Confederacy of Shadows

I.  Cast your shadow:

  • Your shadow may be your fantasized and idealized self.  It may be your seed of possibilities.  Or it may be your repressed, hidden self.  The opposite of your ideals.  The secret desires that may not be spoken of.  Your shadow is any part of you not being realized in the moment. 
  • For purposes of this confederacy, your shadow is an alias.  To cast it, simply create an online profile that cannot be traced to you.  (In the Confederacy, your actual self is referred to as your Identity.)    
II. Cast your world:
  • Create a labyrinth of puzzles, riddles, quests, scavenger hunts, and challenges using your personal symbols and myths.  
  • The labyrinth should be a segment of your reality and include a sampling of your internal conflicts, though encrypted in symbolism to protect your privacy. 
  • The labyrinth should have two entries/exits.  These are the “rabbit holes” into your world.  
  • The Back Door is a virtual rabbit hole maintained by your Shadow.  It is accessed online. 
  • The Front Door is a rabbit hole maintained  by your Identity (your actual, physical self). It can only be accessed off-line. 
  • Maintain your world.  It should always be evolving in response to your own personal growth and to the perspectives brought to the world through explorers. 


An Example


  • If, for some strange reason, you feel uncomfortable leaving a trail for strangers from cyberspace to follow to your front door, then lead them instead to a personal profile.  In other words, instead of leading them to your actual, physical person, lead them to your myspace, facebook, or whatever networking brand you use.  If you do not have a profile for your "Identity", then make one for the game.
  • Involve friends and family in your shadow world.  Have them  serve as contacts, gatekeepers, and clue keepers along your trail.  This provides a buffer between you and the explorers on your trail.
  • Communicate with your explorers.  Get to know them.  But remember that this is a game involving anonymity.  Knowing an alter ego through the internet is not the same as knowing someone in person. 
  • Trust your gut.  If something does not feel safe, it probably isn't. 


 Suggestions For Casting Your World

  • Review your personal archive of photo albums, journals, letters, or any other historical documents that you have saved.  Identify the contours of your life.  The ups, downs and in-betweens.  Identify the primary tensions, patterns and story lines.  
  • Develop a Psi-key.  This is your lexicon of symbols that hold meaning for you.  It is your life and internal universe encrypted in metaphor, myth and symbolism.  
  • Identify your cast of characters.  These are the key roles you play and have played throughout your life.  They can include any of the hats you wear throughout your day, such as sibling, parent, employee, student, artist, athlete, guest, host, foreigner, etc.   They can also be key roles you have played in your past.
  • Map out your internal landscape by connecting your Shadow and your Identity through a web of riddles, codes, quests, puzzles and challenges.



1.  To connect the Shadows and their Identities.  To make the two one.
2.  To share and explore our worlds with one another.
3.  To connect with each other through finding and creating overlapping worlds.



ShadowAny part of you not being realized in the moment.

Identity - You.  Your physical, actual self in the moment, and your personal identifying information.

Cast - To externalize your internal reality via artistic expression, symbolism, puzzles, riddles, quests, and internet networking tools.

World - The patterns, themes, tensions, conflicts, myths, story lines and symbolism that define the contours of your reality.

Back Door - The virtual rabbit hole maintained by your shadow and accessed online.

Front Door - The  rabbit hole maintained by your Identity and accessed offline.

Psi-key - A dictionary of your personal symbolism.  This is your psyche's language or code.

Shadow Explorer – Someone who both casts their world and explores others'.  In ARG terms, a Shadow Explorer is both a puppet master and a passenger. 

Atlas of the Shadowsphere - The Shadowsphere is the collective reality of Shadow Explorers.  Shadow worlds will naturally intersect as more and more people explore and cast worlds.  Networks will form.  The Atlas of the Shadowsphere is simply a name for this overlapping of worlds.


Substitution Ciphers

ctrl a (for pc)

command a (for macs) 

unfiction online tools