of this dynamic, we can become more consciously involved in the evolutionary process, but we will always remain “in the dark” to a greater degree.
Every entity purposefully, accidentally, or otherwise destroys something or someone else as a consequence of its own creative acts. Atoms do this, cells do this, plants do this, animals do this, we all do this. In this way we are all agents of the dark side. This is a very important thing to realize. This locks creation and destruction together in a seemingly paradoxical embrace.
Eating a meal is an obvious example of ubiquitous evil. Even vegans are destroying living entities of great beauty and value when they consume their food. As we acquire a new job, the last employee is fired. A tree or plant dies and falls into the soil, while its body parts degrade to become the life-giving elements for a new tree to grow out of. The destructive force comes as a consequence of the creative force, and the creative force comes as a consequence of the destructive force. So this is the over reaching context through which we can frame human destructiveness. Our destructiveness is sourced in a much bigger framework than what we generally realize."
In our work, we rely on the fact that archetypal patterns in nature tend to repeat. With this understanding we extrapolate fundamental properties from one system onto another. For example, we link parasitism in nature to the activity of shadow complexes in mind. This article describes the way this fractal-like patterning works.
There is an ancient alchemical maxim, As Above, So Below. It comes from a hermetic text called the Emerald Tablet of Thoth. This is an actual text that has been transcribed many times across several languages originating at least 1000 years ago. Because ancient knowledge is all too often deemed outdated in our current scientific era, jewels such as this are overlooked.
“That which above is like that which is below to do the miracles of the one thing.” – Hermes Trismegistus, the Emerald Tablet of Thoth
It’s only now that we’re beginning to become aware of the actual scientific merit of this statement. This phrase, which is the primary maxim under which medieval alchemy is based, infers the truth of “self-similarity”. What this means is that patterns in nature can repeat in their fundamental patterning, although they never duplicate exactly. The platonic solids that manifest in minerals are such shapes. The spiral is such a shape. A Mandelbrot fractal is itself an archetypal patterning which epitomizes self-similarity. Dr. Jonathan Wolfe’s presentation on fractals may be of interest.
Philosopher Ken Wilber has brought this understanding back to western culture through his use of the idea of the holon and holarchy. Arthur Koestler coined the term holon, which Wilber used extensively in his psycho-social mapping.
Holarchy stands on two major tenets. One is that all matter is organized with individuality and community as equals and intrinsically related. The other is that these collectives manifest with self-similarity.
Every “thing’ in this universe, whether it be an atom, an automobile, a human being or even an idea is at once a single solid individual thing – and - a community of smaller things within it, existing in a larger community above it. For example an atom is a single, sovereign individual entity and a massive community of sub-atomic particles. It’s also a constituent member of a larger community, a molecule. Or, a cell is a sovereign entity in itself and a giant community of organelles and complex molecules. At the same time, it’s a member of an organ, which is itself a member of an organism. This goes on forever.
Every thing or holon is a community of holons downwards, and a member of a greater holarchy upwards. Wherever there is a distinct boundary around a community, that creates its “thing-ness” and what we call a holon. Even a non-material thing like a sentence is a holon, made of smaller holons called words, made of smaller holons called letters, all existing within a greater holarchy we call a language. Ken Wilber says “There are no things, only holons”. By recognizing this, we open up our polarized view of the universe as an organization of things, to a more holistic understanding of things in relationship. Things literally “are” relationships. They are holons.
The other component of holarchy is self-similarity. This is where we find the connection to the hermetic maxim As Above, So Below. Nature repeats fundamental organizing shapes that work well. The Fibonacci “golden ratio” of 1:1.618 is a mathematical code which is embedded into natural shapes everywhere, showing us that self-similarity can be sourced in knowable ratios. Or the fractal-like patterning in trees, rivers, animal vascular networks and far beyond. The spiral is another archetype being reused over and over. Spiral Dynamics, a related mapping system to Wilber’s Integral Theory makes it clear that the spiral is also linked to psycho-social development. Self-similarity is really a law of archetypes.
