This article was inspired by Shadow Work: How To Face Your Darkest, Disturbing Thoughts
All of us have our own darker side. Continue reading to understand how to overcome these thoughts and desires.
Shadow work is a powerful and mysterious technique that has existed throughout the annals of time, but hidden from the mainstream world.
It has established a more occultist role over the years and has helped numerous individuals discover the source of their mental dissonance, physical diseases, and even the crime that has resulted due to mental instability.
Traditionally, shadow work falls into the ambit of Shamanism, but due to its healing properties it is also used in alternative medicine and other schools of spirituality, especially during the archaic periods.
However, in modern times, the practice falls into the fields of psychotherapy. According to Jungian Psychology, our shadow aspect represents the unconscious aspects of our personality. One can find extensive academic literature written by therapists and psychiatrists.
Since our modern day medicine mostly function by curtaining symptoms rather than repairing the source, the drugs and therapy does little to curb our deeper and darker thoughts and desires.
People who experience such thoughts are made to feel like they are flawed, abhorrent and wretched. And the answer to such a problem is to accept ourselves for who we are and grow through self-love.
What Exactly are These Dark and Disturbing Thoughts?
Well, our thoughts and desires are extremely personal aspects of who we are. They can manifest based on various different factors, such as our circumstances, our upbringing, and our cultural and religious influences.
Almost all of us harbor such thoughts — thoughts we would like to keep to ourselves and these can be anything, such as:
- Sexual perversion such as sadism, molestation, rape, etc.
- Physical and Emotional Violence
The examples of such thoughts can be directed towards, literally, anyone, even animals and inanimate objects. When our dark and disturbing thoughts are concerned, almost nothing is considered to be off limits.
The Reasons for Such Thoughts
Each and every one of us is taught to inculcate certain values and norms that are considered to be acceptable by society.
We are taught exactly what is considered to be good and evil, what is considered right and wrong and what is virtuous and sinful. When we do step out of these pre-defined limits, we are punished in some way or another.
So, basically, we grow up being monitored at all times, whether it is by our parents, law enforcement, or even the wrathful God that is all-knowing. Due to this, we are repressed to the point of coercive conformity.
This sensationalization of sinful and bad behavior makes it seem attractive in a mysterious manner. Now, to a naturally inquisitive person, this is paramount to begging them to rebel and few of us even do.
Once we experience what it’s like to have a darker side, we fear it and repress it as we are conditioned to do so.
Repressing a part of ourselves is anything but healthy for us. And its effects manifest in physical or psychological problems.
Overcoming our Darker Side
Throughout our lives, we are thought to think in terms of absolutes. For example, a certain act is either absolutely bad or absolutely good, and there’s no category in the middle. However, reality is anything but absolute.
Every day we are forced to make decisions that are morally ambiguous. Hence, we start to view ourselves in such absolutist perspectives. Either we are good, or we are bad — which leads us to the belief that there is something wrong with us, which can even become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
However, the reality is that everyone has a darker side, and it’s not something that makes you a bad person. Everyone needs to understand that we all have such thoughts and to deal with them, we must learn to take responsibility for such thoughts, no matter how disgraceful and disgusting we may feel.
The only way to stop them from controlling our lives is to face them. Repressing them will only increase their potency and cause you harm in the long run.
The ability to face our darker side is the ultimate form of courage. Doing so will allows us to heal and grow past these psychological blockages that prevent our self-growth.
If you feel that you possess a dominant dark side within you, then you need to understand that this does not make you a horrible person.
The attraction we experience towards the things we are not supposed to do is simply due to the conditioning we undergo throughout our lives, especially during our early years.
We are all taught to not even think about certain things, which only force us to think about them even more. The act of suppressing a thought only increases the likelihood of it reoccurring.
Shed your preconceived notions about life, shed yourself of all the labels you have been taught by society, and perceive things from a relativist’s perspective. There is always a reason for an occurrence and, once you learn to address it, you will also learn to overcome it.
This article was inspired by Shadow Work: How To Face Your Darkest, Disturbing Thoughts, which was written Aletheia Luna. She is the co-founder, editor and author of popular spiritual website LonerWolf.com. As a transformational mentor and holistic writer, she has helped to guide thousands of people throughout the world on their paths of self-acceptance and wholeness. You can follow her work and private updates on Facebook.