This is the fourth in a series of posts called About Dianna, which looks at my upbringing and life influences. You can find the series of posts below:
Shadow is not bad. Shadow is the ego driven part of your identity that is scared of weakness, pain, and being forgotten, so it triggers your fears, your angry defensiveness, and your pride. Understanding this, and overcoming it, is literally an act of turning shadow into light. In Jungian psychology, the shadow can also be seen as the unconscious aspect of self - the unknown. It is the hidden parts of ourselves we would like to remain hidden. In shamanism, we journey into the lower world aspect of the Otherworld in order to meet our shadow self, face it, accept it, and conquer it. This is the hero's journey in every fantasy story (think of Luke Skywalker walking into that tree trunk to face the dark side of all he could become) but those stories are derived from this shamanic understanding that is as old as time.
As a shadow worker, what I strive to do is help people see their shadows in the "mirror", recognise it, accept it, love it as part of what makes them a whole, deep individual, and that's when miracles happen: the shadow is no more. The shadow becomes light because you have shone light on it. All shadows can be transformed from dark to light; some more easily than others.
Can angels help with shadow work? Hell, yes! I have a group of archangels I work very closely with in all my work, and they include Archangel Michael, Archangel Raziel, Archangel Azriel, and Archangel Jeremiel.
When I first started consciously working with angels, I had no idea who to call - I just called Archangels Michael and Gabriel - Gabriel because he'd visited me in the past, and Michael because I felt like I could and should. (And actually, the more I call on Michael, the more like an old friend he feels - he has a very loving energy.) Following that, other angels showed up more strongly (like the named three above) and I'm certain it's because of the shadow work that I can incorporate into my readings and channelling. For those who don't know (and this is only a summary) Archangel Raziel guards mystery schools, magick, and ancient, secret knowledge; Archangel Azriel is the gatekeeper of souls at death; and Archangel Jeremiel is the recorder and keeper of past lives and past life lessons.
One of the reasons I hesitated for years to work with angels was because of this stereotype of "light and fluffy" that seems to surround them. I didn't relate to it. There was never any talk of the importance of the shadow whenever I read about lightwork, and no lightworker ever seemed to mention the shadow - at least never in a good light. Yet, it's only by recognising it in a good light that it can be transformed.
Angels, to me, have never shied away from the dark spaces of our third dimension - why would they? That's where they're needed the most. Angels are the piercing hard clarity of light; steel; the edge of a blade; and they have definite warrior energy (in the sense that they have a mission that must reach its destination, which lies in showing is the way to the 5th dimension).
My first memory (at the age of one) was of a mix of dark and light: me, stumbling as a one-year-old through a dark, damp cave that smelled of earth and magic; that then looked like earth and magic when I saw the stalagmites and stalactites that protruded from every angle. It was stunning. From that moment, dark and light were not separate for me. When they merge in union, the most beautiful rays can be seen.
With shadow work we travel from the lower world up, just like the stalagmite, working through our darker energies to find out how we can transform our fears, anger, envy, and deep hurts into something peaceful.
With light work we travel from the higher realms down, just like the stalactite, wrapping love and positivity around our spiritual selves, which offer a guiding light for us to trust in as we traverse into the unknown of the future.
Where they meet in the middle is where we begin to heal.
This is the third in a series of posts called About Dianna, which looks at my upbringing and life influences. You can find the series of posts below:
My journey with angels began when I was very little. My grandmother - a devout Roman Catholic - taught me about guardian angels when I was as young as two. She taught me how to say a prayer every night before bed to thank the angels for the day, and to send blessings to those I loved. Whether anyone believes in angels or not, I found this a very comforting, sweet habit to nourish. (Who doesn't love wishing nice things for the people who mean a lot to them?)
I can't remember if I "felt" my guardian angel when I was little. I do remember my spirit guide, and I quickly distinguished him as a guide and not an angel, even at that young age, although I'm not sure how I did. He just had a different energy, and I remember always knowing he was my spirit guide - a tall, Native American man with long, black hair he wore in a plait, and no wings - no wings at all. (The wings are an important element when you're two!) He had a great smile, though, and was so very wise.
Despite my grandmother teaching me how to say a goodnight prayer, it was not a habit I continued - like a lot of kids, I stopped doing it from about 4 or 5 years old. My mother was a believer that I should choose my own beliefs for myself when I was older, not be thrown into one (Catholicism) at five years old, and as I grew up, I don't think I ever really dwelt on the thought of angels too much.
At the age of about six, I fell off a rocky ledge by the sea and plunged probably about ten to fifteen feet into the water below. Rocks jutted out along the sea bed. I couldn't properly swim, and as I sank under the water, I remember looking up and seeing the sun's rays shining beautifully above the surface. I should have been scared, but I was only thinking about how beautiful those rays looked, and then I heard a voice telling me everything was absolutely fine. It was a deep, male voice that sounded different to my spirit guide's voice. It sort of reverberated around me the way a dolphin's sound would if you're in the water with it. It repeated, "Everything's absolutely fine," and I felt this really deep calm steal over me. I was still, instinctively, trying to doggy-paddle to the surface, but I felt nothing but peace. The next thing I knew, I was being hauled out of the water by one of my dad's friends who ran me to the shore. My legs were all torn up from the rocks beneath the sea - they had to be in bandages for two weeks.
