Years ago when my stepson, Logan was killed instantly in a head on train collision, my path of healing crossed Dr Jack Miller and his 12-week intensive process for healing grief, loss and trauma called The Phoenix Project. I participated in PP #9. As you will read…he is beginning PP #52 this summer. There are many orchestrated opportunities for participants to engage deeply with their process in The Phoenix Project. One of them is Shadow Night.
Simply stated, in Jungian psychology, the ‘shadow’ or ‘shadow aspect’ refers to an unconscious aspect of the personality which the conscious ego does not identify in itself. Dr Miller identifies an unconscious aspect in each participant that they then bring to life on shadow night…
The following email is from Dr Miller to those of us who have completed The Phoenix Project. We are spread out all over the world. He has given me permission to reprint this story…
From Dr Miller, July 10, 2015
A number of you have heard me speak about the Shadow Night adventure of PP#45 (4 yrs ago
here in Portland). The story line for that night was about a traditional circus which was transitioning into a Cirque-du-Soleil-like circus -- no longer using animals. On that night our Cirque was taking their very last animal (a bear) & presenting him to the King & Queen of the forest, who would then return the bear to the forest.
Mark (a massage therapist at that time) played the King of the Forest. He was not in PP#45, but helped out on that night for the fun of it. Unbeknownst to me, Mark invited several friends to show up & see our Shadow event in downtown Portland. One friend (Susan) came & saw the bear being returned to the forest.
Jump ahead now to PP#52, which will begin here in the Portland area on Sunday. Both Mark & Susan are going to be in PP#52. Last Saturday, Susan was driving her RV to the ocean. She was driving on the road thru the woods. When all of a sudden a large bear came running out of the woods & ran right into the RV. It then turned & ran back into the forest.
Susan was overwhelmed & fell into deep sobbing (grieving the loss of her son and other losses). She sobbed uncontrollably for over a half hour feeling amazing catharsis & relief afterwards.
And thus begins the journey of PP#52 here in the Pacific Northwest, as we get ready to set sail on our Night Sea Voyage. Stay tuned 🌊😎 End of email.
I ask, is this just a coincidence? What are the chances of this happening to the same person who witnessed the symbolic bear being released 4 yrs ago? If not a coincidence, what does it mean? Since my son Richard died 9 months ago, experiences like these provide comfort. I had to ask myself when Richard died, how does one person get struck by lightening twice? The question has opened a curiosity and awe of the more spiritual realm of existence, instead of constricting pain and anger, even though I miss my son dearly every single day.