This is a shadow work ritual I’ve developed that lets you create manifest a space called the trials. Through these trials, your energetic self travels in order to overcome the shadows that reside within them. These shadows are part of you and stop you from being your true, free self. If you want to read more on shadow work, I wrote an introduction to it here.
I don’t consider shadow work to be an easy thing to start with if you’re new to journeying, visualisation and trance meditation. Training focus, grounding and visualisation first is key to going through this successfully. However, if you feel doing this ritual is a step too far out of your comfort zone, I also wrote a Tarot Spread to use with this ritual that you can also use on its own.
Depending on how you view this it can be considered trance meditation, astral travel, journeying etc. In the end, its shadow work and how you believe you reach the desired state is up to you. Visualisation and manifestation of will are key in this ritual.
The trials aren’t necessarily a pleasant thing to go through but the result can be very rewarding, as is often the case with shadow work. If you are scared then I can only say there’s nothing to be scared of. Everything we face in life we can overcome one way or another. This is just one way of many to do it and may not be the way for you. That’s okay too.
Personally, I feel the trials can feel a bit like a videogame, and like any video games, they can be overcome. Maybe this comparison can help you visualise the trials but please trust your intuition to bring you what needs to be dealt with. I just happen to be a gamer in my free time so that’s why I make that link myself.
Trial through shadows
You don’t go on a journey without preparation right? To prepare for the trials doesn’t have to be difficult but it’s important. If you don’t prepare it’s like signing up for a test on a subject you’ve never heard of. I encourage you to read through the phases carefully before trying it out.
Make sure to take your time to go through this ritual, if you need to take a break make sure to do so between the trials, not during them (this will make sense in a bit). While nothing necessarily bad will happen if you stop during if you do stop in the middle of the process to overcome whatever you face and it can leave negative feelings that way. I will include a “quick way out” for you in case it’s needed but I don’t encourage using it if it can be avoided.
To prepare for the trials take a look at the following:
- What is your mental/emotional/energetic state like? What’s bothering you or holding you back? If its a feeling but you can’t put it into words that’s okay too. This helps you determine what you’re struggling with and thus want to deal with during the ritual.
- How well developed are your focus and visualisation? If you need music, a candle or anything else to help you out with this gather it.
- Find a comfortable spot to sit or lay down for a while where you can’t be disturbed. I prefer to lay down as it usually takes quite some time to get through the trials compared to my usual meditation sessions. Disturbances can cause you to lose focus and thus have the ritual be ineffective.
- Have something small to eat and drink ready for when you’re done. If you’re new to these kinds of rituals you’ll need to make sure you keep up your energy level afterwards to not feel completely drained. Grounding before and after helps too.
- To start, sit or lay down if you needed anything to help you out like music turn it on.
- Close your eyes and breathe deeply a few times, with every breath you sink deeper into your own world of shadows.
Part One – The Initiation
Before the trials can begin you need to initiate them and their purpose. This is how I visualise them being determined and taking shape.
- You’re walking in the dark. You feel safe here in this dark nothingness.
- Slowly you see that actually, this is a hallway or tunnel with pillars or torches that spread light. Exactly what it looks like is up to you.
- As you keep walking you focus on what shadows you want to work on, that you want to conquer.
- The more clear and solid this intent becomes the brighter the path ahead becomes.
- When you’re sure you’ve connected to the shadow you want to deal with, you need to give it a name. If you’re really connected to it the name will come to you. It can be as simple as “self-doubt” or as strange as “Àngelfaxi”. When you name the thing you can distinguish it from something else. Which can be useful later on.
- Now speak this name as if you wish to challenge it. Speak it with determination and force. As you do a door will appear at the end of the path.
- Before you enter through the door, where the trial will begin, there will be an untouched white candle next to it that you can take with you. While you don’t have to I encourage you to do so as it is how I build in the early return. Manifesting the candle early on makes it easier to use later when needed as you may be overwhelmed.
- As you enter through the door you will see 2 torches light up on the other side signifying the trial has begun.
Part Two – The Trial
I cannot tell you what your trial will look or be like, this is why it’s so important to truly connect during the initiation, as your intuition will manifest the appropriate trial to help you work through it. The trial can be to become at peace within nothing or to endure the pain that an enemy inflicts on you, there are no limits to how this may manifest, but it’s important to know that no matter how hard it seems, you can overcome it.
- As I said before as you enter through the door the torches are lit and the trial begins. There’s no going back through the door.
- When you overcome the trial another set of torches will appear on the other side.
- When you hold your hand above the torches they will be lit and you can enter the return phase.
- Sometimes during a trial, another will make itself known, you’ll know what I mean when it happens. It’s usually a deeper layer than what you’ve just dealt with.
If this is the case there may be a new door between the torches and instead of returning you can decide to continue deeper. If it presented itself you should again have a name. Speak it and open the door to challenge it.
If you feel too overwhelmed during the trial and feel unable to overcome it, then there’s an “emergency way out” so to speak. Take out the candle from the initiation and light it with your will. The light will surround you in a sort of shield of light and allow you to return. This visualisation is important because if you do not close yourself off from this overwhelming feeling it will linger once you’ve returned.
Even with this method, I encourage you to return to the trial at a later time. Not all doors opened can be closed and demand to be dealt with. If you get out early on it may be a good idea to journal about it. Journaling is a very effective way of dealing with troubles and can help you put in perspective what you’ve faced helping you understand. Another way could be to do the Tarot reading or look back at it.
Part Three – The Return
When the trial has been overcome you can return from the shadows to the light, stronger, more at peace. This doesn’t mean you’ll feel happy necessarily, but you should feel lighter. As if this hole where the shadow was is now filled and you are whole.
- After you’ve touched the torches at the end of the trial you will see a staircase going back up, and just like the initiation it starts hidden in shadows and becomes more illuminated towards the top.
- With every step you take the shadows you’ve faced will become more familiar, lighter, and they slowly become an accepted part of you.
- If you cannot accept them yet that means there’s still another trial to overcome on a deeper level and that’s okay. The journey should be lighter at this point forward.
- As you’ve reached the top and feel ready slowly move your fingers and toes and open your eyes.
- have a drink, bite to eat and maybe write down your experience if you so desire.
you’ve survived the trials ♡
Àngelfaxi – My Shadow
Àngelfaxi is one of my shadows. I’ve faced her more than once.
Whenever I initiate the trials I feel like a knight or gladiator, ready to fight and conquer my fears.
But when I face Àngelfaxi I see myself. Her laugh is shattering and her screams deafening. She embodies my outbursts of emotions that I’m ashamed of, created by years of being bullied, harming myself and doubting myself. Whenever I face her I don’t feel like this knight or gladiator anymore, but as a sister and as I embrace her I know that I embrace myself, and that is how I overcome her in the trials. I don’t need to fight her, I accept her, that she’s there, that what she feels is valid and that she deserves to be listened to.
She’s only the surface of this journey for me and time and time again she’s there at the start to remind me who I really am and what I am truly capable of, and that she is a necessary part of me.
Maybe you have a shadow like her that you wish to overcome, and I hope you’ll end up loving your shadows in a different way like I do now.