The reason why this is so important is because we can expect repeating archetypal patterns to manifest. So when we are investigating invisible domains like the psyche, we have a starting point. We can look for evidence that psychic structures, for example, relate to other patterns in nature that we can actually see. If proven out, we have some base mapping to begin with. By starting our investigations of mind and nature with the archetypal patterns the universe reuses ubiquitously, we are not lost in a sea of random occurrences, but we are navigating within networks of intelligent and well designed patterning.
In our own work on the human shadow, we have used this understanding to decipher the relationship between shadow complexes in the psyche and parasitism in biology and information systems. We have also correlated shadow dynamics to polarity dynamics in electro-magnetism and cultural disease in the society. We can stand on such correlations not only because the circumstantial evidence points to such conclusions, but also because we understand how self-similarity manifests in nature.
A Culture of Mind
This article is based on the chapter “A Culture of Mind” in Shadow Tech
One fundamental concept that underpins the Shadow Tech model is the relationship between culture and mind. This understanding is rooted in Holarchy and self-similarity, but was also influenced by John C. Lilly’s “human biocomputer” analogy.
There is no widely accepted definition for the mind, also called the psyche in psychology, but Dr. Daniel Siegel may have one of the most up to date definitions and it also serves to uphold our model. He says that the mind is “an embodied and relational, emergent self-organizing process that regulates the flow of energy and information both within us - and between and among us.”
Lets break this down. The mind is embodied, therefore rooted in the human body. The mind is relational, meaning it also outstretches to others. The mind is energetic, which we understand as electro-magnetism. The mind is informational, meaning it’s code, script, data. The mind therefore, can be seen as John Lilly saw it, as a human operating system (OS) which extends out beyond the body connecting with the minds of others. Like our computers, our mental operating systems engage in a greater “Internet” of community. We call this culture. Mind and culture are microcosmic-macrocosmic. They are one in the same. Society is a physical community of human bodies. Culture is the informational script of societies, the societal OS.
There is another definition for culture. In biology it is the product of cultivating microorganisms like bacteria in a Petri dish. Culture in this definition is an organic living outgrowth, and we would propose that the informational culture of mind is the same. The science of memetics is a move in this direction. Another bourgeoning science called biosemiotics looks to establish the way information and meaning(mind) is created even more deeply, down to the most primitive living structures. See this video presentation by Deana Nebauer.
Culture is the greater ”Internet” of human minds. It is an organic, energetic, informational operating system for human societies.
When we define culture and mind in these ways, and when we apply what we know about the Holarchic and self-similar way in which systems emerge in nature, we now have a firm basis for establishing the existence of parasitism in the mind and how shadow complexes in the individual are transmitted throughout a society – through the informational medium of culture”.
We also come to see how working on one’s own mind has a direct result on the culture. When we heal the mind, we heal the culture by default. It’s the natural, instantaneous effect of doing self-work. The primary laboratory for cultural change is the individual mind.
Psyche as cell
This map is a conceptual framework, and not a scientific description of the physical body or how the mind relates to the body – but it’s a step in this direction. An understanding of the link between mental processes and the brain and body could be deepened by applying this model.
In the diagram above we see the archetypal shape of a cell. Its central nucleus stores the DNA, the code for its creation and behavior. In the mind (psyche), there is also base operating code for its creation and activity. There is a clear link between the physical DNA in our cells and our minds but let us use this central nucleus in the map to be the place where Jung’s Collective Unconscious is located.
Human beings are not conscious of the vast majority (95%) of internal cognitive processes, but there is deep mental software that mediates them. Therefore, in this map, the greater body of the cell is the unconscious mind and the “Id” in Freudian terms.
