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Choosing Light Or Shadow

Heart Choice: Choosing Light Or Shadow

by Angel, Jan 27, 2011


This may be one of the most important posts I've written. For white and yellow belts this may just be noise. For anyone orange and above, these ideas should be wrapped into everything you do.

I've had students who, after a long time trying, give up this process. One woman told me that she cared more for her dramas than for herself. Giving them up, she said, was "like giving up my best friends!" This attitude never made sense to me. Why, after much time on this path, would someone choose to be a slave to their dramas? Tonite I may have figured out something important. Said differently, I already knew this, but assumed everyone else did. Like my assuming everyone was empathic till I was 10 years old. "You mean they DON'T feel everyone else's emotions!?"

That something, said simply, is "Love and light and life." Cheesy new age words, right? Not for me. These three words define the core of my being, of who I am in this life and between lives, of what I'm here to do, and of all that I teach and share.


The most important one. When the heart is fully online, real LOVE awakens. Not the valentine's day pink card stuff. Not the horny teenager stuff. Not even what the various churches tell you when they want you to give more money. Love is the energy of the heart chakra, which should be the core of everything we say and do, every moment of our lives. Bringing the heart online, discovering the awesome scope of that Love, and beginning to express it in each moment is really what we're all here for. Because it's so important I put it first.


 But the first one you'll discover is Life. When you begin to clear the "gut muck" out of your core and to get free of the dramas that have enslaved you your entire life, for the first time you can take a deep breath. You begin to truly live. From deep in your guts, you begin to discover and experience Life.


Later, when your higher centers come on line, you begin to see the energies directly, to perceive them in everything, to be surrounded by an almost palpable cloud of light. This light covers and colors and shapes you, everything you notice, and all that others see from you. It is so amazing and beautiful that everything in your life changes.

So, Love and Light and Life. The heart and head and gut, online and in power. The essence of all my teachings. The core of my life.


The Problem

The difficulty with this approach -- Life, Love, THEN Light -- is that Light is left till last.

It has to be. You can't experience the higher chakra energies until the lower chakras are online and stable. But if you have not made a commitment to Light from an early stage in this path, you'll likely get lost along the way.

As I understand it: This world has been in Shadow or Darkness for thousands of years. Now, the sun is rising. An age of Light is beginning. All of our habits, dramas, fears, and so on come from a world mired in Darkness.

Unless we make an early and solid commitment to working in and seeking the Light, we will spend much or our life and our energy enslaved to Shadow.

But you can't really experience that Light until you are further along. And it's tough to get further along if you haven't committed to the Light. So it's necessary to understand what that Light is and how it works thru studying history and stories... and then make a commitment to walk in it even tho you can't directly experience it yet.


Light And Shadow

Light And Dark

Star wars talks about the "light side" of the force and the "dark side." The New Age religion is always talking about "The Light" like it's some kind of deity. Language and popular culture have strong myths about light and dark. Every fantasy book ever written seems to be about the struggle b/w the light and the dark. These concepts show up so often in daily life that you probably take them for granted.

There are two important questions here, however. Two fundamental, life-shaping, critically important questions.

The Questions

What's the difference b/w the light and the dark?
How do you know which one you're working with? How do you know which path you are following. I've known very dark sorcerers to teach courses in "the language of light" and to talk about "sharing light" when what they are doing is clearly ... dark. So, how do recognize light and darkness. How do you know for sure which path you and others are following?

Does it matter?

Is this one of those minor points of philosophy that's maybe fun to discuss but practically is useless? Is it of minor importance? Or is it the most important question you can ask?


Let's address this question first, for if it doesn't matter the rest is just noise.

I feel that this is one of the most important questions you can ask in your life. That the question of light vs darkness and how it applies to your own path is one you should re-evaluate constantly for the rest of you life. At this time when the energies of the world are changing from a time of thousands of years of darkness to a beginning of thousands of years of light, the question of which you will serve is more important than you can imagine.

Tuning to the new (light-side) energies will produce less immediate results. Doing so will make your life more work than it would otherwise be. For now, you will be struggling against the current. But the current is changing and will soon carry you exactly where you are trying to go. Those paying attention will get to surf the most almight righteous wave in thousands of years. Those not paying attention will get tossed head over teakettle.

Since humans are part of the world, the world is influenced by their decisions. If they all follow the easy path, that of shadow, the world will move further into shadow. It will take her much longer to get where she's going and a lot more pain will happen along the way. If you begin to work towards and walk in the light, it will not only help you, it will help everyone alive and future generations. The future of the planet is shaped by enough of us making this decision.

Perhaps you will say, "I don't want to serve anyone, dark or light! I'm going to follow my own path and serve my own self." That sounds noble. That makes sense, right? On the surface, yes, it does. However, that is the fundamental attitude of the darkness. The "I don't care about others and their rules. It's all about ME." perspective is the basic one for everyone who walks the dark side. If you propound this simple idea, you've already chosen. At this time of chaos in the world's history, you can either choose to serve the light or you can be enslaved to the darkness.

