Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Casting Shadows

Now that we've seen how darkness is merely a corruption of the light and how evil is just a corruption of good, there's just one more thing we need to understand about how all this works. And that is this:

It's all positional.

We know this from our dancing with our own shadows. The position and proximity of the light dramatically changes how the shadow is played. A light that comes from the side casts a longer shadow, while a light that is directly overhead produces nearly no shadow at all. A light that is closer (and therefore brighter) produces a darker shadow whereas a dimmer light or one that is further away produces a lighter darkness.

The same is true for goodness and evil. If goodness draws near to you as a friend, side-by-side, it casts what seems like a longer (or broader) evil in front of you. If goodness hovers over you like a cloud, the evil is greatly reduced. (In Christian terms, we might call this being wrapped in God's goodness. Or embraced.) If the measure of good you're encountering in your life is immense, the evil seems all the darker, whereas if good is but a mere distant idea, evil, too, may seem somehow muted.

So, too, is it important which way you're standing. Where are you looking? If the light is behind you, it casts your shadow in front of you so that all you can see is your own darkness. If goodness is behind you, evil falls in front of you. It's just how it works. But it works the other way, too. If you turn toward the light, if you turn toward good, the darkness and evil fall behind you. This is how we press on, although most of us can never shake the feeling that we're being followed.

And if you make either light or goodness your companion, walking beside you either to your right or your left, then darkness and evil fall to your other side, much like the proverbial angel and demon on each shoulder or the two roads diverged in the wood. You're set up to make a constant choice between one or the other, seeing both, feeling the presence of both.

This is not to say which is best, or even which is better. Sometimes, you need to have the darkness fall in front of you; you need to look evil in the eye. Sometimes, it's better off behind you so that you can move forward. Sometimes, you have to keep darkness on your right; sometimes, you're better armed if it's on your left. Of course, we'd all like to live with our shadows underneath us, but that's just not the way life works. So we have to be realistic about these things and understand that each has its own worthiness.

But we must remember, no matter where darkness falls, no matter where evil appears, it's all positional. It's all relational. It has everything to do with where we're standing juxtaposed to light and goodness. That's all it is.

So if you don't like the darkness you're seeing in your life, move. If you don't like the evil you deal with, move. Its you who makes the shadows dance, not the other way around. So make them dance. Put them in their rightful place; hold them accountable. Hold the shadows accountable to the light. Hold evil accountable to good.

Make darkness dance. 

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