The next major segment of the mind, as known in psychology, is the ego. The ego is the general conscious state of awareness. In this map, the ego is the field around the boundary of the cell membrane. It extends inwards into the body to some degree and outwards into the culture to some degree. It’s the boundary field. In psychological terms the persona and self-image are located here. They extend out in the culture (super ego) and inwards into the unconscious.
The external world is shown in this map outside of the cell as culture. As described in the article “A Culture of Mind”, culture is not separate from the mind, but is the macrocosmic correlate to it. Culture and mind are one interconnected operating system.
In this map, we also see a representation for Jung’s shadow, within the unconscious. Here it is shown as a complex, virus, parasite, active wound or however one wants to describe an autonomous, unintegrated mental complex that acts destructively upon the psyche. The way in which shadow complexes manifest and spread is a major aspect the Shadow Tech model.
Some background to the above statements follows:
We have noticed that the Eukaryotic cells, which are the building blocks of our bodies coincide with an archetypal shape. It’s the same shape that atoms and solar systems adhere to and that tribes, cities and nations adhere to. The nucleus is an Axis Mundi; a central sovereign locality where the organizing code is stored and from which the instructions for the continuance of the holon are disseminated. In simple structures like atoms we call these codes the nuclear strong and weak forces but those forces are also “laws”, which become more elaborate as the archetype manifests in increasingly complex systems.
Outside of the nucleus is the system, body, territory, kingdom, or cytoplasm, where necessary operations are conducted in accordance with the central plan. At the outer edge of the system, body or kingdom is the membrane. It’s the protective wall or energetic boundary at the intersection of inner and outer. “Inside the kingdom is goodness, outside are enemies and evil”, according to ancient thinking. Known order is inside the cell membrane, and chaos is without.
Bruce Lipton, biologist and author of The Biology of Belief, made the realization that the nucleus and DNA of the cell is not the cell’s brain, it’s the gonads. It’s the hard drive. The cell’s brain is the mem-brane. It’s at the membrane where the cell acts as transceiver, inputting energy-information that serves is purpose, and exporting its toxins and the energetic products that it’s coded to create. It’s at the membrane where the highest information throughput takes place. The membrane is where the cell faces life and death, where its sustenance is derived, and where potential threats like viruses are encountered.
The burgeoning science of biosemiotics is bringing us closer to the realization that all living systems engage in perception and derive meaning from their interactions with their environment. We would suggest that all living systems, even the cell itself have mental processes. How? Because wherever matter or energy is exchanged by living systems, the meaning derived is coherent information and this information is the substance of mind. This membrane focused information field “is” the organized, living state of meaning and perception. It’s the mind, the software, the operating system, the culture that sustains the holon.
The human psyche or mind can be seen as the totality of all energy-information within and around the human body, down to the internal components of the cells and outwards into the culture. The conscious ego aspect of mind can be seen as the field centered at the boundary between the body and the external world. If we traced the structures of body inwards down to the atomic domain and outwards to the planet as a whole, we might see our brain and nervous system at the center. So the locus of highest information throughput is the brain, nervous system and perceptual organs and nerves. Our ego consciousness is the highest at the membrane.
The Victim Victor Cycle
This segment is directly excerpted from Shadow Tech
"A fractured program becomes autonomous in the psyche once its script is habituated. Once habituated, it has successfully gained access to our consciousness in a manner it can control on its own. If it’s not habituated, it lives through energy being passed to it occasionally, when an old wound is triggered by an experience in life. Once a parasitic program can feed itself through a habitual pattern in the mind, it becomes a master of its own life cycle. A Frankenstein has come alive.
When a parasitic program feeds on ourselves alone we call that an addiction, and when it feeds in coordination with others in relationship, the authors call this the victim-victor cycle. The victim in this model is the feminine or negative pole of a destructive energy program and the victor is the masculine or positive pole of its destructive energy. They are intertwined and every individual experiences both polarities.
