Shadow Work (The Less-Than Whisper)

I hit a bit of a wall on research concerning the shadow work and steps for moving forward.

After some thought I decided to reach out to someone with a bit more experience, who suggested that the reason I’m having trouble assimilating this shadow is that it is not entirely seated In the shadow self at all.

They suggested that perhaps It may be tied to something that is a part of my core and needs further development. Meaning that the whisper has a source that isn’t wholly external to my ‘light side’, and there is something where it is rooted that needs growth or development within me. And once the ‘soul’ has grown, developed, and transformed, then the shadow/whisper can be reassessed if needed.

This has a ring of truth to it. There are parts of myself that, because of the way I walled myself off emotionally and grew up so fast, never developed properly or fully.

They suggested doing a chakra reading to look for blocks, which I have, and I will post next week when I am at a computer and have had a bit of time to analyze the results and dig deeper into it.

Shadow Work (The Less-Than Whisper)


I have not done much in the realm of reading for shadow work this week, but I have been researching from writing prompts and tarot spreads that I will be able to use along that path once the holidays are over.

I have also decided to continue with the Tarot for Growth for another month, as although I sometimes find the prompts a little deep and skimming a little close to sensitive subjects, I am also enjoying it and I haven’t had anything from it actually trigger me, so I think it’ll be okay.

I may switch things up in December, though, and do a monthly challenge that’s a little more lighthearted.  We’ll see.

I am grateful, though, that the rawness that had caused that whisper to rise has eased off for the time being.  It was more than just the vulnerability of the drop, but incorporated the whispers of my father coming through when the veil was thin, as well as what has been going on with my mother over the past few weeks.

Now that her opportunity to “pimp me out” to her foundation buddy’s son for the Halloween fundraiser, all I have to deal with is her badgering about being disappointed in me, which is much easier to deal with somehow than the fact that she views my sexuality (and me at all) as a bargaining chip for social prestige.

Shadow Work (The Less-Than Whisper)

Tarot Shadow Work by Christine Jette, (the first 1/3 of) Tarot for Troubled Times by Shaheen Miro and Theresa Reed, and Tarot For Your Self by Mary K Greer

I went to the storage unit over the last week and dug out the shadow working books and resources I have that I will be using in this journey.   I’ve begun re-reading one of those books, and am in the process of making a plan on how I want to go about the shadow work involved in this issue.

The picture of the books to the left are the three books that I dug out.  I will also be working with a variety of sources from online, and some notes I have taken over the years from previous shadow work and methods I’ve come across and/or done. One (very brief but informative) site that I discovered recently and you may also want to check out to better understand some of what shadow work entails can be found here.

On Thursday, the question for the TarotforGrowthOctober was how to better connect with the shadow self.   What I got from that reading was a warning that now is not the best time to do my shadow work, and I had to sit back and think about this for a while.

Trick or TarotIn all honesty, I think that the reading is right, and so I’m going to adjust my plan a little bit.  The holiday rush is looming large in the very near future, and in order to do shadow work safely, I feel it needs to be done at a time when I’m less at risk for overwhelm than that time of year provides.   I put a lot of strain on myself during those six (or so) weeks.  Not just mentally, but physically as well.

So between now and the end of the holidays, I am going to spend this time not in shadow work, but in brushing up on techniques and creating a more thoroughly thought out plan of action.   This will keep the task fresh in my mind without putting the extra strain on myself that very probably could exacerbate the stress that the holiday rush puts me under in the first place.

I AM still going to use a Wednesday post to keep me on track, though.  I want to make sure I don’t just shove the planning and preparation task off into a corner and forget about it.


Evaluating Timing

Today’s meditation was just over ten minutes long, and was centered upon using sound as a focus for meditation.  I’m not sure why I was surprised by the effectiveness of this technique, considering how my synesthesia is focused on auditory input, but I was.  What is also surprising, though, is that I really enjoyed it.

Halloween Tarot Today’s draw is a double without a jumper, meaning that both cards dropped out together.  The cards in today’s draw are the Moon and the Sun cards.   This is surprising, as this deck is VERY thoroughly shuffled, and yet they popped out together regardless of that fact.  (The Moon and The Sun are cards are the 18th and 19th card, respectively, in the Major Arcana.)

The message that comes across in these cards and how they landed is that there is always an end to troubled times.  It’s like that old Charles Strouse/Martin Charnin song for the play Annie, yeah?  Corny, I know… but that’s exactly what popped into my head when I saw these two cards land on the table.

In the tarot, the Moon card is traditionally a representation of illusion, fear of the unknown (and the unknown in general), intuition and the subconscious, and a temptation to retreat from the unknown to a place of safety.    The Sun, on the other hand, is a representation of positivity and lightheartedness, that ‘inner child’ spark, warmth, vitality, and success.

Deck Used: Halloween Tarot

Bonus Reading

Another #TarotForGrowthOctober prompt.

Question: How can I improve my relationship with my shadow self?  (Fitting for what we have been discussing, and I might visit this reading more in depth on next Wednesday’s shadow post.)

Trick-or-Tarot DeckReading Summary:   Walk away (Eight of Cups), reevaluate (Adjustment/Justice), and come back stronger (King of Pentacles).   These cards echo the same pattern as the read on the positivity cards above, and it creates a feeling of reinforcement in what I’m seeing here.

Take Away: What I’m reading here is that starting this right before the holiday rush might not be the best idea.  If I wait, and take this time over the rush to evaluate my plan and look at different paths to my goal, then once the holiday rush is over and I am on the other side of it, I will be in a better and stronger place to do the shadow work safely.  

