Sunday, April 26, 2009

Our Shadows Lurk

Peter Pan never wanted to grow up. He wanted to live in his imagination in a place called Neverland.

I never really understood the role of Peters shadow until I realized without light, there was no shadow to be seen. I also didnt understand that though Peter was a boy, he was always played on stage or TV by a woman, ie, Mary Martin, Cathy Rigby.

Perhaps, it was too on the nose to cast a boy in the role of Peter, or it was to strange to have a boy in those tights, or it was perfect as both sexes have problems with growing up.
I recently had dinner with a sweet woman who wanted to know what I thought of "the dark force". Oddly I thought of Peter.

There lurks within us all the light and dark natures of being human, when we get closer to the light, perhaps it brings out the shadow behind us , this shadow becomes our best friend, or foe as it haunts us, and perhaps threatens to "take us over', and if we were consumed by the dark we would be looking for that light to find our way home.

The boy Peter Pan who longed for adventure was nothing without his shadow, and when he lost it , he felt like he lost one of the greatest parts of himself.

A lost boy who needed Wendy a mother figure , and Tinkerbell his muse, to light his way. Younger , smarter versions of his image of self. The shadow lurked, needing to live on the heels of a boy who never wanted to grow up. As time marches on and the boy gets older he susses his options.

We all have moments when we can look to the light to shine our way, or fall into the shadows as Peter did, blaming others for our predicaments.

In the midlife crisis of a man/woman not being what he wanted to be, life not going the way he has felt entitled to; the boy is faced the the threat of being kicked out of his imagination, his world of make believe.

Some need to have children of their own, living their legacy out in the face of a child…or absorb into a younger version of themselves, a blank state where all the problems of the past can disappear. The point is the screaming inner child is the shadow of what is truly lurking. The boy is terrified to leave Neverland and really never does by virtue of keeping links to the lustrous past of a once exciting life.

It is the vitality of the young that feed the image of the old. Why not make peace with the dark and the light, knowing that it is always there in the duality of life?

Yet the youthful expression of life sometimes has to be remembered by the awkward fumblings in the back seat of a car, a weekend tryst, the taboo of being unfaithful, or reconnecting with memories that bring us back to life, but the elixir of life is not what reminds us of our shadow, it is the light that is ultimately shed on us.


The Never Fairy said...

Nice post!
You might want to check out the 'new' Peter Pan adventure. The shadow motif takes on very much of what you are saying in this book. Click my name to see!

Thanks for the insights.


Anonymous said...

You are givign us a glimpse into our psyche in a unique way. I gues it takes a psychic,to render light on the psyche. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

how pithy of you....great work ....all around

my budgies said...

that's a great example of shadow -reminding us we live in a dualist world.
a four year old once said, out of the blue, "everyone has a shadow" - i have no doubt he channelled that.
it reminds me to face the fact that nothing is perfect here, and in that everything is as it should be (even when that's hard to digest).