The shadow is the separation, the separate identity, that continues to recreate itself in thought and uses objects outside, or other than itself, for it's distinction as better or worse, right or wrong, good or bad, rich or poor....etc. The shadow is the mental fabrication, the fiction, of self and other or subject and object.
When there is an efforting to get to some other experience then is present, there is the projection of lacking in what is arising. The only way that can be created is by a mental view that is lacking of expansion, heart and presence with what is. That would always be the striving ambitious ego/shadow.
It could appear true, the situation may seem lacking; however, that is simply because of the view or perception that is being created through beliefs, habits of thinking formed out of mental training or conditioning.
The path is recognizing the perception as slanted, biased, dualistic and then transcending the view with pure awareness, awareness that is not informed by past or future thinking and awareness that is beyond the labels and limitations of the mental continuum.
The experience of human life is experience of sensing and judging according to preferences established from a dualistic methodology. This ' I like', and that' I don't like' arise continually in the biased mind stream as experience presents itself, moment by moment. What is liked is anything that agrees with my bias and what is discarded or rejected is anything that is not familiar and supportive of my comforts and preferences.
The shadow is the particular expression or attribute arising that is separated from my self identity and projected upon an object. Until there is acceptance of what has been rejected there cannot be self realization. Until all experience is embraced as self arising in different expressions; the shadow is splitting off and bias is present.
So when I see anyone as "not like me" then I have a story of shadow arising. In groups there is always a separation between the 'innies' and the 'outies' which is simply a more social expression of the shadow. Whatever is different, threatening to the self and is an obstacle to my worldly concerns, is rejected. The worldly concerns being; fame vs. humiliation, gain vs. loss, etc.
The human is constantly creating it's self expression in the world to dominate, to be acceptable, to make it in the field of abundance, comfort, and position and she is angry when that ability is not available to her for som