Deck Used: Trick-or-Tarot Deck

Shadow Work (The Less-Than Whisper)


Once upon a time there was a young man deeply in love.  He and his love enjoyed each other’s company and spent hours on hours together creating fictional worlds and beautiful stories together with their friends.

The young man, naive and trusting, had a great faith in humanity and the goodness of people.  He believed those around he and his love when they spoke of friendship and trusted them wholeheartedly, allowing them close and opening his heart to them on many occasions.

Then one day, out of the blue, a shadow figure appeared.  Witness to things the boy and his love could not see, this figure shared what had been seen.  Harsh words and plots hidden behind closed doors were revealed, and the true nature of those around him were put on display. The wicked witch and her crones exposed.

These others were not his friends at all, but instead aimed to split him from his love and steal his love away, expressing a desire to toss him aside as insignificant and as inconsequential as a wilted leaf in the dead of winter.  His trust crushed, the young man felt a tear rip through his insides, and a wound was created deep within his soul.

He and his love moved on from these people, yet the wound remained.  The young man buried it deeper and deeper, trying to find a way to make it smaller, make it less, and yet it remained… and remains.

That young man is me.  Was me…. somewhere around eight or nine years ago.

And still the wound remains.


I tell myself all the time that that witch was a jealous cunt, and that her and her friends just wanted to try and separate us because they were jealous of what we had… and STILL have. And yet, it’s like in the back of my mind there’s this -knowledge- that I’m irritating and insignificant to others. Like a gnat.   Knowledge that isn’t true… but knowledge that my mind and heart refuses to allow logic to refute.

That whisper within my head uses words like piss-ant and insignificant and annoying and know-it-all and “special snowflake” (sarcasm).

I have tried for years to bury this whisper and smother it out, I’ve tried to pretend it doesn’t exist and ignore it… and yet it is there still. Insistent and persistent, it works its way back into my ear from the hole I bury it in. An insidious whisper, always there like the slow drip-drip of acid, keeping the wound just fresh enough to remain an open wound.

In our discussion on Monday night, you asked me to begin working on this shadow.

So I’m going to begin a weekly practice, and with it a weekly update post. Some weeks, I might have not much to say. Other weeks… maybe I’ll have a lot. But, each week I’ll go through the details of what I’m doing, and I’ll use this blog to keep myself accountable and on track as I work on this for a bit and see if maybe I can start the healing process.

I do not believe that this will be an easy process, or a quick one. I also don’t believe that the wound will be banished entirely, although perhaps it will begin to heal a bit… and maybe, possibly, start to scab over. The scar is sure to remain, but a scar is an empty echo… whereas the open wound that’s there now is much louder.

My first post, written here today, is an expression of my intentions.  It is a cementing of my will to move forward with the process, the first step upon the path, and an acknowledgement of the whispering less-than aspect of the shadow within, an aspect that I have tried so hard to ignore for so long.

Let the work begin.


Why I Own The Daemon Tarot

So this arrived in the mail yesterday…


And the person I had with me had a pretty visceral reaction. As in, raised voice and “what the hell did you buy, why did you buy this”, etc. Poor guy nearly had an aneurysm, I’m pretty sure.

I’m not a Christian and I don’t believe in heaven or hell, an omnipotent god or evil devil.

What I do believe in is the inherent good and evil of people. No person is all good. No person is all bad. We all have a darker side, and that is what “Shadow Work” is about. And, Shadow Work is the reason that I purchased this deck (…and a couple of others I have in my collection. I’m looking at you, Secret Tarot of Dominic Murphy.)

“The shadow-self is where you keep your anger, your resentments, your self-loathing, your grudges. Some of us display our shadows for all to see: others keep them well-hidden, and appear unbearably and disgustingly cosmic to those who don’t.” – [Aeclectic Tarot Forums]

I had to explain this to him (once he calmed down) and I figured it might be something interesting for you as well.

The term “Shadow Work” refers to Carl Jung’s references in his work to the human nature’s “Shadow Self”. This is that side of us where our hidden (and sometimes not so hidden) issues lie. Our insecurities, our negativities, our morbidities, our toxicities. Our deep seated wounds. Our destructive tendencies.


My mother calls Shadow Work the “Abattage des Démons” which translates into the “Slaughter of the Demons”. And that is why this deck was so intriguing for me. It’s not about evil creatures for me, but about a 69 card deck filled with all different aspects of the Shadow Self.

[Yes, 69 cards, instead of the standard 78-ish. Which means this isn’t really a tarot deck at all, nor does it carry the structure of the tarot. If what I heard is correct, the author did not want it titled with the word “tarot” but the publisher did it anyway.)

“The shadow self can be raw, dark and unbearably real and often remains as an unconscious aspect as we rather not look at why we do or say things irrationally or instinctively.” – [The Shadow Self and Tarot on Tarotpugs]

The deck is a way to explore those shadowy parts in the self, nudge at them and examine them. And perhaps, ultimately, while bringing them into the light to heal them, even if that healing is minuscule and takes countless rinse and repeats to see any real progress.

In my case, I do this most often by working with a dark deck on the first day to pull forth an issue that I need to work on, and then switching to a lighter deck the following day (or days) in order to seek a positive path that will assist me in healing what had been brought to the surface the day before.

Shadow Work is an important part of self development, and something that takes immense amounts of time, like chipping away at a wall by picking off one little granule of mortar at a time. Tools to help in these endeavors are always a good thing, and I see this deck as a tool to assist me on that path.