Last Entry: Experiences: April 15, 2013


Monday, April 15, 2013

Shadow Art Reveals More Clues

As we were studying shadows and personas, within my human development class during my first term at Southwestern College, we were asked to simply hold each of these concepts while creating separate pieces of artwork. My shadow piece, below, came to represent the next clue about the trauma I had experienced within my life.

Strength from Brokenness
Within this painting, I initially saw a strong backbone that was also broken and the strength of a body in cobra pose despite this brokenness. Thus, I came to see this as strength growing out of difficult conditions. 

But, we were also directed to dialog with this image using our non-dominant hand, asking questions like "Who are you?", "What age are you?", and "What are you calling my attention to?". My answers surprised me and I didn't want to believe them. But, I found that they directly related to the trauma I have been speaking about. It seemed it was time to begin healing this trauma within me.

To link up why this was being shown to me at this time, I will share some of the questions and responses:

Why is the back broken? 
It is what is broken in the family.

What about the arms? 

Forceful power imposed.

Why are you showing up for me now? 

This is part of your power when used wisely.

How do I use it wisely? 

Be in faith and awareness of your actions and how they feel to you.

Why is this shadow aspect important to my life? 

To be present, aware, and awake to the pain of other's broken backs.

Tell me about the positive power in this? 
Teaching. Pursuing helpful techniques with strength and confidence.

Is there an aspect of pushing oneself up despite the pain? And, if so, what is that about? 
Yes, it is your pain and your broken back that this comes out of. Believe in your power to serve and to be uplifting to those you encounter.

As the term progressed, the traumatic aspect of this image was acknowledged and dealt with on various levels. Safety was a theme. More images were created and discussed. A medicine walk yielded a piece of bark with the same exact curvature of the spine as was in my shadow image. And finally, a Despacho Ceremony was done in class that allowed me to begin letting it go. It was here that my six-year-old soul part again made an appearance. As we went to bury the despacho under a tree, I felt her presence on my hip. She wanted to be part of this ceremony, to water the despacho and to allow the transformation of the negative energy into our prayers for the future. And it was with great care that I helped her to be with me and to make this contribution.

Thus, through this one image, a lot started to happen within me in healing my trauma and in revealing information about my future. The image offered both positive and negative qualities, as well as reasons for attending to this situation at this point in time. It helped me to see how the conditions I have lived through were meant to be transformed and how particular situations are not purely positive or negative but contain both qualities. As I have worked with this trauma over the years, I now see it is as a seed that I have carefully planted and nurtured along the way, with the fruits of that seed just beginning to mature today.