The cycle will be triggered when a wound or fracture in the psyche is touched upon by an environmental factor or by the actions of another person. Often our emotional triggers are not random but are the veiled acts of autonomous agents in ourselves or others seeking an energetic meal. These triggers can be anything, anywhere. A trigger could come from a newspaper article or maybe a term in this book that offends. It could be something someone said at the grocery store, or any disturbing situation. In a close relationship, triggering is never random. A cycle can ensue when our partner says or does something that we interpret as an offense. Or we may say or do something to them which will result in our partner becoming triggered, and we begin the victim-victor cycle.
From here, we will openly act out as a result. Once we act out of a trigger, the cycle has begun. We will find ourselves losing objectivity as we take another step towards reliving the cycle. As we act out with increasing emotional energy, we fuel the psychic fire. Each stage of escalation results in less objectivity and more energy added to the conflict. As we destroy ourselves or each other, our parasitic programs get stronger, and our physiological patterning more ingrained. More of our energy is channeled off to our autonomous agents and the original wounds which gave rise to our viral programming become inflamed. We re-wound ourselves every time we turn the cycle, thereby increasing the possibility that we will be activated and wounded again. Sometimes a cycle is unable to escalate because of some external distraction or circumstance. In this case the energy system will freeze and continue later.
If we don't have anyone else around for our parasitic programs to feed on, the cycle may simply use our own minds and bodies. This is called an addiction. Addictions appear to be the victim-victor cycle playing out within the bounds of a single individual mind-body. If we look closely as the feelings which precede a “binge” we may find the same wounds and the same parasitic programming that play out in relationships. An old wound becomes a physiological need, which gives rise to a viral program that feeds cyclically on the chemicals it was formed out of. Dr. Gabor Mate has found that addictions are cycles formed out of physiological chemical needs which arose from psychological trauma. The addictive cycle is an attempt to fulfill a chemical need.
Trauma --> disharmonic chemical state--> a program is formed --> the environment validates the program --> the program becomes active and parasitic --> the program cyclically activates the wound to re-trigger the original chemical state of need --> the cycle attracts like resonance in the environment --> a parasitic virus is shared.
When we find ourselves in a destructive cycle, the party that’s enjoying the circumstance is never the part of us that later has to kiss and make up or make excuses for our bad behavior. The party running the show is a shadow entity, a parasitic program, a viral script running behind the veil of ego consciousness. In biology, a virus destroys our cells by altering their DNA. Similarly, these psychic programs tie into our physiological infrastructure and trigger us from the location of an old wound, where they originally formed. The triggering of the victim-victor cycle is an electro-chemical phenomenon which floods the body with hormones. Our blood and nervous system are flushed with chemical secretions which take us over, create the destructive effects, and live out the chemical program that the parasite embodies.
Imagine a computer virus, which is an informational script that plugs into the operating system and takes control of the computer. Or the T. Gondii parasite we discussed in a previous chapter. And remember the cultural example of false flag terrorism that we explored. Now think of the ongoing conflicts between nations and races. These are all self-similar representations of the victim-victor viral cycle occurring in different holons. Our viral cycles manifest at every level of our being, from the individual mind, to the body, to personal relationships to cultural conflicts. They all come from the same wounded sources, originating in our very way of life.
The life cycle of a viral program, like all organisms or systems operates within the bounds of polarity. There are always two poles between which a cycle will manifest. Our shadow programs are formed when part of our psychological circuitry is negatively charged by a traumatic circumstance. This is because children are truly victims of their environments. Our wounds are based on a negative, feminine, victim profile. Wounds have an inward moving, need energy to them. Our viral programs are formed out of these needs. The electro-chemical states that they create are feelings of fear, guilt, sadness, worthlessness and the like. These energetic states attract like-resonance in others passively, but they also flip poles and manifest an active aggressor modality. (Reminder: The term feminine does not refer to the female gender. It’s an energetic polarity association.)
