The Charioteer of Shadow

( (C) Copyright to the artist : The Wild Unknown Tarot - Kim Krans & The Chrysalis Tarot - Tony Brooks & Holly Sierra )

Are you coming or going from the space within and without?
Are you moving through life, galloping along only to be met with a great wall, resistance or pain that has caused obstacle after obstacle and keeps returning in many diverse forms?

Shadow work is shifting work. 

To go into the depths of the subconscious or unconscious mind we can draw from the energies of the Chariot and step into the prominent themes. In this post I wanted to share with you the amazing energy that comes from getting on the horses back and taking the reigns when it comes to facing your shadow, and a few different ways of looking at the chariot as an entrance to engaging and working with them.

First we begin to move, we take steps whether they be giant leaps or stepping stones. Each person will have their own idea of the level of intensity they want to experience or can experience. Movement doesn't have to mean intense or busy it can be as small as:

  • Writing a sentence
  • Free writing for half an hour as a journal entry
  • Jotting down some keywords about how you are feeling to describe what you perceive or know to be happening and lingering

Or it might be as big as:

  • Having a dedicated afternoon to drawing up a spread
  • Going to a therapy session
  • Receiving a guided Tarot reading
Movement means building blocks, or placing rocks down that you can use to create a pathway for yourself, so your not just floating around in the ether; thought stacking and worrying. It is about identifying that you see something inside the subconscious and owning that it is your responsibility to discover and unlock what it is and what it means to you.

Once you have made your move towards wanting to know the shadow, congratulate yourself. It takes willpower and courage to face it. Your shadow might look insignificant in the smaller scheme of life, but never underestimate it's capacity. It has lived within you for a long time undetected, or submerged. It has a power, and left in the darkness without attention or awareness it can gain power over you as you begin to manifest it into the physical.

What about those of us who have been addressing our shadows for some time. Whether that be by looking at it in the mirror, the mirror of the people around or by starting to make it a dedicated practice in our spiritual and personal development.

How do we start to take the steps we have created (the awareness) and use the Chariot energy to it's prime potential?

By looking at the conflict

Shadows are created when some parts of us are in conflict with another. That is why there is identification on both positive and negative shadows. What resonates with us may not resonate with another so we are shamed, guilt tripped or encouraged to put them in that special box. The box that becomes a Pandora's box when we are able to finally make our own decisions and actions in life.

It seems simple right? As soon as your able to make up your own mind, and do whatever the fuck you want to, it seems there are more reasons to put all those shadows into the box. It is the paradox of being an adult, your have the freedom to do what you want, and a responsibility to own your decisions yet the same mouths and hands that have offered us the conditions we needed to thrive as children and young adults are still there, in different forms. It might be your boss who reminds you of your belittling grandparents, or it might be a lover who's financial behaviour and ideals mimics that of your parents or yourself. 

You think you are free, and yet you are conflicted. What is this? This is not the life I wanted, or thought it would be like. Why do I feel conflicted?

This kind of questioning, raising awareness and suppression cycle keeps building and building, until both your mind, spirit and body can no longer handle the weight of it. That is why it is so pivotal to understand both where you come from physically and mentally as well as spiritually. Family is the foundational bedrock of secrets, lies and conditioning alongside loyalty, love, compassion and community. We carry this into adulthood.

What can I do today? Exercise

The first thing I would recommend doing is to create a simple family tree and write down the names of the members in your family members ( close or distant, it is up to you) You are in the Charioteer here. Once you are done you can either write keywords or write a page listing qualities about that person. Everything from frustrations to things you love about that person.

When you are finished with your lists, see if any of those qualities apply to you.

Are you hot-headed? In what situations are you hot-headed?

Or maybe you are a loyalist to your siblings and it frustrates you to see other people choosing their friends over their siblings issues – look at that – why is that? Is it because you want to help your friends more, but can't because your siblings take up a lot of time and energy?

Lastly, for this exercise see if you can match any of those qualities with people in your life outside of your family; friends, lovers, workers, acquaintances. Write down their qualities and match them up.

Tip: Draw on the example I offered before about a lover with financial similarities as parents.

Lastly I wanted to mention focusing on the elemental attributes of the Chariot. When you think about the elemental association with the Chariot, Water, you can begin to see that by embracing your emotions and allowing them to rise to the surface and flow through you, you begin to make yourself available to the ones that are calling you to look beneath the surface of illusion and into the real depths of yourself. 

By coming face to face with your shadow even in the shallower parts of your river you make space for it. Think about the river that is your life, it's many currents; amidst the rolling and chaotic waves or the softer, stiller waters there is need for movement. Even if you only throw a rock into the water and watch it ripple. You have awakened something, you've become alert to your shadow.

I hope this look at the Chariot in regards to shadows has helped light a candle in the darkness during this time of the year, and throughout all times in life. You can always use the Chariot Tarot card as a place to start from and focus on to help you to create that movement, and firm will in yourself alongside a life long practice of attending to the shadow realm.

Much love & Blessed be.

Blair Mirth

Blair is a Pagan Loving, Earth magic maverick with a love for Tarot, poetry, Herbs, Creative Writing and Learning. Here you will find all manner of magical tips, techniques, interviews and sharings

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