As expressed in a previous entry of mine, which I will provide link to below, Jung proposed several achetypes. (http://www.spellsofmagic.com/read_post.html?post=352855)
The Main Archetypes:
I will dedicate this post to fully explaining the Shadow and it's many potential uses.
What is "Shadow"?
The shadow, as proposed by Jung, is an existing part of our unconscious. It's made of a variety of things: repressed thoughts and feelings, desires and wishes, instincts, ideas, etc. It is a reflection of the deeper parts of our subconscious and psyche in whole. It is raw potential and unknown ability. It is amoral- being neither good nor bad, only our thinking and judgment of it makes it so. We tend to describe it as our "darker side" because it is often vast, unknown and chaotic and thus turns into a sort of waste-land where we dump the aspects of ourselves that we don't like or don't want to face. Coming to terms with your shadow is a nessasary step in wholeness and self-actualization.
" The shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego- personality, for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral effort. To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self- knowledge ."-Jung
How do we recognize "Shadow"?
It can be one of the easiest or one of the hardest archetypes to recognize, as it depends on the individual. The easiest way to recognize it is to meditate on yourself and look inward. Often, people recognize it through various dreams they experience. It can be
seen in hallucinations, visions or a variety of other forms. When the shadow is something we do not want to accept- Jung theorizes that we then project it onto others. These are people who share similar aspects with our shadow, and often we tend to feel one of three things: uncomfortable, fearful, or fascinated . And why shouldn't we? You are essentially looking into a mirror, and seeing for the first time (perhaps) something you haven't really noticed before.
Why study it?
Jung proposes that the shadow, when given a life of itsown due to suppression/repression or another method of denial, can begin to alter a persons actions. When a person is confused, fearful, doubtful, angered- the shadow can become a daunting problem in our
lives. It can affect relationships and hurt those around us. In the case of those on this site, you should always know yourself before you attempt to know others or any sort of subject. It connects directly to magick- as we must know our potential and abilities to do
anything of the sort. You would not sit a child in a car and tell them to drive without first properly explaining how the car functions, right? It is the same way with this. You cannot dive into something that involves an aspect that you do not know.
Snakes (representing the snake from the garden of Eden)
Pools of water
How can we integrate the "Shadow" into our "Whole"?
In the words of Jung himself;
" 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
" When we must deal with problems, we instinctively resist trying the
way that leads through obscurity and darkness. We wish to hear onlyof unequivocal results, and completely forget that these results can only be brought about when we have ventured into and emerged again from the darkness. But to penetrate the darkness we must summon all the powers of enlightenment that consciousness can offer ."
Realize that it is there. Observe what you do not know and what you know. Observe yourself and your behaviors. "Why did I do/say that" "Why did I feel that". Begin to accept all traits and aspects of yourself- realizing who you are. It is a process that requires optimal moral effort, focus and determination. It can take days, weeks, months, years to learn- and even then there is not a hundred percent chance a person will ever fully come to terms with it.
I reccomend reading:
Shadow Magick Compendium: Exploring Darker Aspects of Magickal Spirituality
By Raven Digitalis