About eight years ago I wrote an article called, Owning The Beast Within. It came about as an expression of all I had learned about my own dark angel through years of compassionate therapy with a truly gifted woman and healer. She had shown me the places inside myself that I had buried and denied most of my life. A dark angel – a muse to fear or embrace? I feared her for too many years. It took a while, but I did learn to embrace her with love.
“Rumors of heaven, only speed the truth on earth. My dark angel shine your light on my curse. You are the other that I have to find. Until I do, guess I’ll see you around in my mind.” – Dark Angel, song by Blue Rodeo
Our Dark Angel Is A Portal To Creativity
Embracing our dark angel releases the energy of creativity, and the precious gift in that kind of deep surrender is finding our art and our freedom to express ourselves authentically. The dark angel has a voice, one that has likely been repressed for years, or even lifetimes, and we have the power to exalt her by listening to her, and letting her create and express. When we do that with the energy of compassion and non-judgement, we are providing the much needed acceptance of this part of ourselves, and a portal for release into the rich and infinite well of our deepest creative gifts.
She Comes Back Again and Again…
You may have noticed that there are times in our lives when we feel ‘off’…out of sorts, or if we have let it go for too long, we may actually feel nothing at all…we are simply numb. At times like this, be warned that the dark angel is back with another layer of growth and expansion for you. We may push her away, turn our backs, go into denial, (my personal best) or throw a hissy fit. None of these will make her go away. It is just better to say ‘hello and welcome.’ Not easy to do, especially when you remember her last visit and how she ate you up and spat you out, leaving your life spun and dissolved into something unrecognizable while you were on your knees begging for mercy.
Stagnation or Fear of Expansion Will Beckon Her
Naturally there is a lot of fear when we feel her approach. Again, depending on how much fear is there we are likely to run and hide in some way or another. The thing about our dark angel though, is that she is always coming from a place of benevolence and is only helping us to grow and expand. If we have been sitting in a deep pool of stagnation for too long out of fear, ignorance, or sheer laziness because we are enjoying our comfort zone a little too much, be prepared for some rather intense tornado energy to rip through the house of your cozy ‘self.’
Poets and Angels Know A Thing Or Two
There are some telling words by the Lebanese-American artist, poet, and writer, Kahlil Gibran from his book, The Prophet that speak of how joy and sorrow are inseparable, “The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.” Whenever I read these words, I often liken the sorrow to the dark angel, which carves ever deeper into our being. This, so the vessel of ‘us’ can contain more joy, which I believe, comes from our ability to express the beauty and divine creativity that we were all born with. Always knew those poets and angels were onto something!
Some Light To Get You Through The Shadows
Some of the greatest sources of comfort and just plain, pure nurturing came from the following books. These have been the ones that have held my hand, and still hold my hand, when my vessel is being carved deeper and wider so that I can continue to create, express, grow, and expand. Nothing makes me happier than to share them with you. I hope you find them helpful too.
- Care of The Soul, by Thomas Moore: this book introduces the idea of soul with reference to C. G. Jung, and Greek mythology. It shows the need for soul in our material world and the role of spirituality in caring for the soul. This was a soothing balm of care and comfort.
- Transitions – Prayers and Declarations for a Changing Life, by Julia Cameron: this is a little book which shares beautiful prayers of empowerment followed by potent declarations and reflections on the nature of change and coping. The comforting words help us to awaken and to revitalize our abilities to transform our lives in the face of whatever the universe may put in our life’s path.
- Heart Steps – Prayers and Declarations for a Creative Life, by Julia Cameron: this is another little book sharing potent prayers and declarations on living a creative life. The supportive words can lead to a powerful awakening of the artistic child within and revitalize our fading dreams.
- Finding Your Own North Star, Martha Beck: this is a great book when we need to find our authentic voice or feel stuck living other people’s’ dreams and not our own. Beck is a master at teaching how to listen to your innate wisdom and how to create a life centered in passion. She knows only too well her dark angel as she suffered through severe childhood abuse. She went on to courageously create a unique life as a life coach.
- Anam Cara – A Book of Celtic Wisdom, by John O’Donohue: one of my favorite books, O’Donohue invites us into the magical and unobtrusive world of our own divinity, to that place in the soul where there is no distance between ourselves and the eternal. Full of ancient Celtic wisdom, poetry, and blessings, the words in this book can make you feel and awaken to the utter beauty of your heart’s landscape.
Just Hug That Dark Angel And Say Thank You
In the end, if our dark angel muse has paid us a visit, we can rest assured that some part of us needed to be broken open or broken down so that we could further expand into our creative being and receive that energy with the kind of grace and humility that only deep surrender can offer. We may not always realize it at the time, but our dark angel is a gift, one that we need to hug every now and then and say thank you to.
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Wishing you much love & happy writing…
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What is a dark angel? In your article it sounds like something positive but perhaps your site could delve more into them if you think it might be useful. I am intrigued by them and would like to know the difference between that an a guardian angel. I think your book titles are really good on the side there.
Many thanks for stopping by.
The dark angel that I am referring to is simply our ‘shadow’ side. Those places inside that we like to hide or deny. The article speaks about learning to embrace this part of ourselves as a way to open up the channels of our creativity which has often been repressed by these feelings of shame, fear, failure etc…
I use the name ‘dark angel’ because our shadow side is beneficial and can often save and redeem us when we learn to love and accept it.
Warmly, Heather 🙂
Wow I really love the ‘guts’ behind your site – sort of combines creativity with a dark side. Do you plan to help writers of all sorts of genre here? I was only asking as I am a pro blogger who runs 5 websites for a living – writing seems to be the way forward for me these days and I love new outlets to visit for inspiration! Great article, loved the unique style of it! 🙂
So glad you enjoyed my site and this post.
My site focuses mainly on helping writers who want to ‘go deep’ and write from a place that many creative types refer to as ‘the zone’ or what I like to call writing ‘close to the bone.’
If a writer is blogging about the best kind of cellphone to buy, then what I have to teach would not be of much use….you see what I mean.
Many thanks for stopping by, Chris. I wish you much success with your blogging ventures.
I really enjoyed reading this piece. You have a gift of writing and really took me on this journey. Your ideas of the dark angel are a great use of externalization, and it reminds me of the narrative therapy practices by Michael White and David Epston.
You have some great positive guidance and advice and I think you raise a valid way of looking at some of things we tend to submerge when it is too hard to face.
Let us all embrace our dark angel and utilize this as a gift to provide growth and learning.
Keep up the inspiration
Thank you for your kind and insightful comments, and I am so glad you enjoyed reading the post.