Some people’s shadow programs stay on the negative or victim side predominantly where they attract abusers. Others manifest an abusive, masculine victor profile which causes them to hurt others, but always leaves themselves victimized after a conflict. All victor-aggressors are victims originally. Acts of abuse towards others are actually acts of self-abuse because they block the host from being able to bond with others. An abuser cannot obtain the healing electro-chemical state which comes from loving and being loved. Abuse of others is an act that blocks the abuser from knowing compassion and love. Victim profiles attract abusers and victor profiles create victims. We all participate in and create the victim-victor cycle no matter which profile we tend to favor.
Addicted to conflict
The electro-chemical states which our shadow programs invoke, possess and addict our entire being. We become dependent on feelings of fear, anxiety, guilt, rage and other destructive states. These states become totally integrated into our physiology and our shadow programs act to summon those states when they are in need of a dose. We are generally not in control of this dynamic which we share with our loved ones, our culture and our species. Domesticated animals like dogs or cats are also ensnared to participate in the cycle. Abused animals can also become triggerable victims of the victim-victor cycle.
A body of pain
Looking deeper at destructive programs of the psyche, we may find that we don’t just harbor one viral program but multiples. As we look at our society, we might see an entire range of viral operation going on. We might view this situation as an ecosystem of viral psychic activity that lives worldwide. If we were to model this in terms of a holarchy, we might see overlapping and interlocking holons, each representing a type of psychic virus.
In his work, spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle describes a psychic parasite that he calls the “pain body”, which accurately describes this same phenomenon that we are discussing.
“The pain-body is my term for the accumulation of old emotional pain that almost all people carry in their energy field. I see it as a semi-autonomous psychic entity. It consists of negative emotions that were not faced, accepted, and then let go in the moment they arose. These negative emotions leave a residue of emotional pain, which is stored in the cells of the body. There is also a collective human pain-body containing the pain suffered by countless human beings throughout history. The pain-body has a dormant stage and an active stage. Periodically it becomes activated, and when it does, it seeks more suffering to feed on.” – Eckhart Tolle in “Awakening to your life’s purpose” an interview with Kathy Juline.
In Tolle’s description of the pain body, which is very similar to our own model, he mentions that entire races or even the female gender may have a pain body. It appears to us that he is describing a shared code, a communal viral script that’s playing out the victim-victor cycle throughout a large segment of the population. Melissa has told me that she does believe that women have a shared pain body, and that it’s formed in the context of patriarchy. Women in general have thousands of years of disrespect, physical and emotional abuse behind them. In my own internal work, I came into touch with a similar profile that I can see as a male pain body, also formed out of patriarchy which I call the Father Thing. This is the dark side of Saturn in astrological terms. Both men and women in our society have a gender based pain body and minority races also carry a pain body. African-American and Native-Americans are clear examples, although every racial segment must carry its own culturally destructive codes.
Because of the energetic nature of the universe and the human being, we live within a shared informational domain where we transmit and exchange our programs with each other. We cannot help but do this; it’s the nature things. If we zoom out of our own predicaments and look at the human species as a whole, we might see these destructive dynamics playing out through all of us. We are each transmitters and receivers collecting, amplifying and directing energy patterns to each other. We do this through our communication and media, through body language, through pheromones and other electro-chemical input-output.
Ultimately the master game players are the Archetypes. They are living energy systems that we are all vehicles for. It's convenient to look at certain people or groups we deem evil and say that they are hurting us (victim), or that we need to eliminate them (victor), but we are all playing the game equally. The game persists because we are all tuned to the same channel. We are running the same programs within the same cultural operating system. Some individuals may indeed be more consciously destructive towards others, but they are not in control of their behavior. They have been taken over by the effects of these systems. We are all in the same boat together, playing unconscious polarity games, equally victims of a force we have not yet come to know.
