Books: Debbie Ford’s “The Dark Side of the Light Chasers”, by Ella Isakov
Debbie Ford is a best-selling author, presenter, and pioneer in spiritual and emotional education. Her book “The Dark Side of the Light Chasers” explains that each one of us has a shadow. Ford shares how we can open to a healthy life by seeing both the dark and light in ourselves. By being present with all aspects of ourselves, we can create positive changes in our lives. Her book leads us on a journey to take back our power and live authentically.
Drawing on the shadow work of Carl Jung, Debbie Ford writes that from a young age we are taught to hide our dark side, that is, our feelings and thoughts we don’t like and fear will be judged by others. But unhealthy thoughts and habits remain as long as we reject these aspects of ourselves. As fear, shame and lack of love set in, we bury the dark parts of ourselves in an effort to push away feelings of not being good enough. We create an outer shell, a projection of what we think we should be.
The outer shell may seem like it’s protecting us from the world, but our real treasure is hidden within. It takes courage and strength to face the truth. As we shed the shell and go back to the root cause of why we hid behind it in the first place, we can experience personal and spiritual growth and acceptance.
“The Dark Side of the Light Chasers” had a profound effect on me and my process towards self-acceptance. For a long time, I hid my shadows and fears, but they continued to reveal themselves through the people I was attracting and the patterns I kept reliving. When I could no longer ignore what kept reappearing, I began my journey of opening up and accepting all of myself, the shadows and the light. This journey required patience, care and courage to delve into the memories of my formative years and discover the roots of the fears. As my guard started to come down, my heart started to open, not only towards myself, but also to accept and love others more authentically.
The only thing that holds us back from looking within is fear, stemming from core beliefs we have developed. It is important to face our fears and core beliefs so that we may discover our precious gifts within. As we challenge our core beliefs and forgive ourselves and others, our inner truth, wisdom and love become more apparent, helping us appreciate ourselves for all we are. “The Dark Side of the Light Chasers” contains easy-to-follow exercises and meditations to support and guide this journey.
When we make the decision to open up to all parts of our self, we begin to understand that everything we see in others, even behaviours that bother us, are also within. The universe guides us back to wholeness. Self-love and acceptance come as we reclaim and make peace with the shadow aspects we once feared, so we may unleash our brilliance within.
To open up to this journey, we must explore the emotions and life events that led to the formation of the shadows. The apparently negative events in our past are blessings that can lead to higher awareness. By facing our inner self, we transform how we view our self and our life.
I invite you to allow “The Dark Side of the Light Chasers” to guide you into the places within yourself you wish weren’t there – or that you don’t realize were. As you open to both the darkness and the light within yourself, you will find the freedom to love yourself and others fully.
Ella Isakov is a yogi, Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist, and humanitarian.
Ella feels that yoga found her, and is incredibly grateful for the beautiful gifts she continuously discovers on her journey, on and off the mat. Her passion and purpose in life has always been to teach and inspire others along their path. Ella’s goal is to provide a warm, safe and attentive environment, giving special attention to individual needs and educating students so they can grow in their understanding of the nature of the poses within their own body and discover their own inner wisdom.
Ella left her career as a school teacher, but continues to combine her two loves of yoga and children by teaching kids yoga through FUN, empowering, interactive and mindful yoga play. She is also a Phoenix Rising yoga therapist, working with clients using classic yoga postures and mind-body psychology to allow for a deeper connection to self.