Tag Archives: dark side

Chuck’s Place: The momentous opportunity of Now

Turning in a new direction…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

As without, so within. Without, we are all witnessing a stupendous archetypal drama. The dweller, at the threshold of the mighty house, has opened the door to the dark side of the force. Within, the ego Soul, at the threshold of the subconscious, must awaken to whom it has let in.

Difficult to own this projection. The drama without is so spellbinding it would seem to be the only real movie in town. That’s part of the challenge. The collective subconscious ego Soul has materialized a hypnotist, whose name is invoked daily more than any other word on Earth. Now that truly is black magic. With that much attention surrendered to the hypnotist, we are all drawn sheepishly to await the next suggestion upon which all life revolves.

Now, how could such an overarching outer predicament actually reflect the condition within one’s own personal psyche? The ego Soul, at the third chakra, is a child obsessed with its own wants, needs, and desires—particularly an insatiable hunger for attention and recognition. A child is simply incapable of seeing and caring for the rest of its personality and body beyond the mirror of its own appetites and power drives.

The subconscious soul is the warehouse of what Jung called the shadow or personal unconscious. However, it is also the gateway to the collective shadow and the collective unconscious archetypes deeply tied to the physical instincts. The subconscious soul is abundantly willing to cater to the power and appetite drives of the naive attention-seeking ego Soul at the third chakra, with the hidden intent of taking possession of the ego Soul.

What then ensues is ego Soul at the third chakra getting all it wants satiated via a Faustian-like pact with the devil, which uses its position of influence to take control of the personality and give free rein to its long suppressed shadow agenda. From an outer world historical perspective, the Nazification of Germany reflected the shadow taking possession of a collective national ego Soul, with atrocious consequences.

To actually reflect objectively on both inner and outer reality, ego Soul must establish itself at the heart center chakra, which enables an adult perspective and decision making center to come online. These include being able to acknowledge life beyond the self, as well as clarity as to the interconnected, interdependent wholeness of all things. This allows for acceptance and creative integration of all parts of the self. This enables the adult to raise the child at the third chakra with compassion and firm limits.

Outwardly, we enter a New Year with a new American Congress set to challenge the Executive branch. Investigations offer the possibility of temperance, but all must face the reality: as without, so within. No one is immune from encounter with the dark side, which is quite willing to change its appearance from devil to angel but still house the same power drives. All must ask themselves: From what center are they really acting? From the sly, rationalizing, justifying, manipulating possessed ego Soul, at the third chakra, or from right action, from the ego Soul raised to the heart center?

The momentousness of this time we live in is the opportunity for all world citizens to participate in the raising of the world ego Soul to the adult position of the heart center, both within and without. This is the dawning of The Age of Aquarius, which at this time beckons us to own the projections of our times, within ourselves, and to cover our ears from the master hypnotists, both within and without.

Turn and walk in a new direction. Don’t look back. Move forward with ease into new life. What will you meet? It’s all new now. Don’t get caught in the Scylla and Charybdis of depression or exhilarated denial. Walk the razor’s edge mindfully. You are the master of your own ship.

“The time to hesitate is through,” say the Doors.

Walk your ego Soul through the door to new life in the heart center of your SOUL.

The journey continues.

Happy New Life,


Chuck’s Place: The Light Side of the Dark Side

Light emerging from its soulful partner…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

No dispute that the dark side is ascendant now. Bringing light into the darkness is the spark of creation. Darkness and light are the eternal partners of creation and new life.

Genetically I hail mainly from drinking Irish stock. My violent alcoholic father knocked out my mother’s teeth while I shivered in her womb. Darkness.

By the time I was two my mother managed to divorce us from this violence, delivering us to my new Russian Jewish musician father, eighteen years her senior. My Jewish father interrupted my genetic predisposition and unfolding by providing stability, predictability and an example of well-grounded rationality. Light.

I learned to honor Mother, the most venerated in both Russian and Jewish tradition. By age sixteen I had to free myself from the containment of this maternal dominance, the darkness of the womb of the mother complex. Darkness.

In my senior year of high school I began my mentorship with Dr. Efren Ramirez, the Puerto Rican psychiatrist who became my spiritual father. Efren was ultimately to deliver me to Carlos Castaneda, Carl Jung and the I Ching—the fathers who have subsequently guided me through life. Light.

Efren was Puerto Rico’s shining star in the early 1960’s. He had solved the opioid crisis in his native soil through his innovation—Existential Confrontation and the Therapeutic Community. John Lindsay, New York City’s bright light mayor, seduced Efren away from Puerto Rico to tackle heroin addiction in NYC. Light.

