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Dispelling Shadows - Everything Leads Us To The Light

Dispelling Shadows - Everything Leads Us To The Light

There’s a tremendous ferment going on, with millions of people changing jobs and/or wondering if they should be doing something different. As I went through this countless times when I was younger, today I’ll share some ways to approach what is, and what could be.

I've found over the past 50 years that whether I've known it or not,just about everything I've ever done has served my expertise in being a counseling astrologer. As with many, I realized that even though I’ve been doing astrology for a long time, I’ve also had to learn and do many other things along the way.

I used to wonder why I learned skills at certain things only to move in a different direction into a new set of skills and tasks seemingly unrelated to the previous set. With the perspective which comes with time, as the years passed I noticed the pieces falling into place, often not the way I suspected earlier in life.

Many friends and clients have remarked that some of what I say and analogies I use are perfect to convey practical understanding of astrological events and qualities as well as human challenges. All of this is synthesized from the many things I've learned and done throughout my life.

For example, three decades ago I spent some years producing, directing, and editing many types of television shows. I did thousands of hours in studios and on locations, as well as hundreds of hours in editing bays, and was trained in set design, lighting, camera and sound setup and balancing, signal routing in control rooms, character generating, and all the other minutiae of the craft.

I was introduced to the world of television production quite by accident as a result of a temp gig I almost turned down, which is a strange story in itself. The magic of how I came to be an accomplished producer, director and editor allows me to say that we should never overlook an opportunity simply because it doesn't conform to our vanity, short-sightedness, or assumptions about what we should be earning or doing. That very low paying temporary job led me directly into a very fulfilling career in television!

My time in television gave me a lot of interesting skills which have transferred to my life as a counselor. For example, a producer must learn all elements of the production, including lighting a studio set. Without boring you with details, when interviews are done on a set, each figure is lit from three angles so that there are no shadows on their faces. There is a key, fill, and back light, which fill the space in ways that almost all shadows are dispelled. This is related to the meditation I give you at the end of the Full Moon articles each month.

Even though I had spent years learning about what we call “the human shadow,” my time in television helped me understand principles of light and shadow and how to dispel shadows on a sound stage. I was able to transfer this set of skills to my work as a counselor dispelling human “shadow material” by “shining a light" on personality problems from multiple angles.

Before learning about the principles of lighting a set in the 80s, I hadn’t understood much about working with what we call "the human shadow." When younger, I had explored (and experienced!) a tremendous amount of difficulty, suffering, and frustration when dealing with human shadows, both my own and others, even if that term didn't exist back when I got my BA in Psychology in 1972. Carl Jung hadn't been "rehabilitated" in those ancient days, and the concept of "shadow material" was not taught in universities.

After taking all the classes I could find, including getting almost halfway to a MA, I realized I had 2 questions which could not be answered by psychology. Simply put, 1) Why are we instantly attracted to certain people, ideas, and behaviors, and instantly turned off by certain people, ideas, and behaviors, and 2) Why does something happen when it does? Why not yesterday? Why not tomorrow?

What I didn't learn from my psychology and philosophy studies about my life questions led me to explore astrology beginning in 1971, starting that chapter of the adventure my life has become since then. While finishing college and beginning to learn astrology, I also kicked around learning practical skills like cooking, making good coffee, even running restaurants, then wound up having a foundation, bookstore and school of astrology and metaphysics while producing a lot of concerts and cultural events from the mid-1970s through the mid-80s. I was bouncing between New York, Austin, mountaintops and hidden valleys, and communing with spiritual Beings all over the continent.

However, all good things come to an end. Bad ones too! I was done with producing and promoting concerts by the mid-80s, and didn't really know what I wanted to do next. I couldn't go back, didn't see clearly how to go forward or even where to put my energies, but still needed to make money somehow, since I had temporarily withdrawn from teaching classes and my heart wasn’t really into building my counseling practice. So I did pickup gigs for over a year, mostly word processing. (That led me into being a feature film consultant for some of the biggest movies of the time, another story in itself.)

After countless temp gigs, it segued into the television work I've described. After some years, that too ended, but I've never forgotten what I learned when I did set lighting, as it's the perfect analogy for dealing with human shadows.

The analogy is specific and applicable. Usually when we confront shadow material in ourselves or another, we understand it from our pre-set point of view. That's one way to see things, and can be illuminating to some degree, but it still leaves other areas in the shadow.

That's the reason when we're dealing with our own or others' intellectual shadows, or emotional shadows, or interpersonal shadows, it's always useful to illuminate whatever dense object of thought and/or feeling that is creating the shadow from multiple light sources. In that way we dispel those shadows that arise when we only view things from one point of view.

Illuminating anything from multiple light sources entails finding enlightening views toward whatever is shadowed. If we find enough enlightened views of a thing and have lit that thought, feeling, or action from key, fill, and back light angles, we dispel shadows and can see anything in its "unshadowed" state.

That's also why it's often not enough simply to know what we know. We are forever challenged to keep learning different angles of approaching human experiences on this dense Earth, so that we can view things from multiple angles. And because none of us individually is as aware or knowledgeable as we all are together, often if we wish to find a different way to illuminate something we must learn how others might view that particular shadow material.

An added benefit to this is found in something our old friend the I Ching has to say about learning. From the Wilhelm/Baynes translation, a piece from Hexagram 58, The Joyous:

Knowledge should be a refreshing and vitalizing force. It becomes so only through stimulating intercourse with congenial friends with whom one holds discussion and practices application of the truths of life. In this ways learning becomes many-sided and takes on a cheerful lightness, whereas there is always something ponderous and one-sided about the learning of the self-taught.

It's always good to share insights with others on our spiritual wavelength so that we can come to insights that can help us to help others. I've lived that principle for decades, and over the years and many diverse experiences in many crafts and skills, I've learned how to use insights and knowledge from any number of crafts and interactions to apply them to my work as an astrological and spiritual counselor.

I suppose it comes with 50 years' practice of astrology, since it's given me many opportunities to blend multiple practical experiences I've developed, including the writing and speaking skills I've cultivated over decades. My experiences as an astrologer have helped me understand the overview of my life experiences as the narrative of my “hero’s journey,” just as my life experiences have contributed to my astrological interpretive abilities. Everything in our lives can contribute to all we do if we open to the spirit of learning and applying the knowledge we find in ways that we like.

At the very least I can say that having lit my life from so many different angles of experience, I'm not as beset by shadow material as I used to be. And that helps me put spotlights on the charts and lives of my clients so that they also can view their mythos, or movie of their life, from different angles of vision.

Never give up learning and seeing how what you've learned can be applied in other ways, other fields, and other angles of understanding. If we are in fact the stars of the movie of our lives, then it's important to light ourselves in the right way so that we and the audience don't wonder what's in the shadows.


© Copyright 2021 Robert Wilkinson -

About the author:

Robert WilkinsonRobert wilkinson An internationally-known astrologer, author, public speaker, metaphysician, and futurist, with over 25 years experience as a counselor and educator. He has presented hundreds of public talks on all aspects of Astrology, the Eastern Wisdom tradition, the Western Wisdom tradition and promoted many mass gatherings and cultural events. Some of his specific areas of interest and expertise include personality profiles, degree patterns, integrative astrology, various aspect harmonics, among others.
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Reprinted on crystalwind.cawith persmission from Robert Wilkinson.

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