The heart is toxic to the virus
There is one vibration, one formula, one antidote that repels and destroys parasitic programs. This is the archetypal, electro-chemical force present in the feelings of compassion, love, faith and acceptance. These words represent energetic flows in the human mind-body, and like all archetypes, go back to the universal source code. As we currently see it, the base code for these healing vibrations is the 0, the wave, the heart, the all encompassing feminine force. When this vibration enters the location of a wound, if it can get past a viral program, a destructive cycle will end. If this vibration is able to permeate the mind-body regularly, it will inoculate and protect the human being from further infection and transmission.
If we can invoke compassion and hold it during a conflict, our own viral flows will be neutralized, thereby ending the cycle, but this is very difficult in the midst of crisis. A more effective way to manage conflict is to clean and clear our own emotional wounds which are the original food sources for our parasitic programming. When our own destructive energy is transmuted through internal spiritual work, conflict is generally reduced in our lives, and if it does occur, we are capable of directing ourselves much more objectively. When we are so unconsciously energized by destructive energies, we are victims to our viral programming and have no choice but to act as an unwilling host.
In order for us to clear our destructive programs, we must channel down into the wounds where they originated. This is where our psychic parasites have their deepest roots. We must gain access to the location of the original fractures and let them air out. This allows them to naturally heal and reform. There are multiple methods we are familiar with. We will share one of them with you in the chapter on emotional processing and we aspire to find more techniques in the future."
Living in the Movie
Living in the Movie of Life
By Colin E. Davis
(originally published 9-14-16 at livinginthemovie.com)
Living In The Movie is an analogy that describes a way of perceiving and relating to our outer reality that is based on how a movie is created, projected and viewed. We have found it to be an essential tool for raising our own consciousness and for enhancing our relationships.
Imagine a scenario where moviegoers visit a theater and sit down in their seats. They make themselves comfortable as the movie is played for their entertainment. If the movie is really good, with a compelling story and excellent production, the viewers may lose themselves in the movie. The movie can literally take over their consciousness. After the film is finished, they may walk out, a bit disoriented, remembering the significant events in the film that really compelled them. A great movie is transparent and allows the viewer to live through it.
Imagine that most of the time, as we live our lives, we are living "through" the events that are happening "to" us. Our lives are made of scenes that are intimately connected to our internal state, and we are traveling through them, seemingly controlling the details, but always finding unexpected twists and turns, some of which we wish would never have happened. Many of the events that occur are traumatic and unpleasant for us. We often wonder why we had such bad luck or why someone did something to us. We also say that many things seem to happen by chance. At some point we start to see patterns or cycles and we wonder why the same things seem to be happening to us.
If we go back to the movie projection analogy, we can imagine looking back behind ourselves, and seeing a beam of light coming from a projector room in the back of the theater. We can see that the movie on the screen is actually a projection and the source is in the projector room.
If I use this analogy to inspect my own being, the source of the movie projection is the light that the projector beams into the theater. That’s me, at the highest level, the real me. And the film is the personal subjective aspect of me that I normally refer to as my self. Transposed into a spiritual/psychological understanding, the light of the projector is my soul and the film is my psyche, or my mind/body system.
What if our perceived reality as we know it is universal technology similar to the way a movie is created and projected? We believe that it is. In fact, we believe that the human creation of technology (masculine), and art (feminine) is a mirror-like reflection of the universal evolutionary process. If so, we can read our personal and collective creations as a deeply symbolic projection or movie.
Another useful metaphor we can use on top of the film metaphor is one where we relate our being to that of a computer with our minds as software and our bodies as hardware. In this analogy our perception is based on how we have been coded or programmed. This analogy fits right on top of the movie analogy and again shows how we create technology that mirrors our nature.
We are each born with certain intrinsic characteristics, but as we are exposed to the events which play out in our lives, and as we are programmed by our family and social environment, the light sensitive emulsion on the film (read: emotion) becomes solid and then when the light of consciousness projects through our film, what we perceive is completely filtered by the way we have been exposed.
