The subject of ‘shadow self’, the dark side of our nature, is an elusive one. This is because there are certain aspects of our life we would prefer to hide, certain demons or voices we would instead have thrown into the most bottomless abyss of nature.
No matter how terrifying these things might be, the bitter truth is that those parts of us are here to stay, and we can either spend our whole lives running away from them, accept them or better still find out how monstrous our dark side is.
By taking the shadow self-quiz, which is usually a measure of how adorably naughty or maniac one can be, you can get to know how monstrous your dark side is. This may bring you a step closer to the understanding of how to embrace and have peace with your inner self.
The origins of the shadow self
‘The shadow self’, also known as ‘the dark side’, was first studied to fruition by Carl Jung, a world-renowned Swiss psychologist. He popularized and coined the empirical science of analytical psychology.
Jung believed in the treatment of the mind and the soul. He based his works and the majority of his research on a deep understanding of esoteric knowledge (knowledge about the soul) and spiritual scripture. The result of the many years of expert research gave birth to the Jungian archetypes.
What are the Jungian Archetypes?
Jung believed that four major Jungian archetypes existed. The archetypes are deeply interwoven in the unconscious mind, linked to the ego and the conscious mind but left hidden in the psyche.
According to him, the Jungian archetypes are innate, hereditary, and universal for each individual and work to influence how a particular person has specific experiences.
Jung highlighted only four (4) significant archetypes but insisted that there is no limit to the number of patterns possible.
Here is a quick overview of the four Jungian archetypes with more emphasis being laid on ‘The Shadow Self’ archetype, our focus in this writeup.
The word ‘persona’ is derived from the Latin word, ‘per-sonar,’ which means ‘mask.’ Based on the teachings of Jung, the Jungian persona explains how we present ourselves to the world. It is the core of who we would like to be, and who we wish to be seen as by the world.
The self as an archetype represents the joined consciousness and unconsciousness of an individual. The self is created through the process of individualization and represents the unified psyche as a whole.
The Jungian personality has ‘the ego’ as the center of consciousness. ‘The self’ lies directly in the center of knowledge. ‘Ego’ is described as a dot in the center of a circle of ‘the self.’
The Jungian teachings strive for the ultimate goal of an individual achieving a state of ‘cohesive self.’
The anima or animus
The anima is the feminine representation in a male psyche, and the animus is the masculine representation in the female mind. The Jungian anima/animus represents the link of communication to the collective unconscious.
The shadow self
This consists of the sex and life instincts, the weaknesses, shortcomings, desires, and repressed ideas formed from our attempts at blending in with norms of the society and cultural expectations.
The ‘shadow self” represents everything wrong, not just to society but to us personally. The shadow self includes emotions such as envy, greed, lust, hate, and aggression. It usually exists in the unconscious part of the psyche.
This archetype is known as the ‘dark side,’ a part of us we would always want to be buried. Still, according to Jung, these parts will ever break loose to reveal themselves in dreams or visions and can appear as particular creatures like a dragon, a snake, or, worst of all, a monster.
This sounds horrific, but there is no need to fret. You should, however, take the shadow test to know just how heightened your dark side is.
How monstrous is your dark side?
There are many forms of the dark side, depending on what exactly we have locked away. The various ways with which the shadow self presents itself are usually identifiable via the shadow test or quiz.
The shadow quiz is a systematically designed algorithm that takes the data you put into it, analyses the encoded data in an attempt to return your most probable match on the dark side scale.
The following are a list of the 13 significant monsters that lurk in the shadow self, the causes of the monsters and how they play out in our personalities.
- The Egotistical Monster
Cause: Fear of being a nobody, not good enough.
Personality traits: Narcissism, ego, arrogance, indulgence, inconsideration, excessive pride.
- The Controlling Monster
Cause: feelings of abandonment, mistrust in life, feeling not good enough
Personality traits: jealous, obsessive, bossy, suspicious, possessive.
- The Perverted Monster
Cause: lingering childhood issues, repressed sexual energy
Personality traits: lustful, corrupt, depraved, sadistic.
- The Rigid Monster
Reason: ego death, rejection, fear of the unknown, chaos
Personality traits: obstinate, narrow-minded, intolerance, uptight, uncompromising, inflexible
- The Untrustworthy Monster
Cause: concern of life in general.
Personality traits: deceitful, irresponsible, impulsive, unreliable, frivolous.
- The Glib Monster
Cause: distrust of self, others, and life.
Personality traits: crafty, inconsistent, sly, cunning, superficial.
- The cowardly Monster
Reason: lack of confidence in self.
Personality traits: weak-willed, timid, fearful.
- The Wrathful Monster
Cause: Mistrust of life, fear of other people, closed heart
Personality traits: vengeful, quarrelsome, bitchy, hot-tempered
- The Naïve Monster
Reason: lack of individuated ego, refusal to grow up
Personality traits: immature, simpleminded, illogical.
- The Cynical Monster
Reason: fear of being too vulnerable
Personality traits: resentful, overcritical, negative
- The Nonchalant Monster
Reason: buried fear, shame and or grief
Personality traits: distant, indifferent, emotionally detached, unexcited, uncaring
- The Emotional unstable Monster
Cause: unresolved emotional issues, feeling unloved and powerless
Personality traits: over-emotional, melodramatic, moody, manipulative, changeable, impulsive and moody
- The Neurotic Monster
Cause: desire to gain control due to fear of self, others, and life
Personality traits: demanding, masochistic, obsessive, compulsive, paranoia, finicky.
It is essential to bear in mind that the functional aspects of our lives are also locked away with the dark sides. Both are present in the shadow self, which underscores the importance of the shadow test and why every individual should take theirs soon.
The free shadow test helps individuals to know their dark side to afford them the leverages that are needed to handle or better still conquer its effect.
Are there times when you act out of character? It could just be your shadow self at work. It, therefore, comes as a necessity for all individuals to take the free shadow test.
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