Only much, much later, did it occur to me it might have been an angel. It was something, anyway. I didn't think too much on it in the years that followed, but I never forgot it.
When I was a young adult and in the throes of my early spiritual journey, a friend and I went to hear Doreen Virtue speak about angels, and indigo and crystal children, near Hyde Park in London - this must have been around 2004. I remember there was a full moon eclipse that night over the Embankment - it was stunning!
At the talk itself, I didn't particularly feel angels present (not that I really knew what that felt like other than the incident when I fell from the rocks). But I did note how magical the eclipse felt, and how much fun I was having with my friend on a rare night out.
A few weeks later, I was in the midst of emotional and spiritual chaos. My life was a mess - relationships, work, the lot. I was being psychically attacked - I could feel it, but didn't know where it was coming from - so I devised a spell to find out the source of the attacks (I did find out), and during that time, I awoke one night to a presence in my room - a presence that introduced itself as Archangel Gabriel. In my half-awake, half-asleep state, he told me (he appeared to me as a "he") that he was going to fix the wounds in my body so I could also heal spiritually and continue my work (I won't go into what those wounds were.) I think I said, okay, and thank you, and then eventually, I drifted back off into deep sleep.
That was the first time I'd ever had an encounter with an angel where I could picture the angel and knew it was an angel. In the days that followed, I saw further angels with giant swords - warrior angels - standing guard on the road outside my flat where I lived. (This, by the way, was the inspiration for my portrayal of angels in The Witching Pen series - they have never appeared to me as "light, love, and fluff", but as all-powerful, daunting beings you simply wouldn't mess with in a million years.) I was told that in response to the psychic attacks, they'd been sent to protect me. I was twenty-four years old and in a state of overwhelm, and for better or worse, the overwhelm was too much, and that was the beginning of my retreat from the spiritual work I had been doing. I needed a break, and I needed to not see "beings" around every corner (which I did because I've always been a natural empath, and psychically in-tune with other layers of existence).
Because I was emotionally hurting from real-world stuff, my energetic body was wide open to all sorts of things, and I did not have the strength or the know-how to fix it. And in all honesty, I didn't feel worthy of working with angels - I was that girl who loved vampires, werewolves, witches and wizards, magick, fairies, and so on - I loved horror movies. (I still do!) I was working intensely with British, pagan-focused witchcraft at the time and incorporating my shamanic knowing into it (shamanic witchcraft). I've always been about working with the shadow self and transmuting all that dark stuff inside us. How could I possibly work with angels considering all of that? (Note that at this time, I knew nothing about the connection between angelic beings and shamanism - Google didn't exist then, the internet was young, information was scarce, and I'd always associated angels with my grandmother and Roman Catholicism, which was in direct contradiction to the witchcraft and shamanic studies I'd been undertaking.)
So, over the years, living a more material life concerning finances and settling down and making relationships work, took over. And when I say years, I mean fifteen years. I still walked in the world of magick in many ways, but my involvement in it was nowhere near the extent it had been.
I did miss it. A lot. In many ways, I felt spiritually amputated. But I ignored it.
Life did its thing. I had a family; I wrote books; I grew older; people I loved passed on.
At the end of 2018, something changed. I caught the flu, which was not a flu at all, but an awakening - some kind of activation code on the tail of an urge - a need - I could no longer deny, to re-enter the spiritual world in the way I had walked in it before. So, I did. I had to. I am back, and so are angels. I have come full circle (or perhaps it's a spiral).
Despite my angel encounters above, I never thought I'd be channelling angels for others. They seem so ... light. And I will always have a strong love of the dark and gothic. Thing is though, light shines most brightly in the darkest places. Darkness knows how to hold a space, and be a vessel. (And now I know about the angelic-shamanic connection.)
But my knowledge on angels was very limited. I needed to start studying angels so I could get a sense of the different energies trying to communicate with me. I decided to go back to the "beginning" and looked up Doreen Virtue (after all, that night of the eclipse with Doreen Virtue led to the visitation from Gabriel in the weeks that followed, I am sure - tapping into the energy of a thing can be enough to bring that thing to you, such is the way of energy work). It turned out she'd done 180 on her career path, was no longer speaking to angels, and had turned her back on the "new age". So, I sat back and wondered what to do with this brick wall I'd encountered. It was completely by accident that I then found Charles Virtue (her son) a week later - this was good. His training programmes were the kind of thing I was looking for and it was a place to start from where I'd stopped in 2004.
Since then (in 2019), I have also received my Munay-Ki rites, passed down from the shamans of the Andes and Amazon, into which angelic energy is strongly entwined. Since beginning this long, in-depth rite of passage, I have clearly begun to see how angels work with earth energies and star beings, and have for tens of thousands of years and before; and I can now disassociate them from (or merge them with) my childhood Roman Catholic roots so much more easily, and connect them with my older shamanic and starseed roots. Angels are beyond all religion.
And here I am, bringing the messages of angels to you - weird world! Wonderful world.