The journey through life is primarily a journey that seeks a place of belonging, a place of safety and compassion, a place for our hearts to call home. In this attempt to find a home we often find ourselves in settings where we feel lost and just simply feel like we don't belong.
Humanity survives by forming circles, tribes, social systems and distinctions of every description. These distinctions essentially separate and discriminate in order to create a sense of uniqueness that provides the group and the individual with a special sense of identity. As children, we experience this in school and later, as we become adults, these inner circles become more nuanced where divisions are formed on the basis of ideology, social or economic status, education, ethnicity, religion, nationalism and a host of other lesser things. We all seek to fit in somewhere, we all need to fit in.
Inclusion is just a short step from exclusion and this can happen within families and the closest of relationships. A familial group can form an exclusive group circle that excludes the other and when that "other" is you it can lead to a painful process of discovery and self-realization. There comes a moment when you realize that in order to become a part of this circle you will have to betray yourself and those thoughts and ideas and beliefs that you hold dear. Slowly you become aware that it feels like you are quietly beginning to dissipate and vaporize, you are losing touch with who you are. In a confused struggle to protect self, you begin to loosen the bonds to those within the circle that you now realize has excluded you. With time you begin to understand that no matter what you do or say you will never be included in that circle because the cost of entry to that circle requires that you become someone else.
Shadows require a source of light and are a dark two-dimensional reflection of the physical object that is between the light and a surface. Each of us has our own unique shadow but that shadow isn't who we are because it has no depth of feeling or dimension, no sense of being or purpose. When light leaves and is replaced by the darkness within an inner circle the deepest of relationships can become a Shadow that has lost its light.
You can’t embrace a Shadow and you can't become who you are not. The solution is to return to the source, alone, to reach for the light and to embrace that light. In that light, you will find love and in that love, you yourself will be the reflection.