Saturday, May 21, 2011

Running With the Wolves

Release the wild woman . . .I am currently working my way through a book on archetypes and women's issues and identity called Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes.  It's a book I probably never would have picked up on my own, but having been recommended it by Goddess Leonie, I'm quite taken with it.  It's a bit academic and dense to wade through at times, but well worth any brain fumbling you might have to do (I'm certainly doing my fair share of it!).

I'm only two chapters into this book, and so am fumbling to describe it accurately.  Instead I'll let one of the blurbs do the talking:
Folklore, fairy tales and dream symbols are called on to help restore women's neglected intuitive and instinctive abilities in this earthy first book by a Jungian analyst. According to Estes, wolves and women share a psychic bond in their fierceness, grace and devotion to mate and community. This comparison defines the archetype of the Wild Woman, a female in touch with her primitive side and able to rely on gut feelings to make choices. The tales here, from various cultures, are not necessarily about wolves; instead, they illuminate fresh perspectives on relationships, self-image, even addiction.

So far, Women Who Run With the Wolves has been very thought-provoking, especially coming at it from a background of eating disordered behavior and addiction, dysfunctional family life, and a long repression of my femininity.  Empowering, too.  Interestingly, while I thought the concepts of this book might conflict with my faith, I'm finding that I can draw a lot of parallels between the archetypes and stories Estes writes about and Jesus and the Bible.  Interesting indeed!

The image at the top of this post is a mixed media creation I made in response to what I've read so far.  It was fun to respond in a visual way, as I usually just respond with words.

What's on tap for your weekend (besides the apocalypse, of course -- oh wait, that didn't pain out)? ;)


  1. Beautiful artwork, Beth. The book sounds interesting; if I didn't already have an entire bookcase waiting my perusal (including an e-book to review for Booksneeze), I'd hunt it down. Maybe in a month or two...

    Meanwhile, welcome to the Day After. Obviously, we didn't rise to meet Jesus in the air with our dearly departed loved ones. Pity; it would have made my aunt's funeral yesterday even more of a life celebration than it was. Oh well, guess we'll have to wait a while longer.

  2. I'm sorry about your aunt -- but glad we get to rock it out on this earth a little while longer. :)


"I am glad you are here with me."
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King