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Shadow Dance Ceremony

Updated: Jan 18

Please keep in mind that this process should be approached with playfulness and is to be considered with openness and curiosity. The goal is to find more awareness, while moving your body in beneficial ways, always safely and with care.

This process may be a helpful tool to cultivate more clarity, confidence & personal power within your body and attitude.

Please seek professional help immediately for serious trauma;

physical, emotional or any kind.


“Shadow Work” is a modern term, however it was commonly practiced by our ancestors. They understood ways to navigate and use this as a powerful tool in their lives. People were forced into reckoning with these "dark" or "hidden" energies, and for the simple reason that before modern electricity humanity was in a much darker, colder world.


In our modern era we have distanced from this idea - and to these processes.


But what is SHADOW WORK?


Simply, it is uncovering or recognizing our underlying ENERGIES or BELIEFS -

about ourselves and the universe, that are largely unconscious and gathered from life experiences.


Realize that the world is not so much as it seems -

Rather put: our BELIEFS are what make things be revealed to us the way they do.

It is our beliefs that attract, manifest and shape our world.


But let’s get clear - “SHADOW” is not a synonym for “negative”, or “bad.” Just as Darkness is only the contrast to Light - Yin & Yang, Cold & Hot - all of these DUALITIES exist in all in the universe - modern humans included.


Shadow Work IS NOT dwelling in sorrow or focusing only on that which you do not want. Rather, let “Shadow” be another word for “unknown” or “unseen” aspects of

a personality.


Also, looking at Shadow does not mean we are focusing on "negative" things that will attract into our life if we notice them.


Let’s look at it this way - say your car’s “check-engine” light is on.


Do you:

1 - Ignore it - because you think it best to only focus on the “positive” image/idea of what you want?

2 - Wallow, cry and claim defeat because you feel powerless against the implications?

3 - Take it to a professional, get a diagnosis and allow help from others or universe to fix what the issue is?


(Hint - #3 is Shadow Work).


Let’s look, release & REPLACE - for we have permission to change our story anytime.


Do you notice that when you look at your literal shadow - in the sun or against a single source of light - that your shadow does not move unless you do.


Your Shadow does not impose anything against you, or your brilliance -

although it is very "real."


~ Let’s learn to dance with our Shadows. ~

(And Lead).


4 STEPS to MOVE SHADOWS:

1 - RECOGNIZE

2 - ALLOW & RECOGNIZE EXISTENCE

3 - APPRECIATE LESSONS & SURVIVAL/ADAPTATION

4 - NEW STORY INTEGRATION


~ RITUAL SETUP: 15 - 20 minute Ceremony ~

Create a Sacred, Consecrated Space for your Ritual:

Optional offering of Elements -

Water (in a bowl or glass, seashells, river stones)

Earth (dirt, all stones, sticks, flowers etc.)

Fire (candles - electric works just fine & be safe with real candles)

Air (your breath and verbal spells, feathers)

- Create your own offerings!


Begin with The Night - or find a very dark room (with space to shake your groove thang).


1 - RECOGNIZE

Find a closed door, or clear wall space to cast your Shadow. Allow for a single light source behind you - a lamp, flashlight or some witchy candles!


Find a comfortable chair or seated position on the floor.


Take several deep, cleansing breaths, and offer an intention or statement.

Something like:


“Shadows, I accept your existence, and I intend to learn, grow & evolve towards my highest good as a result from a specified time while in my experience.”


Soften your gaze around your Shadow reflection. Breathe, allowing for several minutes in stillness and quiet. Invite a “Shadow” to come to mind (a fear, insecurity or memory, it could simply be a feeling).


Allow feelings, thoughts and beliefs to arise. What comes up? Don’t get overwhelmed - allow yourself to focus on 1 - 2 at a time. And, if it wants to be vague - let it be vague. The emotion could be broad - label it “insecurity”, and know the details may not matter and more clarification will come.


Example: " I don’t feel like I am a good Dancer -

or I have a lot of resistance to Dance / Movement.”


2 - ALLOW & VALIDATE EXISTENCE

- ASK, “When was the first time I remember feeling this way?”

- Perhaps it might take a moment. But a person, event, or comparison will come to mind, and this is important to recognize.


Everyone, thing and idea WANTS TO BE SEEN & RECOGNIZED. BE VERY CAREFUL TO NOT CAST JUDGEMENT - on your Shadow, yourself, the Other etc.


If we are just quiet and let things be, it is rather easy to just sit as a container for things to show up and exist. This is the space where things can be released or otherwise transmuted.


