Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Shadow work exercise

In keeping with our theme this week for ongoing classes, I thought I'd offer an exercise that can help us develop skills for working with our shadow material. I found this on the Spirituality and Practice website:

This exercise, “Toward Away,” was created by Colette Aboulker-Muscat of Jerusalem, Israel. It enables you to work with ambivalent feelings, one area where shadow tends to manifest.

Breathe out three times. Imagine something that attracts you so much that you would like to move toward it. See it clearly and be aware of how you feel and how your body feels, particularly your face. Now let your feelings flow into your slow movements toward the thing that attracts you. Now move slowly away from this thing and let your movements express how you are still drawn back to it, even as you are moving away.

Breathe out three times. Imagine that very close to you is something specific that repels you strongly, something that you want to move away from. See it clearly and recognize all your feelings toward this thing, especially in your face. Let your feelings express how you are flying away from this thing. Now move again toward this thing that repels you and discover what it is that repels you. Then discover something which you can appreciate, something that actually attracts you toward it. Now move slowly away, being aware of how you are moving and feeling.

When you are finished, breathe out and open your eyes.
I would like to recommend that you try this both with your eyes closed and with your eyes slightly open. Eye closure does help with visualization - especially when we're first learning. But we want to cultivate the ability to do most exercises with our eyes open - partly to avoid sleep or going into a trance but also because having the eyes open is symbolic of the awakened, aware state that is our aspiration.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for all your posts. They provide such insight into our daily lives and help on the road to awakening.



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