Though drawn to the opportunity, Efren was heartbroken to leave his beloved Puerto Rico. His father-in-law had been governor of Puerto Rico and Efren lamented frequently the loss of native culture and autonomy of the island under the shadow of American possession. Efren proposed a “free association” status for Puerto Rico in relation to America, but it never came to pass. In truth, Puerto Rico became a welfare state with a debt to the mainland that it could never repay. Darkness.

Fast forward to today. Devastated by Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico remains still largely flooded and without electricity. President Trump has threatened to abandon the territory’s relief, chiding Puerto Ricans for their debt. Where is the light in this darkness?

Elon Musk proposed that he could power the entire Island with solar  electricity. The current Puerto Rican governor’s response was, “let’s talk.” Perhaps Puerto Rico will be lighted with the true energy of the future. Perhaps Puerto Rico will take Trump up on his offer to be abandoned, galvanizing their own energy and spirit, ultimately leading to the realization of Efren’s dream of independent status. Light.

These are the seeds, long buried in the shadows, that might sprout from the light side of the dark side of Puerto Rico’s current crisis. Like night turned into day,  all creation springs from the light emerging from its soulful partner, the dark.

Light and Dark,


Chuck’s Place: Love it all

Love it all, the dark and the light…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

If we are truly to understand where we are, we must face the fact that the ego, with its capacity for reason, is the reigning god of now. The notion of an all-powerful god behind the scenes may still hold a sentimental attachment, a hope or belief, but reason reigns as that which gives order to life and the world. I pass no judgment nor support for this fact, I simply state the obvious.

The Christian notion of an all-loving god is the precursor to this god of reason. An all-loving god suggested a fair god, a reasonable god, a forgiving god, a god of order. And though this loving god still embraced the irrational—spirit life—it shed its dark side. Older notions of god, such as Yahweh or Allah, depict a far more bipolar god, a god of love but also a god of rage, a god of chaos. This god showed his dark side, torturing Job and drowning all who missed Noah’s boat.

The current god of reason has lost this ancient bipolar quality. I would submit that the current world crisis reflects the return of the disowned dark side of god, which is now in power, leveling the playing field of reason and order. We are currently facing chaos and the exercise of evil in control.

What I suggest here is that life is bipolar. We are both good and evil. Evil is not simply the absence of good, evil is part of the essence of everything. America has always stood for the highest values of goodness and caring, the most reasonable values on earth. But in so being, as we set out to save the world, we disowned our dark side, which has now visited itself upon us, and the rest of the world, in a caricature of abuse of power, an infantile, instinctual ego lacking reason.

Nonetheless, this startling state of affairs is so attractive and refreshing to the suppressed shadow, or inherent dark side of the populace, that it is lavishly having its day with all its drama and danger. This is the law of compensation: if we embrace one pole of our bipolar being too rigidly, the repressed side will eventually return with a vengeance.

This vengeance of the dark side is so intense that it threatens, like Noah’s flood, to wipe out all the goodness of civilization, in fact all of life itself. This instinctually driven, dominating power drive is completely self-serving, incapable of reasonable sacrifice to ensure a future beyond itself.

Yes, we must judge it; we must attempt to forestall its shortsighted, narcissistic stance that invites apocalypse, but we must also address the issue at its core: reconciling our bipolar being. We are all a composition of light and dark, good and evil, male and female. We must know all sides of ourselves; we must live all sides of ourselves. If we cling to a one-sided ideal of reason, we end up overturned by the irrational, chaotic side of our nature.

When I suggest that love is all, I mean that love includes evil, the dark side. Love can love its evil side. When the Dalai Lama states that yes, he could kill to defend his life, this does not make him hate his attacker. To the contrary, love reigns in that moment for he who must be killed. With the decision to kill, the Dalai Lama reconciles his instinctual, killing, “evil” nature with loving acceptance of all that is, even the ruthless, even the psychopathic.

Our evolving god image, that which we model ourselves upon, must return to its bipolar roots. That is where we are being led now. This is not merely an aberration being acted out on the world stage. That perspective is a hold out of the god of reason. No, what is being abundantly lived now is the breadth and potential of the dark side of humanity.

Of course, we hope that reason and the light side will prevail, but this can only happen if we embrace and find a place for the irrational, instinctual dark side of our beings. This is how each individual currently walking upon this earth is challenged and empowered to steer the course of our world.

