If you travel in psycho-spiritual circles, it’s probable that you’ve heard the term “shadow work” bandied about from time to time.
Originally coined by psychotherapist Carl Jung, shadow refers to the aspects of the personality rejected by the ego and the subsequent effects they have on our relationship with self and others.
Shadow work is a fairly common practice in the spiritual community these days, and for good reason–this process is freaking invaluable when it comes to processing trauma and healing the wounds of the past. The insight it provides into how we react to certain triggers and why we repeat unhelpful patterns is mind blowing, and when we work to integrate the shadow, we tap into a sense of power and agency that we often never knew we had.
There are many ways to begin the journey into shadow and to do the challenging soul work it asks us to do. Because I have a thing or two to say about shadow work myself, I get a lot of inquiries from those who are interested in engaging with shadow work, but have little idea where to start. Of course, a midnight google sesh is highly recommended when it comes to generating a basic knowledge of what the shadow and shadow work are, and if you don’t mind academic/circuitous language, you can go straight to the source and read some of Jung’s work yourself. In this post, however, I wanted to highlight some of my favorite witchy shadow workers and the resources they’ve created that have been particularly helpful in my own shadow journey in the hopes that they can help you begin or continue yours. Happy shadow working!
This lovely magickal maverick is an absolute treasure trove of wisdom and practicality when it comes to exploring the shadow. She has an entire collection of shadow work videos over on her Youtube page, has a free downloadable pdf of shadow work journal prompts, she offers one-on-one shadow work counseling sessions on her website. If you’re looking for a modern, approachable take on shadow, be sure to check her out!
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again–Benebell Wen is a powerhouse. Her knowledge of the esoteric and Chinese folk magic and all things tarot is absolutely exhaustive. So, when I found out that she was going to be offering a shadow work course for Tarot Summer School, I was like, “where do I sign up?” According to the course description, we’ll be harnessing psychological and metaphysical power through tarot to help us integrate our shadows. Needless to say, I’m stoked.
Joanna Devoe is a bit of a dark horse on this list–after all, she’s much more well-known for upbeat positivity than she is for probing the deep, dark depths of shadow. However, her e-book, The Rich Witch: 7 Portals to Prosperity, forced me to confront my money demons and incorporate them so I could stop shooting myself in the foot when it came to my finances. See, I didn’t come from a fam that handled money responsibly and the general message I got from them is “rich people are assholes.” If I didn’t want to be poor forever, I was going to have to get real with myself about the importance of money and of managing it properly. This book helped me do that ❤
As a daughter of the Morrigan, it’s safe to say that Jo Morris is more than comfortable with the shadow. She’s fairly candid about the trials and challenges she’s faced, and she’s more than willing to share what she’s learned on her journey. Her collection of healing videos are an amazing resource for those who are currently in the midst of their shadow work journey and are looking for tips to process some of the difficult truths they’ve recently faced. And, if you’re in any way into Celtic witchcraft, check her out for that–she’s a gorgeous resource.
Thank you, oh glorious witches, for sharing your knowledge of the shadow landscape with us. You rock!