Our life as we know it is a projection through the film that is running in our projector. In other words, the lives we lead, and all of the events and factors which drive our lives, are the direct result of what has been encoded in our film or mind/body system. These events are not random, chance situations. Chance is the result when the many layers of code in us play out in the universe in a manner that is outside of our ability to recognize.
Thankfully, it’s possible to change the code in the different layers of our film or mind/body. The more malleable layers of our code are easier to change and doing so changes what we see in our projected movies. I don’t think we can say that any one layer of our mind/body code is more or less influential than another. Humans are walking and talking script that goes all the way back to the creation of the universe and it’s all playing a part in our being here. But the most recent layers of coding, especially that from early childhood, when changed, can result in very significant alterations of the way we experience our movies.
As we will explore, subtle but powerful dynamics exist in the personal relationships we have with each other and the nature of those relationships reveal our own code or film. We find that there really is no separation between the lives of individual human beings – we are all operating in total relationship far beyond the obvious. The question of free will is challenged when we begin to perceive the interlocking and completely unconscious relationships between people and every other aspect of the universe. Melissa and I firmly believe that ultimately, there is only one operation in this universe – the growth and development of one organism, and that being’s ever increasing awareness of itself.
When we come to understand the projected nature of our reality, we also can become conscious co-creators, so to speak, and be able to change the way our movie, or life, plays out by changing our internal state alone. Just as a change in the exposure of film changes the picture we see or a change in the coding of a program changes how it runs, we have found that as we change our internal state of being, our outer reality naturally starts to flow in a different direction, and we don’t even have to try. We have enjoyed great changes in our lives in the time we have been living this way without doing anything “out there”, but instead by illuminating and changing our internal exposure.
The other thing that happens when we understand that our life as we know it is the direct function of our internal state and coding, is that we are able to take 100% responsibility for everything that happens to us – everything. This is especially important in terms of the things that negatively charge us. Taking responsibility for the scenes and elements that appear in our movies definitely includes those things that invoke fear, anger, annoyance, grief, sorrow and the like.
Some might ask if a child is 100% percent responsible for what happens to them in their lives. We would say yes, but they are not able to act on that responsibility. As we mature into adults and the layers of our psyche and nervous system become developed, we are able to take responsibility increasingly. Delaying true adulthood is one way of trying to avoid this responsibility.
One final analogy that is helpful for us in taking more responsibility for the events that play out in our movies is Paul Levy’s analogy that he calls awakening in the dream. It’s a similar metaphor that explores the relationship between our internal state and our outer reality in alignment with dream symbolism.
When we do dream analysis, we try to interpret events and objects which appear in our dreams as symbolism that have a direct link to our personal psyche and to the collective consciousness of mankind. Dream analysis is an effective way of understanding the internal dynamics of our psyches. And when we interpret the things that appear in our movies as though they are symbols which we can interpret for successful navigation, we come even closer to the level of responsibility that we need to have in order to really direct our movies. Always asking “What does this mean”, was something I was taught to ask by my father after a great film, and now, as I understand the nature of my reality to be similar to a projected film, asking this question has become a continuing mantra that I meditate upon when doing this very fruitful waking-life dream analysis.
With all this being said, we don’t want to have to process and analyze everything that happens in our movies of life, but if we can live in a flowing way, in a way that feels right to us, even if we have to face challenges, we can face them with courage and with a certain faith that we have to power to meet those challenges. Then we are in a movie of our choice. And so importantly, if we can be free of the unnerving scenes that keep appearing in our movies, if we can be free of the negative cycles that repeat over and over, then we are really in a movie of our choice. and in fact, we would then be the directors of our movies!
