Introduction To Shadow Work

Shadow work is a journey of integration that is gentle, self-directed, and positive.

Shadow work has gotten a bad rap in an on-going and twisted narrative from do-gooders saying that anything less than Light is less-than. Shadows are scary and even – evil.

EVIL=LIVE Backwards

I guess we could say that Shadows are “evil” because in essence their separation from the Conscious Mind is to “live” backwards. There is a method to the madness but it’s convoluted and wastes time and energy.

What would you do if you could meet, greet, and converse with your Shadows? What would you do if you could work closely with your Shadows in a collaboration to improve your life now? What would it feel like to be unified? What would an integrated You be like?

What Is A Shadow?

When your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors were met with resistance, ridicule, and punishment, you experienced pain. To protect yourself from shame, guilt, and hurt, your Unconscious mind repressed these experiences to protect you. Most of these traumas happened when you were young and too helpless to protect yourself. You may have no memory of the traumas, but your body, heart, and mind have not forgotten.

Shadows are born from traumatized subtle bodies. Trauma forces you into fight-or-flight. The response is automatic and unconscious because the trauma has been trapped in your subtle and physical bodies.

What Are Subtle Bodies?

Subtle bodies are vibrational layers of your overall being. There are many bodies to your energetic makeup from the grossest physical layer to the angelic levels and beyond. They are a collective of energetic signature ranges that contribute to your life experiences. There are so many aspects to you that only a select group of these energies are operating consciously through your physical vehicle.

The subtle bodies this Shadow Work system focuses on are the Etheric, Emotional/Mental, and Causal. Each vibrates within a unique range of frequencies that contribute to an individual’s experience. Their overall structure will be described, and I will show you ways of strengthening those bodies to handle the release of trauma.

Alternative methods of healing such as Massage, Reiki, and Acupuncture are also effective co-strategies because these modalities use the Universal Life Force and the template of creation to release trapped energies and restore integrity to the body. Shadow work may involve one or more of these modalities.

How to Approach Shadow Work

The primary ingredient of Shadow Work is Love. Loving yourself is the simplest, most effective way to bring your Shadows into the forgiving light of compassionate scrutiny. Loving yourself is one of the hardest things to do in this dense, three-dimensional level of existence.

Why is it so hard to love yourself here on Earth? Pain. This physical manifestation in a human suit comes with a world of pain, amnesia, and confusion.  Life is experienced through an awkward, and for some of us, overly sensitive vehicle that has a large, and decidedly esoteric, instruction manual that require years of study and discipline.

But that’s changing. In this dimensional shift, as the Earth energies ascend to a higher vibrational range, access to understanding and integration has increased exponentially. The old ways still work but there are new ways of integration that have opened to us, ways that are cross-disciplinary, simple, and safely effective.

You are responsible for your integration. If you remain separate from all your shadows, they will rule your behavior without your conscious consent. They will sabotage your conscious intentions, not because they are evil or wish you ill, but because they are traumatized.


A journal is a vital part of the Shadow Work process. I learned this the hard way. Emptying your heart and mind onto paper through the sacred art of handwriting will provide a map of where you’ve been, where you are, and where you will go. The act of writing or drawing by hand, in your native tongue or imagery, links the mental/emotional to the physical through an association of body movement to the words in your mind and the feelings in your heart. You bring energy into a state of consciousness that grants you control over your internal processes.

Without this record, you remain metaphorically near-sighted. A journal becomes your reading glasses, binoculars, and microscope all in one. Your experiences become conscious experiments in living, and you align more fully with your Divine Purpose, which is to experience everything that happens in loving awareness.

Do not judge entries in your journal. You may swing wildly from one end of an issue to the other. You can only write from where you are in the integration process. The crisis phase will look different from the denial phase or the calibration phase.

You will contradict yourself. As long as you are focused on growth and healing, you’re on track. And don’t forget to date your entries. This will come in handy.

Questions and additions to the topic are welcomed in the comments below.

Next: The Etheric Body (3/17/2021)

©2021. I.O.Kirkwood. All rights reserved.

DISCLAIMER: The author is not a medical professional, therapist, social worker, nutritionist, or dietician. Content on this website is for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to substitute for medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis and is not monitored by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Consult your healthcare provider if you are having symptoms, before conducting guided meditations and spiritual exercises, before using any herbal product, or beginning any new health regimen. Any application of the content provided is at the reader’s discretion. No warranties are expressed or implied. By using any or all of this content, the reader does so at his/her own risk and is the sole, responsible party.

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Published by I.O. Kirkwood

Vibrational Alchemist ~ Medium ~ Writer

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