The Interior Woman

November 27th, 2007

Sometimes women become tired and cranky while waiting for their mates to understand them. The women say, ” Why can´t they know what I think, what I want ? ” Women become fatigued with asking this question. Yet, there is a solution to this dilemma, a solution which is efficient and effective.

If a woman wants a mate who is responsive this way, she will reveal to him the secret of woman´s duality. She will tell him about the interior woman, that one who, added to herself, makes two. She does this by teaching her mate to ask her two deceptively simple questions that will make her feel seen, heard, and known.

The first question is this: What do you want? Almost everyone asks some version of this, just as a matter of course. But there is yet one more essential question, and that is: ” What does your deeper self desire?”

If one overlooks a woman’s dual nature and takes a woman at face value, one is in for a big surprise, for when the woman’s wildish nature rises from her depths and begins to assert itself, she often has interests, feelings, and ideas which are quite different from those she expressed before.

To securely weave a relationship, a woman will also ask the same two questions of her mate. As women, we learn to poll both sides of our nature and that of others as well. From the information we receive reciprocally from both sides, we can very clearly determine what is valued most and how to respond accordingly.

To love a woman, the mate must also love her untamed nature. If she takes a mate who cannot or will not love this other side, she shall be in some way dismantled and be left to limp about unrepaired.

So men as much as women, must name their dual natures. The most valued lover, the most valuable parent, the most valued friend, the most valuable ‘wilderman,’ is the one who wishes to learn. Those who are not delighted by learning, those who cannot be enticed into new ideas or experiences, cannot develop past the roadpost they rest at now. If there is but one force which feeds the root of pain, it is the refusal to learn beyond this moment.

We know that the creature Wild Man is seeking his own Earthly Woman. Afeared or not, it is an act of deepest love to allow oneself to be stirred by the wildish soul of another. In a World where humans are so afraid of ‘losing’, there are far too many protective walls against being dissolved in the numinosity of another human soul.

The mate for the wildish woman is the one who has a soulful tenacity and endurance, one who can send his own instinctual nature to peek under the tent of a woman’s soul-life and comprehend what he sees and hears there. The good match is the man who keeps returning to try and understand, who does not let himself by deterred by the sideshows on the road.

– Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Women Who Run with the Wolves

Black and shiny

November 24th, 2007

So the last few days my dreams have been full of shiny black cars. The first night I was dreaming about them, the dark man was driving and drove us into a river. But I had rolled up the windows and the car floated along until I got out easily inside some building that the river ran through.

Last night I got to drive the car, briefly, and then my husband drove it for a while. We went to a place where there was a frail young dark-haired woman, and I held her for a while before I woke up.

I guess I need to take control of the car and take care of this woman.

According to one dream interpreter:

Dreams of someone else driving your car are potent dreams. Remember, your car is your vehicle. You are meant to be the driver plotting out your course. Your car is meant to be your ticket to freedom. When someone else in in the driver’s seat it means that is symbolically the person you feel or may even wish were in charge of your life.

Look at who is in the driver’s seat. Is it a parent, a spouse, a child, a friend? How do you feel about the person driving the car? Are you happy about where they taking you? If you like the person driving the car and are happy about where you are going, this dream might point to you wishing that you handled your life like the person in the dream does. It might also be a wish for being ‘rescued’ by that person from a situation in your life that you are unhappy with.

Alternatively, if you don’t like the person driving or the course you’re on, it may feel like that person is in charge of your life, or that you feel like you’re making the same choices as someone whose life you feel is less than ideal.

Remember though, the person driving the car is a symbol. Dreaming of someone of the opposite sex driving your car can point to an animus/anima figure who you feel is in control. For women, the animus is the thinking part of the psyche, for men, the anima is usually representative of the emotions. Do you feel you are making decisions according to faulty logic or misguided emotions? This is where your feelings about the driver of the car give you the most information about the dream.

Look at dreams of cars and driving as sign posts giving you information about how you can regain control of your life and what you can do to claim your freedom and power.


For alchemists, black symbolized the beginning of the process of spiritual development. Black was the color which symbolized confusion, and a feeling of despair. It might be thought of as the color of wandering in the desert, feeling like nothing good will ever happen.

But wandering in the desert allows us to give up those things we no longer need, it allows for old parts of ourselves to die off so that new life may spring up. Even the mighty oak must first spend time as an acorn lying in darkness before it can reach up toward the sky.

