Thoughts on: Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola EstΓ©s

Women Who Run With The Wolves explores folk tales and myths through a jungian lens with the intent to help women reconnect to the instinctual self, the Wild Woman archetype.

πŸ“ Classic tale beginning:

β€œβ€œOnce there was, and ones there was not…” This paradoxical phrase is meant to alert the soul of the listener that this story takes place in the world between worlds where nothing is as it first seems.”

πŸ“ The animus can pollute your flow of creativity with self doubt. One with a polluted river will not be able to take compliments; β€œBeautiful? This old thing? Well, it nothing really, look at all the mistakes I made”.

A well-developed animus has excellent borders. An artist that puts up a sign outside her house: β€œI am working today and am not receiving visitors. I know you think this doesn’t mean you because you are my banker, agent, or best friend. But it does.” πŸ’ͺ🏻

πŸ“ Original stories where often morphed to fit religious beliefs. Pagan symbols became Christian symbols. Sexual parts where removed and animals became demons. 🦁 β€”> πŸ‘Ή

πŸ“ There is no more reliable sign that a person has spent time with Ugly Duckling status at some point or all her life than her inability to digest a sincere compliment. We have all know people like this… πŸ¦† 🦒

πŸ“β€œSometime educated guesses can be made about the wounds of childhood by closely inspecting what matters adults irrationally lose their tempers over”.

πŸ“ β€œIf you don’t go out in the woods, nothing will ever happen and your life will never begin” 🌲

It’s beautifully written, very mystical in its tone, and I can sense the impact this book must have had on women throughout the years. As a male reader I can’t fully relate to all aspects of it – and it’s ok, it’s not written for me -but there is a lot of value in this book nevertheless.

For me the biggest takeaways are the stories themselves and their interpretation. I also found the chapter of creativity truly profound.



Get the book right here or find other amazing reads in my reading lists!

Threats to our Creativity and Women Who Run with the Wolves

One of my favorite parts of this book revolve around the topic of self-sabotaging our own creativity:


πŸ“ β€œSome of the malevolent complexes’ favorite thieveries and punishments of women’s creativity revolve around promising the soul-self β€œtime to create” somewhere of in the foggy future. Or promising that when one has several days in a row free, then the rumpus will begin at last. It’s hogwash.”


This is just a way to suffocate the creative impulse further.


Another great way of suffocating creativity is Only-iffing; Only if I had a such and such degree then my work would be decent. Only if I receive such and such thing…


Many put their talents in the back burner:


πŸ“ β€œI’ve seen women insist on cleaning everything in the house before they could sit down to write…. and you know it’s a funny thing about house cleaning… it never comes to an end. Perfect way to stop a woman.” 🧹


How do you nourish and protect your creative life? And if you don’t; How do you procrastinate? πŸ€”


(And yes! A Review of Women Who Runs With The Wolves is coming soon!) 🐺

Favorite Books of the Year 2018: β€œ12 Rules for Life” – Jordan Peterson

Life is suffering. How do we deal with that?! We face it, we bare it. Hell is a bottomless pit and in spite of how fucked up and unfair things are, we still can make it even worse. Let’s not do that! What if we instead get our act together and prepare ourselves to face suffering when it comes knocking? That’s the better path. And we all know where we fall short.

Peterson puts the responibility of all the world and all of it’s suffering on the individual. “If we all lived properly, we will collectively flurish.” If we put ourselves in order, maybe we will do the same to the world?

πŸ“ β€œAim up, pay attention, fix what you can and don’t be arrogant in your knowledge , strive for humility, be aware of your weaknesses. Consider the murderousness of your own being before condemn and judge others. Maybe you missed the mark? And most importantly, don’t lie! Lying is the path to hell.”

The book is fantastic, but maybe more importantly – it led me to examine the world of Jungian psychology – and what a wonderful rabbit hole it is to dive into!Leading me books like these:

πŸ“– Man and his symbols

πŸ“– King, Warrior, Magician, Lover

πŸ“– Demian (kinda related..)

πŸ“– Women Who Run With with the Wolves

Read the full list of favorites or check out previous lists right here!

Are you Man Enough? Thoughts on: KING WARRIOR MAGICIAN LOVER

Do we face a crisis in masculine identity? This books claims that’s the case. The disintegration of traditional family systems being one reason – but it’s not whole story.


There are two other factors:


Lack of initiation into manhood leaves modern society to a dominance of Boy psychology.


The other factor is patriarchy which is the expression of the immature masculine. What today is called patriarchy is really β€œpuerarcy” (I.e the rule of boys) – like Lord of the flies! An expression of boy psychology and the shadow (crazy) side of mature masculinity. The authors see patriarchy as an attack on both masculinity and femininity in its fullest. Boys fear women and boys fear real men.


So how do we deal with this? In lack of rituals we have to each find our own way to Man psychology and that’s the purpose of the book. To help us on our way by showing how to access the mature masculine energies.


πŸ“ For initiation rituals to work there needs to be a death. Effective, transformative initiation slays the ego. This is not the case for our modern initiations (I.e military, criminal gangs).


πŸ“ The Patriarchal male does not welcome full masculine and feminine development. The more beauty, maturity, creativity and generativity we display the more envy, and hate we generate in superiors and peers.


πŸ“ King, Warrior, Magician, Lover being the dominant masculine archetypes. We have all archetypes within us. Like board members we need to make all of them heard.


πŸ“ We can only admire others if we have a sense of our own worthiness.


πŸ“ Kings in the ancient world was often ritually killed when their ability to live out the King archetype began to fail.


πŸ“ If we are not secure enough in our inner structure, we will rely on our performance in the outer world to bolster our self confidence.



By learning about the archetypes and their shadow versions we can assess them in ourself. I have a hard time imagining anyone reading this book without getting an aha- moment for sudden insights, whether it’s about yourself or people around you. Loved it!


I posted my full notes on my site. (LINK IN BIO.)




Archetype are you most aligned with?

Get the Book!Extended Notes

Check out myΒ reading listsΒ for more great books!