“When we dislike someone, or feel threatened by someone, the natural tendency is to focus on something we dislike about the person, something that irritates us. Unfortunately, when we do this–instead of seeing the deeper beauty of the person and giving them energy–we take energy away and actually do them harm. All they know is that they suddenly feel less beautiful and less confident, and it is because we sapped their energy.”
For the last few years Shadow Work seems to be my entire existence; whether it is battling through my Shadow, the collective Shadow or helping to guide others through their’s, Shadow has been ever present all around me.
I am so aware of Shadow Work that it became a Course for The House of Twigs: School of Ritual.
A lot of people seem to think that because there is a beginning to our Shadow journey that there, too, must be an end.
But, is there?
In my opinion, no.
Just like I believe our Kundalini awakening to be a life-long event, after the Serpent’s initial rising, I believe Shadow Work is also life-long.
Once you have seen, tasted and existed within the depth of Shadow, there is no going back to the shallows of mundane life.
There is no more smiling through fake bullshit to avoid conflict or confrontation; there is no more biting your tongue to make someone else comfortable; there is no more apologizing for taking up space in this world; there is no more playing small in any regard.
Shadow Work demands us to step into ourselves and our power because the most important keys to collect on our journey dwell in abysmal places.
There is no more pretending because our Shadow simply does not allow us to do so.
There is no room for lies, masks or inauthenticity, only truth.
Shadow Work is about the understanding and acceptance of ourselves and our feelings, thoughts, emotions, actions and desires.
The key to this gritty work is honoring the less positive aspects of ourselves and our nature and learning to reconcile them.
I am going to digress for one moment because there IS a point I want to make with this piece, but you need a bit of backstory.
I have written about Witch Wars, and how ridiculous I find them to be; often they are meritless, ego driven temper tantrums with Magick involved, and they can be disastrous for both target and Magickian.
The target could potentially be faced with a Magickal attack; the Magickian will have to deal with the excessive use of energy, and if casted with too much uncontrolled emotion, they will have to deal with what I call “Magickal kickback”.
It isn’t karma or some three-fold law, it’s the idea that if our intentions are not clear, our mind not focused, and our aim not precise, the energy created could bite us in the ass.
I can’t believe I am about to use a gun analogy, but it’s effective for painting the picture.
A gun is a weapon, it can be used for protection and defense, but at the end of the day, it’s main purpose is to maim and/or kill; in many ways this is how baneful Magick should be viewed and respected (think of it as a last resort, not a first option).
Some of the higher-powered guns on the market have serious kickback (recoil) and can even blow your shoulder out of socket if not held properly.
So, yeah, you could still hit your target and harm them, but you also harmed yourself.
I have seen the degree and frequency of Witch Wars lessen in recent months, but what has taken its place is almost as bad.
There seems to be a lot of petty gossip, evil eyes and hate being thrown around.
And, it’s all meritless; just like Witch Wars.
When we don’t like someone, why do we have to dramatize it?
Why do we have to become the victim in our own narrative to justify not liking someone?
When I don’t vibe with, or like someone, I am honest with them and myself about it.
I have had it backfire in my face a few times because people really can’t handle not being liked; it’s as if they would prefer the drama and gossip just so they can have something to hold onto.
“Well *this* is why they don’t like me. That bitch.”
Otherwise, they just can’t accept it.
I have had people try to ruin my career because I was open and honest about not vibing with them; I clearly explained my feelings, wished them well, and they still wanted to bring me down.
Talk about petty.
There are tons of things in life I don’t like, and no one ever asks for in-depth, psychological reasons as to why.
There are certain foods, clothes, textures, seasons, animals, crystals, herbs, you name it; there is literally SO MUCH that I don’t like, and it’s accepted without question.
When it comes to people though, we can’t just say, “Oh, yeah, I know them, we aren’t friends; just didn’t get along but I wish them well!”
It simply isn’t accepted.
People start digging, fishing, stirring and conjuring to the point where sometimes we take on this created drama as our reality.
What sense does any of this make?
And, this is one of the keys to not only Shadow Work but to Magick:
It’s okay to choose yourself over others.
Read that again: own it, accept it, live it.
Then understand this:
It’s okay to admit you don’t like someone.
It’s okay to not quite know why, either; always go with your intuition– your first instinctual thought.
I’ve become friends with some of the people I didn’t initially like; I’ve talked about my theory of this many times in the past. As a defensive reaction, I don’t usually like authentically strong Witches upon first meeting.
On the flip side, I’ve seen my intuition nail the character of a person to a T and without exaggeration, it saved me.
Everything is energy, and Witches are some of the most energetically complex creatures created; to expect that we will always get along, and like one another is naivety at its finest.
To protect yourself, your space, and your Magick, you must be choosey with who you allow to get close and see your inner workings of Self.
Accepting that it’s okay to not like someone because their energy rubs you wrong is the epitome of Self Preservation.
Talking shit and projecting your insecurities because you don’t like someone, or they don’t like you, is the epitome of childish.
There’s enough space for us all to exist.
I generally am polite when confronted by people asking why I don’t like them, why we became distant, or why I won’t accept their friend request; I try to always be consciously aware of the words I use with others because, in truth, I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.
So, I lessen the blow with positive affirmations, and then lay it on them that our energy just doesn’t compliment each other’s.
But, the clear and simple answer is:
Because I don’t have to.
I don’t have to be friends with everyone.
I don’t have to like you just because you like me, or because we have mutual friends, or interests in common.
I don’t have to like everyone, and neither do you; it’s unrealistic to think otherwise.
We are responsible for the protection of our energy.
We are also responsible for the words we speak and actions we carry out.
Are you proud of your words and actions?
Are they warranted?
As Witches we are even more responsible for our words and actions than the average person because we carry Magick.
We ARE Magick.
And Magick can both heal and harm.
(Thumbnail Image: Marius Sperlich)