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What can be stored in the shadow (of consciousness)?

Deepak Chopra
Alternative & Complementary Medicine
Anything can be stored in the shadow. A bank vault where you keep your most precious possessions is a hiding-place as much as a prison dungeon. The same is true for the shadow -- although the term is used most of the time to describe a hiding place for negative energies, you have the power to turn positive to negative and vice versa. I once knew two sisters who were close as children but grew up as very different adults, the one a successful college professor, the other a twice-divorced worker at a temporary agency. The successful sister describes her childhood as wonderful; the other sister describes hers as traumatic. "Remember when Daddy locked you in the bathroom for six hours after you did something wrong?" I heard the unhappy sister say to her sibling. "That was a turning point for me. I could only imagine how angry and hopeless you felt." The happy sister looked very surprised. "Why didn't you ask me about that? I liked being alone, so I just went inside and told myself imaginary stories. The incident was nothing."

And so our stories go their separate, highly idiosyncratic ways. The same incident had no emotional charge for one sister, whereas it was a source of anger and shame for the other. Great art can be made out of scenes of violence (witness Picasso's Guernica) and horrors can be concocted from holy virtue (witness the crucifixion of Jesus). In the unconscious, there is a full population of unexamined impulses.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.