“Black is the color of mud, the fertile, the basic stuff into which ideas are sown. Yet black is also the color of death, the blackening of the light. And black has even a third aspect. It is also the color associated with that world between the worlds which La Loba stands upon — for black is the color of descent. Black is a promise that you will soon know something that you did not know before.” — Clarissa Pinkhold Estes, Women Who Run with the Wolves

Becoming conscious

November 19th, 2007

“One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.” — Carl Gustav Jung

“Like the sun’s rays that cause the seed to stir within its husk, love’s radiant energy penetrates the facade of the false self, calling forth resources hidden deep within us. Its warmth wakes up the life inside us, making us want to uncurl, to give birth, to grow and reach for the light. It calls on us to break out of our shell, the personality-husk surrounding the seed potential of all that we could be. The purpose of a seed husk is to protect the tender life within until the time and conditions are right for it to burst forth. Our personality structure serves a similar function. It provides a semblance of security, as a kind of compensation for the loss of our larger being. But when love’s warming rays start to wake us up, our ego-shell becomes a barrier restricting our expansion. As the germ of life swells within us, we feel our imprisonment more acutely…..The brighter love’s radiance, the darker the shadows we encounter; the more we feel life stirring within us, the more we also feel our dead spots; the more conscious we become, the more clearly we see where we remain unconscious. None of this need dishearten us. For in facing our darkness, we bring to light forgotten parts of our being. In recognizing exactly where we have been unconscious, we become more conscious. And in seeing and feeling the ways we’ve gone dead, we start to revive and kindle our desire to live more expansively.”

– John Welwood Love and Awakening : Discovering the Sacred Path of Intimate Relationship

Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.” — Carl Gustav Jung

“The creation of something new is not accomplished by the intellect but by the play instinct acting from inner necessity. The creative mind plays with the objects it loves.” — Carl Gustav Jung

OK, my dreams are starting to bug me, so I guess it is time to turn to Jung. Don’t know if there are any Jungians among my readers, but feel free to play along if you like.

My shrink is not a Jungian type, so it’s difficult to discuss these things with him. Anyway, this dream is from a few months back, but I find it interesting and I’ve put off posting it here for a while now:

I dreamed one morning of a dark haired, bearded man with a wolf. He gave me a map, which was actually a puzzle of some sort. I felt in the dream as if he were a man of great power. The wolf growled and chased away almost everyone else from the scene, except for three of us who were left to listen and who were given the maps. We seemed to be starting a quest to search for something, although it was not clear what we were supposed to find.

So here’s one interpretation of wolf dreams that I found:

The second category of wolf dream is quite different. In these dreams the wolf is the symbol of noble wildness, freedom from societal restraints, and elemental reliance on instincts and nature. This is the women-who-run-with-the-wolves image, and it appears in the dreams of anyone who is beginning to acknowledge the powerful and natural side of themselves. This wolf often recalls a sense of power, wisdom and life-in-the-moment. There is an almost elemental freedom that temporarily is lost to us during the socialization process; but our vivid aliveness is never truly gone. Typically when an individual begins to feel stirrings of their natural self, or a power based on aliveness rather than external achievement they may dream of a wolf that is both awesomely powerful yet strangely welcoming to them.

So, in my searching around for some meaning to this dream, I then happened across “Women Who Run with the Wolves“, which I’m currently reading. I’m finding this book an interesting introduction to a lot of what I’ve never really understood about women’s, and my own, psyche. I don’t know if this is “the map” of the dream, but it seems to be at least a piece of the puzzle.

I found this quote from the book interesting today:

Classical psychological theory tends to, by absolute omission, split the human psyche away from relationship to the land on which humans live, away from knowledge of the cultural etiologies of maliase and unrest, and also to sever psyche from the politics and policies which shape the inner and outer lives of humans — as though that outer world were not just as surreal, not just as symbol-laden, not just as impacting and imposing upon one’s soul-life as the inner din. The land, the culture, and the politics in which one lives contribute every bit as much to the individual’s psychic landscape and are as valuable to consider in these lights as one’s subjective milieu.” — Clarissa Pinkopla Estes, Women Who Run With the Wolves

I’m talking politics more and more with my shrink these days, who seems to think I ought to be working in some sort of political think tank. He seems amazed again and again that I see things at the “big picture” level that I do, and am able to piece so many things into that picture.

Perhaps the puzzle is what I do with all these things I observe and know, if there is any place for that beyond my musings here and on my political mailing list. Or perhaps it is meant to spur my creativity, to take me back to doing artwork again and being active in that area. or to push me further in my therapy work with Darwin and eventually raising and training service dogs. I really don’t know yet.

But doors are beginning to appear, and the keys seem to be close at hand.