Face your dark side, learn to love it. To love does not mean to give it free reign but to respect its knowledge and contribution to our wholeness. To acknowledge and accept our own darkness is the love that will ensure our survival and evolution upon this planet.

Do your part, as I do mine.

Love it all,


Chuck’s Place: The Economics of Changing Dreams

We must begin by assuming personal responsibility for the world’s current dream. Last week, I proposed that we are in the Time of the Usher, the dream changer. That lead role mysteriously fell upon Donald Trump.

Our very own Petty Tyrant!
– Art by Jan Ketchel

If we face the deeper truth that our world is spinning out of balance and requires a radical shift to survive, perhaps we can appreciate why we have called upon such a ruthless sorcerer from the dark side to usher in change. This sorcerer fits the bill of what the Shamans of Ancient Mexico call the petty tyrant.

Petty tyrants rank as extreme narcissists and psychopaths who wield the power of life and death over others. For shamans, encounters with petty tyrants are fundamental to their training. Most importantly, since tyrants lack any capacity for empathy for the cruelty they perpetrate upon their victims, shamans are offered a golden opportunity to lose their self-importance when dealing with them. Those indulging in self-pity under the reign of the petty tyrant exhaust their energy quickly and unwisely, as the petty tyrant has absolutely no concern for their needs.

Instead, shamans learn how to hone and revamp their energy, wasting none in seeking sympathy or validation for the hardships and cruelty directed at them by their petty tyrants. This energy saving training has the secondary benefit of preparing them to face future onslaughts from the unknown.

In this time of changing dreams that we are now experiencing, we are all at a distinct advantage, as it is very clear who the petty tyrant is. We can choose to stand up to him, by deciding to have all our energy available to meet the unexpected challenges and shifts that are occurring daily, with a minimum of energy expense.

Shamans ultimately seek the defeat of the petty tyrant but realize that getting caught in the traps of indignance and being offended both exhaust energy and cloud the ability to observe and plan strategically. The bigger the tyrant the greater the challenge to preserve  one’s energy and stay centered on the task. This is the position of the assemblage point that the shamans call the place of no pity. This position requires extreme mindful presence without ego attachment. The only question to ask oneself is, what is the appropriate action now, all personal attachment removed from view.

Since January 21st of this year I have limited myself to one minute per day of taking in the news. I came to this practice after observing the energetic impact that one hour of news was having on my energy as I went through the day.

Donald Trump, our news tyrant, seduces with outrageous antics and threats, which literally suck the energetic life out of a person. The emotional volatility evoked, and the attention given, literally feed the tyrant entity, who clearly has an insatiable hunger for attention.

I observe a tremendous energy savings with my one minute per day limitation. Each morning, I quickly receive the bullet points of necessary information, intentionally avoiding the trappings of emotional reactivity and seduction to track, think about, react to , and talk about the stories that are circulating in the news throughout the day—all energy-zapping practices. As a result I am free to decide if I need to do something or if I can just move on.

I don’t spend my energy on worry, fear, or rage. It simply depletes too much energy. Being offended by Trump is a waste of energy! Refusing to give him the attention he feeds off of, starves him of my energy and I get to keep it for myself. Having detachment from his outrageousness allows me to see clearly and to strategically navigate now.

Thus, I see Trump’s role as the usher, who has disrupted the familiarity and security of our world, as the role of the petty tyrant as well. He offers himself as the one to help us hone our energy and prepare for the real changes that we will invariably face as the world changes dreams again.

It’s a dangerous situation!
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Please don’t misconstrue my perspective as a benevolent casting of Donald Trump. He is a tyrant and he is dangerous. Many people will be and have been crushed by his ruthlessness. However, the world must evolve now into a new dream in order to survive, and the silver lining in Trump is that, though he appears the antithesis of survival, he has had the ability to interrupt the status quo of the world. This interruption of energy flow is a move of a sorcerer and it allows us all an opportunity to hone our own energy and prepare for the challenges on the horizon. These challenges may be hastened by Trump, but they hardly originate with him.

The deeper dream we are leaving is the self-centered dream where it’s all about “me” and “us” (U. S.)! Trump’s embodiment of that dream is the catalyst for the new dream, the one centered at the heart level: the real truth, transparency, and all-inclusiveness.

For us to prepare for this new dream, we must learn the economics of saving our energy resources by losing the self-importance of being offended and raising our consciousness to the truth of the heart.

The heart stays in alignment with the soul/energy body—spirit—call it what you will, but it is that divine center within us all that tells us the truth, the real truth, and whose guidance will lead us forward into a truly sustainable dream, the dream we are really preparing for, a heart-centered world dream.