Next is habit, tradition, inertia... You have probably lived in this world for many lifetimes. Even if you haven't you live in its energy and have been raised in its customs. You are shaped by this world in much deeper ways than you realize. And this world has lived deep in shadow for a very long time. So many, probably most, of your unconscious tendencies will take you down the familiar path, toward darkness. If you do not address this question of light and dark actively, then habit, tradition and inertia will address it for you. And they will choose the dark side.

Others. There are many people, many entities, many guides, many "others" who have lived in this world for a long time. Some have grown rich and powerful. As the world transitions from shadow to light, all of those following the old ways will begin to lose their power, their wealth. The methods they used in the time of darkness will increasingly fail in a time of light. This transition is already happening. Financial, business, govermental, religious, and meta- systems are failing world-wide.

If you've studied biology you know that any entity, when it feels itself dying, will struggle mightily and do whatever it can to survive. With all these systems, structures, entities and individuals feeling their old life slipping away, there is a deep panic in the world. Huge numbers of powerful ones are desperate as they feel this change coming. And, desperate, they will do WHATEVER it takes to try to prolong their way of life. There is a huge amount of energy being spent, right now, trying to drag the world back into darkness

The result is that your religions, governments, businesses and other worldly systems are lying as they never have. They are spreading confusion and chaos. They are considering huge changes to the world in order to protect themselves and their way of life. Much of what you are being told, day-to-day, is a lie. Most of the "News" is a lie. Most of what religions are expressing is a lie... Meta- entities, guides, and powerful beings are in a similar difficult position. So what's happening is that much of the "guidance" you can receive now is a lie. When you SCAN, if you are not careful, things will lie to you. This is a very difficult time for all of the systems and creatures of the old world. They are panicked and doing whatever it takes. You need to be hyper-aware and very careful.

So, ...

This basic tuning to light or dark is, I feel, critically, funamentally, incontrovertibly important, to you and to this world.


Many things are lined up against you. If you seek your own road, which all seekers do (and should), you may end up walking in shadow. All of your habits and unconscious pieces push you toward the shadow which is all they know. And every physical and meta- organization and entity has a strong inclination to pull you back to shadow.

Right now is an incredibly important time in the history of the world and if you are not actively questioning your "alignment" and seeking the light, the many forces lined up against you will take you to the other side.

If you are inclined to dismiss these ideas of light and darkness and just trust that you'll end up where you need to be, I guarantee you'll end up enslaved by the shadow.

What's The Difference

What is the difference between the light and the shadow? How do you know which side you're working for?

As an exercise I recommend you go back and watch the first Star Wars movie, the one from so many years ago. Don't watch it as fiction, tho, or as a story. Watch it as a documentary on light vs. dark. Pause it regularly and make notes. Which behaviors define the light side? Which the dark side? What things do the masters of each side teach? What do they require of their students? Study these things and build up some ideas of your own.

Next watch the later Star Wars movie where Anakin starts out a happy, innocent boy and becomes Darth Vader, a powerful knight in the service of darkness. Make a list of the choices he made, of the emotions he felt, and of the places where he could have chosen more wisely. Where did he err? Where did his teachers screw up? Did he get so far into the darkness that he could never come back? At each stage of his progression from innocent to "dark lord" what steps might he have followed to set things right?

You can also check out other books, movies, and television shows, both history and fiction, and find examples of the struggle betweent the light and the shadow. As you do this, do not passively watch, but actively study. Dissect these stories. What consistencies do they show about the path of light and that of shadow? What lessons can you discover that will help you now? What are the fundamental differences between those who seek light and those who slaved to shadow? Here are a few that stand out to me:

light: heart path
dark: no heart

Read Rumi, Hafiz, The Prophet, The Alchemist and other such. Every one of these "light side" figures will talk about the path of heart, listening to the heart, deciding with the heart, and so on. The light side makes the heart the center of all its choices. Now review any of the darkest places in fiction or in history. They all move away from the heart. They follow desireor passion, without compassion. They are driven by gut-level responses. The energy of the heart is either deeply asleep of completely missing.

light: self-improvement through serving the whole
dark: self-advancement through only serving the self

Those who follow the path of light have to be selfish. If your whole family is racist, your whole culture is primitive and violent, your whole world destroying itself, ... you will need to stand up to them and say, "No." Tell them that you feel racism, facism, prejudice, mindless violence and so on are wrong. Tell them they need to change. Why? Because YOU feel it. Is that selfish? Absolutely. You are daring to disagree with all those around you. But you do so in service of love, of compassion, of life, of choice, of personal power and free will. Those who follow the darkness don't care about those things. Who or how many get hurt is irrelevant as long as the dark side one gets a bit more for him- or herself.

