December 06, 2019
Whatever the secret is, we understand that it is now part of our work for life.
Women Who Run With the Wolves
By Clarissa Pinkola Estés
Battle Scars: Membership in the Scar Clan
"In small and confidential groups of women, I bring about this exchange by asking the women to gather together and to bring photographs of their mothers, aunts, sisters, mates, grandmothers, and other women who are significant to them. We line up all the pictures. Some are cracked, some peeling, some damaged by water or coffee cup rings; some have been torn in two and taped back together; some are wrapped in glassine tissue. Many have beautiful archaic writing on the back saying "Oh, you kid!" or "Love forever" or "This is me with Joe at Atlantic City" or "Here I am with my groovy roommate" or "These are the girls from the factory."
I suggest each woman begin by saying "These are the women of my bloodline" or "These are the women from whom I inherited." Women look at these pictures of their female family and friends, and with a deep compassion, begin to tell the stories and secrets of each as they know them: the big joy, the big hurt, the big travail, the big triumph in each woman's life. Throughout the time we spend together, there are many moments when we can go no further, for many, many tears lift many, many boats out of dry dock and off we all sail away together for a while."
"Whatever the secret is, we understand that it is now part of our work for life. Redemption heals a once-open wound. But there will be a scar nevertheless. With changes of weather the scar can and will ache again. That is the nature of a true grief."
La Selva Subterranea: Initiation in the Underground Forest
"There are times in a woman's life when she cries and cries and cries, and even though she has the succor and support of her loved ones, still and yet she cries. Something in this crying keeps the predator away, keeps away unhealthy desire or gain that will ruin her. Tears are part of the mending of rips in the psyche where energy has leaked and leaked away. The matter is serious, but the worst does not occur—our light is not stolen—for tears make us conscious. There is no chance to go back to sleep when one is weeping. Whatever sleep comes then is only rest for the physical body.
Sometimes a woman says, "I am sick of crying, I am tired of it, I want it to stop." But it is her soul that is making tears, and they are her protection. So she must keep on till the time of need is over. Some women marvel at all the water their bodies can produce when they weep. This will not last forever, only till the soul is done with its wise expression."