Thursday, December 12, 2013

Shadows arrive and leave

I was complaining to myself that Raglan Road seldom throws up any good images these days. At one time there were many but I suppose all streets have their boring periods. I was passing one evening and a bush cast interesting shadows in the sodium lighting. Workmen had recently repaved and the leaves stood out against the texture of the concrete. I had to wait for some time, because immediately I took the camera out of its bag, a wind blew up and the leaves swayed frantically. This phenomenon is something photographers know well. The fleeting shadow images are the opposite of light. but they are often conceived as representing the whole and sometimes God. "For in and out, above, about, below/ 'Tis nothing but a Magic Shadow-show/ Play'd in a Box whose Candle is the Sun/ Round which we Phantom Figures come and go." The Jungian concept of shadow is deceptive and rather complex. It refers to the unintegrated aspects of the psyche. The shadow is often a projection of these, usually onto other people. If you find yourself disliking someone for no particular reason, the chances are you are projecting parts of yourself that you do not like. That is an unconscious phenomenon it is good to think about. Jung said that recognising one's shadow is so worthwhile that it's ninety per cent pure gold. The other ten per cent - well, that really is darkness at noon.