light: an attitude of giving
dark: an attitude of taking

The light side, contrary to many popular myths, does not always "turn the other cheek." It is not weak and passive. It can be powerful and active. It can fight and oppose when necessary. It can support and help where appropriate. It's focus, however, is always on increasing the whole. In all its struggles, it strives to make the world a better place. The attitude is "How can I give back?" The dark side is often active. Sometime it is cruel and brutal, of course, but it doesn't have to be. A seemingly kind word used to manipulate can be far more effective and far more cruel than direct brutality. In every choice, the dark side only seeks to increase itself. The attitude of the dark side asks, "How can I take?"

light: try to see/feel/know each one as it is
dark: try to change each one to make own life easier

Love is awareness. Those who follow the heart path are always studying others, learning about them, paying attention to them. If you follow this path, you will find things that disgust or disturb you. The light side response, however, is not to turn away from that which bothers you, but to get to know it better. If you learn enough about anyone or anything, you cannot help but love them. Even in their most desperate struggles and most horrifying actions, they are striving to learn and grow and express... The light side finds beauty in these things. In your efforts to grow and to understand, you will find your awareness and your love increasing moment by moment. The darkness refuses to look at things it doesn't like. If you think "God hates ," if you refuse to look at "the other side" of an issue, if you turn away from that which bothers you, you are walking toward the dark side. You will eventually find yourself creating or supporting laws, religions, and traditions whose purpose is to prevent those things that offend you. Follow this path long enough and you will end up making people into slaves so that they can't cause you to experience something you don't like.


Making The Choice

The differences between the light and the dark path are, I hope, clear. They are extreme... and important. So how do you choose one side or the other? Just knowing the difference is not enough. How do you make the commitment to one side or the other? How do you evaluate yourself each day, each moment, to make sure you are still where you want to be?

If you want to be a slave to the shadow, that's easy. Do nothing at all and trust your inner fear, anger, and habit to carry you along. Refuse to look at the things you don't like. Build a deep well of bitterness or "poor me" in response to your life. Get caught up in any control drama, become its slave, and let it carry you. You'll get there quickly and easily.

What if you don't want to be a slave? What if you seek to walk in the path of light and live powerfully, actively, and beautifully? What can you do?

The first step is to do what I've suggested above. Go back and study human history. Re-watch the movies. Look again at the stories. Study my list of the four differences between light and shadow. Re-write them so that they really make sense to you. Add or delete from the list so it works for you. Talk to others you trust about these ideas and truly come to understand them.

That first step is important because walking in the light is not like joining the food co-op or "getting saved." You can't sign a form or say a magic phrase and be done with it. The light side is a path you walk every day, with every step. And like any path it comes back to the '3D' method.

  1. Make the DECISION
  2. Develop DISCIPLINES that will carry you forward
  3. Have the DEDICATION to keep making the right choice


Make a heart choice. That is, get in your guts. Ground, center, and breathe until you are relaxed. Once your guts are stable, move that energy up into your heart. Do an exercise like SWEET, but based in the heart. Once the heart is calm and strong and relaxed, seriously consider whether you want to spend the rest of your life enslaved to shadow, or working toward freedom in the light. If it's the latter, make that decision there, in your heart. Hold it in your heart. Impress it on your heart. And once you've made it, expand the energy of that decision down into your guts where your passion lives. Out into your hands with which you sense and shape the world. Down into your feet that will carry you forward on this path. Up into your head which will have to evaluate and make decisions as you move forward.


This part is up to you. If you have, as I suggested, written down in your own words the defining characteristics of light and darkness, start there. If not, do so now. Take some time and really make these differences real to you. Now make up exercises or games that you can play every day to lead you along this path. Become aware of things you need to watch for and set up alarms inside to notify you when you slip. Seek opportunities to learn and grow and practice. Making a big change in your life is not a big decision. It is a few small decision you make over and over, every moment of your life. Create disciplines to increase your awareness of those moments and to help you make the decisions that will lead you where YOU choose.


Years ago I saw a friend who'd quit smoking, smoking a cigarette. When I asked her what she was doing, she told me she had quit. And she'd quit again as soon as she finished this cigarette. In fact, she figured, she'd just keep quitting after every cigarette she smoked and that way she could quit smoking without ever giving up cigarettes.

She'd quit smoking, but she was still always short of breath. She still had the smoker's cough. And she was still at risk of lung cancer, emphysema, high blood pressure, and all the rest. Her attitude may seem silly to you, but it is the same one most people have on their meta- path. They get the first two "D"s down just fine, but never get the dedication part.

If you choose to walk on the light side, you cannot make "dark side choices" every once in a while. Even small moments of cruelty, selfishness, bitterness, disgust, and so on will poison your system. You need, instead, to have the dedication to keep making "the right choice."

There is an old asian tradition that we all eventually get what we ask for. The difference, they say, between a master and an ordinary person, is that the master keeps asking for the same thing.


Make the choice to walk in the light. Every moment, from now and for the rest of this life, keeping making that same heart choice. Keep following the disciplines you've set up for yourself. Choose now, and keep choosing. In this way, you will find your way to the light, help those around you do the same, and re-shape the future of this world.

++ Angel




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