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Maleficent: The Hero and The Villain inside all of us

Have you watched “Maleficent” the Disney movie with Angelina Jolie? I watched it the other day and the symbolism of the hero and the villain was so striking that I just had to write about it. It was such a strong representation of the ‘Shadow’ that Carl G. Jung, the Swiss Psychiatrist spoke about in his work.

Have you heard the quote that says “the qualities that bother you the most in others are actually those that you don’t like about yourself”? Well I had heard it many times before and it never really made any sense to me until I came across the shadow concept.

Shadow is the unknown dark side of our personality; the counterpart to what Jung called the ‘Persona’ or ‘Conscious Ego’ personality. “In Jungian psychology, the shadow or “shadow aspect” may refer to an unconscious aspect of the personality which the conscious ego does not identify in itself, because one tends to reject or remain ignorant of the least desirable aspects of one’s personality…” (As defined in Wikipedia). According to Jungian analyst Aniela Jaffe, the shadow is the ‘‘sum of all personal and collective psychic elements which, because of their incompatibility with the chosen conscious attitude, are denied expression in life.” Whatever we deem unacceptable or evil and we deny in ourselves becomes part of the shadow. It basically “contains all those qualities we hide from ourselves and others, but which remain active within the unconscious.”

How does the shadow develop and where does it come from?

Read the full article on Executive Women Magazine.

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