Take some time here. Once you recognize the specific Shadow or story -

now it’s time to DANCE!


I recommend starting this in silence - however music is wonderful to add.

I recommend music of tones and melodies, but not necessarily with lyrics (it is recommended to create a neutral space and not one to receive subliminal messages - see below for recommended songs for Shadow). You can do something that matches the energy of your Shadow - you will intuitively be drawn to what is best for you.


Take several minutes of DANCING WITH YOUR SHADOW - watching your reflection as you move. Include movements of arms/hands, touching & connecting with the surface that your Shadow is displayed (the wall or door) - you will see such beauty in this process!


This can feel hard to stick with sometimes - stay there, stay present and hold the space for your Shadow.


Again - catch expectations or judgements, and realize those are

Shadows all their own. And that’s alright!


3 - APPRECIATE LESSONS & SURVIVAL / ADAPTATION

We develop many of our Shadows at very early stages of life. These were unconsciously adopted - and exist to protect us - to keep us “safe”.


After your song of Shadow dance - take a moment to reflect on these gifts.


Example: “I see that my Shadow wants me to stay safe from criticism -

from myself or others. It had good intentions for me.”


4 - NEW STORY

Now is the time to rewrite your patterning. What would you like the story to say instead?


Example: “I am safe to feel, express and move in any way that feels good to me. Dancing is a practice - as I engage I will become more comfortable & confident with this. Dance is my soulful expression - my Soul is unique, and so is my Dance.

I give myself permission to explore, express and accept my journey of self discovery - I offer my energy of this dance to myself, and to others so they may feel EASE, GRACE & JOY.”


Repeat 3 words that reflect your new story, while "zipping up" your midline

(tracing up from pubic bone to your bottom lip).

"EASE, GRACE & JOY."

Zip-Up & repeat 3 times.

This engrains the intention into your energetic field.


What a beautiful sentiment - NOW IT’S TIME TO DANCE IN THE LIGHT!


Light another candle, and place it between you and your Shadow - your Shadow will disappear from view. Turn your attention to yourself, and begin another dance -

this dance is dedicated to YOU, (and your Shadows that exist in you and the Universe).


Pick a song or 2 that feels uplifting to you. Not sure what movements to do?


SPIN - REACH LIMBS, SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE! REMEMBER - IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT ANYTHING LOOKS LIKE! It should just FEEL GOOD.

(See below for song suggestions).


Again the steps are:

1 - RECOGNIZE

2 - ALLOW & RECOGNIZE EXISTENCE

3 - APPRECIATE LESSONS & SURVIVAL/ADAPTATION

4 - NEW STORY INTEGRATION


Close your ceremony by thanking your Shadow, your Light - and your New Story to be set forth from here on.


Example: “I am safe to move, express, and dance with my Shadow - evolving towards and basking in my Light. I invite opportunities to express myself through movement,

and to honor my unique Voice.


"And So It Is.”

~ ~ ~

KNOW THAT THIS WORK IS SO IMPORTANT AND VALUABLE.

WITH YOU HOLDING SPACE FOR YOURSELF IN THIS PROCESS - YOU ARE CREATING ENERGETIC CONTAINERS FOR OTHERS TO DO THEIR SHADOW WORK.


1 - 2 short songs will do! You might want to repeat them -

Listen and move as long as feels good - stick with it.


Shadow Song Suggestions: Spotify Playlist:

https://open.spotify.com/playlist/69URz6Cxk8bELRlGngUMqW?si=80oD710PRjqYVaJOjklTiQ


Instrumental:

October, Heinali

Midnight Swim, Active Child

Ghosts in the Brazos, Slow Meadow

Absence, Slow Meadow


Lyrical:

Is What It Is, She Keeps Bees

Burning Bowl, She Keeps Bees

Saturn Return, She Keeps Bees

Fangs, She Keeps Bees

Three Seed, Silversun Pickups

Vessel, Zola Jesus

Somebody's Sins, Tricky

I'm Not Going, Tricky


Light Song Suggestions: Spotify Playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5fn8FgaaSdwsZPYhI6vtA5?si=5VKPIbgUQ-KkAK8FLXEDMQ


Instrumental:

Immunity, Jon Hopkins

Rather Lovely Thing, Nick Cave, Warren Ellis


Lyrical:

I know Places, Lykke Li

In Sunlight, Tina Malia

Radiance, She Keeps Bees

Station (2014), Lapsley

Ocean Eyes, Billy Eilish

This Feeling, Alabama Shakes

Apparently, Random Rab

Haseya, Ajeet, Peia



Angela Nelson, Shadow Dance

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