the dark and the light

by | Dec 30, 2009 | Writings

as many of you know based on my astrology writing and horoscopes- i am very much about attaining wholeness rather than perfection. in wholeness one embraces both their light and their dark, their masculine and their feminine. my passionate interest in the dark feminine stems from this interest in wholeness. since the dark has been demonized for millennia and the feminine has been repressed since patriarchy took over 5,000 years ago- it is the dark feminine that has been the most misunderstood and the most disconnected from. in order to find balance i believe we need to intimately know, make peace with and integrate all aspects of ourselves. my work with the dark feminine is an attempt to do just this.

something i have run into a lot in the spiritual community is a tendency to be light-polarized. there is this yearning for the light, for ascension, and for Spirit- and in that yearning there seems to be a negation and subsequent repression of the dark, the body, and the Soul. this yearning for purity and perfection is a beautiful ideal- as it pushes us to grow and become more conscious. but as anyone who has been on the spiritual path long enough knows- the greater amount of light you embody the greater amount of darkness and shadow there is to become conscious of. as jung said, ‘enlightenment is not a matter of imagining figures of light, but of making the darkness conscious.’ spiritual growth is not about getting to a place where you no longer possess darkness- it is about making that darkness conscious. just as the yin and yang symbol contains both dark and light in equal proportion- so does this experience of life. to have light without dark, spirit without soul, light body without earthly body- is to be incomplete. a commitment to a true path of spirit involves shadow work, dark nights of the Soul, and full embodiment of consciousness attained. we can’t just live in the ethers!

i have a group on facebook called ‘healing the wounded dark feminine’ in which 700+ members discuss who the dark feminine is, what her wounds are (or rather what humanity has done to negate her) and how we can bring her back into the balance of things. in our many discussions one arose about the nature of the dark. the dark is not synonymous with evil- yet it has been associated thus for ages. why is this so? the comment that the dark is merely the absence of the light does not sit right with me symbolically speaking. i am not well versed in astro-physics, so i cannot scientifically talk about light and dark with any sense of authority. but i do know symbolism and mythology- and the dark is not merely something that shows up when the light is not there. it is it’s own entity. in my elementary research on the physics of light i read that the dark is not able to be measured like light is, and so from this premise it is assumed that dark does not exist. but what if it exists but is not measurable by the means we have today? this would take darkness and make it chaotic and uncontrollable- as measuring something is how we gain an understanding of it and master it. perhaps this very property of darkness- its perceived wildness, its perceived lack of cohesive organization, its complicated labyrinthian essence that is unable to be understood or contained- is what caused humanity to label darkness as bad in the first place. for those who believe that Truth can only be found with reason and logic- that which is deemed unreasonable and illogical may very well be called so in order to manage one’s anxiety about being out of control. when you look at the word dark- and all the connotations it comes with- in this way it is easy to see why we fear the dark and yearn for the light. yet they are two sides of the same coin and cannot be separated from each other.

the dark feminine is distinct from the light feminine. the light feminine possesses the qualities that have been more or less accepted in women throughout the ages: nurturing, caring, self-sacrificing, unconditionally loving. the light feminine is very much attuned with Spirit. the dark feminine, on the other hand, embodies all that is uncontrollable, wild and chaotic in the feminine: intuition, mystery, magic, and sexuality. she is fierce, independent and powerful. she is fully connected to her body, expressive of her sexuality, and is not afraid to express intense emotions like anger. the dark feminine is attuned to Soul. in mythology the different dark feminine goddesses were seen as destroyers of ego. these powerful feminine forces were able to see beyond illusion and facade to what is real and true- and it was these very gifts of perception, insight and depth that were perceived as dangerous by the rational, logical, controlling ego. as a result what she stood for became twisted and her darker aspects were deemed evil and dangerous. so in society today we see a total disconnection from healthy expression of the dark feminine. we either see people completely unconscious of it, denying it, judging it and condemning it. or we see people overindulging in it- abusing or misusing sexuality, embittered, full of rage and hatred. neither of these are balanced expressions of the dark feminine- they both need healing.

there is so much misrepresentation of the dark i could write about it forever! the dark is symbolized by the womb, the winter, the night, and death. it is symbolized by inner processes that are not externalized, rational or logical. dreams and the unconscious are governed by the dark as they are not able to be controlled or understood from the perspective of the mind. the unconscious speaks in symbols, imagery and synchronicities. to take things at face value would be a big mistake when it comes to the unconscious- yet the rational, logical perspective assumes that everything can be known and understood with the mind. this is a light/Spirit perspective, but the dark and the Soul know differently. darkness is not merely the absence of the light. darkness is its own essence. just as death is not the absence of life. death is a doorway into another realm of existence. death is a portal, a space of transition. just because the living on this side of the doorway cannot see into the other side does not mean that the other side does not exist. just because we cannot measure or control darkness- does not mean it is doesn’t exist either.

i read somewhere that the rosicrucians “postulated one eternal, boundless and limitless Cause, which they defined as Darkness, the root and basis of light. Robert Fludd described it as ‘Divinity latent or at rest,’ declaring that ‘Darkness adopted illumination in order to make Itself visible,’ and that only after the active period of manifestation began did Light and Darkness appear.” the rosicrucian perspective that darkness is divinity latent or at rest and darkness adopted illumination in order to make itself visible is quite different from the perspective that light is the only thing that exists. according to this view darkness existed first. there are other schools of thought that support this idea- for example ma kali, the hindu goddess, is often referred to as the mother of all creation. she is a dark goddess and her light aspect is durga- but in the references to creation she is given the sole credit. also- in the bible God first created heaven and earth and both existed in darkness. then God said ‘let there be light’ and there was light. if darkness could not exist without light, then the bible should have said ‘in the beginning there was nothing’. but that was not the case.

ultimately my point in writing this article is not to do battle between light and dark- we have enough of that going on in the world today! my point is to show how these two are actually two sides of the same coin. they are brother and sister, friends, consorts, beloveds. unfortunately because humanity has demonized one and set the other on high, we have made them enemies. in order to find peace in our world we have to make peace with the polarities we have projected. accepting and embracing the dark and the light is the key to doing this. if we cannot make peace with the dark within us and around us we will constantly project our unowned and unconscious darkness onto others. when we find that peace within we will be able to see that what is within us surrounds us. this is the essence of Oneness and Unity. this is the essence of enchanting the light and the dark into Union.

in love…

~divine harmony

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