Meeting the ‘Dark’

This post is going to be metaphoric in nature. And so while you read this post, I would like you to think in symbolism.
‘Light’ and ‘Dark’ are symbolic words. They are not absolute. Many religions talk about Light and Dark in absolute terms. The popular belief is that ‘dark’ is evil and bad. However, that might be a very simplistic way of looking at this topic.

Let us look at the definition of these words in a slightly different way.

Light that which is seen; that which one is conscious about; that which we are willing to hold out for the world to see; those aspects of us that we are OK with.

Dark : that which is not seen; that which one is unconscious about; that which we are not willing to show to the world; that which is held secret within us; those aspects of us that we are not OK to look at.

‘Darkness’ is not really bad. Darkness is merely all the things that we have kept away from our own selves and from the world. Darkness is all the old wounds that are too painful to even look at. All of those emotions that we don’t want to feel, start to become dark. All those icky and nauseating memories that we try so hard to forget, are part of our darkness.

Everyone is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody.
~ Mark Twain

If our minds were like computers, all the hidden files are the dark files. Now just because the files are hidden, it wouldn’t mean that it doesn’t occupy memory space. It still affects the system and if there is a virus as a part of the hidden files, the virus can actually affect the entire system.

Have a look at this illustration that I found somewhere on the internet. It seems to sum up a beautiful aspect of darkness.

Even though we try to hide our dark sides, we can’t really escape its influence on our lives. Nope. We couldn’t possibly run away from it, because it follows us like a shadow everywhere we go. Some people even tell me that they feel like they are fighting with a monster inside them. They ask me, “Can you somehow get this monster off my back?” Unfortunately, it can’t be magically removed in some way. Nor can we eat/drink/sleep/exercise/sex/pray/wish it off. Those are merely distractions from the darkness.

I believe that at some point, you would have to turn towards it and embrace it. Look into its eyes. Be patient and very very tender. And then slowly get intimate with it until it starts to show you another way, another you. This could be a slow process and it could even be overwhelming. If the darkness scares you, do not hesitate to meet a counselor or a therapist who would help you walk through the darkness. It can be very relieving if done the right way.

I believe your darkness is a compass that would lead you to Joy and Peace. Hold on to it. We have often been told that the ‘Light’ guides us towards truth and divinity. I would say, the ‘Light’ and the ‘Dark’, both guide us to the truth. Both are equally divine. In fact, embracing the unconscious and dark sides to us, allows us to be more conscious and in touch with the light. 

[Continue reading the extension of this post in my next post : What you Resist, Persists]

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