• Document

Leading from Within

Parker J. Palmer

This piece comes from Chapter V of Parker Palmer’s book, Let Your Life Speak. As such you’ll notice some references to earlier chapters in the book.

from Let Your Life Speak, Copyright © 2000 by Jossey-Bass

We share responsibility for creating the external world by projecting either a spirit of light or a spirit of shadow on that which is “other” than us. Either a spirit of hope or a spirit of despair. Either an inner confidence in wholeness and integration, or an inner terror about life being diseased and ultimately terminal. We have a choice about what we are going to project, and in that choice we help create the world that is. “Consciousness precedes being.” I want to look at the shadow side of leadership. I suggest that the challenge is to examine our consciousness for those ways in which we project more shadow than light.