Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Wolves and Stardust

I was excited to find Women Who Run with the Wolves in my college's library last week, and every page of it holds poetry and power. Metaphors, myths, and stories are such incredible learning tools, and exploring the psyche alongside characters like Vasalisa the Wise and Baba Yaga is equal parts exciting and inspiring.

When I was little, I loved all kinds of stories and legends, and I thought that there was a very thin veil between our world and the "spirit world." I completely understand that not everyone will resonate with this sort of spirituality, so feel free to think of it metaphorically if that makes more sense to you. But based on my studies of literature, history, art, and physical health, I like to think that we are deeply connected to the earth and to each other.

In Women Who Run with the Wolves, Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes refers to the famous opening line "Once there was, and once there was not" as a "paradoxical phrase ... meant to alert the soul of the listener that this story takes place in the world between worlds" (71), and for some reason, this line made something click inside me. Suddenly, so many of the life-draining, soul-sucking, self-bashing elements of the very physical, very aggressive culture we're constantly bombarded with seemed to be significantly less important and less powerful. The "world between worlds" reached out and said, "Yes, there's this physical stuff, and yes, that's relevant, but remember what/who you actually are, okay?"

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