From an energy miser,


Chuck’s Place: Compensation

Compensation is the action of balance. In everyday life, we work—we give of our energy and are compensated with wages. Hence our efforts are compensated or balanced by stored energy—money—that we are then freed to use as we see fit.

We are all guilty; we all compensate... - Art and Photo by Jan Ketchel
We all compensate…
– Art and Photo by Jan Ketchel

Psychologically, compensation operates as the balancing agent of the unconscious to our conscious decisions and actions. If we spend our day studious and bored, our dreams may compensate by taking us on faraway adventures. In this way our conscious life is compensated—balanced—by our unconscious adventures.

The more extreme our conscious attitude, the more extreme our unconscious compensation. If we insist on keeping ourselves in flighty behavior, the unconscious might compensate with a bad mood, a depression, or a physical fall, bringing us back to earth.

This same compensatory mechanism operates on the world stage. When the ruling attitudes become extreme in any direction they are compensated by a counter movement of equal and opposite energy that reacts in its own destructive wake.

If we accept the premise that the world is an interdependent whole, then outbreaks of behavior, such as the recent horrific tragedy in Paris, should be explored as a powerful compensation for an equally imbalanced ruling principle, not necessarily within Paris or France but within the prevailing governing attitudes of our times around the world.

I have often proposed in my writings that ISIS is not simply a coincidental acronym for the Goddess Isis, but in fact has become an agent of the dark side of that Goddess, constellated from the depths of the collective unconscious. This would suggest that the ruling powers of our world have gone so far from valuing the sacred feminine Mother Earth that she is now activated, from her destructive side, to bring down the ruling order.

As we face the reality of the condition of our world, where the earth and the environment—the purview of the Goddess—have been completely denigrated, threatened with extinction, it becomes clear how a wrathful Goddess might invoke such ruthless destructive retaliation upon civilization itself.

Of course, this compensation cannot be allowed. ISIS must be stopped. But how? The outrage evoked by the destruction caused by ISIS sounds an appropriate battle cry. Nations will join forces to defeat this devil. But how? Seal the borders? Too late and, furthermore, ISIS infects many homegrown disenfranchised youths who can find no meaning in the world as we know it, though they do find meaning in bringing it down. What battle plan for this insidious entity?

We must face the individual shadow to destroy the collective shadow... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
We must face the individual shadow to face the collective shadow…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Every individual is a hologram of the entire world. Each and every one of us, in the microcosm of our lives, has a ruling ego attitude that is being compensated by our unconscious forces. Each and every one of us must study our conscious decisions and behaviors. Where are we neglecting the true needs of the Goddess? How are we out of synch with Mother Nature?

Are we so obsessed with the digital world—which is a purely masculine abstraction—that we have lost touch with our physical bodies, our true nutritional and self-care needs?

Have we so abandoned our instinctual selves and instead turned ourselves over to the Goddess Amazon.com?

Have we so abandoned human eros and squeezed it into Match and Tinder?

Do we listen to the wisdom of our birthright—our dreams—or have we completely shifted our connection to wisdom to the great god Google?

Are we so enamored by the glitter of consumerism that we cover over true need with empty objects?

We must study the nature of compensation in our own lives. If we are ridden with anxiety, fear, compulsions, and moods, these are compensating clues as to the problems in our conscious ruling attitudes. If we can humbly see the one-sidedness of our ruling attitude and change it, we will change the wrathful compensation of the dark side of the Goddess within.

If the truth is that there are very painful feelings or inconvenient truths that our ego has been avoiding, resulting in dastardly unconscious compensations, if we then turn around and face the unfaceable—mourn a deeply imprisoned feeling, for instance—then we completely shift the inner balance.

If the ego can align itself with the true needs of the self, the Goddess Isis can usher in a renewal, a new stage of fertile creation and meaningful life.

That’s the compensation we must seek now, the compensation of renewal over destruction. We are all empowered, and charged, to arrive at proper compensation within ourselves. This is how we will change the world for the better.

Some day... a world of light... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
Some day… a world of light…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Of course, there will be necessary responses to the intolerable violation of innocence in Paris. But if we are not careful we might find ourselves drawn into a purely scapegoat compensatory reaction that actually plays into and empowers the reach of the collective shadow that now threatens us.

If we collectively face the compensatory relationship within ourselves, we can shift the balance of the forces that threaten us and restore calm to the world. Ultimately, love is the key. Love rejects nothing. Love faces the truth, Love restores proper balance. Love is always the answer.

Liberté, égalité, fraternité,