Does everyone have a shadow self, and are shadows necessary?
The answer: Yes, everybody does have a shadow self, and it is necessary.
Before we get into it, we need to make sure that you understand a few things.
What is the shadow self?
The shadow self is the part of you that you’ve neglected and rejected, and left behind since childhood.
It’s the unconscious part of yourself that is outside of your awareness. The other side of your personality holds all the qualities that you decided not to identify with.
Why does everyone have a shadow self?
When you were born, you were a whole, complete being.
But as you grow, your family and culture encourage some parts of your personality while punishing other parts.
So as a child, you learn that you’re supposed to be one way and not the other. This other side of yourself is the shadow self.
Even though you don’t identify with it, it’s still a part of who you are. And you cannot eliminate who you are.
Instead, you can only repress it to the point that you’re no longer connected or aware that it’s a part of you.
It’s in the process of building up your proper persona that you indirectly create your shadow persona.
Everyone gets split into two, and it is completely necessary for human beings to get along.
Why are shadows necessary?
By creating a proper persona that is socially acceptable, you can be a part of society and can engage in healthy relationships.
Although you are not whole, you can at least identify with the side that can make a living and live freely in this world. Then, later on in life, you can discover your shadow. Then you can then integrate it into your proper persona so that you can become whole again.
This is how shadow-making and shadow work typically happens in a person’s life.
However, what if someone doesn’t build up a proper persona?
Instead, they identify with their shadow qualities, such as a thirst for power and destruction. Unable to form healthy relationships, violent and murderous.
People who had incredibly horrible upbringings or were born with a different type of brain end up like this.
People who never built up a proper persona can only identify with the rash and reckless part of themselves. With that in mind, there is no other side for them to integrate and become whole.
So yes, everyone does have a shadow self. And yes, shadows are necessary.
Because without incidentally creating a split personality between shadow and what is socially appropriate, we wouldn’t have functioning societies.
Instead, we’d still be living in the stone age—killing, raping, and pillaging acting like animals.
Does that mean that the shadow is evil?
Your shadow isn’t necessarily evil or immoral—it’s just different.
Keep in mind that your shadow is the other part of yourself. Although it may have qualities that you don’t find most agreeable, it contains a lot of your creativity, interests, intuition, and energy that you can access.
If only you knew how to integrate it.
Learn how to integrate your shadow and become whole with our Shadow Work guide here.
Are shadows necessary for the well-being of the world?
First-world countries are made up of people who are “more civilized”, and in turn, also have their own shadow sides.
But it’s thanks to having built some moral backbone and sense of obligation, they have spiritual depth.
You need spiritual depth to get in contact with your shadow and become whole.
However, there are still many countries out there that lacking in spirituality.
The concept of freedom and safety comes from spiritual development.
Something you’ll notice about third-world countries is that many of them have a massive slave trade.
These countries overall have a low spiritual development, which is why slavery is so abundant.
This is because civilizations that haven’t developed enough spirituality don’t understand the importance of freedom.
However, world affairs are outside of the scope of this blog.
I will just say that the geographical locations make a massive difference in spiritual development because some places are much harder to live in than others; making spirituality more “affordable”.
The last thing I’ll say about it is that spiritual development happens in its own time.
People, civilizations, and nations all grow in different ways and on different days.
It’s only a matter of time.
Here are some resources I recommend:
Shadow Work for Beginners is based on my in-depth research and personal experiences with shadow work, projection, sadomasochism, inner child healing, triggers, and all things shadow. This resource gets updated at no additional cost.
A Light Among Shadows is a guide on self-love and being. This series goes over consciousness, spirituality, philosophy, and makes sense of why people are the way they are. Recommended for anyone dealing with resentment and self-hate. Learn more here.
Shadow Work for Relationships teaches you everything you need to know about attachment theory, practical inner work, and your dysfunctional behavior. By the end of this, you will have developed your earned secure attachment style so you can put an end to your cycle of bad relationships.
Shadow Work Journal: 240 Daily Shadow Work Prompts contains inner work exercises related to relationships, anger, anxiety, self-love, healing trauma, abandonment issues, depression, forgiveness, etc.
Self-Love Subliminal for self-hypnotism that will help you change your behavior and gain self-love, self-awareness, better relationships, greater health, and improve your creativity.
Shadow Play (or “DsR”) is a sister website that goes over “sensual” shadow work through BDSM experiences. If you are 18+ and are interested, go here.
Mindful & Mending is a small website that’s about self-hypnosis, affirmations, auto-suggestion, and more techniques & tools to help you shift your unconscious mind. Check it out here.