These metaphors are clever, but can they really apply to our lives? Yes! Melissa and I live this way every day, and by doing so, we have access to our deepest coding and are able to stop destructive cycles and to read our outer lives as an accurate oracle for guidance. When we live in this way, our lives take on a new dimension, an artistic dimension that flows and is deeply meaningful. Living in the old way, where we are subject to the winds of change, victims of circumstances, is not empowering and does not lead to very much growth. Living in this way and knowing that all significant events can be traced back into our psyches is deeply instructive.
Here is an example of how aspects of my own life which would normally be referred to as chance are actually my own creation. In my own inner work, I discovered that some of my primary destructive coding was related to what I call the victim/victor code and is caused by emotional abandonment. As I was coming into this understanding two of my neighbor tenants moved out and new ones moved in. These two men,were each suffering from deep emotional wounds. I learned about their history over time and they revealed to me what they had been dealing with. As I talked with them more I came to find out that they saw themselves as victims, and in fact they each had specific circumstances play out in their lives when they were young that were acts of aggression upon helpless children. They were truly victimized.
I befriended these two, doing my best to give guidance when they asked for it and trying to help them. Only after I really got into my own code of victimization did I realize that these men were aspects of me, they were showing me what the code I was running looked like when it was fully engaged. In my case, I was repressing my victim code, I was not wanting to see it for many years. It was the way I felt as a child in my early life but when I grew up and developed my own sovereignty, I repressed those old feelings and didnt allow them to surface. They directed my life in so many ways, and my movie of life continually showed me the scenes that this film or code was the source of. If I look back, I can see how so many of the people in my life were running the same code and how I always wanted to help them. I believed that my outer reality was truly separate and that acting on them was an act of giving. In fact, my helping of others was in one way opening up my heart or my ‘out channel’, but in another way it was a futile act because the giving I was doing was partially caused by my deep need to be healed myself, and I was not directing that care inwards.
When two new neighbors showed up, I was just at that time able to see my life as a projection. And as Melissa and I really started to go deep into our emotional wounds, we noticed things change outwardly. On neighbor moved out suddenly and the other died. He literally died next door, and that is itself a story for another time. Then as we began to come into the understanding of acceptance, the ‘in channel’, that allows self love, a new neighbor moved in. He was a plumber who was there to work on the building’s plumbing which was blocked, yet another metaphor. At the same time I received a metal coin at a party that had the words “go with the flow” imprinted on it. We pondered the meaning. We eventually realized that the plumber, who himself led a very flowing and self accepting life, was a teacher for us. And the blocked plumbing was later found to be caused by an ‘underground leak’, meaning repressed emotions. We learned from him and the circumstances and deepened our awareness of acceptance. He then moved out and a very neutral neighbor moved in who is rarely there. The other tenant was replaced with a successful contractor who is a fine home builder. He calls his business ‘artisan’. I see the shifting of the people around me as the outer reflecting of the shifting of my own inner state and the moving of deep emotional energy which has been the film through which my consciousness projects.
We call this way of living Life Art. It is engaging in life as an artist engages his or her own work. Our lives are masterpieces of art and we are all creating our life art in every moment, only we usually dont know it. Becoming aware of how our inner state creates our movies of life allows us to change anything in our lives by changing our inner state alone. The story above is one of countless stories I could relate where one of us has witnessed a change in our outer movies of life as the direct result of inner work we have been doing. Slowly but surely we are sourcing our own code, the film we are each running, and studying it for elements we wish to change. By first illuminating the source energy, then integrating or accepting what is, we are then able to move into the recreation process which is simply a matter of intent, but that intent is effective because the blocked energy which was keeping us back has been transformed, thus our life art is created.
These metaphors are an artistic creation in themselves and can be used just as a viewer of art uses the art as a filter to see themselves through. Art changes us by adding something to our perceptual filters. Art changes us on the deepest levels and by creating and admiring art we enhance our lives. Living in the movie is life art which enhances our lives in a very meaningful way. It has aesthetic and practical application. It not only sounds good but it works if we allow it to. There is nothing to be proved, only art to be lived.